Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
It is just one more of those unpleasant facts of life that the anti-Israel lobbies of the planet have no real interest in the well being of the Palestinians, but are merely motivated by hostility to Jews. It is another unpleasant fact that those protesting their support for the Palestinians are merely seeking the destruction of Israel.
Welcome to the wonderful world of Middle East Orwellism. It took September 11 to force the Western world to confront the realities of the Middle East, and as part of this, the prevalence of Orwellism in that part of the world.
In the Middle East, words often mean their opposite, causes and effects are generally reversed, victims are generally blamed and aggressors whine about their victimization. The same pattern is increasingly characteristic of the Israel-bashing choruses in the Western media and elsewhere.
In the aftermath of September 11, Americans were treated to daily lectures by demagogues from the Arab world about U.S. culpability in the “oppression” of the Palestinians. Spokesmen for the most barbaric and oppressive regimes on earth lectured the West about its “insensitivity” and immorality. Supporters of terrorism argued with a straight face that the attacks on New York and Washington were the work a Jewish cabal.
Israel, of course, has had to deal with the Orwellism of the Middle East all along. It has long listened to the reversal-of-cause-and-effect homilies coming from the Arab world, under which Israeli retaliations for barbaric terrorist attacks against its civilians are “aggression,” while those very attacks themselves are “protests” by frustrated “activists” and “victims.”
Israel has also been lectured by the Western armchair peacemakers about how its settlements are the cause of the Arab-Israeli conflict, whereas they are in fact its consequences. Israelis are told that their “occupation” of the West Bank and Gaza Strip caused Arab hatred and resentment, whereas their occupation was in fact the consequence of that hatred and resentment.
In the Middle East’s Orwellisms, victims are turned into aggressors, savages and barbarians are painted as victims, imperialists and warmongers are declared moderates, defense is aggression, offense is defense, democrats are denounced as imperialists, dictators are lauded as democrats, and there are no problems on the planet that could not be resolved through the destruction of Israel.
The anti-Israel lobby demonstrably puts on display its recreational compassion for the “suffering Palestinians.” In fact, it has no interest at all in any Arab suffering unless it can somehow be used as a bludgeon to delegitimize Israel. The simple fact of the matter is that Arabs living under Israeli rule are the only Arabs in the Middle East who are not brutally oppressed by their rulers. They are the best-treated political minority in the Middle East. They are the only ones living under some semblance of the rule of law, the only ones enjoying basic freedoms,
the only ones who can vote, the only ones protected by due process, and the only ones not subject to summary execution and mass murder when challenging their regime.
The Middle East is the planet’s best illustration of Moynihan’s Law, which posits that the degree of oppression of any people is in inverse proportion to the cries of oppression one hears from them. The only government in the Middle East that does not indiscriminately shoot Arabs who criticize it is that of Israel. But Middle East Orwellism has been swelling, especially in Europe and in liberal circles in the United States. The rank hypocrisy staggers the objective mind:
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in enlightened government and progress — but overlook Arab fascism and are silent when Algeria or Sudan massacres its civilians.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in peace — but support all forms of military aggression against Israel and think such aggression must be rewarded.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in democracy — but feel that Israel is the only country in the Middle East that must be dismembered and destroyed.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in basic freedoms — but back the likes of Arafat, Mubarak, the Saudis and the Assads.
The Israel-bashers claim they oppose violence — but “understand” Palestinian terrorism.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in human rights — but not in Arab countries.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in freedom — but are not disturbed that slavery still exists in Sudan, Saudi Arabia and elsewhere among Arabs.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in freedom to practice religion freely in the Middle East — but of course only for Muslims.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in progress and enlightenment — but endorse concessions to those preaching jihad, medieval blood libels, and Holocaust denial.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in progress, but Arab societies should never be expected to progress beyond 13th century feudalism.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe in honest government — but have nothing to say about Arab kleptocracies.
The Israel-bashers claim they believe that human rights of Arabs must be protected — but not in Arab countries.
The Israel-bashers claim they oppose the use of torture — except when practiced by the Palestinian Authority or other progressive Arabs.
In fact, the only “human right” the Israel-bashers really think Palestinians need is the right to attack Jews and destroy Israel.
Steven Plaut is a professor at Haifa University. His book ‘The Scout’ is available at Amzon.com. He can be contacted at email@example.com
About the Author: Steven Plaut is a professor at the University of Haifa. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The answer is an emphatic no.
The meaning of “God’s watch” here is not entirely clear.
Don’t Israelis and Arab Palestinians deserve more than this? Is it not time to stop the insanity?
At age 104, my mother was still concerned about her relationship with Hashem.
Obama’s incompetence, the way his naive worldview and credulity have made a fool of him, are equally frightening
“The only difference between this world and the time of Meshiach is our bondage to the gentile kingdoms.”
You’ve discovered our little secret!
Klein’s challenger has demonstrated a propensity to unleash poisonous vitriol, even to other Zionists
President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy.
Welcome the book of Leviticus!
If the nationalist Knesset members don’t provide the answer, the Arab MKs will do so in their place.
International Agunah Day falls annually on Ta’anis Esther, this year on March 13.
Yeshiva University Museum recently hosted an exhibit titled “Threshold to the Sacred.”
Even a foxhole Yid has to admit that antisemitism is on the upswing.
When the Temple was in existence, Jews were religiously obligated to eat roast meat at least once a year.
I have frequently drawn up lists of what I love most about Israel, and Arik Einstein has ranked high.
In the past, the law school prohibited the singing of Hatikvah.
American non-Orthodox Jews are intermarrying their way into post-Jewish oblivion, and they’re doing so as a direct result of having emptied their version of Judaism of all meaning.
The Taliban is all too willing to obliterate anything attesting to ancient Jewish life and culture.
It began as just another exercise in political academic wackiness at Hebrew University. A graduate student there claimed that the absence of any history of rapes of Arab women by Israeli soldiers proves that Jews are racists and oppressors, people who do not even regard Arab women as sexually desirable. The student at the Mount Scopus campus and her “research” were then awarded a university honor for these impressive “discoveries.”
I favor eliminating the exemption of yeshiva students from military service and, without quibbling about details, I endorse the initiatives designed to end that disgraceful exemption.
American news headlines over the past few weeks have focused on political targeting by the Internal Revenue Service of conservative groups. But Israel is experiencing its own form of political targeting by the state. The attorney general is leading an initiative to have a small group of radical juveniles who engage in mischief declared a terrorist organization.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/middle-east-orwellism/2003/09/05/
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