I really did not want to talk about this.
More than that, I expected this topic to quickly die out because of how absurd it is.
But its nearly been three months and people are still talking about it, so I might as well just say what I have to because I feel it needs to be said.
No, Attack on Titan is NOT antisemitic.
Honestly, when people first started talking about this I was surprised by how a lot of people appear to be misreading the manga in such a big way.
I think I should start from the beginning, when Chapter 114 of Attack on Titan was released.
This chapter detailed the backstory of the main villain of the series, Zeke, and his true motivations.
It is revealed here that because of all the prejudice he has suffered for being an Eldian, Zeke has come to believe that all Eldians are born to suffer.
As a result, he decides it would be best to euthanize his entire race by sterilizing them so no more children can be born.
After this chapter was released, many people used this backstory as proof that the Attack on Titan writer, Hajime Isayama, is antisemitic.
Along with this, they used other pieces of evidence, like that the main character, Eren, is supposedly in support of Zeke’s plan.
Then there is the idea that Eldians are based off the Jewish people so, because they can turn into monsters, this is an analogy for Jews being monsters.
And finally there is the fact that Isayama based the characters of Dot Pyxis off Akiyama Yoshifuru, a general who has been accused of war crimes, and Erwin Smith off Erwin Rommel, a Nazi general.
However, to believe all of this so called evidence of antisemitism is to mistakenly look over some rather obvious proof to the contrary.
Because Zeke’s backstory and motivations are not Isayama showing he believes some races should be wiped out, it is him creating a cautionary tale about the damage racism can have on individual people and entire cultures.
Zeke’s plan to euthanize Eldians was mostly created by the racism he suffered from Marleyans for being Eldian.
Without this racism, Zeke would never have come up with this cruel plan, or had the means to put that plan into motion.
Then there is the evidence that Eren is now siding with Zeke’s euthanasia plan, which is highly flawed evidence because it has been hinted multiple times that Eren is just using Zeke to achieve his own goals and will actually not go through with the plan.
Then there is the whole theory about the analogy to Jews being monsters, which is just ridiculous.
Yes, The Eldians can turn into Titans and they do wear arm bands like the Nazis forced the Jews to wear during the holocaust.
But might I remind you that the Eldians are the heroes of this story?
If Eldians are truly meant to represent the Jews and the Marleyeans are meant to represent the Nazis, then this paints Jewish people in a positive light with the heroes being representative of them.
Onto the argument that Isayama based the characters of Pyxis and Erwin off war criminals, this piece of evidence is actually true because Isayama has said he respects Akiyama Yoshifuru, who Pyxis is based off.
However, when you look at how Pyxis is portrayed in the series, things get complicated.
Isayama does not portray Pyxis as some paragon of virtue, but as a flawed human being who is willing to go down in history as the butcher if it achieves his goals.
Yes, Isayama’s idealization of Yoshifuru may be serverly misplaced, but at least through Pyxis he highlights his various flaws.
Then there is Erwin being based off the Nazi general Erwin Rommel, whose knowledge and opinion of the holocaust is questionable and he may have been involved in a plot to kill Hitler.
Not only this, but Isayama also does not portray Erwin as a perfect individual either but, like Pyxis, a highly flawed human being, despite being on our protagonists’ side.
Finally there is a bulk load of counter evidence to go against this idea of Attack on Titan being racist and antisemitic.
The Marleyeans are constantly portrayed in a negative light for their horrific actions, propaganda is frowned upon in the series, and our protagonists actually take down a monarchy with fascist elements in the Uprising Arc.
In conclusion, I think there can be no doubt that Attack on Titan is not antisemitic.
There is just too much evidence to the contrary.
People have just massively misinterpreted many of the ideas in the story and have not looked at the evidence which directly contradicts their misinterpretation of the series being antisemitic.
To me, Attack on Titan remains a series that provides commentary on the horrors of war and the extreme consequences of racism and persecution.
If you still think the series and its writer are antisemitic then I beg you to please read the story over again, and you will hopefully see that this is far from the case.
I really did not want to talk about this.