Gilad Atzmon exists now as nothing but a pariah to both the anti-Zionist community in the west and to the world at large. His statements such as "I'm not going to say whether it is right or not to burn down a synagogue, I can see that it is a rational act" draw a barrage of outrage from all quarters, and he is no longer welcome at any of the standard locations for British anti-Zionist activism and debate (the SWP's Marxism festival, Electronic Intifada and so on).
In this one man is embodied the Zionist dual criticism levelled at those who stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people - you are an anti-Semite, or if you are Jewish you are self-loathing. He takes it further than any other relatively mainstream, or at least non-fascist, figure in the West by verging on Holocaust denial.
However, I believe there is more to Atzmon than meets the eye. Isn't this too perfect - an Israeli-born Jew, who is publicly ambivalent about the authenticity of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and defends to the hilt the right of Palestinian self-defence? Isn't he the perfect western Zionist bogeyman?
This, I think, is a conscious choice by Atzmon. As a member of the same group that he is rounding on, he prevents any generalisation of the criticisms against him. While every anti-Zionist Jew might be self-loathing, they're certainly not anti-Semitic. Contrast this to the anti-Semitic characterisation of every anti-Zionist African-American, for example. Gilad Atzmon dies, so that Ali Abunimah may live - or at least sign a strident statement denouncing his views.
His role is that of vanishing mediator, standing alone in a third place so that Zionist and anti-Zionist alike may hurl rotten fruit - and any Zionist accusation of anti-Semitism may be countered by waving a piece of paper that denounces the rank anti-Semite Atzmon.
Gilad Atzmon stands as a Jewish Messiah, dying for the sins of gentiles and their forefathers. Come, impale Atzmon with a lance upon the cross! Laurie Penny! Richard Seymour! Denounce! Cast him into outer darkness! Cleanse thyselves of the shame of over 700 years! Wash your hands in the blood of this last Jew, and erase the stain of centuries! Walk into the pure light of philosemitic anti-Zionism!