Before You Blame Israel

An ax-weilding Palestinian terrorist murdered a thirteen year old Israeli boy and fractured the skull of a seven year old yesterday in the West Bank. What’s more, he escaped the clutches of those all-powerful Israelis and hightailed it back to his village. At least two known terrorist groups jumped up to claim responsibility for this Samir Kuntar-like atrocity, and there can be little doubt that the assassin is being celebrated across a wide swath of the Arab world. The Western media will be close behind, trying in every conceivable way to make it look like the two boys had it coming. They will say they were living on stolen land. Or, at least, that the new Israeli government “provoked” the violence with its rampant xenophobia and polarizing stance on peace. And this in less than two days. As always, those Israelis had it coming.

Driven to the brink of insanity, there is often little choice but murder in order to make one’s voice heard above the din of Israeli drones. Logical, no?

But before you blame Israel for the violence of others against it, consider:

“To hold the Jews responsible for the aggression against them…is to disfigure political reality beyond recognition. Even if the Jews were the most rotten and misguided people on earth, they do not number 280 million in nationality (let alone one billion in religious affinity); they have not organized their politics around the destruction of twenty-one Arab countries, or trained a generation of suicide bombers to achieve that goal; they have not used the United Nations as a medium for spreading a genocidal ideology around the globe, or their synagogues to preach “death to the Arabs!” Jews did not bomb America in the name of the Torah, or foment anti-Muslim sentiment throughout Europe.”

This paragraph is from an essay entitled “On Ignoring Anti-Semitism” by Ruth Wisse. It was published in Commentary in 2002, the year of the so-called “Jenin massacre,” for which the world media outdid each other trying to prove that the Jews were as bad–no, worse–than the Nazis. Well, there never had been a massacre at Jenin, just around twenty Palestinian civilians killed in door-to-door combat–not counting an equal number of IDF soldiers and, of course, the terrorists themselves–but the defamation stuck like honey, and to slip “Nazi” into any throwaway criticism of Israeli self-defense has become a detestable fashion in recent years.

We might do well to remember the lesson of Jeningrad.

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