And so, my esteemed colleagues, Melanie Phillips and Caroline B. Glick, have both concluded that organized American Jewry, including AIPAC, do not have the spine to back Israel as President Obama tries to “throw Israel under the bus.” (Phillips has just informed me that, in a subsequent article, she acknowledges that AIPAC’S presentation was more “nuanced” than she’d originally been led to believe).
Glick reminds us–we, (that’s the royal “we”), need no reminding that AIPAC behaved shamefully in the matter of the persecution of Steven J. Rosen and Keith Weissman. May I congratulate Dr. Daniel Pipes for having hired Steven J. Rosen long before he and Keith Weissman were both exonerated . Their exoneration should lead to the exoneration and release of Larry Franklin as well.
I wonder what will lead to Jonathan Pollard’s pardon and release? The Coming of the Messiah? Not even then?
By the way: My friend and esteemed colleague, Dr. Barry Rubin, begs to differ. He does not think that the Obama administration’s policy is “so much ‘anti-Israel’ as it is anti-realistic.” Given the intransigence and low-risk tolerance of most Arab states, Rubin doubts that they will risk anything in return for peace with Israel. He predicts that Obama will soon discover that even his charm and hard work are no match for Middle East (non-teleprompter) realities, especially in a time of jihad.
On a wave length, Aayan Hirsi Ali has also just weighed in about the Islamification of Europe. She notes that a multi-cultural and progressive Europe has utterly caved in to Islamism, both in terms of Jews and women. She suggests that immigration must demand loyalty to one’s new country and way of life before loyalty to the Muslim “umma” (people, nation), and its way of life (jihad, taqquiya, gender and religious apartheid). Hirsi Ali doubts that most Muslim immigrants in Europe can be trusted to choose Europe or the ways of the West first, last, or ever.
Aaron Klein, World Net Daily’s reporter in Jerusalem, has written a very important book with the heart-stopping and very sober title: The Late Great State of Israel. Klein emphasizes that Israel is in profound, existential danger, not only from without, but also from within. The book is not pessimistic; it is realistic and we avoid its information and analysis at our peril.
In Klein’s view, Israel faces grave danger from Iran, the Arab League, Palestinian terrorist groups, the United Nations, the European Union, the American government, the anti-Israel grassroots international community, the global media and Academy—and, if that were not enough, from Israeli leaders as well. The same kind of appeasement which has led to the Islamification of Europe is hard at work in Israel and at the highest levels of government. (Stay tuned for an interview with Klein later this month).
As I sit here, contemplating the continuing disasters—the daily suicide bombings in Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, the rising civilian death toll, the advance of hate and intolerance across the globe—I wearily wonder: Is it too late to turn things around?
Just then, a colleague called my attention to the first liberalization of the mental health laws in Egypt in sixty years. The article, just released by the BBC, describes the treatment of both alleged and real psychiatric patients as similar to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in the West.
Egyptians view “mental illness” as shameful, stigmatizing. Husbands dump unwanted wives in loony bins where, in one case, the woman has been confined for 22 years, not because she is mentally ill, but because she no longer has a home and her siblings do not want her. Now, Egyptian psychiatrists are mandated to review cases more quickly and to turn to community- rather than asylum-based remedies.
Thus, from a psychological and educational point of view, great Egypt is 100-150 years behind the West. (I know, I know, ex-psychiatric patients in the West also have good reason to continue to criticize mental health care here but not because people are institutionalized for the rest of their lives. Au contraire.)
Saudi Arabia, the West Bank and Gaza, Iran, Afghanistan and large parts of Pakistan trail the West by anywhere from seven to ten centuries. We are fighting the Past, but this time, the Past is utilizing the weapons of the Future, Ghenghis Khan has nuclear weapons, Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah terrorists communicate via computer and cellphone.
Freud would put it this way: As ever, Eros (the life instinct) is battling Thanatos, (the death instinct), chaos is struggling to engulf civilization, the past-repressed threatens to overwhelm present-consciousness. The outcome of this struggle depends on the sacrifices that each of us are willing to make—and yet, lest hubris misguide us, both history and life are, nevertheless, essentially tragic.
Thus Spake Herr Docktor Freud, another brilliant Jew who was forced to flee his Nazified Viennese homeland.