Skip to comments.Andrew Sullivan: Spreading the greater lie about Israel
Posted on 12/25/2001 4:08:58 PM PST by CrossCheck
A gaffe is perhaps best described as what happens when a politician accidentally tells the truth. Among professional practitioners of the political arts this doesnt occur too often. But every now and then the truth emerges. So God bless the French ambassador. All he was saying is what many also privately believe. That shitty little country, Israel, has become, among many European elites, the object of hate that dare not speak its name.
Im not talking merely about editorials that seem to deny the right of Jews to emigrate to Israel; or leaders that come close to blaming Israel itself for the mass murder of its own citizens by Hamas terrorists. It is simply routine at this point to see balanced news reports from the BBC and the broadsheet British press that morally equate the actions of Israeli self-defence with the deliberate murder of civilian Jews by Palestinian terrorists.
While Britain and America are allowed to fight a war against terrorism, Israel is urged to practise self-restraint every time another terrorist massacres another group of civilians in a restaurant or disco. Supporting Israel as a matter of right versus wrong is almost unheard of in polite society.
In normal times, this is lamentable but not disastrous. The Jews know something about survival. They can and will defend themselves. But in abnormal times, when anti-semitism is spreading across the globe like a brushfire, it is deeply dangerous. Not since the 1930s has such blithe hatred of Jews gained this much acceptability in world opinion. Across the Arab world, in particular, the past decade or so has seen a shift from mere passive resentment of Jews to a paranoid anti-semitism. That European elites want to ignore it, or worse pander to it, suggests we have learnt nothing from history.
Am I exaggerating? I wish I were. The massacre of September 11 has merely exposed and accelerated this trend. In the aftermath, a Gallup poll of Pakistanis found 48% believing that the Jews actually flew the planes into the World Trade Center, after warning their compatriots to stay away. This unhinged lie was routinely reproduced in dozens of Middle Eastern newspapers and remains the biggest single obstacle to getting Arabs and Muslims to acknowledge Osama Bin Ladens guilt.
Al-Ahram, Egypts biggest newspaper and the official mouthpiece of the government, controlled by President Hosni Mubarak, recently published a particular gem as a compilation of the investigative work of four reporters on Jewish control of the world. It stated that: Jews have become the political decision-makers and control the media in most capitals of the world (Washington, Paris, London, Berlin, Athens, Ankara). It claimed: The main apparatus for the Jews to control the world is the international Jewish lobby, which works for Israel.
Or take the official moderates. Consider the view of the former imam of New Yorks Islamic Cultural Center, a man described until a short time ago as a western-leaning mullah sent to New York to spread inter-faith understanding. After September 11, he disappeared and then popped up in the Middle East with the following statement: You see these people (the Jews) all the time everywhere, disseminating corruption, heresy, homosexuality, alcoholism and drugs. They do this to impose their hegemony and colonialism on the world. Now, they are riding on the back of the world powers.
Then theres the Palestinian Authority newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadeeda: the Muslim-Jewish conflict resembles the conflict between man and Satan . . . this is the fate of the Muslim nation, and beyond that the fate of all the nations of the world, to be tormented by this nation (the Jews). Replace the word Muslim with German and you dont have an approximation of Hitler. You have Hitler.
Heres one fact, reported earlier this autumn by Agence France-Presse: Mein Kampf was recently as high as No 6 on the Palestinian bestseller list. Last week, Reuters ran a photograph that was barely picked up elsewhere. It was a picture of Hezbollah youth brigades gathered in a square and all performing the Nazi salute. If that picture had shown American children doing the same, dont you think it would have been splashed on every front page in the world? In fact, it is a function of condescending racism to the Arabs that we believe this kind of hate-filled pathology is somehow normal for them.
The left is particularly complicit in this evil. Many western liberals chided America for withdrawing from the Durban conference on racism last August. But that conference was the latest high-water mark for Jew-hating. The infamous, fabricated tract, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, was widely distributed at the meeting. Questioners were shouted down with cries of Jew! Jew! Jew! The Palestinian Authority refuses to include the fact of the Holocaust in its own history books.
What about the following statement by one Ali Aqleh Ursan: The covetous, racist, and hated Jew Shylock, who cut the flesh from Antonios chest with the knife of hatred, invades you with his money, his modern airplanes, his missiles, and his nuclear bombs. Is Ursan some fringe extremist? No, hes the chairman of the Arab Writers Association.
There are, of course, completely legitimate criticisms of Israel and Israeli policy that have nothing to do with anti-semitism. The settlements policy of the prime minister, Ariel Sharon, is extremely hard to justify. There are Jewish extremists as well; and there is brutality in Israels conduct in the West Bank and Gaza that deserves rebuke.
But these valid arguments are light years away from the Jew- hating that has been fomented by Arab governments for years and tolerated by western elites for far too long. Such anti-semitism is the fundamental reason why no peace is possible in the Middle East, because it has so infected every possible Arab interlocutor that Israel simply has nobody to make peace with. In fact, unless western governments expose and condemn such anti-semitism no peace will ever be possible.
And the minute real pressure is put on the Palestinians by the West, we get results. Hamass temporary cessation of suicide bombings in Israel last week is directly related to the Bush administrations clear backing for Israel after the latest terrorist wave. Appeasement is not necessary for peace. In fact, it perpetuates war.
Do we remember anything? Sixty years ago such hatred of Jews unchallenged, appeased, excused, ignored led directly to Auschwitz. Its prevalence now in the Middle East should remove any doubt about the morality of Israels self-defence in these perilous times and shame anyone who trafficks in it. Yes, this means that Israels war against terrorism is the same as our war against terrorism. And, yes, it is good versus evil all over again.
How much more do we need to know about the nature of Israels enemies to know whose side we should truly be on?
We give Egypt $2 billion a year...and I object to this hand-out, too. But Israel doesn't get a few million more, Israel gets a few billion more...all told, about $5 billion per year when everything is lumped in together. But why does Israel "deserve" more...or anything at all?
Incidently, do you know why we give Egypt $2 billion per year? At Camp David, we had to "buy" the "peace treaty" between those two, because Egypt would lose its hand-out from our great ally Saudi Arabia. (But at least Saudi Arabia's so-called friendship is somewhat free -- we just pay for the oil).
So, if you really look at it, we have to pay Israel $5 billion per year, and then because of Israel we have to shell out another $2 billion to Egypt. It's ridiculous, especially when Bush's tax cut came to an average of $300 per tax payer.
You forgot a few, but happy new year anyway.
[[[ Being a deep thinker, can you share with us one fact about Israel that gets you to that conclusion.? ]]]
Government offices are closed on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
Well if closing government offices on a religious holiday makes a nation a theocracy, then Cuba is the only non-theocracy in the western hemisphere. Indeed, the only non-theocracies (and presumambly on Aloutte's list of preferred governments) would be Cuba, China, Viet Nam and North Korea.
LOL. Now that's funny! Are you talking about onions with bagels or palestinians?
Maybe we want a reliable ally close to our oil supplies in the Middle East.
I support the U.S. fighting, and yes, U.S. soldiers DYING so that our freedom will endure. If you think appeasing bullies is a way out of that, then you're sadly mistaken. Fortunately, most Americans don't make that mistake, and the rest of us will save your cowardly butt (and, no, we don't expect to be thanked, we expect to be criticized every step of the way.)
"A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself." -John Stuart Mill
While -- at the same time -- Britain eavesdropped on our elected officials, stole military and technological secrets and then sold them to the the USSR and China?
Hello anybody home? Welcome to the real world, EVERYBODY spys on EVERYBODY, You don't think that the SIS dorsen't spy on us and the CIA doesn't spy on the Brits? As to Israel selling our secrets to other countries I have never and will never say that they are angels, or that they always are right. Just that they have the right to exist, something are large part of the world disagrees with.
A "quote", even a made up one, can be interpreted in different ways? Checkmate.
Ha. that's $300 in the first year. 5 years out its a LOT more.
AND $5 billion divided by 280 million people is about $18 per American, most of which is REQUIRED to be spent on products MANUFACTURED in the USA by AMERICAN workers.
Furthermore, these funds act as seed money. If Israel spends a billion on F-15's, are they going to switch, after spending their aid money, to Dassault products? NO, they keep spending their own cash on US-manufactured systems, because they've already started down that road. This aid costs the average American VERY LITTLE.
In my opinion, if the U.S. wasn't playing the role of big Momma, bailing out Israel at every turn and turning a blind eye to what really goes on over there, then Israel would be forced to reach some true accommodation with the Palestinians.
I don't even think we should just "drop" Israel, but if we are going to keep dumping cash into that country, and sell weapeons to it indiscriminately, then we also have a responsibility to see that Israel behaves like a rational state and starts negotiating in good faith. This means Israel cannot have everything it wants, i.e., settlements need to go.
The best favor we could do for Israel is to force that country to grow up and eventually wean itself from the American taxpayer.
Hee, hee. Good point!
BTW, Israel is the only country exempt from the requirement that it must spend its money here in the US. It is allowed to spend its U.S. gift money with its own defense contractors within Israel itself.
Wow-- leftists really are used to a nanny-state, and just go BONKERS if they don't get it. The safety of individual citizens is not supposed to be the #1 priority of the government-- I believe that the oath goes "to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, from all enemies foreign and domestic." Or something like that. Sorry, sweetie, but no one is going to give you your own Marine to watch over you.