John Robson: What part of ‘Death to Jews’ do Israel’s critics not understand?

Author of the article:John Robson

Publishing date:May 19, 2021 

Rockets are launched towards Israel from Gaza City, controlled by the Palestinian Hamas movement, on May 18, 2021.
Rockets are launched towards Israel from Gaza City, controlled by the Palestinian Hamas movement, on May 18, 2021. PHOTO BY MAHMUD HAMS /AFP via Getty Images

Here we go again, in that dreary cycle where a barrage of Hamas rockets at Israeli civilians causes a barrage of media rhetoric against Israel. What part of “Death to Jews” do they not understand?

Seriously. Most Western media outlets misrepresent the conflict in ways that can only strengthen the hand of those bent on wiping the Jewish state and its inhabitants off the map. From headlines like “Israel pounds Gaza with heavy strikes as conflict enters second week” to sneering insinuations that Biden is retrograde in backing Israel, the press scrupulously avoids noting that the violence began with Hamas and will end, as Golda Meir reputedly said, “when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us.”

The body count of “civilians” in Gaza doesn’t just miss the point that since Hamas is not an army, every dead terrorist is a “civilian.” It obscures deliberately firing rockets from near schools, mosques and hospitals in quest of telegenic mass death despite the IDF’s painstaking efforts to warn people to leave buildings before blasting them.

The passive voice is another part of the misrepresentation. As NBC put it at one point: “As the bombing of Gaza intensifies and the death toll rises, pressure is mounting for a rethink in Washington.”

Hamas like Hitler is quite open about the death-to-Jews plan and people are again going la la la I can’t heeear you. Thus the Babylon Bee shames “mainstream” media with its bang-on headline “Tensions Rise In Middle East As One Side Wants To Kill Jews And The Other Side Are Jews Who Don’t Want To Die And Neither Will Compromise.”

Western media outlets aren’t part of the death-to-Jews cult, but they run copy from radical anti-Israel stringers, and torque headlines and skew coverage in ways as baffling as repellent.

A typical NBC headline Sunday: “Dozens killed by Israeli airstrikes on Gaza as ceasefire efforts ramp up.” Following Friday’s “Israel airstrikes on Gaza kill 8 children and flatten a high-rise building that housed The Associated Press and Al Jazeera offices.” And “Israel’s destruction in Gaza shows it doesn’t need U.S. military aid” and “’They cry all night’: Civilians trapped in Gaza amid intensifying Israeli bombing.”

The destruction of their building led to a sharp protest from AP including being shocked, shocked, at the allegation that Hamas was operating right under their ink-stained noses.

Then there’s the trope where people condemn Israel, then Hamas, then call on Israel to stop defending itself. It’s a simulacrum of balance whose practical impact is Israel’s enemies get free hits until one day they carry out the “war of extermination and momentous massacre” Arab League Secretary-General Azzam Pasha promised in 1948, the first of many occasions when the Palestinians were offered a state and said no, war of conquest first, talk of peace later.

Of course, criticism of Israeli government actions is not inherently anti-Semitic. If it were, Israel would be full of Jewish anti-Semites. But it’s one thing to note mistakes and condemn individual acts of brutality and quite another to equate a democracy where Arab Muslims have full rights with a blood-soaked tyranny where Arab Muslims have no rights.

Space precludes discussion of the unequalled persistence and virulence of anti-Semitism. But you’d think its extraordinary history, including the Holocaust, would make decent people everywhere very wary of this mental and moral poison. Instead, the New York Times observed on Sunday: “Divisions within the (Democratic) party have burst into public view, with the party’s ascendant left viewing the Mideast conflict as a searing racial justice issue that carries echoes of U.S. politics.”

This comparison to American slavery is nothing short of demented. And nobody would expect any other nation on Earth, even a tyranny, to tolerate endless bombs and rockets, stabbings and car attacks, rhetoric of annihilation and periodic invasion attempts. So what’s the deal with Israel?

To coin a phrase, j’accuse.

National Post

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