We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East. (From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Stephen Fry in a Stir – The strange double standards of the Israel- and Pope-bashing "intelligentsia"

Stephen Fry, the actor, comedian, gay icon, and public intellectual, is often termed (though not by me) a British "national treasure".  He has also been termed –  and this description is spot-on! –  an "occasional Jew".  For although halachically Jewish, Mr Fry was not raised within Judaism, and according to his memoir (if my memory of a quick fumble with said volume in a branch of Ottakar's bookstore serves me correctly) he once contemplated entering the Anglican priesthood. 

However, Mr Fry is a signed up member of the Israel-bashing fringe group Jews for Justice for Palestinians (JfJfP).  He's hardly the sole person of halachic Jewishness but of a faith other than Judaism to belong.  The group strikes me as a rag, tag and bobtail assemblage of the well-intentioned, the ill-intentioned, and the politically naive. Some (admittedly by no means all) of its members –  like Mr Fry himself –  have tenuous links to Judaism, and some are "non-Jewish Jews" in Deutscher's sense. On its website it mocks Abe Foxman of the ADL for taking umbrage at a recent article by Karl Vick in Time magazine which bears this offensive statement:
'In the week that three Presidents, a King and their own Prime Minister gather at the White House to begin a fresh round of talks on peace between Israel and the Palestinians, the truth is, Israelis are no longer preoccupied with the matter. They're otherwise engaged; they're making money; they're enjoying the rays of late summer. A watching world may still define their country by the blood feud with the Arabs whose families used to live on this land and whether that conflict can be negotiated away, but Israelis say they have moved on.'
(Incidentally, the BBC, in a feature about Tel Aviv  –  "Is Tel Aviv the New Miami?", featuring sunbathers and opening with the line "The ladies of Tel Aviv are on the hunt for gold" –  seems to have been inspired by Vick's statement.)

But to return to Mr Fry.  In 2008, when Israel, against all the odds, achieved its 60th anniversary, he joined with many another "as-a-Jew" in signing a malevolent letter that appeared in the Israel-demonising and increasingly antisemitic Guardian.  It stated, inter alia:
'As Edward Said emphasised, what the Holocaust is to the Jews, the Naqba is to the Palestinians....We cannot celebrate the birthday of a state founded on terrorism, massacres and the dispossession of another people from their land. We cannot celebrate the birthday of a state that even now engages in ethnic cleansing, that violates international law, that is inflicting a monstrous collective punishment on the civilian population of Gaza and that continues to deny to Palestinians their human rights and national aspirations.'
This week, Mr Fry and a bunch of "usual suspects" signed a mean-spirited letter to the ever-obliging Guardian vehemently opposing the state visit of the Pope on the following grounds:
 'Opposing the distribution of condoms and so increasing large families in poor countries and the spread of Aids. Promoting segregated education. Denying abortion to even the most vulnerable women. Opposing equal rights for lesbians, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Failing to address the many cases of abuse of children within its own organisation. The state of which the pope is head has also resisted signing many major human rights treaties and has formed its own treaties ("concordats") with many states which negatively affect the human rights of citizens of those states. In any case, we reject the masquerading of the Holy See as a state and the pope as a head of state as merely a convenient fiction to amplify the international influence of the Vatican.'
Ah! Hang on a moment! Don't the Pope-bashers' strictures regarding the promotion of large families, insistence on segregated education, regarding women as baby machines, and the oppression of gays apply equally if not more so to sections of the Islamic world, fundamentalist members of which wish to drive every other religion and social system, including secular democracy, off the face of the earth?

 Mr Fry, the leftwing "intelligentsia", the Guardian, and the JfJfP group (which is about to send a Break-the-Gaza-Siege boat to Hamastan; according to unconfirmed reports it will set sail on erev Yom Kippur!)  should be condemning the following chilling statement that a top Hamas official has just made (hat tip: http://www.gloria-center.org/gloria/2010/9/millions-of-virgins-millions-of-martyrs), stating that
every Muslim should have a lot of sons and train them to be terrorists and hence martyrs, and  concluding :

"If this is the culture of the nation today, who will be able to stop it?...As long as we continue on this path, nobody on Earth will be able to confront the resistance, or to confront the mujahideen, those who worship Allah and seek martyrdom."

This is the same official who said, a few years ago:
 "'You will be victorious on the face of this planet. You are the masters of the world on the face of this planet. Yes, [the Koran says that] 'you will be victorious,' but only 'if you are believers.' Allah willing, 'you will be victorious,' while America and Israel will be annihilated, Allah willing. I guarantee you that the power of belief and faith is greater than the power of America and Israel. They are cowards, as is said in the Book of Allah: 'You shall find them the people most eager to protect their lives.' They are cowards, who are eager for life, while we are eager for death for the sake of Allah. That is why America's nose was rubbed in the mud in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Somalia, and everywhere.... America will be annihilated, while Islam will remain. The Muslims 'will be victorious, if you are believers.' Oh Muslims, I guarantee you that the power of Allah is greater than America, by whom many are blinded today. Some people are blinded by the power of America. We say to them that with the might of Allah, with the might of His Messenger, and with the power of Allah, we are stronger than America and Israel.'"
But such are the double standards of the Guardianistas and their ilk that no condemnation is likely to be forthcoming.

13 comments:

  1. Hypocrisy is what the Left does best.
    I noticed Claire Rayner signed the pope letter, she's not exactly a poster girl for Zionism either.

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  2. I class her as a "non-Jewish Jew". Thanks for reminding me (I think!) of her spiteful horrible attitude to Israel:

    Outrage over Claire Rayner's attack on Israel
    By Robert Mendick
    21 April 2002 The Independent
    Claire Rayner, Britain's best-known agony aunt, has outraged the Jewish establishment by declaring a loathing of Israel and an apparent empathy with Palestinian suicide bombers. Ms Rayner, 71, who was born Jewish but has long been a self-proclaimed atheist, has said that the Jewish people's claim to a historic homeland was "a load of crap".
    Ms Rayner told this newspaper: "I have never had any attachment to Israel. The only time I went there I loathed the country. People were abominably rude. I am appalled by the right wing hawkishness of this government. What upsets me even more is so many of the constituents seem to approve of what Sharon is doing.
    "People say the Jews have a historic right to live on the land * how can they? What a load of crap. You could also say Sephardic Jews have a right to Spain."
    Ms Rayner, the president of the British Humanist Association declares a firm preference for a world without national boundaries. She added: "If you treat a group of people the way Palestinians have been treated they will use the only weapon they have which is their individual lives. This is why there are suicide bombers."

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  3. Isn't it strange how so-called intellectuals have the most closed mindsets, so convinced by their own self-righteous indignation. We then find that their cleverness extends only so far as their ability to project it on TV and the media.

    Rayner's deep intellectual understanding of Zionism appears to have been coloured by the fact she found Israelis even ruder than she is.

    I do find it strange, however, that this Pope gets a State visit and the former did not. Maybe it's because he's German.

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  4. Hi, Ray! I saw Ms Rayner on TV a decade ago arguing vociferously against the monarchy in a BBC debate hosted by Trevor Macdonald. I was struck by her bitter attitude.
    A State Visit is strange, but I wish every success to the pontiff in his "evangelical spirituality" crusade, for I think it can only strengthen the West. For it to succeed, though, I think a young handsome pontiff (next time around) is Rome's best bet - a sort of George Clooney in a cassock. I don't mean any disrespect to Catholics in saying that; I think it's just relecting the reality of the televisual world we live in. Something has to reinvigorate the West against dark forces which threaten us.

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  5. I'm glad to see you fry Fry. Good job!

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  6. Unfortunately, he'll still bubble and squeak ;~(

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  7. Fry's not a full shilling, he did his disapearing act some time ago,but came back, and he has been inside for theft. So who the hell cares what he says or does.

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  8. Thanks, Steve! "Who the hell cares" - my sentiments exactly, but I did want to get this off my chest, since he's lionised out of all proportion by Al Beeb and other sections of the media. Honestly, a Martian would assume he is the Prime Minister, to judge by the way Al Beeb and the Grauniad publicise his every word.

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  9. Strange how, just because someone can sing, dance, act etc, some people seem to think their ideas on politics and Islam must be well thought out and based on fact.

    In reality, celebrity status seems to mean that guys like Stephen Fry can pronounce on any topic (and favourites are how benign Islam is, and how superior to our Judeo/Christian ethic, and how evil Israel is)), and however fatuous or blatantly wrong their pronouncements, some will believe them.

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  10. Too true, Cassandra - it's a case of the Cult of Celebrity merges with Dumbing Down Syndrome!

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  11. oh the pathos. I am so fed up with the whinging semetic monotheists. Try joining the diverse human race instead of the smug self satisfaction in deluding yourselves as g-d chosen. Link up with the Palestinians and combine your lands into a new land for all. It worked in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand.
    Capiche?

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  12. Hi Daphne,
    I only just discovered your blog (via Islamist Monitor Australia) and now will never be seduced so much by the bonhomie of Stephen Fry again. Why do those self-loathing Jews not realise that sidling up to those who want to anihilate their brothers and sisters will not safe their own skin either?

    PS: I wonder why you dont have Pamela Geller's "AtlasShrugs" and Robert Spencer's "Jihad Watch" in your blog list?

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  13. Thanks for your comment, Rita.
    I tend to list blogs that focus exclusively on Israel rather than the wider struggle against jihad.
    The sites you mention are excellent -crucial too - and among others worthy of note is, of course, Gates of Vienna.
    I might revise this policy eventually, but of course Atlas Shrugs and the other well-known ones need no introduction from me!

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