This post currently appears in the SA Jewish Report:
“The time has come, my little friends, to talk of other things / Of shoes and ships and sealing wax, of cabbages and kings / And why the sea is boiling hot, and whether pigs have wings / Calloo, Callay, come run away / With the cabbages and kings.” The Walrus, (Alice in Wonderland).
You could be forgiven for thinking that when it comes to reading or hearing about the Middle East, that you have fallen down the rabbit-hole into some kind of bizarre parallel universe where the world is topsy turvy and nothing makes sense. The Walrus seems to be more coherent than some of those who frequently opine and make decisions that affect Israel and the rest of the neighbourhood.
The commentary, headlines and decisions that world leaders make about Israel has us thinking that perhaps we are at the Mad Hatter’s tea party. Israel has become the proverbial bait that is dangled before the sharks and other predators with the rationale that sorting out the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians will magically cure all ills. Wars will magically disappear, radicals will suddenly find their need to sing kumbaya and everything will be coming up roses.
Cartoon, courtesy of RAFO
If only. US Secretary of State, John Kerry, is suffering from an awful case of foot in mouth disease. Every time he opens his mouth to opine on Israel he sticks his foot right in. His latest comments infer that if the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was solved, the Islamic State would have a lot less candidates. He obviously missed the declaration of the Caliphate. IS are a force so evil that even Al Qaeda have said no thank you to signing up. Al Qaeda are like Mickey Mouse by comparison. The double standard that Kerry and others subscribe to on issues Israel related is quite staggering. How can we forget his “hell of a pinpoint operation” jibe with regards to Israel defending her citizens against Hamas this past summer? I am sure that the coalition forces are exercising proportion and restraint when dealing with ISIS.
But it is not just Kerry that subscribes to ye olde double standard. I cannot help but be amused when I hear the same people who bemoaned Israel’s actions in Gaza saying that Israel should be included in the coalition, after all we will successfully sort them out.
UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, is also suffering from a Middle Eastern related ailment. Known as “Tunnel Vision”, Mr Moon suffers from symptoms that range from selective amnesia on warnings about the use and intentions of Hamas built tunnels and signs of shock and disbelief when confronted with the reality. It is too little, too late, Mr Moon. Perhaps if you heeded our warnings about the dangers of tunnel vision, this condition would not have spread to your UN schools and buildings. Now Ban is demanding an inquiry into weapons found in UN facilities in the Gaza strip – but not without castigating Israel for “wholesale destruction”
“There is no hope for long-term stability in Gaza without addressing the underlying causes of the conflict: an end to the occupation that has grinded on for nearly half a century, a full lifting of the blockade on the Gaza Strip and effectively addressing Israel’s legitimate security concerns,” Ban said.
Sigh. Oh Ban, we have been through this before. What occupation in Gaza? Did you also miss the memo on the disengagement?
Rounding out the theatre of the absurd, is the movement by at least two European states to recognize a Palestinian state. This must come at great confusion to the Kurds, currently amongst the most persecuted people in the world, who are waiting for the world to recognize their national aspirations.
The majority of the British parliament voted to “symbolically” recognize a Palestinians state. Is it a belated mea culpa for past historical ties to the region or do they think if they pander to the Palestinian cause that they will placate ISIS? Once again Israel is the proverbial carrot or shark bait dangled in front of a predatory international community who feign impatience with Israel yet judge the Jewish state according to a different set of rules.
But the cherry on the top has to be the press coverage of yesterday’s terror attack in Jerusalem. Apparently the brutal death of a 3 month old baby girl by a staunch Hamas supporter doesn’t warrant a headline more than the one featured below by the AP (Associated Press). Seriously? Is the life of a Jewish baby girl so worthless and cheap?
When Israel should be the topic of discussion, the world is silent but opinions and opprobrium flow freely in moments when support should be paramount. The appalling rise of anti-Semitism barely warrants a mention in international discourse. I am beginning to think the Walrus is more intelligent than the average leader.
It is a Mad Hatter’s tea party, a bizarre world where everything is upside down and Israel can be dangled on a fishing hook for everyone to bite. We have fallen down the rabbit hole and I cannot help but wonder, how in the world are we ever going to find our way out?