20 May 2007

British Lord Benighted

Lord Andrew Phillip, a washed former member of the House of Lords who says he no longer wants to be called Lord, is Lording it over us Americans. Yes, using his intrinsic Limey superiority, he lays waste to our foreign policy, morals, and intellect. All without needing to rely upon a single fact. Good Lord!

This Lord said:
To quote from the UNHRC Report,
"Following Israel's withdrawal, Gaza has become a sealed-off, imprisoned, occupied territory."

Come again? Occupied by whom? Oddly enough, I agree that Gaza and the incredibly modestly named "West Bank" are occupied territories, but this is because they are parts of Israel which are infested with generations of violent hippie squatters. There isn't a single Israeli living, stationed, or patrolling in Gaza.
Occupied by whom, Lord Phillips?

He later smears America:
...To Hell with the Americans, frankly, because they seem to be locked in the sort of benighted view of Israel/Palestine as they have been over Iraq...

I'll be honest and admit that I had to look up "benighted".
be·night·ed adj.
1. Overtaken by night or darkness.
2. Being in a state of moral or intellectual darkness; unenlightened.

Let us assume that he is not merely using the word as a rhetorical flourish, and that he therefore intends the second meaning. This is the crux of his complaint. At least this is something we can have a real argument about.

I might even be tempted to agree with Lord Phillips again, but as above, not in a way he might have expected. America's policy toward Israel is unenlightened or in moral or intellectual darkness" only to the extent that we do not support Israel strongly enough. Speaker Pelosi's intellectually vacant, beheadscarved appearances with the chinless ophthalmologist come to mind. Secretary Rice's morally adrift pronouncements do as well.

The problem is that Lord Phillips overlooks the morally enlightened and intellectually illuminated argument that tiny Israel is the only Democracy in a sea of dictatorships, each one of which is bent upon Israel's destruction. Israel has honored every agreement it has made, and the Arab dictatorships have honored none. A moral person, an intellectual person, has no trouble discerning that the enlightened position is support for Israel. I have said many times that the Middle East is not hard to understand, unless you do not want to understand; unless you do not want others to understand. Leftist politicians and leftist journalists all insist that the Middle East operates by some unknowable calculus, that "...we westerners cannot possibly fathom the nuance of the intricately linked sets of motiva--Oh, fuck it! We give up! And so should you!"

And if you insist, as Lord Phillips does, that those Arabs occupying Israel and those surrounding it are working for peace and doing the best they can, but just can't get any traction without legitimacy and some sign that the west take them seriously, then indeed you cannot make sense of the Middle East. Because every time these selfsame Arabs are offered peace, which should benefit a bunch of squatters with no army, no navy, and no air force, but which does not include the peace of the Jewish dead, they reject it. To the Left, the mystery is: Why would these people keep provoking Israel to violence, in order to live in peace?

But it is laughably clear if you do not beg the question so. Repeat after me: The Arabs will accept nothing less than the destruction of the State of Israel. If, as an analytical method, you view the actions of Israel and the Arabs through the following lens--Israel is committed to living with Arabs, and Arabs are committed to living without Jews--you suddenly see the formerly incomprehensible actions of the Arabs as reprehensible instead. This is a key point--unlike support of the so-called Palestinians, support of Israel at no time requires you to say, "I don't know why the people I support would do such a monstrous thing."

That is morally and intellectually enlightened.