Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

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)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The Left's Hypocrisy Over the Term "Blood Libel"

Sarah Palin's use of the term "blood libel" to describe the slanderous accusations of her enemies following the tragic shootings in Arizona didn't offend me.  Not one iota.  Not for one split second. I notice that in common with other enemies of what’s Right and right such as the Guardian and the Independent, Al Beeb has been milking the Sarah Palin-uses-the term-blood-libel story to undermine an attractive and engaging politician who also happens to be a friend of Israel.

How characteristically and predictably cynical and partisan of Al Beeb and those newspapers – anything to score points for their nakedly leftist, anti-Western agenda. On its website Al Beeb has cited the (equally predictable and partisan) indignation at Ms Palin’s comments of the press secretary and president of what they call “the progressive pro-Israel [sic] group J Street”.  That prince of pro-Israel bloggers, the esteemed Elder of Ziyon, made this excellent pictorial comment on J-Street's president, Jeremy Ben-Ami, a few days ago.

Wouldst that Al Beeb and the other anti-Palin stooges proved as enthusiastic in revealing Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’s favourable perception of Israel, but that’s undoubtedly too much to ask, because it sits uncomfortably with their own monstrous anti-Israel bias:

“My grandfather, Akiba Hornstein, was the son of a Lithuanian rabbi. My grandfather changed his name to Giff Giffords for reasons of anti-Semitism and moved to Southern Arizona from New York more than a half century ago. In the 1940s, he founded my family’s tire and automotive business, El Campo Tire, which grew into a successful and thriving business for 50 years, which I ran for several years before serving in the Arizona Legislature.
Growing up, my family’s Jewish roots and tradition played an important role in shaping my values. The women in my family served as strong role models for me as a girl. In my family, if you want to get something done, you take it to the women relatives! Like my grandmother, I am a lifetime member of Hadassah and now a member of Congregation Chaverim.
When I served in the State Senate in Arizona, I had the opportunity to visit Jerusalem . It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life. I had the opportunity to meet with the then-mayor of Jerusalem, Ehud Olmert, and I got to see firsthand the sacrifices that Israelis make in the name of security because of the dangerous state of affairs there.
I will always be a strong supporter of Israel . As the only functioning democracy in the Middle East, Israel is a vital strategic ally of the United States . I believe the United States must do everything possible to secure Israel ’s long-term security and achieve a lasting peace in the region....
Until the Palestinian leadership and other hostile regimes are willing to accept Israel ’s right to exist, it will be impossible to achieve peace....
As a woman and as a Jew, I will always work to insure that the United States stands with Israel to jointly ensure our mutual safety, security, and prosperity.' (Hat tip: Professor Barry Rubin)
Professor Barry Rubin refers in passing to the absurd furore over Ms Palin’s use of the term “blood libel”, in his new post, “Anti-Jewish Insanity in the Middle East Transcends All Previous Limits” (
'After more than 30 years working professionally on Middle East history and politics, I can still be astonished by things that happen in the region. Yet, precisely as William Shakespeare wrote in his play about Cleopatra:
"Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale/Her infinite variety:"
Well, not exactly "infinite variety." It's just more of the same, to an infinite extreme. Who would have thought, say 20 year ago, that the Arabic-speaking world's obsession with demonizing Jews might go even further than where it was at that time?
For one thing, in the 1990s, history seemed to be moving toward moderation; for another thing, who could believe it could become even more intense.
But just at the moment when for the first time in all of history Americans are told that (some) Jews object to the use of the term "blood libel" by someone falsely accused of murder, the same people are ignoring thousands of blood libels generated daily in the Middle East, many with fatal consequences.
And now this, as reported by MEMRI (
Wael Ramadhan: "The [Roman] war against Cleopatra was Jewish in essence, and history repeats itself. The Romans had no territorial aspirations in Egypt in those days, and this is ignored by history and by many historians. The Romans were at war with the Parthians and the remnants of the Persian Empire, but they had no intention of waging war against Egypt."
Ramadhan has just made a television series on the Romans and Cleopatra.
There is a humorous side to all of this, but hatred and demonization of Jews is also a mania poisoning the Arab world (not to mention Iran and some other Muslim-majority) and blocking progress in dealing with all of its problems.
This plague has reached epidemic proportions, it shapes policy, prevents peace, paralyzes research and education, and unhinges religion. While an absurd debate rages in America about whether a non-Jew is allowed to use the phrase "blood libel" (something that no Jew has ever hitherto objected to in world history), they are ignoring huge numbers of actual, serious, deadly blood libels.
A sea of blood libels.... And they will produce a sea of blood.”

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