As I write this, the British media is falling over itself to condemn Israel anew. Yesterday a boat bearing terrorists attempted to reach Israeli shores; Israel managed to reach them first and opened fire. As would the defence forces of any sane, democratic nation on our planet.
Of course, the BBC and the Daily Mail, among others, are horrified at this event – what, Jews, defending themselves against terrorism? Whatever next?!
The Mail suggests that this latest terror threat doesn’t actually exist, while the BBC persists in referring to the Islamic militants on board the flotilla as ‘aid workers’.
The British media should be anti terrorism – and as a result should have the decency to at least put forward Israeli responses. After all, it wasn’t so long ago that Brits themselves were being slaughtered by the same terrorists who this week are so cheerfully running rings about both Israel and the court of world opinion.
Here is Melanie Phillips – do note the edits at the end of her article, both of which are significant.
Peace convoy’? This was an Islamist terror ambush
As the international community rushes to condemn Israel for the violence on board one of the ships in the Gaza flotilla, which left a reported 10 people dead and dozens injured, it is now obvious that the real purpose of this ‘armada of hate’ was not merely the further delegitimisation of Israel but something far worse.
Gaza’s markets are full of produce, thousands of tons of supplies are travelling into Gaza every week through the Israeli-controlled border crossings, and there is no starvation or humanitarian crisis.
It was always obvious that the flotilla was not the humanitarian exercise it was said to be. Here is footage of the IDF offering to dock the Marmara — the main flotilla ship — at Ashdod and transfer its supplies and being told ‘Negative, negative, our destination is Gaza’.
And now we can see that the real purpose of this invasion — backed by the Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), a radical Islamic organization outlawed by Israel in 2008 for allegedly serving as a major component in Hamas’s global fund-raising machine — was to incite a violent uprising in the Middle East and across the Islamic world. As I write, reports are coming in of Arab rioting in Jerusalem.
The notion – uncritically swallowed by the lazy, ignorant and bigoted BBC and other western media – that the flotilla organisers are ‘peace activists’ is simply ludicrous. This research by the Danish Institute for International Studies details the part played by the IHH in Islamist terror in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Chechnya.
According to the French magistrate Jean-Louis Bruguiere testifying at the Seattle trial of would-be al Qaeda Millenium bomber Ahmed Ressamin, the IHH had played ‘[a]n important role’ in the al Qaeda Millenium bomb plot targeting Los Angeles airport. It was also involved in weapons trafficking, and played in addition a key role in galvanizing anti-Western sentiment among Turkish Muslims in the lead-up to the 2003 war in Iraq. ‘Peace activists’ these people most certainly are not.
And this flotilla was but the latest jihadi attack, deploying the Islamists’ signature strategy of violence and media manipulation.
Here from MEMRI (via Just Journalism) is a clip showing the hysteria against Israel being whipped up on board before the ships set sail, with the chanting of intifada songs about ‘Khaybar’ – the iconic slaughter of Jews by Muslims in the 7th century which is used as a rallying cry to kill the Jews today — and threats of ‘martyrdom’. This was not merely a propaganda stunt, but a terrorist attack.
This is what the Jerusalem Post reported earlier today about what happened last night:
According to the IDF, the international activists ‘prepared a lynch’ for the soldiers who boarded the ships at about 2 a.m. Monday morning after calling on them to stop, or follow them to the Ashdod Port several hours earlier.
… Upon boarding the ships, the soldiers encountered fierce resistance from the passengers who were armed with knives, bats and metal pipes. The soldiers used non-lethal measures to disperse the crowd. The activists, according to an IDF report, succeeded in stealing two handguns from soldiers and opened fire, leading to an escalation in violence.
Also in the Jerusalem Post, David Horowitz wrote:
Benayahu said soldiers, who had been dispatched to block the flotilla because of fears that it was carrying weaponry and other highly dangerous cargo into the Hamas-controlled Strip, were attacked with knives and bars and sharpened metal implements.
Benayahu said two pistols that had been fired were subsequently found aboard the one ship, the Marmara, on which the violence erupted. And, most dramatically, he said that one IDF soldier had his weapon snatched away by one of the ‘peace activists’ on board, that this weapon was then turned against the IDF soldiers, who came under fire, and that they had no choice but to shoot back in self-defense.
… What seems urgent now is to make publicly available footage that shows exactly what did unfold. In early afternoon, video footage screened on Israel’s Channel 2 appeared to show one of those aboard the Marmara stabbing an IDF soldier. Any such footage should have been made available hours earlier. Critically, if footage showing a soldier’s weapon being snatched and turned on the IDF troops exists, it should be broadcast, and the sooner the better.
Some of this footage is now available on the web but much of it is hard to follow: as ever, the Israelis have been far too slow in making the most telling images and information available in comprehensible form (including in English rather than in Hebrew, for heaven’s sake!).
This clip appears to show masked and armed flotilla activists beating Israeli soldiers (although here is the BBC report accompanying that footage, in which the voiceover appears to be claiming, perversely, that the people in masks were Israeli soldiers. That said, the report on Radio Four’s World at One was fair and balanced).
This clip shows an Israeli soldier being stabbed. This IDF clip and this one show attacks on the commandoes including throwing one off the deck, attacking others with a metal pole and a firebomb and an attempted kidnap of another.
It is also becoming clearer as the day wears on that, far from storming the boats in order to attack those on board, the Israelis were hopelessly ill-prepared for the violence they encountered. Israel’s Channel 10 and IDF radio have reported that the Israeli naval commandos were equipped with paint ball rifles to ensure minimum casualties among the flotilla terrorists, with their hand guns to be used only as a last resort.
The terrorists tried connecting the steel cables from the overhead helicopters to the boat’s antenna, in order to cause the helicopters to crash. Only when the terrorists beat the soldiers with iron rods, stabbed them with knives and tried to lynch them did the soldiers respond. The Israeli commandoes were pushed down stairs, thrown overboard, and shot at.
Here is a report by an Israel army radio reporter on board:
‘The activists had many things ready for an attack on the soldiers,’ Lev-Rom said, ‘including, for instance, a box of 20-30 slingshots with metal balls; these can kill. There were also all sorts of knives and many similar things. These are what they call “cold” weapons, as opposed to live fire. It was quite clear that a lynch had been prepared.’
Lev-Rom said, however, that it appears the army, ‘even though it prepared for many different scenarios, was not ready for this one. The army seems not to have known what type of people were there and what type of weapons they had. It was hard for Israel to conceive that the ship, sponsored by the country of Turkey, would have such weapons. Israel was prepared to deal with anarchists, and instead had to deal with terrorists – that’s the feeling here.’
Here** is an even more vivid account showing how unprepared the Israeli soldiers were:
Navy commandoes slid down to the vessel one by one, yet then the unexpected occurred: The passengers that awaited them on the deck pulled out bats, clubs, and slingshots with glass marbles, assaulting each soldier as he disembarked. The fighters were nabbed one by one and were beaten up badly, yet they attempted to fight back.
However, to their misfortune, they were only equipped with paintball rifles used to disperse minor protests, such as the ones held in Bilin. The paintballs obviously made no impression on the activists, who kept on beating the troops up and even attempted to wrest away their weapons.
One soldier who came to the aid of a comrade was captured by the rioters and sustained severe blows. The commandoes were equipped with handguns but were told they should only use them in the face of life-threatening situations. When they came down from the chopper, they kept on shouting to each other ‘don’t shoot, don’t shoot,’ even though they sustained numerous blows.
The Navy commandoes were prepared to mostly encounter political activists seeking to hold a protest, rather than trained street fighters. The soldiers were told they were to verbally convince activists who offer resistance to give up, and only then use paintballs. They were permitted to use their handguns only under extreme circumstances.
The planned rush towards the vessel’s bridge became impossible, even when a second chopper was brought in with another crew of soldiers. ‘Throw stun grenades,’ shouted Flotilla 13’s commander who monitored the operation. The Navy chief was not too far, on board a speedboat belonging to Flotilla 13, along with forces who attempted to climb into the back of the ship.
The forces hurled stun grenades, yet the rioters on the top deck, whose number swelled up to 30 by that time, kept on beating up about 30 commandoes who kept gliding their way one by one from the helicopter. At one point, the attackers nabbed one commando, wrested away his handgun, and threw him down from the top deck to the lower deck, 30 feet below. The soldier sustained a serious head wound and lost his consciousness.
Only after this injury did Flotilla 13 troops ask for permission to use live fire. The commander approved it: You can go ahead and fire. The soldiers pulled out their handguns and started shooting at the rioters’ legs, a move that ultimately neutralized them. Meanwhile, the rioters started to fire back at the commandoes.
It is becoming ever more clear that Islamist terror attacks like this are fiendishly staged theatrical events in which the western media – and beyond them, western governments — play an absolutely essential role in the drama.
If those media and governments refused to swallow the lies and instead called operations like this and the players behind it for what they actually are, such terrorist operations would not happen. The Islamist strategy of war against Israel is carefully calibrated to deploy the most effective weapon in its armoury in the cause of jihadi violence – the western media.
Right on cue, western governments accordingly deliver their own script in condemning the victims of terror for defending themselves. And so, courtesy of the west’s fifth columnists, yet another nail is driven into the west’s own coffin.
Let’s see whether this time the western elites show any signs of waking from their lethal trance.
Update: I am told that the Jewish Chronicle website was taken down earlier (now restored) by a massive denial of service, apparently to shut down its balanced coverage of the Ashdod flotilla incident. The JC’s teccies, and the server hosts, say this hasn’t been caused by just one or tw908o people — it’s clearly now co-ordinated and growing.
**Update 2: The journalist who wrote this account, Ron Ben-Yishai, cannot be accused of being an Israel government stooge: it was Ben-Yishai who in 1982 was first into the Palestinian refugee camps at Sabra and Shatila in Beirut and blew the whistle on the massacre there that had been perpetrated by the Phalangists while Ariel Sharon looked the other way.
I sincerely wish Melanie Phillips was running this country. She remains one of the few, sane voices left in Britain right now.
Here she is on the difficulties facing British Christians of late:
Sleepwalking off the cultural cliff
Daily Mail, 14 December 2009
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, comes in for a lot of stick — not least from columnists like me.
But in the past few days, he has said something important. He has criticised Government ministers for thinking that Christian beliefs are no longer relevant in modern Britain, and for looking at religion as a ‘problem’.
Many Government faith initiatives, he observed, assumed that religion was an eccentricity practised by oddballs, foreigners and minorities.
This is not just a seasonal exercise in special pleading by a Church leader. Dr Williams has put his finger on what should be a cause of extreme disquiet — the war of attrition being waged against Christian beliefs.
In recent times, there has been a string of cases in which it is no exaggeration to say that British Christians have been persecuted for expressing their faith.
In July, Duke Amachree, a Christian who for 18 years had been a Homelessness Prevention Officer for Wandsworth Council, encouraged a client with an incurable medical condition to believe in God.
As a result, Mr Amachree was marched off the premises, suspended and then dismissed from his job. It was a similar case to the Christian nurse who was suspended after offering to pray for a patient’s recovery.
Christians are being removed from adoption panels if they refuse to endorse placing children for adoption with same-sex couples.
Similarly, a Christian counsellor was sacked by the national counselling service Relate because he refused to give sex therapy sessions to gays.
What this amounts to is that for Christians, the freedom to live according to their religious beliefs — one of the most fundamental precepts of a liberal society — is fast becoming impossible. Indeed, merely professing traditional Christian beliefs can cause such offence that it is treated as a crime.
Take, for example, the case of Harry Hammond, an elderly and eccentric evangelical who was prosecuted for a public order offence after parading with a placard denouncing immorality and homosexuality — even though he was assaulted by the hostile crowd he was held to have offended.
Or look at the case of the Vogelenzangs, a hotelier couple from Merseyside, who last week were cleared of a ‘religiously aggravated’ public order offence after being prosecuted for insulting a Muslim guest.
While their behaviour may have been offensive and unwarranted, it is nevertheless a source of wonderment that for the police, ‘hate crime’ doesn’t seem to occur whenever Christianity is pilloried, mocked and insulted — as happens routinely — but only when a minority faith is in the frame.
Indeed, the Archbishop’s complaint echoed an earlier Church-backed report that accused the Government of merely paying lip service to Christianity while focusing support on Muslims.
The curious fact is that Labour’s hostility to faith is highly selective. It does everything it can to protect and support minority creeds while appearing to do everything it can to attack Christianity.
The root of this double standard is the unpleasant prejudice that minority faiths hail from cultures where people are less well-educated and so cannot be blamed for their beliefs. This, of course, is a deeply racist attitude, and is commonly found on the Left.
As Dr Williams observed, one of the effects of the modern hostility to religion is to give the impression that faith is not really very British. But on the contrary, it is part of the national psyche — even among people who don’t go to church.
To stop the denigration of religion, the Archbishop has called on government ministers to be more willing to talk about their own faith. But since this is seen as the province of cranks, politicians are reluctant to do so because of the risk of public ridicule.
This well-nigh insuperable difficulty was acknowledged yesterday by Tony Blair in an interview about his religious beliefs. As his former spin doctor Alastair Campbell once famously observed: ‘We don’t do God.’
This is because among the intelligentsia, the animosity to religion runs even deeper than the upside-down value system of the multicultural agenda. It springs from the fixed view that reason and religion are in diametrically opposite camps.
Anyone who prays to God must therefore be anti-reason, anti- science and antifreedom – in other words, an objectionable, obscurantist nutcase.
But this is the very opposite of the truth. Rationality is actually underpinned by Judeo-Christian beliefs.
Without the Biblical narrative, which gave the world the revolutionary idea of an orderly universe that could therefore be investigated by the use of reason, science would never have developed in the first place.
And it was the Judeo-Christian belief that all individuals are made equal in the image of God that gave rise to human rights and democracy.
Of course, terrible things have also been done in the name of religion. And equally, people without religious faith can believe in freedom and equality, and lead moral lives.
But that’s because they draw upon a culture that rests on religious foundations. Strip away those foundations and what’s left would be a brutalised and chaotic society.
You don’t have to be a religious believer to be mightily concerned by such a likely consequence. But anxiety over fundamentalism has resulted in rising hostility to all religion.
Notably, however, this is not the case in the U.S., which remains overwhelmingly an upfront Christian society. Its politicians are neither ashamed nor embarrassed to call upon God to bless America at every opportunity.
Unlike U.S. mainstream Churches which, as descendants from the English Puritans, remain deeply wedded to the Biblical tradition, the Church of England has always looked down on true Scriptural believers as half-wits.
With such a half-hearted foundation of religious belief, it has been more vulnerable than other Churches to the secular onslaught against religion.
Dr Williams exemplifies this weakness by trying to go with the flow of social change and is for ever apologising for Christianity.
Certainly, it did some terrible things in the past to people of other faiths. But it is also responsible for the astonishing achievements of western civilisation.
Rather than complaining about politicians, Dr Williams should use his office to teach the nation about the seminal importance of Christianity to this society. But to do that, he has to have faith in his own Church — a faith that too often appears to be lacking.
The key point about the U.S. is that it still believes in itself as a nation and in its values, which are rooted in religion. Loyalty to their churches follows from loyalty to the nation in a kind of benign cycle.
In Britain, however, religion and nation have formed a vicious cycle in which hostility to the country’s identity and values reflects and feeds into hostility to the religion upon which they are based.
The Archbishop’s anguish at the onslaught upon Christian faith is very real. But unless he starts promoting the Church as the transcendental custodian of a civilisation rather than the Guardian newspaper at prayer, the society to which it gave rise will continue to sleepwalk off the edge of a religious and cultural cliff.
Alan Dershowitz is apparently either unable, or unwilling, to talk straight when it comes to Obama‘s hypocrisy re Israel. And it is truly a terrible thing to read Dershowitz’s pathetic rationalisations of the suicidal ‘compromises’ Israel is being pressured to make at the behest of the Obama administration.
Melanie Phillips says it best:
The American lawyer Alan Dershowitz is one of the most prolific, high-profile and indefatiguable defenders of Israel and the Jewish people against the tidal wave of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish feeling currently coursing through the west. So a piece by him in the Wall Street Journal giving expression to the rising anxiety being felt about Obama by American Jews naturally arouses great interest.
But just like the majority of American Jews, getting on for 80 per cent of whom voted for Obama, he is a Democrat supporter who is incapable of acknowledging the truth about this President. For most American Jews, the horror of even entertaining the hypothetical possibility that they might ever in a million years have to vote for a Republican is so great they simply cannot see what is staring them in the face — that this Democratic President is lethal for both Israel and the free world.
And in this article Dershowitz shows that he too is just as blind. Acknowledging the anxiety among some American Jews about Obama’s attitude to Israel, Dershowitz concludes uneasily that there isn’t really a problem here because all Obama is doing is putting pressure on Israel over the settlements, which most American Jews don’t support anyway.
But this is totally to miss the point. The pressure over the settlements per se is not the reason for the intense concern. It is instead, first and foremost, the fact that Obama is treating Israel as if it is the obstacle to peace in the Middle East. Obama thus inverts aggressor and victim, denying Israel’s six-decade long victimisation and airbrushing out Arab aggression.
The question remains: why has Obama chosen to pick a fight with Israel while soft-soaping Iran which is threatening it with genocide? The answer is obvious: Israel is to be used to buy off Iran just as Czechoslovakia was used at Munich.
Indeed, I would say this is worse even than that, since I suspect that Obama – coming as he does from a radical leftist milieu, with vicious Israel-haters amongst his closest friends — would be doing this to Israel even if Iran was not the problem that it is.
In any event, the double standard is egregious. Obama has torn up his previous understandings with Israel over the settlements while putting no pressure at all on the Palestinians, even though since they are the regional aggressor there can be no peace unless they end their aggression and certainly not until they accept Israel as a Jewish state, which they have said explicitly they will never do.
On this, Obama is totally silent. So too is Dershowitz. That’s some omission.
Next, Obama is pressuring Israel to set up a Palestine state – within two years this will exist, swaggers Rahm Emanuel. But everyone knows that as soon as Israel leaves the West Bank, Hamas – or even worse – will take over. The only reason the (also appalling) Abbas is still in Ramallah, enabling Obama to pretend there is a Palestinian interlocutor for peace, is because the Israelis are keeping Hamas at bay.
Yet Dershowitz writes: “There is no evidence of any weakening of American support for Israel`s right to defend its children from the kind of rocket attacks candidate Obama commented on during his visit to Sderot.”
So what exactly does he think would happen if Israel came out of the West Bank and the Hamas rockets were down the road from Jerusalem and Tel Aviv (literally: many in the west have absolutely no idea how tiny Israel is). It’s not a question of Israel’s ‘right to defend its children’.
If Obama has his way, Israel would not be able to defend its children or anyone else, because Obama would have removed its defences by putting its enemies in charge of them.
It is astounding that Dershowitz can’t see this. Then there was Obama’s appalling Cairo speech — which I wrote about here – in which he conspicuously refrained from committing himself to defending Zionism and the Jewish people from the attacks and incitement to genocide against them, but committed himself instead to defending their attackers against ‘negative stereotyping’.
On this, Dershowitz has nothing to say. Worse still, by falsely asserting that the Jewish aspiration for Israel derived from the Holocaust, Obama effectively denied that the Jewish people were in Israel as of right and thus endorsed the core element of the Arab and Muslim propaganda of war and extermination.
On this, Dershowitz has nothing to say. Obama drew a vile – and telling – equivalence between the Nazi extermination camps and the Palestinian ‘refugee’ camps. On this, Dershowitz has nothing to say. Obama`s statement that the Palestinians ‘have suffered in pursuit of a homeland’ was grossly and historically untrue, and again denied Arab aggression. On this, Dershowitz has nothing to say.
Equally vilely, Obama equated genocidal terrorism by the Palestinians with the civil rights movement in America and the resistance against apartheid in South Africa. On all of this, Dershowitz has nothing to say. Dershowitz also grossly underplays the terrible harm Obama is doing to the security not just of Israel but the world through his reckless appeasement of Iran.
In the last few weeks, this has actively undercut the Iranian democrats trying to oust their tyrannical regime, and has actually strengthened that regime. All the evidence suggests ever more strongly that Obama has decided America will ‘live with’ a nuclear Iran, whatever it does to its own people. Which leaves Israel hung out to dry.
But even here, where he is clearly most concerned, Dershowitz scuttles under his comfort blanket – Dennis Ross, who was originally supposed to have been the US special envoy to Iran but was recently announced senior director of the National Security Council and special assistant to the President for the region. It is not at all clear whether this ambiguous development represents a promotion or demotion for Ross.
Either way, for Dershowitz to rest his optimism that Obama’s Iran policy will be all right on the night entirely upon the figure of Dennis Ross is pathetic. Ross, a Jew who played Mr. Nice to Robert Malley’s Mr. Nasty towards Israel in the Camp David debacle under President Clinton, is clearly being used by Obama as a human shield behind which he can bully Israel with impunity.
American Jews assume that his proximity to Obama means the President’s intentions towards Israel are benign. Dazzled by this vision of Ross as the guarantor of Obama’s good faith, they thus ignore altogether the terrible import of the actual words coming out of the President’s mouth.
The fact is that many American Jews are so ignorant of the history of the Jewish people, the centrality of Israel in its history and the legality and justice of its position that they probably saw nothing wrong in Obama saying that the Jewish aspiration for Israel came out of the Holocaust because they think this too.
Nor do they see the appalling double standard in the bullying of Israel over the settlements and what that tells us about Obama’s attitude towards Israel, because – as Dershowitz himself makes all too plain — they too think in much the same way, that the settlements are the principal obstacle to peace. Many if not most American Jews have a highly sentimentalised view of Israel. They never go there, are deeply ignorant of its history and current realities, and are infinitely more concerned with their own view of themselves as social liberals, a view reflected back at themselves through voting for a Democrat President.
Whatever else he is, however, Dershowitz is certainly not ignorant. Which makes this lamentable article all the more revealing, and depressing.
Got a nice big bucket? If not, you’d better borrow one from a neighbour. Because trust me – you’re gonna need it after reading Obama’s Love Letter to the Muslim World. He attempted to whitewash Islam to such an extent that frankly, I’m amazed even the Muslim audience members were able to keep straight faces. America’s Prince Of Appeasement bowed low before them, and it was not a pretty sight.
Let’s face it. Obama might as well be a Muslim. I don’t care how much the man insists he’s a Christian. He speaks with a reverence for Islam and he calls the Quran ‘holy’. I don’t know many Christians that would do this. If Obama had spoken this way about Islam prior to the American elections, would he be sitting in the White House today? I’d wager the answer is a resounding NO.
But he did win, and now the Prince Of Appeasement clearly feels secure enough to express his reverence for Islam:
Obama: ‘Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality.’
(really? with not one Islamic democracy? with the Quran clearly stating that non Muslims must be coverted by force or beheaded? with millions of Muslims dedicated to transforming the world into a global Caliphate? with Jews and Christians and all ‘infidels’ living as dhimmis in Muslim lands, century after century? ‘religious tolerance’ – really?)
Obama: ‘In Ankara, I made clear that America is not – and never will be – at war with Islam.’
(no? then G-d only help America. Because Islam’s made it clear, it is War)
Obama: ‘The Holy Koran teaches that whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a person, it is as if he has saved all mankind.’
(’holy’? Only if you’re a Muslim. How many Christians would even consider referring to the Quran as ‘holy’? Oh, and let’s not forget, that the above teaching is a JEWISH teaching that appeared IN Judaism thousands of years before Islam even existed.)
Obama: Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism…’
(correct, Islam is the TOTAL problem!)
‘Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance.’
(Er, where? Not on planet Earth!)
Obama specifically refers to both the Quran and the Christian bible as ‘holy’ – but manages to avoid referring to the Torah in the same way. Instead, he cites the Talmud.
Why is this? Why did Obama not quote from the Jewish holy text, the Torah? After all, it’s not like there’s any shortage of wise and compassionate teachings in the Torah! But no, instead Obama says:
The Holy Koran tells us, “O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another.”
The Talmud tells us: “The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace.”
The Holy Bible tells us, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of G-d.”
And what about the millions of people who DON’T belong to one of the three Abrahamic faiths?
Obama’s Cairo love-fest with Islam will surely go down in history as a masterclass in sheer, unadulterated appeasement. Oh, how the extremists must be crowing right now.
I can almost hear Mohammed laughing.
Melanie Phillips has voiced some very pertinent points about Obama’s comments on Israel today in Cairo. Here is what she says:
“Obama revealed gross ignorance of the Jews’ unique claim to the land of Israel. He said that America’s unbreakable bond with Israel was based upon:
the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied. Around the world, the Jewish people were persecuted for centuries, and anti-Semitism in Europe culminated in an unprecedented Holocaust…
“The Jews’ attachment to their homeland does not derive from the Holocaust, nor their overall tragic history. It derives from Judaism itself, which is composed of the inseparable elements of the religion, the people and the land. Their unique claim upon the land rests upon the fact that the Jews are the only people for whom Israel was ever their nation, which it was for hundreds of years – centuries before the Arabs and Muslims came on the scene. As for antisemitism, he made no mention of the alliance between the Palestinians and the Nazis during the 1930s, and the fact that Nazi-style Jew-hatred continues to pour out of the Arab and Muslim world to this day.
Building upon this ignorance, he then adopted the Arab propaganda version of Israel’s history. He thus delivered a travesty of the facts:
On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people – Muslims and Christians – have suffered in pursuit of a homeland.
“On the contrary, it is not undeniable because it is untrue. The Palestinians have been offered a homeland repeatedly – in 1936, 1947, 2000 and last year. They have repeatedly turned it down. The Arabs could have created it between 1948 and 1967, when the West Bank and Gaza were occupied by Jordan and Egypt. They chose not to do so. They could have created it after 1967, when Israel offered the land to them in return for peace with Israel. They refused the offer. The Palestinians have suffered because they have tried for six decades to destroy the Jews’ homeland.
Obama: For more than sixty years they have endured the pain of dislocation.
“The ‘pain of dislocation’ was caused by the fact that six decades ago they went to war against the newly recreated Israel to destroy it, and were subsequently deliberately kept in ‘refugee’ camps by the Arab world. What other aggressor in the world is described as suffering ‘the pain of dislocation’ caused by its own aggression — which has continued for sixty years without remission and shows no sign of ending?“
Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead.
“There is one reason for that and one reason alone – the Palestinians have ensured that Israel has never lived in peace or security, because they have continued to attack it and murder its citizens. And Gaza? Doesn’t Obama realise the Israelis no longer occupy Gaza? It is run by Hamas, which shows its commitment to the peace and security of its inhabitants by throwing them off the tops of tall buildings.
So let there be no doubt: the situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable.
And what about the intolerable situation of Israel, forced to live in a state of siege for sixty years because of the unending aggression of the Palestinians and the wider Arab and Muslim world? The Palestinians could have lived in peace and prosperity alongside Israel at any time since 1948. If they were to end their attempt to destroy Israel and accept insteadthe right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state — that crucual qualification Obama omitted to mention -- they could do so tomorrow. The only reason their position is intolerable is because they themselves have made it so. What other aggressor in the world has its situation described as ‘intolerable’?
Palestinians must abandon violence.
Good. But then:
Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and does not succeed.
‘Resistance’? ‘Resistance’ is a term of moral approval. ‘Resistance’ describes a fight against injustice. But the Palestinians have been engaged in an attempt to wipe out Israel. Obama sees this as ‘resistance’ – even though he says violence is wrong. And then this:
For centuries, black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was a peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at the center of America’s founding. This same story can be told by people from South Africa to South Asia; from Eastern Europe to Indonesia.
So Obama has equated genocidal terrorism by the Palestinians with the civil rights movement in America and the true resistance against apartheid in South Africa. Thus the moral bankruptcy of the relativist.
Next, he repeated that the settlements (all of them? just new ones?) undermined peace and so had to stop. But they don’t undermine peace. It is Arab rejectionism that prevents peace in the mMddle East, and the settlements are a palpable excuse. Yet Obama delivered no ultimatum of any kind to Iran, the real threat to peace in the region and the world; indeed, he repeated that Iran
should have the right to access peaceful nuclear power if it complies with its responsibilities under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty,
- an alarming indication that he might view as acceptable a formulation which might enable Iran to continue to make nuclear weapons under some kind of verbal and political camouflage.
For his egregious sanitising of Islam and its history, and his absurd claims about its contribution to western civilisation, read Robert Spencer here. But in this regard, one of Obama’s references in particular made me catch my breath. It was this:
The Holy Koran teaches that whoever kills an innocent, it is as if he has killed all mankind; and whoever saves a person, it is as if he has saved all mankind.
This is boilerplate misrepresentation by Islamists and their apologists. The fact is that it is Judaism which teaches this as a cardinal precept. The Talmud states:
Whoever destroys a single soul, he is guilty as though he had destroyed a complete world; and whoever preserves a single soul, it is as though he had preserved a whole world.
The Koran appropriated this precept – but altered it to mean something very different. Thus:
That was why we laid it down for the Israelites that whoever killed a human being, except as punishment for murder or other villainy in the land, shall be regarded as having killed all mankind; and that whoever saved a human life shall be regarded as having saved all mankind. Our apostles brought them veritable proofs: yet many among them, even after that, did prodigious evil in the land. Those that make war against God and His apostle and spread disorder in the land shall be slain or crucified or have their hands and feet cut off on alternate sides, or be banished from the land. (My emphasis)
In other words, this turns a Talmudic precept affirming the value of preserving human life into a prescription for violence and murder against Jews and ‘unbelievers’. Yet Obama passed it off as evidence of the pacific nature of Islam.
So in conclusion, yes, there was some positive stuff in this speech – but it was outweighed by the United States President’s shocking historical misrepresentations, gross ignorance, disgusting moral equivalence between aggressors and their victims, and disturbing sanitising of Islamist supremacism
Clearly I am not alone in surmising that Obama has lost the plot entirely. His recent announcement that America ‘is one of the largest Muslim countries’ is raising both eyebrows and suspicions in all sane observers. Here’s Melanie Phillips again, in the Spectator, saying what many are thinking:
“Having previously declared that America is ‘no longer a Christian nation’ – to be precise:
… At least not just. We are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, and a Buddhist nation, and a Hindu nation, and a nation of nonbelievers…
Obama has now announced, on the eve of his pilgrimage to make obeisance to the entire Islamic world, that the US can be seen as a Muslim country:
‘And one of the points I want to make is, is that if you actually took the number of Muslim Americans, we’d be one of the largest Muslim countries in the world,’ Mr. Obama said.
Uh? Here are some statistics of the number and percentage of Muslims in various countries:
Indonesia: 207,105,000 (88.2%);
Pakistan: 167,430,801 (95%);
India: 156,254,615 (13.4%);
Turkey: 70,800,000 (99%);
Egypt: 70,530,237 (90%);
Nigeria: 64,385,994 (45%);
Iran: 64,089,571 (98%);
Algeria: 32,999,883 (99%);
Morocco: 32,300,410 (99%);
Afghanistan: 31,571,023 (99%)
Saudi Arabia: 26,417,599 (100%)
USA: 4,558,068 (1.5%)
Just what planet is this US President on?
Or is this not a statement but an aspiration?“
Across the pond, Wesley Pruden in the Washington Post also picks up on this point, as well as rightly lambasting Obama for his pitiful love letter to Islam while in Cairo:
“Now it’s on to Normandy, to apologize to the Germans. It’s the least an American president can do after the way the Allied armies left so much of Europe in rubble. There’s a lot of groveling to do for what America accomplished in the Pacific, too.
This prospect should appeal to Barack Obama, who relishes the role of Apologizer-in-Chief. Apologizing for manifold sins against civilization is not always easy, but it’s simple enough: “Blame America First.” You just open a vein and let it flow. In Cairo, Mr. Obama opened an artery.
In an interview before the Cairo speech, he called the United States one of “the largest Muslim countries,” based on its Muslim population, and he later put the number of Muslims in America at 7 million, more than even most Islamic advocacy groups claim.
Mr. Obama described himself as “a Christian, but,” and offered a hymn to the Muslim roots he insisted during the late presidential campaign he didn’t have. He invoked his middle name, “Hussein,” as evidence that he was one of “them.” The Obama campaign insisted last year that anyone who uses the middle name was playing with racism.
The article notes also:
“But it was more fun to fish for applause by berating America and throwing rocks at Israel…. Israel, he said, must “live up to its obligations,” but he had hardly a word of rebuke for the long record of broken Palestinian promises. It was a remarkable insult to an absent ally, delivered to the applause of Israel’s sworn enemies.”
And the piece concluded:
“The great Cairo grovel accomplished nothing beyond the humiliation of the president and the embarrassment of his constituents, few of whom share his need to put America on its knees before its enemies. No president before him has ever shamed us so. We must never forget it.”