The war against the Jewish people and the west
It's as if both Stalin and Hitler are being afforded a posthumous victory
I gave some talks in America over the past weekend. What follows is a composite of what I said in them.
In Israel, the population is traumatised, shocked and grieving. During the Hamas pogrom on October 7, Israelis were slaughtered with a level of barbarism and depravity not seen since the Shoah.
In such a small country, there’s hardly a family that’s not personally touched by what’s unfolded. They have relatives who were murdered in the pogrom, or who were kidnapped and taken hostage. Their children and grandchildren have been called up to military service and are now in harm’s way on the front. Hundreds of these conscripts have already been killed. Israelis are going to funeral after funeral. The rocket barrages keep coming. The anxiety levels are off the scale.
The agenda of Hamas and its puppet-master Iran is very clear. Destroy Israel, genocide against the Jews, and then wipe out the Christian west and all unbelievers. We know this is their agenda because they say so. Repeatedly.
The greater shock, however, has been the reaction to this of an enormous number of people in the west.
There have been shocking scenes in British, American and Australian cities of massive and mostly Muslim mobs celebrating the mass murder of Jews and calling for more. Among the non-Jewish population, this genocidal hysteria is being viewed by millions more with indifference or even support, especially among the young.
Polling has shown that among 18-24 year-old Americans, nearly half — 48 per cent — say they side more with Hamas. More than half — 51 per cent — think the Hamas pogrom in which 1400 Israelis were slaughtered can be justified by the grievances of Palestinians.
In Britain and America, young people have been tearing down posters bearing pictures of some of the kidnapped Israeli children.
Thousands of demonstrators have been chanting “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” — the demand for the destruction of Israel. In London, mobs have been chanting “Khybar, Khybar, oh Jews, the army of Mohammed will return” — the reference to the seventh century slaughter of the Jews of Khybar by Islam’s founder Mohammed, which acts as a jubilant glorification and incitement of the slaughter of Jews today.
The western media have been pumping out Hamas propaganda. The BBC and other outlets headline civilian casualty figures put out by Hamas — regardless of the fact that these are always hugely exaggerated, and with no acknowledgment of the fact that terrorists are presumably included in these figures and may constitute the majority.
While berating Israel for causing a humanitarian “catastrophe,” they make no mention of the thefts of fuel and electricity to service the Hamas terrorist infrastructure in the miles of underground tunnels. They make no mention of the rocket attacks which continue without remission against Israeli civilians. Instead they demand of Israeli spokesmen: “Why are you killing babies in Gaza?”
Even though Hamas is committing war crimes by using Gazan civilians as human shields, western “progressives” are accusing Israel of war crimes. Even though Israel has been warning Gazan civilians to flee for their own safety as required by international law while Hamas is forcing them under gunfire to stay in place, Israel is being accused of breaking international law.
Thousands of cultural and intellectual figures have been signing declarations of solidarity with Gaza. They have not condemned Hamas for butchering and kidnapping Israelis. Nor have they acknowledged the plight of the 240-plus hostages.
Instead, they have blamed “settler colonial occupation and European empire”. They have blamed Israel for “collective punishment” of the Palestinian population, who voted Hamas into power and a majority of whom tell pollsters they still support it — and even if they don’t support support Hamas, a majority support the killing of Jews.
All civilian casualties are regrettable. In war, however, these are inevitable. And these are Gazan civilians who handed out sweets and rejoiced at the slaughter of the pogrom. Gazan civilians who poured through the broken boundary fence after the Hamas terrorists smashed through and joined in the orgy of bloodletting, looting and kidnap. Gazan civilians who spat upon and desecrated the bodies of those who had been kidnapped and paraded through the streets.
Across the west, antisemitic attacks which were already at record levels have now increased many times over. People hurled firebombs at a synagogue in Berlin. In Amsterdam, three Jewish schools closed temporarily over safety worries. In Sydney where mobs chanted “gas the Jews” in front of the Sydney Opera House, the police advised the Jewish community to “stay home” for their own safety.
What’s been revealed is something far wider than the battle by Israel against genocidal Iran and its proxies. The depravity witnessed in the slaughter within Israel has put down roots in Britain, Europe, America and Australia. What we are seeing is a war of annihilation against Judaism and the Jewish people. And behind that is a war against the west from within the west, as expressed through what we might describe as its mass psychopathy moment. This is the west’s civilisational crisis.
Where did this come from? Despite the astonishment and bewilderment of so many — and untold thousands of decent, sane, civilised people are horrified by what they have seen unfold in the west over these past terrible weeks — it hasn’t come out of the blue. It’s been building up for decades. That’s because a horrifying number among the west’s ruling elites themselves were, and continue to be, complicit in the agenda to destroy western civilisation.
This onslaught within the west has four components: Muslim communities in western countries, support for the Palestine cause, liberal ideology and the disintegration of conservatism.
At the most obvious and immediate level, the Iran-backed Hamas pogrom and the war against Israel are the result of American policy under the Biden administration and, previous to that, the Obama administration.
These two administrations have pursued policies that have hugely empowered Iran. The Obama nuclear deal, which contrary to the claims made for it actually legitimised an eventual Iranian nuclear weapons programme, funnelled billions of dollars in sanctions relief into the coffers of the Iranian regime, enabling it to expand its power in the region and funding the weaponry and training it gave its proxies in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Gaza and the disputed territories of Judea and Samaria, the “West Bank”.
The Biden administration followed suit with further backdoor sanctions relief as it grovelled to Tehran in an attempt to revive the nuclear deal. Dozens of Iran-backed attacks on American assets in the region have been ignored by the Biden administration or answered with only a feeble response. The administration has given the Iranian regime — as well as Russia, China and North Korea — the impression that the United States is no longer prepared to go to war anywhere in the world over anything. This impression of a toothless and weak America has hugely emboldened Iran to increase its aggression.
And Iran was behind the Hamas pogrom, as it is behind the Syrians, the Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Houthis in Yemen who are all currently developing a multi-front onslaught against Israel.
So far, there has still been a muted and ambiguous response from America. There are persistent doubts that it will allow Israel to destroy Hamas. An existential war of self-defence — as in the Allies’ war against Nazi Germany — requires for its victory that the entire enemy population is regarded as hostile. Yet the Biden administration has been warning Israel to hold back its assault and to admit “humanitarian” aid even though this will be appropriated by Hamas, and even though weapons are likely to be smuggled in among the aid trucks.
Moreover, for a deterrent to work it has to be credible. America has sailed a mighty force into the region to deter Iran from escalating the war. But although Hezbollah has been firing missiles at northern Israel to probe American resolve, and although American assets have now been repeatedly attacked, the US has responded only sparsely and feebly. If even America’s friends don’t believe it will decisively enter this fight, why should the regime in Tehran believe it either?
The question is why these Democrat administrations are so keen to appease rather than fight and defeat tyranny.
Liberal delusions of reason
One reason is the liberal “kumbaya” mindset: the belief that everyone in the world is governed by reason, that everyone is susceptible to appeals to their self-interest, and that all conflict can be ended by negotiation and “conflict resolution”. War, to such liberals, is never ever necessary and always self-defeating. Such an attitude, so prevalent in the west during the 1930s, facilitated the rise of Hitler and the Holocaust; had it continued to prevail, the Nazis would have overrun the free world.
Today, such liberals can’t get their heads around Islamic religious fanaticism and the belief in jihadi holy war that elevates death to the highest goal of life.
This liberal mindset is a bottomless and lethal delusion. It is largely why the US has remained hell-bent upon “negotiating” with Iran. And it’s why, even now, President Joe Biden is insisting “what comes next has to be a two-state solution…a path towards peace”.
This is deluded on two grounds. The first is that the issue behind the battle with Hamas is the non-existence of a state of Palestine. This is asinine. The issue is Iran’s genocidal war to destroy Israel and murder Jews, an aim that Hamas fully shares.
The second delusion is the belief — so evident in the Biden administration — that there are the “bad” Palestinians of Hamas and the “good” Palestinians of the Palestinian Authority (PA) under Mahmoud Abbas.
This distinction is false. The PA’s tactics may be different from Hamas but its aim is the same. The PA wants the destruction of Israel, as anyone can see from its maps of “Palestine” which consists of the whole of Israel; it has said repeatedly that a Palestine state is a means to that end in its “strategy of stages”; and it teaches its children that their highest calling is to murder Jews and steal all their land including Tel Aviv, Jaffa and Haifa. Moreover, Abbas’s role model is the Nazis’ Middle Eastern ally, Haj Amin al Husseini, who promised Hitler that if he won the war al Husseini would exterminate every Jew in the Middle East.
A Palestine state would mean importing Gaza into the heart of Israel.
But there’s a broader degree to which liberals have been complicit in fuelling the current incendiary atmosphere. The “progressive” world has not only created a dominant narrative of Israeli “colonialism” and Palestinian victimisation by Israeli “oppression”. It has created a similarly unchallengeable narrative of a Muslim world composed entirely of victims of the west.
For decades, it has promoted the doctrine that white-skinned westerners are colonial oppressors so everything they do is bad, while those in the brown or black-skinned developing world are their victims and therefore morally pure.
Under the dogma of identity politics, victim status gives “powerless” (and therefore morally pure) groups defined by race, ethnicity, sexuality or gender a free pass for their misdeeds, for which their “oppressors” are blamed instead.
Accordingly, no criticism can be made of Muslims; those who do so are promptly accused of “Islamophobia”. According to this mindset, Islamic terrorism or extremism has nothing whatever to do with Islam; it is instead caused by poverty, discrimination, marginalisation and so forth.
This failure to understand the theological driver of Islamic extremism, whose aim is to Islamise the world and defeat modernity as a source of evil that threatens Islam, means in turn a failure to grasp the Islamists’ belief that modernity is driven by the Jews who they believe are the prime source of evil in the world. Islamism, or modern jihadi Islam, fuses theological Jew-hatred with Nazism, reflecting the Nazi influence on the fanatical ideologues who created Islamism in the early decades of the last century.
Antisemitism is rampant throughout the Islamic world. This is ignored by the west, which also doesn’t understand antisemitism and thinks it’s just another form of racism rather than a uniquely deranged, paranoid and murderous creed.
Accordingly, the west is gripped by the naive and ignorant belief that the “Middle East conflict” is over the division of the land. It is not. It was always at root an Islamic holy war against the Jewish presence in the land. The west’s mistaken support has conscripted western liberals into a Palestinian narrative based entirely on lies, demonisation and the writing of the Jewish people out of their own history.
Restoring the narrative
The narrative of Israeli oppressors and Palestinian victims is the default position in progressive circles. But with the Hamas pogrom on October 7 this narrative was holed below the water line. To their unbridled horror, western liberals watched people whose cause they had supported commit acts of barbarous depravity, while the people they had called colonialist oppressors were slaughtered — in the cause that western liberals had supported, sanitised and legitimised.
It’s hard to exaggerate the consternation and disorientation this has caused among such liberals. It’s not just the humiliation and embarrassment at having made a bad mistake. It’s much deeper than that. Their entire moral personality is constructed around the belief that everything they stand for is morally virtuous. Anyone who dissents is not just wrong but evil. All who dissent are “right-wing”. All evil is right-wing and all right-wingers are evil. Tyranny can only come from the right. Antisemitism therefore can only come from the right.
But now it’s come from their own side. So what does that make them? Also right-wing and evil? This is intolerable. So they have to get their Israel-Palestine narrative back on track.
That’s why they seized upon Israel’s alleged bombing to destruction of Gaza’s al-Ahli hospital which they claimed had caused hundreds of patients to die. This was quickly shown to be totally untrue: the hospital wasn’t destroyed (even the solar panels on the roof were left intact), and it wasn’t an Israeli attack at all but a Palestinian rocket aimed at murdering Israeli civilians that had misfired and fallen within Gaza, hitting the hospital’s car parking lot. Yet despite this, the liberal media continued to try to pin this “atrocity” upon Israel. The narrative had to be got back on track.
But there’s something even darker that had to be got back on track. This is the need to blame the Jews for their own suffering.
As the black joke has it, the west can’t forgive the Jews for the Holocaust. It can’t deal with the fact that the Shoah was perpetrated by the country, Germany, that stood at the very apex of high western culture; it can’t deal with the fact that other western countries stood by as accessories to the genocide.
To deal with this intolerable burden of guilt, the west tries to erase Jewish victimisation. Demonising the Israelis as latter-day “Nazis” gives it the perfect means to do so. It legitimises the Jew-baiting which went underground after the Holocaust. It makes it acceptable to demonise the Jews again, this time under cover of “merely” being “anti-Israel” or “anti-Zionism”. It enables it to get back to disliking Jews again.
So Gaza is misrepresented as an “open prison” (ignoring altogether its border with Egypt, which normally keeps it closed to the aid Israel allows through its own crossing-point) “occupied” by the “cruel” Israelis who cause a humanitarian “catastrophe”.
It’s no use telling such people that Israel has the most moral army in the world, or leads the way in medical advances and saving lives, or is always first to offer help after any natural disasters. Such people don’t want to know how moral the Jews are. That makes them feel really bad. They need the Jews to be bad.
The western mind hasn’t just been poisoned by the Palestinian agenda of Israel rejectionism. Few realise the extent to which this agenda has knocked the west off its moral compass.
The Palestinians blame the Israelis for behaviour of which Israel is totally innocent but of which the Palestinians themselves are guilty — such as ethnic cleansing, aggression, illegality, war crimes, genocide. This moral inversion is based on the Palestinians’ pathological projection of their own misdeeds onto their victims.
Support for this agenda of moral inversion has fed into the moral inversion of the west’s own identity politics.
For decades, the progressive project has been to destroy the bedrock institutions of the west, its history and traditions and create a new world order around the individual and groups of the “oppressed”. These ideologies of race, ethnicity, sex and gender are based on the Marxist doctrine that all relationships comprise structures of power, in which the powerful oppress their victims.
Why do people want to be victims? It’s because members of “oppressed” groups can play an unchallengeable victim card when behaving badly, and blame instead as oppressors those they are themselves attacking. That’s precisely how Palestinianism works.
We can see the results of this broad victim culture in an education system that no longer teaches history or an appreciation of the institutions of a free society and subjects students instead to these twisted ideologies of “oppressors” and “oppressed”. Which is why the young now support those intent upon genocide against the Jews, themselves attack Jews and the Jewish homeland, and promote barbarism over civilisation.
These ideologies of race, ethnicity, sexuality and gender are all based on a repudiation of the western nation state — which is supposedly responsible for all bad things in the world — by universal values. They are intended to replace the supposedly innate belligerence of the nation state by the brotherhood of man.
We can see how well that one has worked out in the UN, where the world’s worst tyrannies sit on the Human Rights Council which sanitises and excuses those tyrannies while persecuting democratic Israel and whose Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, blamed Israel for the atrocities inflicted upon its own people by saying the Hamas pogrom “did not happen in a vacuum”.
Liberal orthodoxy ordains there can be no hierarchy of values. This means that the west can’t say its principles — such as equality for women, freedom of religion and democracy — are any better than despotisms and tyrannies. The belief that the west oppresses the developing world means Muslims can never be held responsible for what they do. They are always viewed instead as victims. Jews can never be seen as victims. They are viewed as white (even when they are brown-skinned or black) and are thought to be so powerful they control capitalism and the world in their interests and to the disadvantage of everyone else.
That was why when Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, was asked about the rise in antisemitism in America she answered by claiming that “Muslims and those perceived to be Muslim have endured a disproportionate number of hate-fuelled attacks”.
According to this liberal mindset, genocide by the Muslim world is resistance and Israeli resistance to it is genocide. The way in which this grotesque inversion of truth and morality has fried the minds of so many reflects the tactics of the former Soviet Union. The way the west has succumbed to the lies of Palestinianism reflects the way in which so many in the west in the 1930s were convinced against all the evidence that Stalinism was creating a model society.
The current convulsions in the west are as if both Stalin and Hitler are being afforded a posthumous victory.
What this also points to is an utter failure of conservatism. Edmund Burke became the father of conservatism when he defended the inherited values of the Enlightenment against the murderous French revolutionaries. He understood the priceless value of what was in danger of being destroyed.
For decades, modern conservatives have lost sight of the west’s priceless values that need to be defended against the attack being mounted against them. They have failed to take the fight to the left on the ground on which it has made such advances. They have failed to understand the damage being done by moral and cultural relativism, the ideologies of race and gender identity politics and victim culture. For decades, conservatives have failed to stop the universities and the schools substituting anti-west propaganda for education and teaching young people to hate their nation, western society and its values.
Conservatives have ignored all these cultural issues. They decided instead to make liberty into their lodestar, and devoted all their energies to promoting free-market economics. Instead of fighting the left, they put themselves on the same patch of ideological turf: while the left promoted the free market in sexual and social values, conservatives promoted the free market in economics. Both threw the bonds of tradition out of the window. Conservatives went along with the mass breast-beating over colonialism, the promotion of mass immigration and lone parenthood, the obsession with blaming humanity itself for a man-made climate catastrophe whose arrival has been persistently and mysteriously postponed.
Conservatives said they had no option but to “go with the flow” of cultural change. As the left hijacked language to destroy morality, conservatives were looking the other way. They laughed at the inanity of the professors of gender studies; they saw insurrections like Black Lives Matter or Just Stop Oil as principally public order matters; they rolled their eyes at the persecution of lesbians by transgender activists. None of this, they thought, had anything fundamental to do with them. The culture war, said conservatives, was a distraction from the important things like the economy. As for the Muslim world, US Republican as well as Democrat presidents pushed the Palestinian cause and ignored its genocidal antisemitism; it was a Republican president, George W Bush, who said Islam was a “religion of peace”.
Now conservatives and others are all looking in horror at the depraved outcome — on university campuses, in the cultural and administrative classes, and on the streets of great western cities. They are all staring aghast at a civilisation teetering at the edge of the cliff and asking how this could have happened. The answer is as bleak as it is brutal. It’s happened because of them.
Israel is fighting for its own survival and for the lives of its people. It is also fighting for civilisation against barbarism. The question is whether western civilisation understands that this is now a tipping point in the fight to save it. The question is whether western civilisation actually wants to be saved, since its leading lights appear to have have concluded that it is innately bad and not worth the fight.
Israel will win this battle — at terrible cost — because it is determined to survive. It fights because it understands what it is fighting for. The Jews know what they are because they are bound together as one through their roots in an ancient history; they love and value their own people and their nation; and they have risen up as one to defend them to the death. This is not true of the west, which seems instead to have decided to go the way of ancient Rome.
The west is looking in horror at events in the Middle East. Its needs to realise that the war is right here at home.
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