A worried nation amongst worried nations

Israel has been a very lonely country for a very long time. But for the United States’ continuing support, nation after nation has abandoned Israel to her fate, little caring that she is a bastion of enlightened Western thought in the midst of a churning battlefield of Islamist fascism. Things seemed to hit bottom with Israel’s uninspired showing against Hezbollah this summer. However, as Hillel Halkin points out in a fascinating Commentary article, the darkest moments are often very effective at being a backdrop for little sparkles of hope. Right now, the little sparkle of hope is that Europe is finally beginning to realize that it has common cause with Israel, which has always been fighting jihad on its own. This new approach to Israel appeared, in of all places, the UN:

Compare it [the way the world reacted differently to this war than to past wars], for example, with what happened when Israel launched its preemptive attack against Egypt and Syria in June 1967. Then, within 24 hours, a joint U.S.-Soviet resolution was unanimously passed by the United Nations Security Council demanding an immediate ceasefire and Israeli withdrawal with no quid pro quo of any kind. Or compare it with an even more analogous situation in 1982, when Israel invaded Lebanon in order to smash the PLO. That very day, the Security Council again voted unanimously, calling on Israel to pull its troops out “forthwith and unconditionally.” Nothing was asked of the PLO or of Lebanon, and no Israeli interests were taken into account. (In the end, with a measure of American connivance, Israel ignored both resolutions and continued to fight.)

This past summer, by contrast, the Security Council waited a month before acting, giving Israel, notwithstanding European criticism of its “disproportionate use” of force, a green light to press on. And when Resolution 1701 was finally adopted, it blamed Hizballah for the fighting, made an Israeli withdrawal conditional on the behavior of the other side, and mandated the implementation of key Israeli war aims, including the demilitarization of Hizballah and an embargo on arms shipments to it. Indeed, well before this, the G-8 powers meeting in Russia had blamed the war on the “extremist forces” of Hizballah and called not for a ceasefire but merely for “creat[ing] conditions for a cessation of violence that will be sustainable”—that is, for allowing the Israeli offensive to proceed until it achieved its goals.

The difference is striking, all the more so because, in 1967, Israel’s image in the world was at a high, while in 2006, America being a salient exception, it was far from that. The countries of the European Union, plus Russia, Japan, and even China, did not cooperate with the U.S. in backing Israel this past summer in order to please either Washington, with which they have not hesitated to disagree over other issues, or public opinion at home.2 They did what they did because they thought it in their interest.

That is, Europe and Saudi Arabia may still hate Israel, but they’re being backed into that corner where the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Right now, that shared enemy is the inimitable duo of Iran and Al-Qaeda, both of which are bedeviling the world.

If you’re interested in Israel, both on its own terms and as a harbinger of the problems the entire West will face, I think you should read the entire article. However, before I set you lose, I can’t resist quoting one other wonderful little point Halkin made:

There is an irony in the fact that Zionism, initially because of its association with the British Mandate, and then because of close U.S.-Israeli relations, has become regularly associated with Western imperialism when the true imperial forces in the Middle East have always been, instead, Arabism and Islam. These, starting with the Arab conquest of the area in the 7th century c.e., have imposed a uniformity of language, culture, and religion wherever they have spread. In recent decades they have sought to crush the Kurds of Iraq and the Africans of southern Sudan, to repress Berber culture in North Africa, to attack the Copts of Egypt and the Nestorians of Iraq—and to destroy the state of Israel.

Clearly, if the Left is true to its anti-Imperialist Marxist roots, it should be lining up behind Israel, not making common cause with the jihadists against the West. The modern West’s intellectual depravity is never more clearly demonstrated than in its alignment with the jihadists against Israel.

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  • John Hetman

    You are quite right about this being a fascinating turn of events. It obviously is in reaction to the insane jihadist violence across much of the world and the threat of Islamicism in Europe. I wonder if it will emerge as a long term pattern?

  • http://ymarsakar.blogspot.com/ Ymarsakar

    People who are backed into a corner become desperate. Desperate people should not be underestimated.

    Clearly, if the Left is true to its anti-Imperialist Marxist roots, it should be lining up behind Israel, not making common cause with the jihadists against the West.

    That would have to assume that the Left knows what A+B is.

  • Danny Lemieux

    Given what Israel survived at the war of its founding, I have endless faith in the Israelis abilities to deal with future threats. As a Christian, of course, I feel deeply that God’s protective hand plays a big part in this. We will always be there for Israel and her people. As far as the Left is concerned, forget it. They have totally lost their moral moorings and grip on reality. They are in the early, albeit still dangerous, stages of self-destruction and, in the end, will have no more to offer a world that has moved on. The Secular Lefties are like dead leaves, rustling and drifting over the graves of their victims in the cold winter of their failed ideologies. History won’t lament their passing.

  • jg

    A good post, Bookworm, well answered with 2 fine previous comments.

    Marxism is, of course, in practice 20c imperialism of the worst sort. What was the Soviet Union but an empire held together by military force?. Communism attempted to subvert most of the governments of the world.

    It always attacked Western democracies for what IT PRACTICED. The Left, as always, lies.

    The salient point of Arab imperialism needs much wider play in the blogosphere.

  • http://ymarsakar.blogspot.com/ Ymarsakar

    Too bad history is cyclical, and the old will become the new again. Nobody really ever disappears in history, as an archetype anyways.

    JG, the Left practices what is known as the first strike policy. Psychologically, known as projection. Instead of dealing with their own problems and evil, they project their problems unto you and attack you for having those problems, as a way to either deal with it or ignore it. The first strike has to deal with how the fact that if you are on the attack, then the other guy has to defend against your attack. So so long as people are defending themselves from the Left’s charges of whatever and sonsever, the Left will never be attacked on a massive scale by charges of Imperialism and brutality (WWII, etc). It’s called having the initiative as well.

    We saw it when the Left accused Bush of being too unilateral. Since the truth was that Bush was too multilateral, one has to wonder who the truely unilateral party was. And you saw a hint of that when the Democrats were crying for blood about various issues, bombing North Korea, pulling out of Iraq without Iraqi input, censoring critics without input from committes from both sides, and so on and so forth ad infinitum.

    Clinton did say he would not have gone to the UN, to invade Iraq. He was telling the truth, and the Democrats would have loved. Multilateralism? Simple propaganda screens that most amateurs can pierce.