After the release of The Case for Israel: Democracy’s Outpost in October 2008, I traveled extensively throughout North America engaging audiences in post-screening discussions. I made several alarming observations: too many good and decent people were unaware of the resurgence of lethal Jew-hatred in regions around the world. Many were also unaware of the history of complicity between Islamist leaders and the Nazi regime during the Holocaust, as well as the Islamists’ goal to continue Hitler’s work after the fall of the Nazi regime.
Without that context, people mistakenly believe that the virulent hatred toward Israel is directly related to policies and/or territory held by Israel. They blame Israel and reason that if only Israel would make itself smaller and weaker, that the hatred would dissipate. By examining the contemporary manifestations of lethal Jew-hatred against the backdrop of history, the viewer gains vital insight into the driving forces inspiring the campaigns which seek to wipe the Jewish homeland off the face of the earth and to murder Jews wherever they can be found.
The Zionist pioneer and activist Leon Pinsker introduced the term “Judeophobia” in 1882 in his booklet Auto-Emancipation. I use the term “Judeophobia” in the title of the film rather than “anti-Semitism” because Judeophobia is a more suitable term to convey the intellectualized and ideologized hatred of Jews that is encompassed in the anti-Jewish phenomenon flourishing in many parts of the world today.
Judeophobia is a complicated, heterogeneous phenomenon and I invested a significant amount of time in researching current analyses by leading experts in the field. I interviewed 70 experts—who happened to be Jewish, Christian, Hindu, and Muslim—from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, England, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Syria, United States, and Venezuela in the fields of history, law, literature, media, philosophy, political science, psychology, and sociology. Their knowledge and insights deftly illuminate the threats and consequences of Judeophobia in its current state. Personally, the experience of producing and directing this film was transformative.
Unmasked Judeophobia is meant as a clarion call, as a tekiah gedolah blast. In Biblical times, tekiah was sounded on the shofar to raise awareness, to sound the alarm, to assemble all good people to action. We live in historic times, a time of inversion and a time when state-sanctioned calls for killing Jews and wiping the nation-state of the Jewish people off the map is regarded as unremarkable; when Jew-haters at anti-Israel demonstrations on the streets of every continent in the world can chant “Send the Jews back to the ovens” and “Hitler was right” without repercussion. My hope is that viewers will have their individual and collective consciousness raised.
Unmasked Judeophobia is a powerful and effective educational resource. Host a screening for your community, conference, organization, school, church or synagogue. For details and to obtain permission to host a screening, contact us here.