Wednesday, April 10, 2013
A home is demolished, a protester dies and gunships hover overhead as placard waving innocents face off an Israeli juggernaut. A picture really is worth a thousand words. Its accuracy is of no consequence. Winston Churchill made it simple for us when he said “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to put its pants on”.
After the 6-Day War of 1967 David and Goliath magically reversed their roles. I say ‘magically’ because the status quo remained unaltered while slowly and methodically only the perception radically changed. Success and a fundamental inability to appreciate the threat posed by a public opinion war camouflaged the corrosive effect that mounting criticism had on Israel and by extension, Israel’s supporters. That Israel became an excuse for resurgent antisemitism is not relevant to renewed public prejudice.
It was not enough to change Israelis into a nation of Goliaths. In order to humiliate supporters and Israelis alike; in order to foreclose debate, the Israeli became the ‘Jew.’ Israel encouraged it, they were wrong to do so. It made it easier to isolate them and to polarise the Diaspora.
Israel then became the Zionist entity and because the focus in Israel had shifted from the pioneer era to economic expansion, defending Zionism (as a unifying force for social cohesion) was forgotten in the scramble for wealth. Prosperity was not a unique Israeli goal. Israel joined a Western cultural battleground. Maybe the only difference was that Israel had failed first to resolve its national identity or the strategic threat to its national security.
To conflate Jew, Zionist and Israeli into one monolithic virus has made the task of opposing Israel even easier, particularly if you are Jewish. An identity that is built on the negation of a part of that identity demonstrates both commitment and 'sacrifice'. To be a vociferous and Jewish Uncle Tom legitimises prejudice.
Zionism, like democracy is always easy to blemish because unlike totalitarian ideologies it is easily misunderstood. In its simplest form Zionism is the right of Jews to self-determination in their own homeland. But to others, successfully labelling a people with a word they are not interested in understanding makes easy work of shifting the meaning from a blessing to a curse. This is how from bathing in our virtuous birth our public perception changed and we returned to a much more familiar, sinister historical portrayal as devil with horns.
That we permitted our enemies to dominate the media is our crime. That we continue to allow the pro-Palestinian, Arabist version of past and present history to be unchallenged is to blithely march towards extinction. The irony is that if we successfully challenge our enemy they will accuse us of controlling not just the media but everything else; if we fail to challenge them we are still accused of controlling society. This is the classic fascist tactic that ensures we are damned with either course of action. That is their genius. Do you have any suggestions how we can fight them?
There is more than one type of fear. We are frightened to shout out loud our history of physical loss and we are reluctant to demand an end to prejudice even as it infests our society. Rarely are our enemy forced to defend their tactics or their deceit. The intelligent bigot attempts to soothe our fears while we accept that the racist will despise us and work to undermine us because they are the living proof of our multicultural virility.
What we should be doing is attacking every ‘misinterpreted’ diatribe our enemies make. The Palestinian Spokeswoman, Hanan Ashwari gave us a 2013 Passover gift when she accused us of blood libel. It is a timely reminder that co-existence is not part of the deal that the Arab world desires. Every lie is one more stone thrown at our window, one more drop of poison in our well. We should neither forgive nor forget State sanctioned libels because they create a legacy that crosses the generations.
The only way to stop this debilitating struggle is to assault the senses as they have done and to shame the Left and their Liberal allies for their complicity in this antisemitic conspiracy.
Fact 1. The Arab world, and that includes the Palestinians, have persecuted Jew and non-Jew alike since Muhammad appeared just 1,400 years ago.
Fact 2. The Arab world and that includes the Palestinians commit cultural genocide against us. They steal our past, they violate our present and there is no reason to believe they do not intend to extinguish our future. A simple example is the claim that the Jewish Jesus was a Palestinian (Muslim); another, is that having ethnically cleansed East Jerusalem of its Jews they now state at every opportunity that ‘the Jews’ are trying to ‘Judaize’ Jerusalem. This is a term that was used by the Nazis. The people that have adopted this epithet have no shame.
Fact 3. The Arab world and that includes the Palestinians never apologise for their lies. In fact, with the complicity of the international media (and the United Nations) they have made a virtue of deception and an ethic of dishonesty. If no shame attaches to the most heinous of crimes then dishonour becomes something with an entirely non-Western meaning.
Here are the failures of Western understanding and of Jewish propaganda (if we may use such a term):
We cannot appreciate that a lie is a relative term and that to repudiate deception is to dishonour honour. An Arab who kills a female child for being raped has committed the murder of a child in our Western eyes only.
We have accepted despotism as part of our democratic fabric even as it contaminates our democratic political narrative and pollutes our education system. When values are relative to the place of ones birth or ideology then they lose their universal significance and this undermines the basis for our legal system.
To defeat an enemy you must first understand their tactics and second (when possible) use them as they have. There can be no peace while the Western press is dominated by a pro-Palestinian narrative because it encourages Arab and therefore Palestinian lies.
We, of all people should remember that the greater the lie the easier it becomes for the next generation of fascism's foot soldiers and their intellectual betters (on the extreme Right as well as the Left) to erase our right to life.