Bernard-Henri Levy called ‘Jewish dog’ during visit to Libya

Misrata - A visit to Libya by French writer and intellectual Bernard-Henri Levy has led to controversy over who invited him and escorted him amid a civil war in the country. Protests erupted near Tarhuna, southeast of Tripoli, and one man shouted “Jewish dog” at the French writer's convoy, according to video posted online. Levy is Jewish. 

Levy wrote on Twitter that he is doing a reporting trip to the “killing fields” of Libya. He posted a photo of what he said were Libyan police protecting a free press. In the photo, men with AK-47s and covered faces can be seen, apparently protecting him. “So different from the thugs who tried to block my convoy on my way back to Misrata.”
Turkey’s pro-government Anadolu media appeared to highlight the “Jewish” aspect of the trip. He was called a “controversial French Jewish intellectual” in a headline on the pro-AK Party website, which is one of the main backers of Turkey’s militarist government. Ankara's ruling regime has been escalating the conflict in Libya in recent months, shipping Syrian mercenaries recruited from refugee camps to Libya, and also sending drones and weapons to Tripoli. Libya is in the middle of a civil war between the Turkish-backed government in Tripoli and the Egyptian-backed forces in eastern Libya, called the Libyan National Army. 

Turkish media slammed Bernard-Henri Levy for being Jewish. It noted that the Interior Minister of Tripoli had “denied reports of inviting [the] controversial French Jewish intellectual.” The Government of the National Accord appeared to say that the journalist had come without an official government invitation and that the “public has the absolute right to react to any public event.” Anadolu noted that the Tripoli government might take harsh measures against any party involved in Levy’s visit.

The Tripoli government, known as the GNA, has powerful lobbyists linked with Turkey that work in Western capitals to drum up support. The way in which reports of Levy’s visit were tinged with antisemitism appears in contrast to the portrayal of the Tripoli government as the moderate “UN-backed government.” Critics of the GNA claim it is infiltrated by the Muslim Brotherhood, which is known for its antisemitism.

“The visit by the Jewish writer, who is known for his staunch support to Israel, has triggered uproar in Libya, amid calls for probing those who granted him a visa into the country,” Anadolu noted, adding that “Libya’s Ambassador to France Hamed al-Houderi denied issuing a visa for the Jewish writer.” The use of the term “Jewish” in each instance describing Levy in this Turkish media report appears to be unique. When Anadolu reports about other French writers it does not refer to them by their religion, such as noting if they are “Christian” or not.

Source: jpost