Wednesday 1 April 2015

How dare Israel defend itself. We only like them when they're victims

Published 02/07/2014 | 02:30

Hamas militants
Hamas militants

So, according to one headline, Israel has reacted against the kidnapping and execution of three of its teenagers by warning that "Hamas will pay".

In response, Hamas has promised that if Israel "brings a war, we will open the gates of Hell".

Oh dear, both sides are at it again. Will they ever learn?

That's the way the murders of Naftali Frenkel and Gilad Shaar, both 16, and their 19-year-old hitch-hiking companion, Eyal Yifrach have been framed – both sides as bad as each other. Even Obama, hardly a friend of the Israelis, piously declared that "I urge all parties to refrain from steps that could further destabilise the situation," once again implying that there is a moral equivalence between Israel and Hamas.

But there is a world of difference between the only democracy in a region which is rapidly reverting to open savagery and a terrorist organisation which has the complete destruction of a neighbouring country as the central plank of their constitution. But we will still see any Israeli response condemned by those useful idiots in the West who insist that Hamas is a legitimate, democratic organisation. It's not, it never has been and it doesn't want to be.

Professional ideologues, and those simply too stupid to make up their own mind, would have you believe that Hamas probably didn't do it, but if they did, they must have had a good reason. This is the kind of wilful ignorance – even the Palestinian security services agree that it was Hamas – that compels people to justify or explain the murders with counter-accusations and slurs before resorting to some nonsense about the IDF being as bad as the Nazis, and Israel being some of sort of Zionist, apartheid Fourth Reich.

We've seen a lot of that kind of rubbish in the hours since the bodies were discovered and it's a myth which has been peddled by more than one Irish politician in the past whenever they wanted to bolster their revolutionary credentials. And, in a classic example of counter-intuitive liberalism, it's wrong, they know it's wrong but they say it anyway.

The uncomfortable truth is that Israel is the front line of a war that was declared on Western values years ago, and it's one which we in the West have refused to acknowledge. That reluctance has been due to a combination of fear, an unwillingness to be perceived as racist or Islamophobic and of course, for some, there is a genuine, implacable belief that Israel deserves everything that's coming to it.

In fact, Israel must be the only country in the world which is expected to accept the execution of three of its citizens without doing everything within its power to eradicate those responsible. But then they are used to being asked to stoically accept atrocities without retaliating, because when they do push back they are then accused of being 'disproportionate' in their response. This ignores the fact that Hamas routinely launch their rockets into southern towns like Sderot from schoolyards in Gaza, safe in the knowledge that any retaliation will provide the kind of footage that fools people into believing the Israelis like nothing better than bombing schools.

Eighty rockets have fallen on their soil in the last month. Would we expect any other country to sit on their fingers, hoping that the brave freedom fighters of Hamas will simply become bored and return to their mosques?

These are the questions which Israel's oh-so-liberal opponents need to ask themselves – does Israel encourage its citizens to strap on suicide belts and get on a bus? Does Israel execute gay people or women who wear immodest dress? Does Israel openly call for the destruction of another country and the genocide of its citizens? (And, in a case of business before pleasure, Hamas openly declares that they will first kill those Palestinians who have made a life for themselves across the border.)

Do opposing factions of the Knesset openly kill each other on the streets, as we saw Hamas do to members of their rival Fatah?

Everyone is twitchy in the Middle East at the moment and this week's declaration of war on the West by ISIS should be proof, if people still needed it, that we really are facing the long feared 'clash of civilisations.'

Of course, Israel could stop this all tomorrow if they wished and they could return this tiny pocket of land to the kind of peace and harmony of the areas that surround it.

All they need to do?

Cease to exist.

In the meantime, people need to stop siding with the fascist theocrats who look on the destruction of Israel as merely the first step in establishing a global caliphate.

WELL DONE TO THAT COACH

We live in times when racism is often cited where none exists, but we know the real thing when we see it. Now, it has emerged that the coach of a schoolboy team in Cork found himself in trouble with authorities when he removed his side from a match.

Coach Matt McCarthy of Carragaline United noticed one of his players had been racially abused and, he says "I had to make a moral stand. I had to decide whether we should continue and try to win the game or protect the player. This is the second time this has happened to him, I chose to back the player."

The reward for this principled stance?

The club was fined €200 for failing to fulfil a fixture.

Frankly, I wouldn't be surprised if the money was then put into an anti-racism campaign and nobody noticed the irony.

COMPROMISE ON HUNTING

A 19-year-old Kendall Jones is your typical Texan teenager. She's a blonde, blue eyed cheerleader who also likes to... go to Africa to shoot big game.

She has caused predictable flurries of outrage by posting numerous pictures of the lion, the elephant and even the white rhino she shot.

She is facing her critics down, however, with the defence that: "It was a fair hunt."

Well, if she really wants to be fair, why doesn't she go into the bush without a telescopic, high powered hunting rifle and try to take a lion down with her bare hands?

That seems much more fair, to me.

Ian O'Doherty

Irish Independent

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