Rod Liddle Rod Liddle

I stand with Israel

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I had a brief exchange of messages with a British Muslim bloke on social media who had asked me, very politely, why I had posted a picture of the Star of David with the words ‘I Stand With Israel’ underneath. A good question, really – I more usually think this kind of keyboard-warrior grandstanding embarrassing and self-promoting, all that light-a-candle-we-are-the-world- Je-Suis-Charlie cant. I succumbed this time because there was nothing much else I could do to express my horror at Saturday’s savagery and barbarism, other than maybe join the Israel Defense Forces.

When they refer to ‘Hamas militants’ do they imply there is a fringe within the otherwise excellent organisation?

Anyway, the online conversation lasted for precisely two exchanges before this courteous and apparently educated man informed me that the Jews controlled the world’s media. There had been no mention on his part, at any point, that the Hamas incursion and resultant bloody and gleeful murder of innocent citizens might have been taking things – y’know – a bit far. He would not condemn them. And then, very quickly, out came the usual rancid anti-Semitism.

Whatever you think of the state of Israel, what kind of human being are you that you might not merely excuse but even revel in the act of shooting a child in the head and abducting a grandmother? But then I found a statement put out by the Muslim Council of Britain, its only statement on the crisis, the beginning of which read: ‘The Muslim Council of Britain calls for an end to the violence in and around Gaza. The targeting of innocent civilians can never be excused or justified. In the coming days we may see a significant escalation which risks to only further perpetuate this cycle.’

‘Congratulations – it’s a non-smoker.’

The violence in Gaza? Um, aren’t you missing something? In that press release of 202 words of pious, purblind hypocrisy, there was not a single mention of the word ‘Hamas’ nor even a reference to the carnage of Saturday morning. Not one reference. Again, the question: what sort of human being are you that you cannot at least express a wee bit of sadness? The reason no sadness was expressed, of course, is that they are not remotely sad. Not about Jews. And this isn’t about the state of Israel: it’s about Jews.

The extent to which the vile and corrosive ideology of anti-Semitism, always excused with various gobbets of cretinous and immoral whataboutery, is present in the UK was evident in the jubilation of those flag-waving Palestinian supporters and their thick-as-mince white liberal groupies in London and Birmingham. They were thrilled and delighted, just as they were in Sydney when they thronged together screaming ‘Gas the Jews’. Not Israel: the Jews.

Just a couple of hours after the attack, the pudding-faced Corbynista Labour MP Apsana Begum attended a pro-Palestine meeting. OK, she supports Palestine. But didn’t the sheer brutality and loss of life occasioned by Hamas impinge on her a little? Might she not have expressed a soupçon of sympathy? A little later, at a Momentum event outside Labour conference, a young harridan called Yasmin Elsouda said: ‘I’m honoured to be speaking at such a historic moment, certainly in my lifetime, in our struggle.’ Hell, at least Yasmin was honest. She seemed absolutely delighted. Why do we tolerate warped people such as this among us – and indeed import more and more of them?

A Muslim mate of mine told me he stood with Israel and hoped the IDF gave Hamas ‘more than a thrashing’. I’m sure there are plenty of other Muslims who feel the same. Or at least I desperately hope there are. But they dare not say so in public because of the massed violent fury of their self-appointed spokesmen within the Religion of Peace.

The thing is, I wasn’t hoping for a confession from the Muslim Council of Britain or Apsana Begum that they had been wrong about Israel entirely and would start flying the Star of David. Chance would be a fine thing. But, naive though I am, I did expect some sort of expression of empathy with the grieving families, with the relatives of those abducted. Not a jot of it, not one bit. And I’m not sure they have much more time for the rest of us. They are blinded by a tribalism kept afloat by centuries of self-serving lies.

I learned from the BBC that the slaughter of Jewish babies had been carried out by ‘Hamas militants’. I found that a bit of a relief, really – just imagine how awful it might have been if they had, instead, been terrorists? Is the corporation not aware that Hamas is regarded as a terrorist organisation by almost every western government? When they refer to ‘Hamas militants’ are they implying there is a kind of fringe within the otherwise excellent Hamas organisation which can sometimes get a bit overexcited? A bit like the Young Liberals, or something?

Most of the BBC’s coverage contained more than a whiff of white liberal stupidity and a lack of curiosity – and that’s when they weren’t handing over to a BBC correspondent in Gaza City who was a Palestinian and served up nothing but undiluted Hamas propaganda. The BBC failed to distinguish between the innocent civilians being killed in Gaza and the innocent civilians who had been butchered in Israel. The big difference is, of course, one of intent. Israel may indeed be cavalier about how many Palestinian civilians it kills as collateral, but it does not, like Hamas, deliberately target civilians.

There is an intellectual dishonesty in siding with Hamas simply because it is more useless, militarily, than Israel, but that is roughly where the BBC is right now, and has been on this issue for some considerable time. A degree more rigour in its reporting and a degree less bias would not go amiss, would it?