Making October 7 About Antisemitism To Hide Israel’s Abuses

Caitlin Johnstone
4 min readJun 18, 2024


Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix

Listen to a reading of this article (reading by Tim Foley):

They keep telling you October 7 happened because Hamas hates Jews because they don’t want you asking questions about Israel’s actions which provoked the attack.

The October 7 attack was unquestionably provoked by Israel’s extensively documented abuses of the Palestinian people, but whenever you say this you get Israel supporters shrieking “How dare you JUSTIFY the actions of Hamas?? Nothing could JUSTIFY such a savage attack!” It’s a good example of how empire apologia in the 2020s largely consists of deliberately conflating the words “provoked” and “justified”.

Whether or not the October 7 attack was justified is a mental judgement; the answer to that question will always necessarily be entirely comprised of subjective opinion. Which means if the empire apologist can drag the debate kicking and screaming into the question of whether it was justified they’ve actually got a leg to stand on, since then they’re only dealing with feelings and opinions. If you keep the focus on the unassailably factual claim that the attack was provoked then they’ve got nothing, because the facts are all squarely against them.

Keeping this distinction conscious clears up a lot of imperial spin, whether you’re talking about the Hamas attack, Russia’s entirely provoked invasion of Ukraine, or the war the empire is trying to provoke with China over Taiwan.

The imperial spin machine is smearing people who ask inconvenient questions about October 7 with accusations of “October 7 denialism”, a phrase which is deliberately worded to invoke the emotional response that people have to Holocaust denialism.

The thing about this charge is that, unlike Holocaust denialism, nobody actually denies that the October 7 attack happened, they just dispute certain aspects of the mainstream narrative. This is being framed as something sinister and nefarious, despite the completely undisputed fact that Israel has been caught circulating many lies about what happened on October 7.

It’s hilarious how often I get Israel apologists in my comments going “How can you oppose Israel after what Australia did to the Aboriginal people??”

It’s hilarious because of how fast these freaks will drop their “Jews are indigenous to Israel” schtick and admit that it’s just another genocidal western settler-colonialist project the millisecond they think they can score a few internet points by doing so.

US officials voicing “concerns” about humanitarian conditions in Gaza is like someone holding your head underwater while mumbling “Help, someone please help, this poor soul is drowning.”

A decaying, dystopian civilization with an active genocide in Gaza, nuclear brinkmanship with Russia and a looming global conflict with China, and all you’re encouraged to discuss politically is whether Donald Trump is a brave hero sent by Jesus or a big meanie Cheeto man.

It’s not just that you can’t criticize the actions of a foreign state without being smeared as a Jew-hating Nazi — you can’t even criticize your own country’s military allegiances to that state, or your own country’s media for its journalistic malpractice when covering it.

That’s about as bat shit insane a political dynamic as you could possibly come up with. But here in the western empire it’s regarded by the political-media class as not only normal but actually quite healthy.

Arguing that anti-Zionism is antisemitism because most Jews are Zionists is exactly the same as arguing that because most westerners have been propagandized into accepting western warmongering, opposing western warmongering means you must have a seething fascistic hatred of western people.

Jews get indoctrinated just like everyone else throughout the western empire. Their being Jewish doesn’t magically exempt them from the fact that the human mind is easily manipulated, and that the western empire pours more energy into mass-scale manipulation than any other power structure in history. Saying it’s hateful to oppose the imperial depravity that people were indoctrinated into accepting in the middle east is like saying it’s hateful to oppose the warmongering against China that the public is currently being indoctrinated into supporting here in Australia.

Most people in our society are deeply indoctrinated into supporting the agendas of the massive globe-spanning power structure we live under. This is true regardless of what religion they happen to belong to.


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