So, veteran White House reporter Helen Thomas retired (about thirty years too late) after telling Jews to "go home to Poland and Germany".
What did it for Helen Thomas was not her "anti-Israel comments". After all, no one ever has to resign for what they say about Israel. No, what did it for Helen Thomas was that her comments made express reference to "The Jews" and therefore could be pointedly and properly categorised as anti-Semitic.
It wasn't just Israel that should be liberated or that "Palestine" should be created - it was "The Jews" who should "get the hell out".
That's why Helen Thomas had to go. Even in this day and age, an expressly anti-Jewish attack in mainstream media is still just enough to force an early retirement and a flood of sympathy from the Guardian. (Unless you're Richard Ingrams and just keep soldiering on).
But here's the irony: it's those very same Leftist institutions - the BBC, The Guardian and suchlike - who most vehemently stress that being anti-Israel is not the same as being anti-Semitic and yet it is they who are the quickest to forget that distinction when it suits them.
On the BBC/Guardian logic, if Helen Thomas's remarks are merely "anti-Israel", thus conflating attacks on Jews with attacks on Israel at a stroke, why is the singling out of Israel for special abuse over and above all other nations - brilliantly chronicled by William Shawcross here - not anti-Jewish?
It may or may not be on a true analysis. But, on any view, the linguistic logic of Israel's most vehement detractors breaks down when they fail to draw the subtle semantic distinctions that they always plead be recognised by everyone else.
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Update: Mark Steyn's take on the situation is here. And as both he and Fraser Nelson have noted recently, there is no better time to re-read the great article by my friend Tom Gross, "The Forgetten Rachels", a seminal piece published in the Spectator in 2005.
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Further update: Mark Steyn links to my article here, in an excellent new piece.
I would also recommend this moving piece from Closet Conservative.