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In August 2006, author Jostein Gaarder sparked a controversy in Norway after publishing an op-ed "God's chosen people" in the Aftenposten, one of the country's major newspapers, in which he produced scathing criticism of Israel which at the time was engaged in the 2006 Lebanon War. He called for, among other things, for the world to stop recognizing the State of Israel, just like it, according to him, had not recognized the Taliban regime in Afghanistan or the Apartheid regime in South Africa. The name of the op-ed alludes to the concept of "choseness" in Judaism.

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  • God's chosen people (Jostein Gaarder op-ed)
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  • In August 2006, author Jostein Gaarder sparked a controversy in Norway after publishing an op-ed "God's chosen people" in the Aftenposten, one of the country's major newspapers, in which he produced scathing criticism of Israel which at the time was engaged in the 2006 Lebanon War. He called for, among other things, for the world to stop recognizing the State of Israel, just like it, according to him, had not recognized the Taliban regime in Afghanistan or the Apartheid regime in South Africa. The name of the op-ed alludes to the concept of "choseness" in Judaism.
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  • In August 2006, author Jostein Gaarder sparked a controversy in Norway after publishing an op-ed "God's chosen people" in the Aftenposten, one of the country's major newspapers, in which he produced scathing criticism of Israel which at the time was engaged in the 2006 Lebanon War. He called for, among other things, for the world to stop recognizing the State of Israel, just like it, according to him, had not recognized the Taliban regime in Afghanistan or the Apartheid regime in South Africa. The name of the op-ed alludes to the concept of "choseness" in Judaism. The text was perceived by scholars such as Yehuda Bauer and of the Simon Wiesenthal Center as deeply antisemitic. Subsequently Gaarder clarified his views on Israel. Specifically, he said that he does not question Israel's right to exist, "but not as an apartheid state". Gaarder repeatedly dismissed suggestions that his article was anti-Semitic. In 2011, he wrote a new piece in Aftenposten where he regretted that he had used some thoughtless phrases that could be misinterpreted as anti-Judaistic.
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