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That is what makes it so beyond the pale when you hear of a very left NGO called “B’tzelem”, for example, petitioning the courts to allow an advertisement with the names of the children killed in Gaza to be read on Israeli radio (and trying to bypass the political influence laws regarding radio in Israel)! (http://www.jpost.com/Operation-Protective-Edge/BTselem-to-petition-High-Court-against-censorship-of-Gaza-dead-368888 — these NGO’s are supported, by and large, by European Union NGO’s trying to influence/interfere with our society — see NGO Monitor: http://www.ngo-monitor.org/article/b_tselem — shine a light on this!) Such chutzpah! No context — why are these children dying? Is it the Islamic one-party dictatorship committing war crimes by launching rockets to Israeli cities and the legitimate response by Israel — where Hamas places rocket launchers in the middle of schools, hospitals and neighborhoods? Worse, we are not even sure which children are directly killed by a Hamas rocket — we know of many instances of Hamas rockets landing on their own “people”.
We are in a war of ideas — freedom vs. dictatorship. Loving life vs a culture of death. I just got this amazing video that presents this contrast clearly — if you don’t like republican politics, so ignore the end, but the message is so clear and powerful. http://www.truthrevolt.org/videos/bill-whittle-case-israel. After watching this video I wrote the following to my wonderful Christian friends: “I just saw this, and I swear to you, I started to cry. I then got it. Besides the unbelievable truth to what he says I now realize how alone I sometimes feel. Like someone accidentally locked up in a psychiatric institution, and every time I protest my innocence, my docs suggest that my delusional issues are still not resolved! So you give me comfort of knowing it’s not me… Thank you and God Bless you all.”
Please understand. Israeli’s take no pleasure out of children being killed. Unlike our enemies, who dance, launch fireworks and hand out candies when there is a terrorist attack in Israel killing men, women and children, Israeli’s do not take joy in this loss of life of others. But let’s be clear that does not mean we should bear responsibility for these deaths. Hamas, as I have written before, is cynically using the international press to produce photo ops for their propaganda purposes while their fighters and leadership hides underground. It is about Cause and Effect. Here is a good read on the issue: http://edition.cnn.com/2014/
And the best piece is by a former BBC reporter has to say about it: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B4_jLzgwVn7dXzFzUkdjVDVLVEk/edit?usp=sharing. Or the direct intimidation of reporters who want to report the truth about civilians being used as human shields: http://www.jpost.com/Operation-Protective-Edge/Gaza-reporters-tweets-Hamas-using-human-shields-368689 What our enemies are trying to do is show examples of intimidation of reporters in Israel — which is rare, not right and is dealt with immediately. What the BBC fellow says is the bottom line: from Israel you can say what you want, from Gaza — forget about it.
But I also don’t think we should give a large part of the population of Gaza a free pass. Here is why. You must understand that 44% of Gaza’s population VOTED for Hamas (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
So the analogy to Hitler has many dimensions. First, here is a clip of a 1940 rally where Hitler decried Churchill’s attack on German civilians — I kid you not. https://www.youtube.com/watch?
Next dimension of comparison: Fascism. We are having in the U.S. a major crisis of leadership and I hope this does not compromise future generations in terms of paying the piper. It is amazing that 70 years after WW II we are, again, compromising with the evil of fascism which has now become mutated and is being directed as a radical Islamic ideology. This has become possible, in part, because Islam does not differentiate between religion and State in any way. If one reads a basic definition of Fascism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism) it states, in part, “Fascists sought to unify their nation through an authoritarian state that promoted the mass mobilization of the national community and were characterized by having leadership that initiated a revolutionary political movement aiming to reorganize the nation along principles according to fascist ideology. Fascist movements shared certain common features, including the veneration of the state, a devotion to a strong leader, and an emphasis on ultranationalism and militarism. Fascism views political violence, war, and imperialism as a means to achieve national rejuvenation, and it asserts that stronger nations have the right to expand their territory by displacing weaker nations.”
Sounds familiar? This directly relates to the way Islam views nationalism and the State as an extension of it ideology of religious supremacy. Because it believes in this supremacy, especially in land formally captured in earlier times by expansionist Islamic/Arab rulers (for the most part this is connected to Arab culture, though not completely) it sees Israel (and Spain for that matter) as the first target of their wrath… oh, once they murder Muslims who do not adhere to their brand of theology! That is why Hamas (and now ISIS) first went about killing their fellow Muslims who were not getting with the program. Hamas, as a branded part of the Muslim Brotherhood has this ideology as their world view and that it is why it is so dangerous. Obama pandered to MB when he gave his Cairo speech and he is an enabler of MB’s continued attempt to export this ideology throughout the world (MB is aligned with a number of Muslim countries, most notably our NATO “ally” Turkey and, host of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), Qatar) . Our ability to fight this evil first requires us to name it for what it is.
Islam has a really dark side to it that is a petri-dish for fascism, terrorism, antisemitism, anti-Christian, anti-women … actually, anti anything Western. and they are loud and there are a lot of them and the Muslim world overall is cowered into allowing this. and the underlying virus vector is within the Arab Muslim world which adds very primitive aspects of Arab social dysfunction into the Muslim mix. (Honor and shame is key to this problem. Here is an excellent short overview of the issue: http://www.jewishmediaresources.com/1703/the-high-costs-of-ignoring-islamic-culture) And we cannot simply put the issue into a structure of: let’s not forget the good Muslims — it is certainly true they exist … but we have a major enemy in fascist Islam even if there are good Muslims out there. we had an enemy in fascist Nazism even if there were good Christian Germans out there. In the end, we needed to carpet bomb most of Germany to defeat this enemy and I am sure good Christian Germans died in the mix. But the infection was too powerful to differentiate. Fascist Islam is an enemy we need to defeat and it usually takes a lot of pain in Western democracies until it wakes up to the seriousness of the problem. Generating consensus in liberal societies is both our strength and our weakness. It’s not about prejudice — its about a war of ideologies and the Western world is in deep trouble over this. one other thing that makes this Muslim problem worst for us now is that not only must we be dealing with Fascist Islam, we must also deal with their internal struggle between various breeds of radical Sunni Islam trying to kill each other and us (the battle is being reduced – for our benefit – to the battle between pro-Muslim Brotherhood of Qatar and Turkey and anti-MB of Egypt and Saudi Arabia though it is so much more complex since there are variations of a theme that regards even these “righteous” Sunni’s as heretics — note: ISIS, for example and their new Caliphate in Syria/Iraq) and the Sunni-Shiite divide and all the variations therein. Boy, what a mess. at least during WW II we did not also have major battles between Catholics and Protestants. They had, more or less, already had their fill of murder and mayhem during the prior century or so!
There is much more I want to write but this blog is getting long again. So let me leave you with this story.
Life here does have it’s ironies. Last night Meryl and I went to a concert of Beri Sakharof – a famous rock guitarist in Israel (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upU4G6Zstf0). It was held in Kibbutz Yiron in the parking lot of the Galill Winery maybe 2 miles from the Lebanese border (I wonder if Hezbollah was dancing to his music as well :)). The head of the municipality, co-sponsors of the event, spoke of these difficult times and he brought up the discussion whether to have the concert or not and it was decided that it was important for Israelis to continue LIFE. Then he praised our soldiers — in fact, the promoters invited any reservists in the area to attend the concert at no charge and this garnered the only significant applause. I am such a mush I was crying. It was so powerful. And then Beri got up to play — please remember he is totally secular. His band had more dreadlocks than a Bob Marley concert and he said that he wants to start the concert with a song dedicated to our soldiers in the field — may G-d bless them (yes, he used the word El, which is G-d – twice) — and then they played a rendition of the 121st Psalm — the acoustic version by the artist who wrote this beautiful melody is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-CV9ivKPTf8. Of course the author of this Psalm is actually my #1 hero, King David – poet, fighter, lover and builder of the first Commonwealth of Israel nearly 3,000 years ago.
A couple of things before I leave you: 1. this is the soul of Israel and why I love the country and its people, warts and all 2. he did not sing a song about death to the Arabs (something I am sure would have been chanted at a Hamas concert regarding Jews) 3. deep in the soul of Israel – secular or religious – is this deep sense of faith and purpose — in fact, Israel has one of the highest beliefs in God for any Western country even though more than half the country is not “religious” at all; 4. these verses were written in ISRAEL 3,000 YEARS AGO. Please tell me, who are the indigenous people in this conflict. A hint to my next missive.