Bloodthirsty Jews And Pet Palestinians Are The West’s Dream Team
ARE you an anti-Semite? If so, join the band of the righteous. These are good times. Israel is at war with Hamas in Gaza. Hamas are keen to take the war to Israel, firing rockets into the country. But they lack the ground troops and air cover to launch an invasion. Israel has the guns and the personnel to fight the war on Hamas’ turf.
It’s a foreign war between two unequally armed sides. The best outcome would be for the Islamists and Messianics to be forced to the extremes and for the people to unite as one State. But that’s unlikely.
So. We look at the now. And we see that this war has Jews with the better weaponry. And that upsets some onlookers in the West. Why? Brendan O’Neill wonders:
Such are the double standards over Israel, so casually entrenched is the idea that Israeli militarism is more bloody and insane than any other kind of militarism, that many Western liberals now call on their own rulers to condemn or even impose sanctions against Israel. That is, they want the invaders and destroyers of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and elsewhere to rap Israel’s knuckles for bombing Gaza. It’s like asking a great white shark to tell off a seal for eating a fish. America must ‘rein in Israel’, we are told. ‘The international community should intervene to restrain Israel’s army’, says a columnist for the Guardian, and by ‘international community’ he means ‘a meeting of the UN Security Council’ – the Security Council whose permanent members are the US, UK and France, who have done so much to destabilise and devastate vast swathes of the Middle East and North Africa over the past decade; Russia, whose recent military interventions in Georgia and Chechnya suggest it is hardly a devotee of world peace; and China, which might not invade other countries but is pretty adept at brutally suppressing internal dissent. On what planet could nations whose warmongering makes the current assault on Gaza look like a tea party in comparison seriously be asked to ‘rein in’ Israel? On a planet on which Israel is seen as different, as worse than all others, as more criminal and rogue-like than any other state.
People who don’t like Jews, view Israeli agression with a sly glance and seize the chance to praise Hitler, deliver Nazi salutes and warn us to read the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. They do so in public. And no-one shouts them down. These bigots have always hated it that Jewish suffering, notably the Holocaust, gave the Israelites a moral authority in Europe. So. They are swift to equate Israel with Nazi Germany. They reinvent the Jews as the Nazis. And this connivance goes to the top. Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Israel has “surpassed Hitler in barbarism”. Jews are the most depraved. Jews never learn.
Many in the West nod. Because anti-Semitism never went away. The Nazis just lost the war. Anti-Semitism became part of the defeat package. The victors portrayed anti-Semitism as the ultimate evil. Calling Jews names, banning them from parts of society and abusing them went out of fashion – at least in public. Hating Jews was wrong. It was what losers did.
If you professed a mistrust and dislike of Jews, you were a Nazi. You were the enemy.
And the West should never forget what happened to the Jews. So we were told.
With Holocaust memorial days and the vow ‘never again’ anti-Semitism would be defeated. But others began to talk of their own Holocausts. Others wanted to be part of the story of suffering. The murder of millions of Jews would not be the final word on anti-Semitism as Jews had hoped. In time the Holocaust won’t be about Jews. It will be about all oppressed people, and those who want to be seen as victims. It will be about humanity as the victim. And then anti-Semitism will no longer be the preserve of the far-Right.
It will be back. And it will be acceptable.
The Jews who proclaim their distance from Israeli action in Gaza are held aloft by the Left not as protestors with genuine humanitarian concerns, rather as Jews who dared to speak truth to the child killers, as cultural oddities who can see their ilk for what they truly are.
Michael Cahn, one of the organisers, initially posted the invitation to the Cambridge Palestine Forum’s Facebook page.
It read: “Cambridge residents concerned about the recent violence in Gaza are invited to join a Silent Gaza Protest.
“We are meeting in the vicinity of the synagogue in order to encourage the local congregation to take a stance on the actions of the Israel military.
“This is a silent event. Only silence can adequately express our outrage and shame about what has happened. Our visible silence points to guilt, forgiving and forgetting.”
The event would have taken place as the Shabbat or Jewish holy day started that evening.
Janet Walker, one of the organisers, said: “Michael has agreed to cancel the vigil – it wasn’t meant to be a protest really – more of an encouragement to engage in discussion.
So. Israel. The country that would give Jews sanctury. They needed a homeland. They got one. And the West loved it. We in the West cheered when the Israelis fought in 1967 to preserve their country. Plucky Israel was tough and on the side of the angels.
And then things changed.
Frank Furedi notes how post-Cold War Western culture whorn of certainities and ideals began to embrace anti-capitalism and turn on modernity:
In some instances, the cultural devaluation of materialism, rationality and progress mutated into a philistine reaction against capitalist economics. Formerly, capitalism was criticised for not being able to deliver benefits to all, and for its lack of efficiency. The new anti-modernist critique attacked capitalism for being too efficient and far too concerned with materialism. Such a backward-looking and reactionary critique of capitalism readily converged with a classical denunciation of greedy bankers and financiers. As Brendan O’Neill recently pointed out, this cultural environment provided a terrain on which criticisms of the elites who ran the banks, Hollywood and related institutions could on occasion acquire an anti-Semitic tone.
One remarkable outcome of these developments was that radical hostility to the socioeconomic order readily converged with the kind of cultural rejection of the Jews that was usually associated with the political right. The coming together of the sensibility of the anti-Enlightenment left with that of the racially motivated far right over the question of Israel has been one of the most striking developments in recent decades. From this new standpoint, Israel became a standalone oppressive state that combined the worst features associated with the history of its cursed people and the exploitative imperative of global capitalism.
And finally, from the 1990s onwards, the West’s recently established Muslim immigrant communities became increasingly vociferous in their denunciations of Israel. Many Muslim youths , who came to regard their local Jewish community as part of the enemy camp, started to express their anger and frustration in a language that depicted Jews and Zionism as interchangeable enemies. One, arguably unexpected consequence of their campaigning was to erode the cultural barriers in Europe that in the postwar period had prevented the open expression of anti-Semitism. Their campaigning, alongside the growing tendency to pathologise Israel, gave permission to others to shake off their inhibitions about voicing anti-Jewish sentiments.
Although anti-Semitism is still not respectable, it has gained a significant degree of influence in Western societies. For some, attacking Jews and their institutions is justified on the grounds that it represents a blow against the ultimate enemy: Israel. Some reject Israel because it serves as a convenient symbol of the West. For others, Israel has become the focus of their bad faith. In a world of uncertainty and confusion, Israel and its people are regarded as a unique repository of evil. None of these sentiments bears the slightest resemblance to the legitimate anti-Zionist tradition of the past, which was motivated by an honest view of what was in the best interests of Palestinians and Jews. Most of the current critics of Israel possess very different motives. Instead of raising genuine questions and criticisms, they communicate a diffuse sense of anger and passion. As Sartre suggested, the source of such passion has little to do with the target of the outburst – which is why, whatever happens in Israel and Gaza, it will do little to temper contemporary Western fear and loathing of Zionism / the Jews.
And what of the Jew-lovers, who see the race as something above. Giulio Meotti is an Italian journalist with Il Foglio. He writes:
These stubborn Israeli Jews are alone – alone in resisting in a battle for all of us.The people of Israel are valiant, going about their daily lives knowing that Muslim killers might explode a bomb or rocket in any public place at any time. Even more valiant are the Israeli soldiers, who are now fighting inside Gaza, house by house, spied on by cruel eyes, hated by old and young, targeted by beheaders, longed for by their families. These lone Jews fighting in a long night hold the free world’s destiny in their hands.
The world is burning with jealousy of Israel and what it achieved for its people in a mere 65 years.
These stubborn Israeli Jews are alone – alone in resisting in a battle for all of us. It has been calculated that since the year of the founding of the state, more than 60,000 rockets have fallen on Israel. The Israelis are victimized and they are alone, abandoned by the world — now, just as then.
In the Second World War, hope didn’t come from the Western avant garde, but from the Jews who rebelled against tyranny. The same is happening today
Open any Western newspaper and you will read about the trendy Israeli life under Hamas’ rockets, life as usual, while the Arabs die. No mention of Israel as the most heavy bombed nation in the world. No mention of the trauma inflicted on two generations of Jewish children.
Israel is the first line of Western defense in the battle for non-Muslim survival and prosperity in the world. And now that the Jews are running for shelters and employing their brilliant Iron Dome, the world is burning with jealousy of Israel and what it achieved for its people in a mere 65 years.
For the UN, for the Christian bodies, for the White House, for the European Union, for the complacent public opinion and its journalistic sentinels, an independent Jewish State bearing the name “Israel,” with Jerusalem as its capital, a renewal of life in the land of the Bible, a vital Jewish people restored after 2,000 years to its own holy land, has raised unresolved questions and disturbing conclusions. The Israelis are a very special people because they know how to live in the present and make this present worth living, while the West has drained its peoples’ souls and made their lives meaningless, with only shallow-minded hedonism and materialism remaining. This is why Gentiles often hate the Jews.
The sagacious American author Eric Hoffer gave voice to the most tragic Holocaust-related 20th-century truth: “I have a premonition that will not leave me, as it goes with Israel so will it go with all of us”. A peaceful and unique nation like Israel and its people have to resort to violent means to survive. My heart breaks for them.
And you Jews thought you were just getting on with your lives. It turns out that you exist as a symbol to others. You are the embodiment of the last ideal. As such, you can be loved or hated. You might just want to be left alone to be your own flawed, curious and human self. Forget it.
Bryan Appleyard noted:
Some years ago I was in Israel speaking to the writer Meir Shalev. He told me that, after the Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel seized Sinai, the West Bank and the Golan Heights, he said to his father that their country would “never be able to swallow this massive bite.” His father did not speak to him for three months.
As a boy, I remember being thrilled by that lightning victory masterminded by General Moshe Dayan with his glamorous black eye-patch. “My people,” I thought, my chest swelling with the mere idea of having a “people”. Not long before I had discovered I was Jewish. My mother had never told me.
Shalev, who fought in that war, was older and smarter than me and wiser than his father. So was the great Israeli writer Amos Oz . Walking through newly-occupied East Jerusalem, he, in the manner of a novelist, projected himself into the mind of a Palestinian. He saw the injustice of this “massive bite”. Israel shjould abandon this seized land, he concluded, and make a deal with the Palestinians. It was an unpopular idea.
“When my friends and I started advocating a two-state solution in 1967,” he said, “there were so very few of us that we could conduct our national assembly inside a public telephone box.”
The victory was a “cursed blessing”. Israel still holds the Golan and the West Bank, but British schoolchildren do not cheer her victories. Most of the young I meet now regard Israel with dismay and disdain. She metes out violence and injustice and humiliates her allies – notably America but also us.
“Our American friends give us money, arms and advice,” Moshe Dayan once said, foreshadowing all future humilations right down to Obama and Biden, “We take the money, we take the arms but we decline the advice.”
Yet Israel still has one cultural rather than political quality that I admire whenever I go there or meet an Israeli – a magnificent, almost heroic self-consciousness. This is a country that thinks about herself more deeply and agonisingly than any other. She also argues with herself like no other nation.
“The Israeli’s are very argumentitive,” runs the standard gag.
“No, they’re not.”
Speaking from personal experience, wondering who, exactly, you are is a very Jewish issue. Finding out I was a Jew was the perfect explanation for my own paralysing bouts of introspection.
“Everybody knows what a Jew is,” says the writer and satirist Meir Ouziel once said to me, “but a Jew doesn’t know what he is.”
We’ll finish with a few tweets from anti-Semites. None of them have been shouted down or grassed up to the police nor hounded by the Twittermob. Some call it anti-war. But it looks a lot like anti-Semitism. And this looking back to the last Century’s defining crime is in keeping with the curent war. The Israelis and the Palestinians are both looking back – Jews to the Holocaust and a divine promise that the land was theirs; Palestinians to when their lands were taken to fulfill God’s will and, more vitally, those of the hypocrtical Western powers.
The war will end when compromise is reached. But when you only look back, there isn’t any.
— SpartacusK99 (@SpartacusK99) August 9, 2014
— #Gaza (@mobde3a_) August 8, 2014