The Genocide Libel Is the Blood Libel of Our Time

In medieval Europe, Christians who hated Jews spread the lie that Jews kidnap Christian children, slaughter them, and use their blood to bake matzos for Passover. This lie became known as “the Blood Libel,” probably the greatest libel in history. Over the course of many centuries, Jews were tortured and murdered, often by being burned alive, because of the Blood Libel.

The Blood Libel was particularly odious in light of two facts: it was the Jews who, through their Bible, first outlawed human sacrifice, and one of the first laws in the Hebrew Bible is a ban on consuming blood.

For centuries, Jews had to confront the fact that all around them, throughout Europe, a vast number of people believed an enormous lie about them. Jews have to confront the same thing today. We are now living through the Second Blood Libel: the claim that the Jewish state is committing genocide. But, unlike the first Blood Libel, this libel is not the product of Christians; it is the product of Muslims and the left. The very people against whom the greatest genocide in recorded history—the Holocaust—was directed are now accused of the very same crime.

According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, in 1948, there were 1,380,000 Palestinians in Israel and the greater Palestine area, and as of 2022, there were seven million. In other words, there are now five times as many Palestinians in the Palestinian territories and in Israel as there were in 1948.

Now, as I have said all my life, truth is both a liberal and conservative value, but it has never been a left-wing value. Yet, given these figures, even leftists would be forced to acknowledge that Israel has never had the slightest inclination to perpetrate genocide against the Palestinians. People targeted for genocide do not increase their numbers—let alone by a factor of five.

What the left and their Muslim allies claim is that since Oct. 7, Israel has presumably changed its mind and decided to commit genocide against Palestinians (though, apparently, only in Gaza, not in the West Bank).

Here are some facts that explain why the charge of “Israeli genocide” is as much a lie as was the Blood Libel:

First, as Israeli officials have repeatedly stated, if Hamas released the hostages and surrendered, Israel would cease its bombing of Gaza. That was precisely the condition that the United States and its allies offered Japan and Germany: unconditional surrender, and the bombing of Japanese and German cities would immediately cease.

Second, World War II brings us more proof that the charge of Israeli genocide is a lie. No one ever accused America or Britain of committing genocide against Nazi Germany or Imperial Japan. Even those who now maintain that the Allied bombing of Dresden and other German cities was morally wrong do not accuse the United States or Britain of having committed genocide. So why is Israel so charged?

Third, during World War II, it was almost universally understood that every German death by the Allies was caused by the Nazi regime, and every Japanese death was caused by the Japanese fascist regime. Had there been no Nazi invasions of European countries and no Japanese bombing of the United States and invasions of myriad Asian countries, there would have been no World War II and therefore no bombing of German and Japanese cities. Likewise, if there were no Hamas and no Oct. 7, there would be no Israeli bombing of Gaza. Every dead Palestinian in Gaza is the result of Hamas’ actions.

Fourth, Hamas is responsible for every dead Gazan for another reason: Hamas uses Gazan civilians as human shields.

Fifth, despite far larger mass killings around the world, only Israel is widely charged with genocide.

Since the beginning of this century, the Islamic terror group Boko Haram has murdered more than 60,000 Christians in Nigeria. Not only have there been no left-wing protests, but few people even know, let alone care, about it. The Left doesn’t care because the perpetrators have been Islamists—their allies in the fight against the West—and blacks. The left cares about dead black people, whether in America or in Africa, only when they are killed by whites.

From 2003-2008, in Darfur, Sudan, the Arab regime and Arab paramilitary groups killed more than 300,000 civilians and created about 2.7 million refugees. Again, because blacks are being killed by Muslims, the left has no interest in their deaths.

One more example: In just the last few years, according to the BBC, between 700,000 and 800,000 civilians have been killed in the war between the Ethiopian government and the breakaway province of Tigray. Virtually no one knows or cares. It’s blacks killing blacks, after all.

Sixth, the United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has just revised its child fatality figure in the Gaza war sharply downward. On May 6, it reported more than 14,500 deaths; two days later, it reported 7,797. OCHA also revised its figure for female fatalities from more than 9,500 down to 4,959. In other words, all the mainstream Western media have reported as truth the lies Hamas announced about the numbers of Gazan women and children killed by Israeli bombs. (However, even the original false figures don’t come close to substantiating the genocide charge.)

Even if the media give these new numbers the attention it has given to the alleged “genocide,” it will not end a single anti-Israel demonstration or cause one Israel-hater to cease accusing Israel of genocide. Since the accusation was never based on truth, truth will not end it.

The only genocide in the Israel-Palestinian war is the one Hamas and Iran seek to perpetrate against the Jews of Israel.

Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and columnist. His commentary on Numbers, the fourth volume of “The Rational Bible,” his five-volume commentary on the first five books of the Bible, will be released in November 2024 and is available now for presale on Amazon. He is the co-founder of Prager University and may be contacted at dennisprager.com.


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About Dennis Prager

Dennis Prager is a nationally syndicated radio talk-show host and columnist. His latest books include The Rational Passover Haggadah and The Rational Bible, a commentary on the book of Genesis. His film, "No Safe Spaces," is now available on DVD and BluRay. He is the founder of Prager University and may be contacted at dennisprager.com.

Photo: Women hold signs and make the hand symbol of the Egyptian revolution during a protest outside the Israeli Consulate in Istanbul on July 19, 2014. Thousands of people gathered to call for the end to the war in Gaza. Protesters burned Israeli flags and chanted "Allah Akbar," calling Israel and the US 'killers'. Photo by Jodi Hilton/NurPhoto (Photo by Jodi Hilton/NurPhoto) (Photo by NurPhoto/Corbis via Getty Images)