Another Tack: We are the accusers

Eliyahu Hakim(l) and Eliyahu Beit-Zuri(r): “We are the accusers at this trial.”

Eliyahu Hakim(l) and Eliyahu Beit-Zuri(r): “We are the accusers at this trial.”

What has become known as Kerry’s “poof” speech is precisely what Israel was afraid of – being blamed for the predictable flop of Kerry’s delusional project.

Kerry can postfactum posture self-righteously and smugly deny having blamed Israel but that’s precisely what he did when he enumerated Israel’s supposed sins one by one. He then dramatically paused for a studied special effect – replete with expressive hand gestures – before resorting to really sophisticated phrasing: “Poof, that was sort of the moment.” The suggested cause and effect was unquestionable. No belated pedantic quibbles can erase Kerry’s intentional, even vindictive, anti-Israel smear.

If anything, Kerry’s cynical performance before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee underscores all the reasons for Israel not to make concessions just in order to make a good impression.

So-called honest brokers, like Kerry, and the so-called objective opinions of the international community, are in any case predisposed against the Jewish state. Therefore there’s no point in sacrificing vital interests to please those who won’t be pleased by any Israeli gesture short of signing articles of surrender. Continue reading

Another Tack: St. Edward’s and the empty peace

Sir Humphrey: ”why close a hospital just because it has no patients?”

Sir Humphrey: ”why close a hospital just because it has no patients?”

No devotee of Yes Minister, yesteryear’s BBC’s classic, can forget St. Edward’s Hospital – that spanking new cutting edge facility that had no patients or medical personnel. Nonetheless, St. Edward’s hustled and bustled, a veritable hive of activity and creative energy. For 15-months since its much-ballyhooed inauguration, an administrative staff of 500 bureaucrats filled the hospital’s offices, pushed papers and generated red tape.

Sounds exaggerated? A bit over-the-top for real life? Not really. John Kerry’s peace project, for example, replicates the parody’s blueprints with mind-blowing precision. It is for diplomacy what St. Edward’s was for health care – an incredible lot of much-ado about absolutely nothing.

The biggest snag in Kerry’s persistent peace offensive is that it lacks the commonsense basic essentials to even begin to achieve what it was promoted to do. It couldn’t possibly live up to the hype. St Edward’s couldn’t heal the sick because none had been admitted. No doctors or nurses were on hand either. It was a hospital in name only. Continue reading

Another Tack: The postulate of illegitimacy

Jabotinsky in Acre Prison, 1920: Perfidious Albion knew whom to blame

Jabotinsky in Acre Prison, 1920: Perfidious Albion knew whom to blame

Something strikingly dramatic happened in this country exactly on this date 94 years ago. Cries of Itbach el-Yahud(slaughter the Jews) filled the air. It was the first coordinated mass-murder offensive launched by infamous Jerusalem Mufti Haj-Amin el-Husseini (who would in time become an avid Nazi collaborator, Hitler’s personal guest in Berlin during WWII and a wanted war-criminal).

Ever since, this land shook fitfully as rounds of massacres and wars followed each other in breathless succession. The past mustn’t be consigned to irrelevance. Unbroken historical continuities contextualize current events. Nothing springs forth from a vacuum. What now transpires began back then.

The pivotal murder-drive of 1920 and its aftermath are vital for understanding why John Kerry’s peace pageant is a flop and why Israel so profoundly displeases him, his boss Barack Obama and their pet-Palestinian Mahmoud Abbas. It established the prototype whereby Jews are punished for Arab crimes against Jews. It highlights the pattern of appeasing Arab wrath and of Jews paying – as if Jewish existence is in and of itself a casus belli.

The bias maddeningly came into play already in 1920. It’s the bias that has today burgeoned into the escalating extortion and shameless expectation that Israel release convicted murderers as a matter of course  and injure its own interests to keep its enemies sweet. It’s as if Israel has no valid interests, no rights. This is the postulate of illegitimacy. Continue reading

Another Tack: Some are more equal

Obama’s thinking appears closer to that enunciated by the clout-packing pigs of Orwell’s Animal Farm

Obama’s thinking appears closer to that enunciated by the clout-packing pigs of Orwell’s Animal Farm

Speaking the truth can be a dangerous undertaking. It can expose the speaker to all sort of chastisement. This isn’t only so in any given country’s domestic affairs but very much so in relations between states.

Ours, after all, is a globalized reality. This fact can induce and intensify inordinate hubris in some leaders with pretensions to hold sway over more than their own specified domain. White House occupant and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Barak Obama, for instance, often conducts himself as if the American electorate and the Nobel committee had put him in charge of the whole earth.

Had Obama been an unqualified success, his conceit may be suffered but his isn’t and he doesn’t like to hear that he isn’t.

Despite his resplendent liberal credentials, Obama’s concept of liberty is a tad constricted. Everyone – everywhere on the face of this planet and beyond – is perfectly free to go into raptures over him but it’s a whole different opera when not-so-flattering opinions are sounded.

Obama, his appointed sidekicks and salaried mouthpieces resent criticism. Plain and simple. Continue reading

Another Tack: Kerry’s cogent connections

Tel Aviv, November 29, 1947 - Untenable and implausible though this hodgepodge partition was, Jewish multitudes rejoiced in the streets

Tel Aviv, November 29, 1947 – Untenable and implausible though this hodgepodge partition was, Jewish multitudes rejoiced in the streets

It’s a huge relief to realize that US Secretary of State John Kerry doesn’t share the postmodern contempt for history. Or at least so it seems, because when it suits him, Kerry resorts to instructive historical perspectives. Wowed by his superior wisdom, in all its wondrous and infinite manifestations, we’re humbly thankful for the cogent connections he makes.

Just last week he intimated that Israelis have become insufferable nudniks by harping on what evidently cramps his style – that tedious demand that the Arabs recognize the fundamental legitimacy of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.

“It’s a mistake for some people,” he told the House Foreign Relations Committee without naming names, “to be raising it again and again as the critical decider of their attitude toward the possibility of a state, and peace, and we’ve obviously made that clear.” Continue reading

Another Tack: What Obama furtively furthers

Umm el-Fahm leaders sign declarations of allegiance to Israel on May 20, 1949 after the Lausanne Conference Awarded the Wadi Ara region to Israel

Umm el-Fahm leaders sign declarations of allegiance to Israel on May 20, 1949 after the Lausanne Conference Awarded the Wadi Ara region to Israel

One outrageously insolent remark was remarkably ignored in the hullaballoo generated by US President Barack Obama’s Bibi-bashing interview on the eve of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s latest White House visit.

Wedged into the presidential malarkey was a new allegation against the Mideast’s sole democracy. Obama accused Israel of no less than continuing to “place restrictions on Arab-Israelis in ways that run counter to Israel’s traditions.”

Huh? Really? What restrictions? And does Obama now also presume to pass judgment on what are indisputably our domestic affairs? Is there no limit to his meddling and hubris? Continue reading

Another Tack: Krake Zuckerberg

 Krake Zuckerberg (Octopus Zuckerberg): its distinctive face makes sure that we don’t lose sight of Zuckerberg’s Jewishness.

Krake Zuckerberg (Octopus Zuckerberg): its distinctive face makes sure that we don’t lose sight of Zuckerberg’s Jewishness.

Most German publications no longer even pretend any wariness about coming off as anti-Jewish. Gone are the days when Germans had to at least appear a tad more cautious than their fellow Europeans. The latter reverted quickly enough to their old Jew-baiting habits but the Germans have willy-nilly caught up.

A cogent example is being consistently provided by Munich’ s left-liberalSueddeutsche Zeitung, which also happens to be Germany’s largest broadsheet daily. It recently featured a cartoon lampooning Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg after his outfit had acquired WhatsApp. The idea was to show Zuckerberg as a voracious octopus that swallows up everything around it. The caption at the bottom left-hand corner of the cartoon clearly read “Krake Zuckerberg” (German for Octopus Zuckerberg.) Up to this point, it’s tolerable criticism.

But the octopus, as drawn by cartoonist Burkhard Mohr, was also given quite a distinctive face. Its function, presumably, was to make sure we don’t lose sight of the fact that young Zuckerberg – innovative enough to have given the world a social network which millions of Germans also use – is a Jew. To that end, Mohr portrayed him with a preposterous hook-nose and thick fish-lips – as per the freakish stereotype sinisterly ascribed to Jews by their tormentors. Continue reading

Another Tack: Those three no’s – reworded

Legendary political caricaturist Dosh’s pre-1967 view of the existentially threatening Green Line – into which Abbas insists Israel again compress itself

Legendary political caricaturist Dosh’s pre-1967 view of the existentially threatening Green Line – into which Abbas insists Israel again compress itself

When it involves Israel, the international community’s hearing is notoriously selective yet never capricious or random. There is method in the apparent arbitrariness of what does and does not compellingly impress the self-appointed adjudicators of all that’s virtuous and/or villainous in our setting.

Israel’s own largely left-dominated media – forever engaged in advocacy journalism and tendentiously promoting hyped humbug – isn’t remarkably better.

The obliging etiquette of de rigueur enlightenment demands that Israel’s culpability be accentuated and amplified in all circumstances. Simultaneously, any Arab belligerence must by the niceties of politically correct protocol be disguised, discounted and ultimately denied. Stonewalling must be ascribed exclusively to the uncool Jewish state.

The hardly unforeseeable upshot is that nowhere was much interest shown in Ramallah figurehead Mahmoud Abbas’s latest song and dance. Deprived of resonance, the story of his two recent meetings in Paris with US Secretary of State John Kerry expired virtually unnoticed.  Continue reading

Another Tack: Happy Days are (almost) here

A victorious Hitler parades in just-occupied Prague: “painful sacrifices” hardly sated his appetites

A victorious Hitler parades in just-occupied Prague: “painful sacrifices” hardly sated his appetites

Palestinian Authority figurehead Mahmoud Abbas (Abu-Mazen) has this week assured us – at a meeting with a pre-selected group of left-wing Israeli students – that happy days are (almost) here again. That in itself should suffice to allay our anxieties – all, he says, products of that well-oiled Israeli propaganda machine. If we merely take his word for it, we could sleep soundly.

If Israel only improves its act, and conducts its affairs as per Abbas’s directives, peace and bliss will surely be ours. To hear him, there’s no obstructionism whatsoever on his turf. The obstacles to peace are all Israeli-made. Abbas has absolved himself of any responsibility if things go awry.  He’s only seeking justice for an indigenous population oppressed by an artificial entity, a foreign interloper.

Those among us who still possess historical perspectives will recognize the resemblance to contentions made by one Adolf Hitler on the eve of the infamous Munich Agreement, which sold out Czechoslovakia as the alleged cause of all that ailed Europe. Continue reading

Deutsche Chutzpah

image001Deutsche Bank, Germany’s largest bank, shows signs of mild embarrassment in the wake of reports that it had consigned Israel’s largest bank, Bank Hapoalim, to a list of firms deemed too “ethically questionable” for investment by the ostensibly more ethically-minded investors.

Bank Hapoalim indeed featured on the list but Deutsche Bank later averred that this was merely a recommendation by an outside consultant from Denmark.

It needs be stressed that the actual damage to Bank Hapoalim is likely to be minimal at most. If anything, the impact on Deutsche Bank’s image would be more acute. It goes beyond the mere specter of a German financial giant boycotting a Jewish concern. Deutsche bank has a particularly dark past, even as far as veteran German corporations go. Continue reading