Posted in .

Scott Levin Letter to the Editor of the Boulder Daily Camera: Denying Israel’s Right to Exist is Antisemitism

  • July 31, 2023


In response to an op-ed published last week in the Boulder Daily Camera written by Tom Mayer, an emeritus professor at CU Boulder in which the author attacked Israel for its recent incursion in Jenin and questioning the very legitimacy of the State of Israel, ADL Mountain States Regional Director Scott Levin submitted this letter to the editor. Levin pointed out that while criticism of Israeli policies is generally not antisemitic, stating that Jews do not have a right to self-determination in their ancestral homeland is antisemitic. These are troubling times in Israel but there should be no mistake: Israel has a right to exist.

Read the letter here, or keep scrolling to read the text of the letter below.



There are far too many inaccuracies to respond to in Tom Mayer’s July 18 guest opinion about Israel’s recent military operation in Jenin. Yet, his demonization of Israel and Zionism merits a response.

While it is true that criticism of Israeli policies does not always equal antisemitism, Mayer goes well beyond a critique of the Jewish State into a full-blown assault on the legitimacy of Israel’s existence. One can advocate for Palestinian rights, and even the creation of a Palestinian state, without delegitimizing Israel. An assault on Zionists and Zionism — which is defined as the right of the Jewish people to self-determination in their historic homeland of Israel — is an assault on the Jewish identity of the vast majority of Jews around the world and their supporters. It is, quite simply, a form of antisemitism.

It is irresponsible for Mayer to ignore the provocation that led to Israel’s action in Jenin and to shift blame away from perpetrators of violence and antisemitism onto Israel and Zionists. His seeming support for Palestinian “resistance” makes no distinction for the type of “resistance,” including the indiscriminate use of rockets by various Gaza terror groups.

It is unfortunate that instead of offering solutions to the complexity of the conflict that would ensure security, self-determination and dignity for both Israelis and Palestinians, Mayer has used this newspaper to spread falsehoods about Israel and engage in hate-filled attacks against those who support its existence as a Jewish state.

Scott Levin, ADL Mountain States Regional Director, Denver