Shalom Life | August 08, 2014

Woody Allen Defends Jews, Israel in Latest Interview

In an interview with Israel's Channel 2 news, the acclaimed director said "many people disguise their negative feelings towards Jews" as anti-Semitism

By: Brittany Lauton

Published: October 17th, 2013 in Culture » Film » News

Woody Allen doesn't think it’s harder to be a Jew in America these days, but has cast his views against "the low standards of tolerance for Jews all over the world."

By comparison, Allen, who was interviewed by Israel’s Channel 2 in France on Monday, says that "America’s been a very tolerant country." Allen was in France promoting his latest film, Blue Jasmine, which stars Cate Blanchett and Alec Baldwin.

However, to that, the 77-year-old adds, "I do feel there are many people that disguise their negative feelings toward Jews, disguise it as anti-Israel criticism, political criticism, when in fact what they really mean is that they don’t like Jews."

Despite not believing in organized religion, Allen confirmed that Judaism is "an element that will remain in my life permanently" in a 2012 interview with Yedioth Ahronoth, translated by the Forward’s JJ Goldberg.

Though Allen has never been to Israel ("I assume we’ll go and visit Israel soon. There’s no way around it."), he is passionate about the country. In the 2012 interview, he said, "I support Israel and I’ve supported it since the day it was founded."

Despite varied levels of enthusiasm for Israel’s response to various attacks, Allen concludes that he doesn’t "expect Israel to react perfectly every time and that doesn’t change the fact that it’s a wonderful, marvellous country."

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