DOUBLE STANDARD FOR ISRAEL IN MEDIA & POLITICS
by Gerald A. Honigman
A few years back during this trying time of the year in the Daytona Beach area of Florida, I penned an article ("Makos, Kristof, and Bike Week") which focused on the hypocrisy and double standards the liberal, left wing press habitually practices towards the Jew of the Nations. Not that I'm in love with extreme right kooks either, but the former have become more of a problem of late than the latter since respected circles--such as those in academia--tend to give them more credibility. Coming right after the world famous Daytona 500 NASCAR race in this town, and just before most of the college spring breakers arrive, Bike Week brings with it scores of thousands of motor cyclists from all over the world...and the traffic snarls and noise that accompany them as well...Lovely.
While I'm sure it has nothing to do with the bikers' thunder, The New York Times' syndicated columnist Nicholas Kristof seems to vent some of his own particularly hot air around this season as well. A few years back (late February 2004), for example, he wrote a piece about double standards which appeared in our local news version of the problem being described here in which he complained about Israel's security fence, Arabs allegedly being given no alternatives (to their barbarity), and such. The paper's editors typically spout the same lines, and this prompted my own response mentioned above.
Like others of his ilk--Thomas Friedman, David Ignatius, Richard Cohen, just to name a few, who are also obsessed with the creation of a 22nd Arab state (and second, not first, Arab one within the original April 25, 1920 borders of the Mandate of Palestine before the Brits gave 80% away right from the getgo to Arab nationalism with the creation of Transjordan in 1922)--Kristof loves to lecture Israel, practically invisible on a map of the world and roughly the size of New Jersey, about the need to bare the necks of its babes so that Arabs, who have conquered over six million square miles of territory in the name of their nation and desires, can have that additional state as well. And regardless of all the hype about differences between the Arafatians and Hamasniks regarding the acceptance of the Jew of the Nations in what they perceive to be their exclusive neighborhood, a mere reading of what each side of this good cop/bad cop coin is telling their own people--not a Gullible West--puts the lie to those alleged differences regarding the Jews. Any differences at all between the two groups have more to do with who will continue to call the shots--both figuratively and literally--and enrich themselves as Arafat and his buddies did than any long term acceptance of an independent Jewish State.
Having said this, Kristof does have a few redeeming qualities...even if he largely ruins them with his own versions of the moral equivalency manure. So, in that earlier Bike Week article, he got on the Syrians' case about their infamous Hama Solution. Now, at this same season, I recently came across his early March 2006 op-ed dealing with the Darfur genocide. And he actually managed to mention the word Arab (once) as well. Indeed, compared to most of his lefty colleagues, he has shown a bit more responsibility than most in portraying the broader perspective regarding the struggle for political rights in the region. Indeed, his current reports are live from the scene of the action in the Sudan.
Still, despite his revelations regarding the Arab treatment of black Africans who have dared to assert their own rights and have paid dearly for it, Kristof still doesn't get it...
And again, he unfortunately has plenty of company.
In the September 16, 2003 Washington Post, Ignatius could only address Kurds as terrorists or rebels--while never dreaming of using the "T" word for Arab disembowelers of Jewish babes and grandmas. In Thomas Friedman's earlier March 26th article that same year in The New York Times, he advised that the Kurds should be told point blank, "what part of 'no' don't you understand? ...You Kurds are not breaking away." And this sickening hypocrisy is too often mirrored by the crew that has hijacked Middle Eastern Studies on far too many campuses and too often in our own Government as well...especially among the Foggy Folks and others with their hands in the past, current, or future petrodollar till.
All of these alleged liberals apparently accept the Arabs' notion that they and only they have national rights in the region. So a few, like Kristof, may eventually--after decades of playing deaf, dumb, and blind to Arab atrocities against any and all who don't accept subjugation or dhimmitude as their fate--write exposÚs about Arab actions but cannot get themselves to make the next essential leap...that others are also entitled to what Arabs demand exclusively for themselves.
While this crew is rightly concerned about the earlier effects of imperialism and colonialism Western style in the region, it has willingly turned a blind eye to the numerous non-Arab peoples and lands which had been conquered, settled, massacred, enslaved, turned into refugees, and colonized by the Arabs' own centuries' old and continuing imperialism still going on at the very moment this piece is being written.
Despite Arab and their sycophants' complaints about the dangers of divisiveness, what higher code--besides that which the Arabs themselves would like to impose on scores of millions of non-Arabs in "their" region--proclaims an Arab identity to be the only "legitimate" one in a region so culturally variegated as the Middle East and North Africa...Copts, Berbers, black Africans, Assyrians, pre-Arab Lebanese, Druse, one half of Israel's Jews who were refugees from "Arab"/Muslim lands (the other side of the refugee coin that the Kristofs never mention), and so forth? Yet the new, so-called liberals apparently buy right into this...no questions asked.
So, thirty million truly stateless Kurds are to simply accept such things as their kids being forced to sing songs praising their non-Kurdish and allegedly Arab identities in Syria, to live amid Sunni and Shi'a Arabs who are blowing each other apart by the thousands in a state as artificial as the former Yugoslavia--Iraq--and so forth. Kurds were promised independence in that former Mandate of Mesopotamia but got sacrificed on the altar of British petroleum politics and Arab nationalism instead.
Dr. Ismet Cheriff Vanly, a leading Kurdish nationalist, had much to say about this earlier last century. Here's a small slice from his book, The Syrian 'Mein Kampf' Against The Kurds (Amsterdam 1968): "If a Kurd says that he is a Kurd and not an Arab, he will be publicly insulted and arrested."
Related to this, I have written elsewhere about the Uncle Boutros/Uncle Tom effect that Bat Ye'or's dhimmitude has had on millions of subjugated, non-Arab Jews and Christians in the region.(http://www.paktoday.com/mwtoday/tom17.htm)
Dr. Boutros Boutros Ghali was the late President Anwar Sadat of Egypt's Coptic foreign minister who counseled that for Israel to be accepted, it must become an Arab country...no room for any other identities in the region.
Dhimmitude at its worst.
Of course, the way the Arabs like to define things--as Dr. Vanly explained above (and keep in mind that the Kurds are fellow Muslims, like many of the Arabs' black African victims in the Sudan, Chad, Mauritania, and elsewhere)--all of these folks, in Arab eyes, have no identity other than Arab. And to survive, the Uncle Boutroses have learned to play the nauseating game.
What would a true "liberal"--or any decent human being--really say about all of this? Yet the new breed can only see an admittedly imperfect Israel and the struggles of its people to survive amid this murderous and rejectionist Arab mess.
The Third World likes to continuously chastise the West for its condescending attitudes. I agree with much of that criticism. Rudyard Kipling's poem, The White Man's Burden, and all that stuff...
But while the Kristofs of the liberal media are quick to agree, why are they mum about such things as President Nimeiry's statements during the slaughter of over a half million blacks in the Sudan in the 1960s and 1970s (and continuing ever since) that "...the Sudan is the basis of the Arab thrust into...black Africa, the Arab civilizing mission(Arabism and Pan-Arabism in Sudanese Politics, Journal of Modern African Studies, Vol. 11, #2, 1973, pp. 177-78)?
Or why no response to this all-too-typical Arab approach as expressed in the Syrian Arab Constitution of the Ba'th?:
"...The Arab fatherland belongs to the Arabs. They alone have the right to direct its destinies...The Arab fatherland is that part of the globe inhabited by the Arab nation which stretches from the Taurus Mountains, the Pacht-i-Kouh Mountains, the Gulf of Basra, the Arab Ocean, the Ethiopian Mountains, the Sahara, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Mediterranean Sea."
Can't tell for sure...are any Eskimos also included here? I don't think so...at least not yet. But think about Mindanao in the Philippines.
Keep in mind that these are the same folks who like to condemn expansionist Zionists who dare to assert that Jews deserve a state more than nine miles wide. Hamas' leaders recently complained about such things as well.
While we're on the subject, again recall that the Arabs burst out of the Arabian Peninsula in the seventh century C.E., and in the name of their own caliphal imperialism carved out that "purely Arab patrimony" they like to speak of by conquering, forcibly Arabizing, colonizing, and settling mostly non-Arab peoples' lands. And, again, no comment from the Kristofs and Cohens or editorials from The New York Times or Washington Post. Those are reserved for Jews constructing a fence to keep Arabs from disemboweling their children or insisting that their sole, microscopic state should not have to forsake its own contiguity and security so that Arabs can have more of what they want in their own proposed 22nd. And as any with half a brain figured out long ago, what the latter really want is a state in place of Israel, not along side of it.
As just one more of many other examples of how very different lenses are used to scrutinize Israel and the rest of the neighborhood in which it lives (and while Kristof is admittedly better at this sort of thing than most of his colleagues), why, over the years, have the reports of the London-based Anti-Slavery Society and others about continuing slavery of black Africans by Arabs largely been ignored? Only recently are we starting to hear more about the Sudan and such things. Why? Just imagine if the Jew of the Nations was so indulging...
While Kristof should be commended regarding his concern over the fate of black Africans at the hands of genocidal Arabs spreading not only the Dar ul-Islam--for many of the victims are also Muslims--but a racist Arabism as well, he needs to take this quite a bit further. This is something that Kristof and the rest of his buddies refuse to do.
But the Arab-Israeli mess has always come down to one thing...the same exact problem I've reviewed above.
That problem has never been about how big Israel is, but that Israel is.
And the solution to this problem requires nothing less than a revolution in the age-old Arab mindset regarding the rights of any and all others in what they claim to be only "their" region.
Since this is not happening any time soon, Israel better wise up and play the game to win and not just tread water...despite the pressure it will be under from even its "friends."