UK daily revises op-ed that said settlements are ‘the trouble with Jews today’
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UK daily revises op-ed that said settlements are ‘the trouble with Jews today’

The Independent changes phrasing in opinion piece by philosopher Slavoj Zizek after allegations he used anti-Semitic language

Slavoj Zizek speaks at The London School of Economics, April 20, 2016. (Ray Tang/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images via JTA)
Slavoj Zizek speaks at The London School of Economics, April 20, 2016. (Ray Tang/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images via JTA)

JTA — The Independent daily in the UK revised an op-ed that called West Bank settlements “the trouble with Jews today.”

The change was made Thursday to an op-ed by the influential philosopher Slavoj Zizek published two days earlier titled “There is no conflict between the struggle against anti-Semitism and the struggle against Israeli occupation.”

It contained an apparent defense of Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of Britain’s Labour Party, from allegations of anti-Semitism.

The original language said that “the trouble with Jews today is that they are now trying to get roots in a place which was for thousands of years inhabited by other people.”

After amending the article, the paper wrote at the top of the piece: “We acknowledge that an earlier version of this piece did not meet our own editorial standards.”

Following an outcry and allegations that the language used was anti-Semitic, The Independent replaced the phrase “the trouble with Jews today” with “the trouble with the settlement project today.”

In the op-ed, Zizek, whom the German Der Spiegel newspaper in 2015 described as “one of Europe’s boldest intellectuals and also a self-avowed leftist,” also condemned British Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis’s warning last month about anti-Semitism in the Labour Party ahead of the December 12 election as “ethically disgusting.”

Zizek also wrote: “I, of course, indisputably reject anti-Semitism in all its forms.”

The Independent was established in 1986 and its digital editions are accessed more than 20 million times a month, according to the Newsworks website.

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