Sunday, 18 December 2011

A baker's dozen of mainly irrational reason why I support Israel

In the wake of Newt Gingrich’s assertion that Palestinians aren’t a proper people (I have absolutely no idea what this actually means, let alone whether it’s true), I sat down yesterday and spent half an hour trying to rationalise my instinctive support for Israel on the Palestinian question (and most others).

Over the years I’ve heard most of the arguments deployed by both sides, and, on the whole, they pretty much cancel each other out: I have a feeling that nothing less than proof that Israel was carrying out genocide would shift me from my basic “Israelis, yay! Palestinians, boo!” position.

Here are my reasons for almost invariably taking Israel’s side – they are, on the whole, utterly irrational

(1) The BBC is so pro-Palestinian that its reports from the Middle East are often a disgrace to journalism. Unstinting support from the BBC is almost invariably a sufficient condition for supporting the opposite point of view. (Also, both Sarkozy and Obama loathe Benjamin Netanyahu – which is enough to make him a bit of a hero in my eyes.)

(2) Even if you thought Palestinians had a point, would you really want to end up on the same side of the argument as  the world’s most repellent fascist and Islamo-fascist dictatorships, and groups of suicide-bombing, rocket-lobbing terrorists who hate all Westerners (including, no doubt, those Westerners stupid enough to agree with them)? No thanks!

(3) Unlike that BBC reporter, I experienced absolutely no inclination to cry when Yasser Arafat was flown to the West to die. It's not just that he was hideous - it was more the bristlingly bellicosity implied by that gun-belt and that ridiculous pseudo-uniform. The man was a gangster.

(4) I don’t know any Palestinians – I know lots of Jews, and always have done. If I knew lots of Palestinians I might like and admire (and dislike) as many of them as I do Jews – but I don’t, so I can’t.

(5) Despite all the aid that’s been poured into Palestinian territories, they always look like chaotic, poverty-stricken dumps. Where does all the money go?  Rockets? (And why don’t they ever give the place a bit of a spring-clean?) One suspects Palestinian territories are one big Potemkin village, only designed to make things look as bad as possible.

(6) In any given year, Israel often produces more patents than any other G7 country.  I wonder how many patents Palestinian inventors apply for? In fact, let's take the whole of Arabia. Israelis can come across as rumbustious, argumentative, intransigent, belligerent buggers who’d cross the road for a row (I’m paraphrasing Mel Gibson here, Sugartits) – but, damn, these boys are pro-active. (They’re temperamentally a bit like Serbians – who I also like -  but with tons more smarts and a world-class work-ethic.)

(7) I listen to classical music composed and performed by Jews; I watch films made by them; I read novels by Jews; I laugh at Jewish comedians; the pop music industry (when it was good) was practically invented by them; and I hugely enjoy the company of Jewish friends. I can’t point to a single thing I enjoy that has anything to do with Palestinians.

(8) The Jews seem to have made a much better go of turning Israel into an agriculturally productive country than the Palestinians would - I'm certain - ever have managed.

(9) Not only do Palestinians refuse to condemn terrorists – they produce them, and, when given the chance, even vote for them. Which means that Israel – the only mature, fully-functioning democracy in the region - is expected to negotiate a two-state deal with a disorganised rabble half-controlled by Stone Age death-cultists who would undoubtedly use their newly-created state to try to realise their dream of wiping Israel off the map – with the full backing of Iran and Syria (and many other blister-states). 

(10) It’s not necessarily the Palestinians’ fault, but their cause has become a magnet for everyone who hates America, capitalism, free trade and democracy. I happen to be rather partial to all four.

(11) I'm not that keen on a people whose school text-books school text-books teach that their neighbours are pigs without souls. It’s also difficult to support a cause whose adherents use the bodies of dead soldiers as bargaining chips and who eagerly and publicly celebrate the murder of innocent civilians by suicide bombers acting in their name. That’s really unattractive.

(12) None of Israel’s democratic “allies” (I use the term loosely – Cameron has hardly been a staunch friend)) has any interest in maintaining this dangerous, expensive and volatile conflict – but many pro-Palestinians (mainly those countries currently busy slaughtering their own citizens) do. I mean, does anybody in the West, apart from swivel-eyed, US-loathing liberal-leftists not want this issue sorted? The Palestinian refugee problem could be solved by neighbouring Arab states giving Palestinians citizenship. They won’t. Why is that? It couldn't possibly be that they need to be able to point to a mote in their neighbour's eye to distract people's attention from the bloody great beam in their own, could it?

(13) A separate Palestinian state is - in the eyes of many Arab "leaders" - just a step in the long struggle to return Israel to Arab control. But if present-day Israel ended up in Arab hands, what would they do with it? Would they make it a better country - would it be more democratic, more just, happier? Would its people be more productive, more energetic, more inventive? While the answer to those questions remains "No!" - I'm sticking with Israel. 

בהצלחה, Israel.  


  1. By "proper", Gingrich probably means countries that are artificial constructs that have no organic culture or language of their own viz Belgium. They have little meaning except for providing office space for useless international organisations. Although Switzerland has a much longer history it is pretty similar although it does provide nice tax breaks. San Marino, Andorra, Luxembourg, Lichtenstein - who are they and why are they there?

    Palestine. You are treading on egg-shells. I am not talking about a "fatwah" from our glorious and popular muslim fellow citizens, but an attack from a more Hyperborean source. You know what I am talking about. I am now in a position to "grass" you up.

    Your point 7 where you move from Israel to Jews in general. One measure of excellence is the Nobel Prize. Since it began in 1901 850 Laureates have been awarded the Prize. 170 of those have been Jewish [20%] and 6 have been Muslims. Jews account for 0.2% of the world's population, Muslims 20%. One of the six Muslim awards was Yasser Arafat who inexplicably received the Peace prize in 1994. Kaare Kristiansen, a Norwegian member of the Nobel Committee resigned immediately, labelling Arafat "a terrorist". The impertinence of the man!

    Going back to Israel, they have developed since their creation after WW2 an army and airforce and intelligence service which is second to none and given the regional history of sneak attacks by their foes and their very precarious geographical position they have never been in the mood to take any lip. The Americans kept the lid on during the Scud attacks by Saddam, but during these recent developments in Iran they have already got in some pre-emptive blows and it looks as if Obama hasn't got the foggiest idea about what to do. He is probably too preoccupied about getting re-elected. An explosive situation. Perhaps a joint visit by Ban Ki Moon, van Rumpoy and Baroness Ashton should be mounted to read the Riot Act.

  2. Thank you, Camel Jockey - a far more intelligent and informative answer than I suspect my post deserved.

    Two points: I am absolutely sure that what Obama should do is to ask Israel to devise the US's Iranian policy (because it evidently doesn't have one) and then pay it to implement that policy - which may, one suspects, involve quite a lot of explosions.

    As for Baroness Ashton, she strikes me as a perfect symbol of everything that is wrong with the EU - a silly, meaningless woman with absolutely no qualifications and no proper job costing us all a bloody fortune going around the world meddling in affairs which are none of her business and which she has neither the mandate nor the resources to do anything about. She deserves a thorough Faraging - "I mean, who are you?"

  3. I was pleased to learn that a Norwegian had criticised the odious Arafart of being a terrorist. I'm always a bit disappointed by the way my erstwhile countrymen seem to have fallen hook, line and sinker for the standard abjectivist line on the Palestinians (I pinched "abjectivist" from William F Buckley Jr, by the way): we are such suckers for that victimhood rubbish.

  4. You are building up trouble for thyssen, lad! Did you get gjeitost this Christmas? By the way, does "Faraging" mean "Rogering"? The idea of rogering the Baroness is hideous so perhaps it means something else.

  5. Camel Jockey, to "farage" someone means to insult them to their face in an extreme and deeply insulting fashion. It derives from the attack by UKIP MEP Nigel Farage on Herman van Rumpoy in the European Parliament - "You have the charisma of a damp rag and the appearance of a low-grade bank clerk and the question I want to ask is 'Who are you?'" etc. This appalling example of British bad manners can be viewed here:

  6. Thank you for your explanation of "farraging". Yet another ghastly nightmare I don't have to deal with during "The Hour of the Wolf".