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The Demons of Europe (Why the Crapweasels hate America and Israel. {For serious minds only!})
Commentary Magazine ^ | January 2004 | Josef Joffe

Posted on 01/04/2004 1:52:26 PM PST by quidnunc

At the World Economic Forum in Davos earlier this year, a demonstrator wearing a mask of Donald Rumsfeld and an outsized yellow Star of David (inscribed with the word "Sheriff") was accompanied by a cudgel-wielding double of Ariel Sharon; the two of them were followed by a huge rendition of the golden calf. The message? The United States is in thrall to the Jews/Israelis; both are the acolytes of Mammon; and both represent the avant-garde of a pernicious global capitalism.

This is the face of the new anti-Semitism. Lacking certain murderous elements of the classical type, it is nevertheless rife with some of its most ancient motifs. What is new about it is the projection of these old fantasies onto two new targets: Israel and America. Indeed, the United States is an anti-Semitic fantasy come true: the Protocols of the Elders of Zion in living color. Do not Jews, their first loyalty to Israel, control the Congress, the Pentagon, the banks, the universities, and the media? Having captured the "hyperpower," do they not finally rule the world? That at least seems to be the consensus of the Europeans, who in a recent EU poll declared Israel and the United States, in that order, to be the greatest threats to world peace.

Yet the issue is more complicated than the reconditioning of an old myth. Almost every European critic of those two nations will vehemently reject the charge of anti-Semitism or anti-Americanism. Since the behavior of Israel and the United States always offers plenty to criticize, the issue is not easy to resolve. What is the difference between criticism and anti-Semitism or anti-Americanism? What, indeed, are the elements of any "anti-ism"?

At all times and in all places, there are usually five such elements. The first is stereotyping: indulging in general statements that attribute negative qualities to the target group as a whole. The second is denigration: the ascription of moral inferiority to a whole group, traceable in the last resort to an irreducibly evil nature. The third element is obsession, the idee fixe that the target group is both omnipresent and omni-causal — an invisible force that explains all misery, whether dying cattle or failing businesses. The fourth step is demonization. Here the key theme is conspiracy: thus, Jews want to sully our racial purity, or subvert our sacred traditions or, above all, to achieve domination. Finally comes the determination to seek an end to troubles by eliminating the alleged source of torment, be it by exclusion, extrusion, or annihilation.

In polite Western society, it is infra dig (beneath one's dignity) to say: "Yes, I hate the Jews." Not so, "I hate Sharon" or "Israelis behave like Nazis." At this juncture, one begins to muse about displacement, about the human habit to clobber one object while actually targeting another, the other being usually protected by fearsome power, whether symbolic or real. Lashing out at an Israeli leader does not risk the raised eyebrows that demonizing his people, let alone Jews as such, would do in a post-racist age.

How then, can one tell the difference between criticism and "anti-ism"? One test is language. Take this statement: "Demolishing the houses of the families of terrorists is morally wrong because it imputes guilt by association, and politically wrong because it pushes more people into the arms of Hamas." Such a statement is neither anti-Israel nor anti-Semitic; it might even be correct. By contrast, "the Israelis are latter-day Nazis who want to drive the Palestinians from their land in order to realize an imperialist biblical dream" inhabits a very different order of discourse, ascribing evil to an entire collective and, in its equation of Israelis and Nazis, revealing an obsessive need for moral denigration. In our era, the word "Nazi" itself stands for boundless evil. To apply the label to Jews or Israelis is to inflict maximal moral damage on them.

A second test is the test of selectivity. If it is always Israel that is the target of indignation or incrimination, but not Russia's war against Chechnya with about 60,000 dead, China's bloody repression of Tibetans and Muslims, tribal genocide in Central Africa, or the persecution of whites in Zimbabwe, then we are in the presence of a double standard. This strengthens the presupposition of anti-Israelism, if not of anti-Semitism.[1]

Indisputably, Israel has assumed a special place in contemporary demonology. At the more extreme end, Israelis have been characterized as oppressors and colonizers, as arrogant settlers and crazed religious fanatics, as Nazi-like killers of women and children. In this sense, Israel has become an obsession that cannot be explained away by recourse to anti-colonialism, a standard fixture of the post-1960's Western mind. Nor can the Western liberal habit of siding with the underdog explain why the Russian war against Chechnya has attracted only perfunctory condemnation and French interventions in Africa almost none while an Israeli retaliatory incursion into the West Bank city of Jenin in 2002 should have been branded instantly as a "massacre" of "thousands" before the facts were in (the facts being that 24 Israeli soldiers died along with 52 Palestinians, mostly combatants). As in all cases of anti-ism, it was the prejudice that selected the facts, not the facts that informed the judgment.

Nor can the opprobrium attaching to Israel be explained in terms of the Palestinians' noble cause of liberation and statehood. For neither the means nor the end is noble: suicide bombs seek to murder as many civilians as possible, while the noble cause itself is articulated in terms of politicide — i.e., the elimination of the state of Israel. Militarily, the Palestinians are the weaker party, but their ultimate objective remains a total one, whether expressed directly by Hamas and Hizballah and Islamic Jihad or indirectly by PLO officials when speaking to kindred audiences. That these cold facts are virtually ignored in European discourse is deeply suggestive of an old obsession.

The new obsession might be called "elimination-lite." If the anti-Semitism of yore sought to get rid of the Jews, either physically or by means of their complete assimilation, the "lite" version holds that if one could only weaken and push back Israel, only somehow force Israel to retract its occupation-cum-settlements, then, presto!, "the" Middle East conflict would be solved. Less reductionism — that is, less fixation on single causes — would reveal a larger set of problems and a wider tally of "root causes." These would include the many dysfunctional elements of Arab political reality that are unrelated to the Palestinian issue, including hegemonial strife among shifting contenders, barely suppressed civil war between believers and secularists (and between one sort of believer and others, e.g., Sunni and Shiite), failed economies that offer no future to millions of young people, minimal interaction with other Arab economies, severely rationed political participation, a culture inhospitable to introspection, blatant inequalities between the sexes and among sects and classes.

Is all of this Israel's fault, too? Propinquity to the "Zionist entity" and the dynamics of regional enmity might be invoked to help explain the dynastic dictatorship of Syria; it cannot explain the mayhem in faraway Algeria. Adducing Israeli behavior in the occupied territories, brutal as it sometimes is, cannot explicate the sheer hatred directed against leaders like Ariel Sharon, the moral indignation directed against Israel but rarely against Palestinian terrorists, the reflexively one-sided apportionment of blame when there is so much blame to pass around.

But if Israel is not a "shitty little country" (in the words of a French ambassador at the Court of St. James), it is considered somehow inherently guilty — as Jews were seen to be inherently guilty through the ages. Hence, terror against Israeli civilians, even if briefly condemned, is placed in the context of Israeli conquest and oppression and so alleged to call for a "deeper" understanding. In fact, the higher the toll, the greater terrorism's validation in terms of the injustice and despair that are supposedly driving it. Thus, softly-softly, does murder spell out its own moral justification. Nietzsche would clap his hands in delight over this transvaluation of values, which ascribes moral worth to the most reprehensible of deeds: the massacre of innocents.

How has Israel come to be seen as the source of all misery? Why the denigration? The route to anti-ism is not a straight and narrow one. A cynical insight has been ascribed to the Israeli psychiatrist Zvi Rex: "The Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz." Like the survivors of the Holocaust, the state of the Jews is a constant reminder of the moral failure not only of Germany, but of Europe as a whole.

The Germans did it, and Europe either connived or looked on — with some notable counter-examples like Denmark and those many individuals elsewhere who risked their lives for their Jewish compatriots. To consult Freud again, moral surrender to evil creates an irrepressible urge to shift blame from perpetrators and bystanders to victims and their heirs. The psychic mechanism goes like this: if the Jews could be shown to behave like Nazis, they would no longer have a special moral claim on us; if they are as bad as our forefathers, we can unshoulder our own inherited burden of guilt.

Add to this the culpability felt by the French over Vichy and colonial repression in Algeria, by the Belgians over their bloody reign in the Congo, by the Spaniards, Italians, and Portuguese over their fascist pasts, by the Dutch over their (carefully concealed) collaboration with the Nazis, by the Swedes and the Swiss over their "pro-German neutrality," and there are plenty of incubated guilt feelings to spread around. Clearly, Israel delivers an excellent canvas for the projection of blame. When a former government minister, Nobert Blum, calls Israel's anti-terror strategy a "Vernichtungsfeldzug" against the Palestinians, a war of annihilation, using a term normally applied to the Nazi war against the Jews and other "subhumans" in the East, the message of his subconscious rings out loud and clear. Thus, not so softly-softly, are words forged into weapons of self-rehabilitation.

Nor is Germany the only player in this game. Much of Western Europe has drawn its post-Holocaust identity from the rejection of the darkest part of the Continent's proud history. The battle cry of postwar Europe is "Never Again!," as Alain Finkielkraut has put it: a "no" to fuehrers, duces, and caudillos, to colonialism, conquest, and discrimination against the "Other." To regain moral stature, Europeans have turned anti-fascism into a doctrine of worldly transcendence, with a secular decalogue that reads, in part: thou shalt not pray to the discredited gods of nationalism; thou shalt not practice power politics; thou shalt relinquish sovereignty and rejoice in cooperation. From this moral stand it is but a short, tricky step to redemption's darker side. Do not the Israelis, of all people, behave in the evil ways we have transcended? Well, then, are we not better than those who so gratingly remind us of our unworthy past?

This is not anti-Semitism, but it is a derivative phenomenon. The inherited moral burden cries out for projection, and Israel, fighting for its just cause with sometimes unjust means but with far more restraint than Russia against the Chechnyans or Algeria against its Islamists, makes for a perfect target. Vilification spells moral relief because it redresses the moral balance — and so the verdict against Israel has to be "guilty."

But the story does not end here. Recall Jose Bove, the French foe of globalization who in 1999 led a "deconstructivist" mob against a McDonald's to protest what that company was doing to his country's culinary culture. In March 2002, this same Bove showed up in Ramallah, denouncing Israel and declaiming his support for Yasir Arafat, whose headquarters was surrounded by Israeli tanks. Never mind that the Israeli army had not just dropped in for a little oppression but rather to defend against mounting terrorist attacks. What the scene suggested was that Arafat's cause was Bove's cause. Here was a spokesman of the anti-globalization movement conflating globalization with Americanization (McDonald's) and extending his loathing of both to Israel.

The routine pairing of Israel and America is surely the most interesting new motif in our old story, and has been well dissected by Natan Sharansky in these pages.[2] How to interpret it? Again, one must beware of equating criticism with anti-ism and instead look for the classic telltale signs. They are there in abundance.

Stereotyping and denigration. The indictment of the United States comes in three parts. First, America is morally flawed. It executes its own people, and it likes to bomb other people. It is the land of intolerant fundamentalist religion. Selfish and self-absorbed, it refuses to ratify the International Criminal Court or agreements to protect the environment. It is "Dirty Harry" and "Globocop" rolled into one — an irresponsible and arrogant citizen of the world.

Second, America is socially retrograde: it is the fountainhead of a "predatory capitalism" (according to a former German chancellor) that denies social services to those who need them most. Instead of bettering the lot of its darker-skinned minorities, it shunts millions of them into prison. America accepts, nay, admires gross income inequalities and defies the claims of social justice.

Finally, America is culturally inferior. It gorges itself on fast food, wallows in tawdry mass entertainment, starves the arts, and prays only to one god, which is Mammon. It sacrifices the best of culture to pap and pop. In matters sexual, America is both prurient and prudish. It is a society where Europe's finest values — solidarity and community, taste and manners — are ground down by rampant individualism.

Demonization and obsession. The best shorthand statement under this heading is a cartoon on a Jordanian website in April 2002 that showed a jeep-like SUV, a pack of cigarettes with a Marlboro design, a can of Coca-Cola, and a hamburger — all dripping with blood. These, the cartoon insinuates, are the weapons that drive America's quest for global domination. They are meant to seduce, but the blood with which they are saturated symbolizes violent imposition. Yield to the seduction, and the price will be the loss of your own culture, dignity, and power.

Like any proper target of anti-ism, America is seen as omnipotent and omni-causal. America's is the hand that pulls all strings. The U.S. is the cause of poverty, despotism, and exploitation in the third world. Like any target of anti-ism, the U.S gets it coming and going: it is a threat to peace when it uses its fearsome power (Iraq) and a traitor to humanity when it does not (Rwanda as well as Bosnia/Kosovo before the bombing campaign).

The similarities with anti-Semitism are hard to escape. Like Jews, Americans are selfish and arrogant. Like Jews, they are in thrall to a fundamentalist religion that renders them self-righteous and dangerous. As classical anti-Semitism opposes the loving kindness of the New Testament to the vengeful God of the Old, rapidly de-Christianizing Europe likes to contrast its secular-humanist ethos with the harsh Calvinism of America. If the Jews bestride the world as the "Chosen People," Americans claim to live in "God's Own Country" while arrogating unto themselves, as a favorite anti-Bushism has it, a "divine mission."

Another mainstay of the anti-Semitic faith, anti-capitalism, has likewise passed smoothly from the Jews to the United States. Like Jews, Americans are money-grubbers who know only the value of money, and the worth of nothing. Like Jews, Americans are motivated only by profit. Relentlessly competitive ("pushy"), they are the solvents of social justice as they are of every worthy tradition. If the empire of international Jewry was built on finance and trade, America's is built on a "globalization" that exploits the helpless and kills jobs.

Here conspiracy rears its head. Again like the Jews, America is the mastermind extraordinaire, its hand behind every plot, even the immolation of the World Trade Center; in 2003, a half-dozen books on this theme became bestsellers in France and Germany. Echoing a classic indictment of "World Jewry," a poster during an anti-Bush demonstration in Berlin in 2002 read: "Stop Bush's Grab for Global Power!"

And so, the remedy: extrusion. The most murderous variant is al Qaeda's: kill Americans and Jews, expel the new "crusaders" from Araby, and our soil will be holy, the umma whole again. ("Seeking to kill Americans and Jews everywhere in the world," Osama bin Laden exhorted Muslims, "is one of the greatest duties, and the good deed most preferred by Allah.") Elsewhere, the impulse is not physical elimination but pushback, elimination-lite.

The watchword is "anti-hegemonism." America must be repelled because it is the global steamroller that flattens community and solidarity, leaving behind a few rich winners and many poor losers. America is also the great temptress that seduces the rest of the world's children into wolfing down fast food and watching Hollywood violence. Accordingly, the world must resist the hyperpower-turned-empire by going instead for "self-assertion" and "multipolarity" — shibboleths for containing and defanging the American behemoth.

Not only is there a striking family resemblance between anti-Israelism and anti-Americanism, but the two are routinely conjoined in the minds and in the rhetoric of those obsessed with them. Of course, America as "Great Satan" and Israel as "Little Satan" (note the religious language) are metaphors as old as the Khomeinist revolution of 1979. But the pairing of the two Satans is no longer just an Islamic affair. At the anti-Bush demonstrations in Berlin in May 2002, no accompanying posters were held up against Russian or Chinese leaders, let alone against Saddam Hussein, but plenty against Ariel Sharon — as "oppressor," "warmonger," and "state terrorist." Why trundle out Sharon unless to suggest that the enemy was both America and Israel?

Another regular occurrence is the application of Nazi imagery to both America and Israel. At demonstrations against the Iraq war last year, one German poster showed an obviously Jewish figure setting the world aflame. Another proclaimed: "USA–Third Reich, Both Alike" (USA–Drittes Reich, Ihr seid so gleich). Still another stated: "One Hitler Is Enough" (the unspoken message being, Bush equals Hitler). To top them all, a placard read: "Remember Nuremberg, Mr. Bush: Death by Hanging." Franz Alt, a German author and TV moderator, denouncing Bush as the "greatest enemy of mankind," seemed to be echoing the old Nazi slogan: "Die Juden sind unser Ungluck — the Jews are our misfortune."

Still, similarities are not sameness, and parallels are not proof. What are the psychic compulsions that turn Israel and the U.S. into joint targets of hatred and contempt? The simplest answer is that both of these two outriggers of the Occident are different from the rest of the West — different in the same way — and differences, especially when flanked by assertiveness and achievement, do not for fondness make.

To my mind, these differences come in a foursome, of which the first component is power. Specifically, Israel and the United States are the most advanced and powerful players in their respective neighborhoods — Israel in its region, the United States on the global beat. Unvanquished in war, they possess armies unmatched by any of their rivals. America's economy is the world's largest, its technology the world's most sophisticated. The Israeli economy outperforms those of its four Arab neighbors combined. In some technology sectors, like avionics, Israel surpasses even the major powers of Europe. America's top universities are the world's best, and whereas the Arab world boasts not a single true research university, Israel has seven. If America is Gulliver unbound, Israel is a constant and grating reminder of Arab failure.

We need not invoke Freud to infer that success breeds envy and resentment. The indignation is compounded by the rampant modernity both countries epitomize. Relentless change, inflicted from outside, does not sit well with European society, let alone with Arab societies. The European dispensation favors social and economic protection, while the Arab model seems suspended among various reactionary Utopias ranging from state socialism to Islamism. The unconscious logic goes like this: modernization is Americanization, and both have found their most faithful disciple in Israel.

The second element has to do with identity. Compared with continental Europe, the U.S. and Israel stand out for their strong sense of nationhood. For all their actual multiculturalism — indeed, both the U.S. and Israel are ethnic microcosms of the world — these two countries share a keen sense of self. They know who they are, and what they want to be. They define themselves in terms not of ethnicity but of ideology — novus ordo seclorum, Zionism — that transcends tribe and class (though not, in Israel's case, religion) and is ultimately rooted in founding documents like both countries' declarations of independence. Both of their national myths are written in the language of salvation. Indeed, the Puritans, seeking to build a "new Jerusalem" in a "promised land," consciously patterned their own flight from England on the biblical exodus from Egypt. America may be the most "Jewish" nation in the Christian world.

Compare this sense of nationhood with the mindset of Western Europe's mature democracies. The polities extending from Italy via Germany and the Low Countries through Scandinavia may already have passed into post-nationalism. The European Union is fitfully undoing national sovereignty without providing its citizens with a common identity. "Europe" is still a matter of practicality, not of pride. As a work in progress, it lacks the underpinning of emotional attachment. Europeans become all wound up when their own country's soccer team wins or loses, but the fierce nationalism that once drove millions into the trenches of two world wars has evaporated, and with it has gone the thirst to identify oneself with a glorious national past or with heart-stirring national traditions.

With a strong sense of national identity comes, typically, a sense of national purpose and the determination if necessary to back it up with force; this is the third element I would point to. Post-national Europe cherishes its "civilian power," its attachment to international regimes and institutions. Individual European armies are no longer repositories of nationalism or career advancement, but organizations with about as much social prestige as the post office. Europeans pride themselves on having overcome the atavism of war in favor of compromise, cooperation, and institutionalism. This self-perception imbues them with a sense of moral superiority vis-a-vis the "yahoos" in Washington and Jerusalem, who over the last 50 years have resorted to force more frequently than any other Western nations.

Perhaps many Europeans resent unconsciously what they no longer have — all those qualities that once made them fierce and fearsome warriors. Perhaps they resent these two nations in the Western family for doing what they no longer can — or dare — do. And here is another way in which both Israel and the U.S. offer an excellent canvas for the projection of others' superior self-image. Do not the two countries behave in the brutish ways we Europeans have at last unlearned? They are Hobbes and Machiavelli, we are Kant and Rousseau. They insist on war and domination, we on peace and community. And so, Europe's conscience, forged in the cozy shelter of America's strategic might, abounds with reassurance: we have frog-leaped the barbarians and landed in history's moral avant-garde.

This is hardly to deny the strong currents of post-nationalism that run through California's Marin County, not to mention Tel Aviv's Sheinkin Street and the writings of Israel's "post-Zionists." But along with the influences of culture and psychology we must come back in the end to power and politics — in short, to the positions of America and Israel in the international system.

Israel will remain a threatened polity, and the U.S. the world's number-one power, probably for the rest of this century. These are the raw and irreducible facts of international politics. Ehud Barak and Bill Clinton may have enjoyed a better press than do George W. Bush and Ariel Sharon, but that merely obscures the deeper realities. Both countries remain targets not only for what they do, but also for what and where they are.

What they do is sometimes unwise or nasty; where they are, in the international scheme of things, can be changed only by sacrificing their exceptionalism and the power needed to secure it. Without extraordinary strength and the willingness to use it, Israel will not endure as a state among those who deny it legitimacy, nor America as a Jeffersonian "empire of liberty" seeking safety in the juste milieu of a democratizing world.

No Western European country has been attacked since 1945. No wonder, then, that the martial instincts of the Europeans have faded along with their militaries in the course of a seemingly perpetual peace. No wonder, then, that they resent Israel and America as the reprobate children of the West. But nations in harm's way cannot and will not soon evolve into Sweden or Germany — not in the Hobbesian world of the Levant, and not on the precarious perch of the "last remaining superpower." By dint of what they are and what they have, America and Israel will remain both targets and warriors.

The anatomy of the international system, to borrow one last time from Freud, is destiny. On post-nationalism, postmodernism, and the rest, where you sit is where you stand. America and Israel are the outsiders — just as Jews have been all the way into the 21st century. The question yet to be decided, and on which everything hangs, is who will prevail.

[Footnote]

[1] On the question of whether Israel and the Jews are two sides of the same coin, I cannot improve on Hillel Halkin's compelling argument in "The Return of Anti-Semitism," COMMENTARY, February 2002. Suffice it to say that to profess intense dislike for Israel while sparing the Jews engenders such sharp verbal contradictions as inevitably to ring hollow.

[2] "On Hating the Jews," November 2003.

Josef Joffe is the editor of the German weekly newspaper Die Zeit and an associate of the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard.

(Josef Joffe in Commentary Magazine, January 2004) http://www.commentarymagazine.com/


TOPICS: Canada; Culture/Society; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Germany; Israel; Russia; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 01/04/2004 1:52:27 PM PST by quidnunc
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To: quidnunc
{For serious minds only!})

Umm... Ahem... That, umm, eliminates just about all of us.
2 posted on 01/04/2004 1:57:08 PM PST by WinOne4TheGipper (DU : Free Republic :: Oklahoma : Texas (I am in so much trouble))
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To: All
Rank Location Receipts Donors/Avg Freepers/Avg Monthlies
36 Idaho 60.00
2
30.00
92
0.65
45.00
2

Thanks for donating to Free Republic!

Move your locale up the leaderboard!

3 posted on 01/04/2004 1:57:26 PM PST by Support Free Republic (Freepers post from sun to sun, but a fundraiser bot's work is never done.)
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To: quidnunc
In a nutshell, anti-Israelism is merely a cover for anti-Semitism. And the underlying ideology is basically Communist: hatred of America, hatred of the west, hatred of Judaism and Christianity.
4 posted on 01/04/2004 2:03:19 PM PST by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: will1776
bump for later
5 posted on 01/04/2004 2:04:25 PM PST by jocon307 ( The dems don't get it, the American people do.)
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To: quidnunc
Bookmarked - for later reading, I'll see if I have a serious mind!
6 posted on 01/04/2004 2:05:17 PM PST by little jeremiah
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To: quidnunc
France and Germany criticize the US as imperialistic while they themselves maneuver to create their own Euro empire with themselves at the head. Their criticism is pure fraud calculated to advance their own predatory agenda.
7 posted on 01/04/2004 2:19:56 PM PST by Free Vulcan
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To: quidnunc
Interesting article.
But your link doesn't go to the article.
8 posted on 01/04/2004 2:38:04 PM PST by polemikos (Anti-reason leftist howler monkeys are painful to the senses.)
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To: quidnunc
A serious minded BTTT!
9 posted on 01/04/2004 2:49:38 PM PST by F.J. Mitchell (I take great pride in my humility.)
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To: quidnunc
Long read but excellent post. Strange no mention of China except for their Tibetan adventure, or the Russians except for Chechnya. I still think that those two nations are mainly behind the negative emotions people have against both the US and Israel. (Western Europe has always needed to folow someone - anyone - even France and Germany. Germany is following their reunited Eastern half, while France is following Germany.)
10 posted on 01/04/2004 2:54:50 PM PST by 11B3 (Democratic Socialists of America: 78 members in Congress. Treason? YES.)
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To: quidnunc
No Western European country has been attacked since 1945.

Depends how you look at it I suppose. France had its own troubles in Vietnam. The UK has fought an on again off again war in Northern Ireland. Spain has its ETA problem and other Western European nations have had their own battles with terrorism in that time frame. France fought Algeria. UK fought Argentina following Argentina's invasion of the Falklands. Plus W Europe had the Balkans conflict going on right in its backyard for quite a while.

11 posted on 01/04/2004 3:09:12 PM PST by Prodigal Son
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To: quidnunc
Serious minds only : Does that mean folks who will agree with everything you believe is true ?
12 posted on 01/04/2004 3:34:25 PM PST by genefromjersey (So little time - so many FLAMES to light !!)
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To: genefromjersey
genefromjerseywrote: Serious minds only : Does that mean folks who will agree with everything you believe is true ?

It's not an absolute requirement, laudatory though it might be.

13 posted on 01/04/2004 3:40:17 PM PST by quidnunc (Omnis Gaul delenda est)
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To: quidnunc
"Jews want to sully our racial purity"

You have to question any people or persons who think those of a religion are a race.
14 posted on 01/04/2004 3:43:42 PM PST by JSteff
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To: quidnunc
"The Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz."

That's amoung the most cutting things I've ever read. This really was a very serious minded article, far more subtle on these subjects than many other things I've read. But, Commentary is always like that. It's always a good read.
15 posted on 01/04/2004 3:45:33 PM PST by jocon307 ( The dems don't get it, the American people do.)
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To: quidnunc
Add to this mix, a certain international/intercultural penis envy, and you voila, you have most European anti-Americanism.
16 posted on 01/04/2004 3:50:51 PM PST by gatorbait (Yesterday, today and tomorrow......The United States Army)
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To: quidnunc
What I admire most about Israel is that in this age of victimization, they refuse to be victims. If they go down, they will go down fighting.
17 posted on 01/04/2004 3:53:00 PM PST by Malesherbes
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To: will1776
I noticed on your profile page something about the runaway Democrats here in Texas. If you've been reading the 'moveon.org'/Drudge thread, you might be interested in reading a couple of letters I archived regarding these same chicken-little Texas democrats and our buddies at moveon. The swell group at moveon also patted themselves on the back for stopping the appointment of a fine Bush judicial nominee, Miguel Estrada. A bunch of busy little bees over there at moveon...I wonder when they have time to hold down actual jobs! (P.S. Interesting tag line!)


https://www.moveon.org/texasads/letter.html

Contribute to MoveOn.org's "Defend Democracy" Campaign

The following is a letter by Texas State Senator Rodney Ellis written from "exile" in New Mexico.

August 18, 2003
Dear friends,
I am writing to you from a hotel room in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where I and 10 of my colleagues in the Texas Senate have been forced to reside for the past 20 days. If we return to our homes, families, friends, and constituents, the Governor of Texas will have us arrested.
I know, it sounds more like a banana republic than the dignified democracy on which we have long prided ourselves. We are effectively exiled from the state due to our unalterable opposition to a Republican effort -- pushed by Tom Delay and Karl Rove, and led by Texas Governor Rick Perry -- that would rewrite the map of Texas Congressional districts in order to elect at least 5 more Republicans to Congress.
You may not have heard much about the current breakdown in Texas politics. The Republican power play in California has obscured the Republican power play in Texas that has forced my colleagues and me to leave the state.
Recognizing that public pressure is the only thing that can break the current stalemate, our friends at MoveOn have offered to support our efforts by sharing this email with you. In it, you will find:
• Background information on how the situation in Texas developed;
• Analysis of what's at stake for Democrats and the democratic process; and
• How you can help by contacting Texas politicians, signing our petition, contributing funds, and forwarding this email!
The Republican redistricting effort shatters the tradition of performing redistricting only once a decade immediately after the Census -- making redistricting a perpetual partisan process. It elevates partisan politics above minority voting rights, in contravention of the federal Voting Rights Act. It intends to decimate the Democratic party in Texas, and lock in a Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives. And Republican efforts to force a vote on this issue by changing the rules of legislative procedure threaten to undermine the rule of law in Texas.
We do not take lightly our decision to leave the state. It was the only means left to us under the rules of procedure in Texas to block this injustice. We are fighting for our principles and beliefs, and we can win this fight with your support.
Sincerely,
Rodney Ellis
Texas State Senator (Houston)


http://www.moveon.org/news/1633.html

From: Peter Schurman, MoveOn.org
Subject: A terrific victory
Date: September 4, 2003

Dear MoveOn member,

Because of your help, we won a terrific victory today. President
Bush's top-priority right-wing judicial nominee, Miguel Estrada,
withdrew his name from consideration, and the President accepted
Estrada's withdrawal.

As far as we know, this is the first time President Bush has conceded
defeat on any nomination. It's a big day.

Your work made it possible. When Estrada stonewalled the American
people -- refusing, with the White House's blessing, to answer basic
questions about his radically conservative views -- you stood up and
fought back, with more than 40,000 phone calls and more than 90,000
online messages to the Senate.

President Bush was counting on us to roll over and allow the right wing
to tighten its grip on power by packing America's top courts with
conservative ideologues, who would serve for lifetime appointments.

Instead, we and our friends in the Senate stood strong, and today we
prevailed.

Last November, after the right wing took control of the Senate, we set
a goal of driving the Democrats to dig in and stop the right-wing
power grab.

We continue to have our work cut out for us, especially in California
and Texas. But Estrada's withdrawal is an incontrovertible sign that
we are turning the tide.

Congratulations!

Sincerely,

- Carrie, Eli, Joan, Noah, Peter, Wes, and Zack
The MoveOn team
September 4th, 2003
18 posted on 01/04/2004 4:01:50 PM PST by Maria S ("…the end is near…this time, Americans are serious; Bush is not like Clinton." Uday Hussein 4/9/03)
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To: Maria S
Thanks. I FReepmailed it to myself for future reference (whenever I finally decide to update my site). Re garding the tagline, I've got a real doozy coming, but I'm going to wait for jigsaw to notice this one.
19 posted on 01/04/2004 4:14:54 PM PST by WinOne4TheGipper (DU : Free Republic :: Oklahoma : Texas (I am in so much trouble))
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To: Cicero
In a nutshell, anti-Israelism is merely a cover for anti-Semitism. And the underlying ideology is basically Communist: hatred of America, hatred of the west, hatred of Judaism and Christianity.

Same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was!
Same as it ever was.

20 posted on 01/04/2004 4:15:37 PM PST by wizardoz ("Crikey! I've lost my mojo!")
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To: gatorbait
Along with the desire to use our armed forces as Hessians around the world, Europe wants to crush us economically and in every other way. The article posted was well worth reading, very thought provoking. The idea that Europe finds it much more palatable to transfer all their past and present sins to us, rather than face the failure they've become. People do this, too. It never works. They drag around their baggage and never make progress. No wonder we blow right past them technologically and in every other way.
21 posted on 01/04/2004 4:19:12 PM PST by hershey
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To: quidnunc
DOUBLE PLUS BUMP!!!
22 posted on 01/04/2004 4:32:01 PM PST by eclectic
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To: quidnunc
I Love living in the Greatest Nation on Earth and in human history. This article reinforces what we have.
23 posted on 01/04/2004 5:03:15 PM PST by Helms (Free Republic = The Best Aphorisms on the Internet)
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To: quidnunc
Lacking certain murderous elements of the classical type...

Don't you believe it. Those elements are just as much a part of modern anti-Semitism as they ever were. The difference between the Israelis now and their central European predecessors then is that the Israelis shoot back.

24 posted on 01/04/2004 5:11:40 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: quidnunc
Much too wordy to say what was said and jumped to too many tangents... guess I'm too stupid for this guy...

25 posted on 01/04/2004 5:29:28 PM PST by hosepipe
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To: hershey
They drag around their baggage and never make progress. No wonder we blow right past them technologically and in every other way.

You're precisely correct.Eurppeans seem to think that by looking into antiquity and pretending squalor is sophistication,they retain some kind of warped,self hating superiority. They gain nothing of the sort.They sound like a large group of over grown teenagers in their bleatings.

26 posted on 01/04/2004 5:56:40 PM PST by gatorbait (Yesterday, today and tomorrow......The United States Army)
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To: quidnunc
Here the key theme is conspiracy: thus, Jews want to sully our racial purity, or subvert our sacred traditions or, above all, to achieve domination.

The problem is that the author is unable to distinguish between racism, religous conflict, and political opposition. For non-Jews, these are three rather different things.

Some are anti-Semitic on racial grounds, and indeed, this seems to me to be the primary basis for past genocide against Jews. However, I think it is pretty rare, both in Europe and in the US.

Christians and Muslims may see Judaism as a religion that is somewhere between mis-guided and heretical. The former Christian view that Jews were guilty of murdering Christ has fallen out of favor. Muslims now have the more negative view of Judaism, partly because of their inability to separate religion from politics. Hindus, Buhdists, Confucianists, Shinto, agnostics and atheists don't much care one way or the other.

The political category has two dimensions. Some oppose Israel as a state on the grounds that it is racist (giving preferences to matrilineal descendents of Jews) and a theocracy (giving preferences to adherents of Judaism, particularly the Orthodox). Others oppose politically active Jews within their country (US, France, wherever), who strive to use the mechanisms of democracy to muster the foreign policy and defense resources of their country to the aid of Israel.

Of these three, racism is reprehensible, religious conflict is just silly, and political opposition to Israel and its local fan club is a legitimate topic for democratic debate.

27 posted on 01/04/2004 6:47:42 PM PST by Lessismore
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To: zip
ping
28 posted on 01/04/2004 6:51:38 PM PST by Mrs Zip
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Comment #29 Removed by Moderator

To: quidnunc
Definitely one for the printer. My eyes can't read that much text on the screen.
30 posted on 01/04/2004 9:14:32 PM PST by GulliverSwift (Howard Dean is the Joker's insane twin brother.)
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To: Lessismore
I am a firm supporter of Israel's rights to defend itself but have always been concerned with the religious discrimination that prevails in the country. I wish presidents would make this a higher priority and let the Israelis decide the best way to handle the Palestinians Arabs.
31 posted on 01/04/2004 9:18:56 PM PST by GulliverSwift (Howard Dean is the Joker's insane twin brother.)
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To: GulliverSwift

[I am a firm supporter of Israel's rights to defend itself but have always been concerned with the religious discrimination that prevails in the country.]

The religious discrimination that prevails in the hearts of terrorist Muslims and discriminatory neo Nazi democrats concerns me.


32 posted on 11/18/2005 5:09:11 AM PST by ohhhh (Even so, come, Lord Jesus.)
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To: quidnunc

[The fourth step is demonization. Here the key theme is conspiracy: thus, Jews want to sully our racial purity, or subvert our sacred traditions or, above all, to achieve domination. Finally comes the determination to seek an end to troubles by eliminating the alleged source of torment, be it by exclusion, extrusion, or annihilation.]

The national socialist Adolf Hitler thought so to and looked what happened.
May God and His only begotten Son Jesus Christ bless Israel and save America from the national socialist left wing neo nazi democrat party.


33 posted on 11/18/2005 5:12:57 AM PST by ohhhh (Even so, come, Lord Jesus.)
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To: quidnunc

[And here is another way in which both Israel and the U.S. offer an excellent canvas for the projection of others' superior self-image. Do not the two countries behave in the brutish ways we Europeans have at last unlearned? They are Hobbes and Machiavelli, we are Kant and Rousseau. They insist on war and domination, we on peace and community.]

God blesses those who bless Israel and curses those who curse Israel.
The LORD Jesus Christ blesses us BECAUSE WE BELIEVE HIM and no self serving, word spewing, arrogant european national socialist understand this simple fact. They are athiests and continually worship at the alter of Cain and refuse to accept the fact they are dying because of their unbelief if Jesus Christ.
European nations turn their back on God, lost his blessings and envy America and Israel because of God's blessings.
An ignorant and stupid people are these arrogant fools.

"Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, but sin is a reproach to any people."

Simple, but it requires faith in the Lord Jesus Christ only.


34 posted on 11/18/2005 5:27:04 AM PST by ohhhh (Even so, come, Lord Jesus.)
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To: quidnunc
The psychic mechanism goes like this: if the Jews could be shown to behave like Nazis, they would no longer have a special moral claim on us; if they are as bad as our forefathers, we can unshoulder our own inherited burden of guilt.

I don't know if this is correct pseudo-psychiatry, but it really rings a logic bell with me.

35 posted on 02/10/2006 6:17:23 AM PST by WarEagle (This is obviously Karl Rove's fault...)
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