In her blog posting, Connie Bruck falsely labels NGO Monitor a “right-wing” organization (“The Emergency Committee for Israel Cries Wolf,” March 5, 2012). In fact, as our activities clearly demonstrate, NGO Monitor is an independent, non-partisan research institution examining the activities and funding of political advocacy groups claiming a human rights mandate in the region. Such careless and ideological labeling is entirely inconsistent with The New Yorker’s reputation for quality, and is particularly disturbing in an article ostensibly advocating open and civil discourse.

Furthermore, Bruck is wrong to casually dismiss the clear links between the use of the term “Israel firsters,” and charges of dual-loyalty and other forms of antisemitic prejudice and discrimination. The European Union Working Definition of Antisemitsm includes “Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nation.”

According to Bruck, and her source MJ Rosenberg, in contrast to all other forms of racism, in the case of antisemitism it is the victims who are told whether or not they should be offended.

Professor Gerald M. Steinberg