“No, wrong. Say: wrong.”
“Oh dear. Seems we’ve got a problem. Let’s try this. Say: ‘North Korea is wrong.’”
“North Korea is wrong.”
“Fine, fine. Now this. Say; ‘Iran is wrong.’”
“Iran is wrong.”
“Now we’re getting somewhere. What about BP?”
“Wrong. But we’ll get their ass.”
“Wrong. Probably the wrongest bunch on the planet.”
“Wrong. Jeez, are they wrong.”
“Wrong. Seriously bad and dead wrong.”
“Splendid. Now again: ‘Israel is….’”
Careful what I say now, I don’t want to be branded an antisemite or a holocaust-denier again. But what is careful? Am I to overlook the fact that the war-hungry part of the Israeli nation (which just happens to call the shots there) has no desire for a fair, equitable settlement with the Palestinians, believing instead that a few homemade missiles from time to time and the occasional suicide blast is a price well worth paying for the permanent enslavement of an entire people? Am I to believe, seriously believe, that the military assault on a small humanitarian flotilla on the high seas, constitutes a legitimate act of self-defence? Can anyone explain what the strongest military power by far in the Middle East has to fear from anyone? For many years now, every Palestinian pinprick (that’s what they are, no more) has been met with retribution of outrageous, brutal force and still the world’s politicians haven’t the guts to come to any conclusion other than that this is a battle between equals, that both sides have comparable weaknesses and strengths. So they wring their hands and call on both sides to please be reasonable. REASONABLE?
We’ve been here before, of course, and we’ll get to this point again unless…. Unless an American president comes to the fore who is not afraid of the powerful Jewish lobby in the United States, who is willing to put his own job on the line in a bid to settle this historic obscenity once and for all. Sixty-two years have seen the West move from outright, unquestioning, guilt-ridden support of Israel to the middle of the road, where Palestinian violent excesses are roundly criticized and met with concerted sanctions and Israel’s murderous transgressions are likewise bemoaned, although they have consistently remained unpunished. Mach shabbes damit, my father would have said. And watch another UN resolution get crumpled up into a ball.
Such is the hold that Zionist blackmailers have on us that, 65 years after the end of World War II, hysterical Israeli accusations of antisemitism still faze us, despite the fact that there are very few Jews left who have any conscious recollection of the period, just as there are very few Germans left who are old enought to have played an active part in the Holocaust. Of course this horrid episode in Man’s history must not be forgotten and lessons must be learned from it. But today, in 2010, I -a 69-year old half Jew from Amsterdam- reserve the right to call Benyamin Netanyahu a vicious thug, the settlers a bunch of wild-eyed fanatics and Israel a rogue state that gives the finger to anyone who urges restraint. I tell you, if today antisemitism is alive and well it isn’t because of an old and long discredited view of Jews as vermin or hook-nosed moneylenders and babysnatchers, but because of the modern perception of Israelis as benders of the truth who cock a snook at the rest of the world, pursue what they see as their self-interest with the most brutal means and then cry bloody murder when anyone dares to object. I share that perception, so maybe I’m an antisemite after all.
Anyway, I’m on record as a great admirer of Barack Obama, a man of deep intellect, great humanity and all the right instincts. His first year and a half in office has failed to bring all the great achievements I’d been hoping for but boy! Did he have the tide running against him! No, I can’t blame him for not doing the impossible. I blame him for not doing the achievable. An example: if I had been elected in Obama’s place I would, within weeks of my inauguration, have normalized relations with Cuba. Castro’s revolution is now a half century in the past, the man himself is no longer in charge, Cuba -no longer enjoying the comfort of the Soviet Union standing shoulder to shoulder- poses no credible threat of any kind. For God’s sake Obama, with America still squeezing the lifeblood out of that proud but underfed island, no wonder the Israelis think it’s OK to do the same to Gaza!
As for the Middle East: take it from me that no solution will ever be possble until and unless the state of Israel is taught that it can no longer rely on western support whatever the circumstances. Erase the word ‘unconditional’ from your Hebrew-English dictionary. Let Jerusalem know that the next time it oversteps the mark it can expect sanctions. Nothing military, you understand. We can’t have Israelis kill US troops with the very weapons Washington supplied to them. No, economic and diplomatic sanctions are the only ones that will do the trick. Cut off the money supply, boycot Israeli produce (I’ve been doing that for quite some years now), recall your Ambassador, that sort of thing. Tell all your western mates to do the same. Oh, and send a detail of the US fleet into the eastern Med to run humanitarian supplies to Gaza. Should be fun.
Get it, Obama? The key to the solution to this 62-year old problem lies in your ability to tell the Israelis that they are wrong. That they’re wrong and that things are going to change whether they like it or not. Do not tie your geopolitical future to that of Bibi Netanyahu or some day he’ll drag you into a regional conflict worse than your worst nightmare.