Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The tenacity of a special hatred

From The Chicago Tribune, January 25, 2009, by Tom Neumann*:

... The exceedingly ugly character of the marches and rallies against Israel makes it clear that what we are witnessing is global anti-Semitism.

There is precedent for the Hamas philosophy, the Nazis referred to it as seeking to make the world judenrein.

Anti-Israel protests not only in Europe, but even in American communities like Ft. Lauderdale included chants of "Go back to the ovens" and "The ovens weren't big enough." The Europeans and their Middle Eastern friends cruelly equated the victims of Nazism with being Nazis themselves. Thus, the Europeans absolve themselves from their own historical guilt.

And the failure of the political elites to condemn such anti-Semitic behavior or even to recognize it fosters, encourages and inadvertently supports the anti-Semites. One British parliamentarian, turning the situation on its head, accused the "the Jews" of exploiting the guilt of non-Jews over the Holocaust to justify Israel's defensive operations against Hamas terrorists in Gaza.

That thugs beat a Jewish girl in Paris while telling her that it was revenge for Israeli attacks on Hamas goes well beyond the traditional bounds of protest. It was clear anti-Semitism reminiscent of similar events in European history.

And the Paris attack was not an isolated event. The Turkish government's recent rhetoric has been so caustic as to make the country's Jewish population fearful for the first time in its more than 500-year history.

In several European countries, Jewish cemeteries and synagogues were vandalized.

The question for supporters and friends of Israel are, why were there no UN resolutions condemning Hamas' unilateral rocketing of Israel?

...The lesson of the Holocaust is that Israel can and should expect neither fairness, honesty or justice from the world community. Israel can only depend on itself because anti-Semitism today remains not only tenacious, it is fashionable.

*Tom Neumann is executive director of the Washington-based non-profit Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.
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