Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Israel's Clean Technology Pioneers - BusinessWeek

Israel's Clean Technology Pioneers

They're pros at getting the most out of limited natural resources. The world is taking notice—especially U.S. venture capitalists

Levy and Schwaber of Cleantech: The green energy industry hums "despite politics" Elion Paz

By Roben Farzad

Yavne, a hazy industrial corridor in central Israel, seems at first glance an improbable haven for geothermal technology. Its largely barren environs offer no geysers or volcanoes, the essential raw materials for geothermal energy. Yet this small city of 32,000 is home to Ormat Technologies (ORA), a $2 billion multinational listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYX) that builds geothermal power plants around the world, from Colorado to Kenya.
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Stand still and see

“When it comes to the most important things in life, we all have a form of attention deficit disorder.” - Sam the Turtle, renowned armchair philosopher and political analyst

“Stand still and see!” - Moses, just before the sea split

Look Again

When I was growing up, it often happened that I would misplace things, and that didn’t exactly go over big with my parents. After combing my bedroom or the backyard, I would sheepishly declare to my mother, “It’s not there, I looked everywhere.” And my mother’s reply was always the same: “Sam, go look again; and this time look with your eyes open.” And guess what? I almost always found what I was looking for. These days, I find myself echoing my mothers words to our youngest son.
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Stand still and see

'No Jews' policy employed at Austria hotel - Haaretz - Israel News

'No Jews' policy employed at Austria hotel

Tags: Austria, Anti-Semitism

A hotel in the Austrian region of Tyrol that said it does not accept Jewish guests has caused shock in the local media and tourism industry, the daily Tiroler Tageszeitung reported Sunday.

A Vienna family of seven had had tried to make a reservation at the Haus Sonnenhof apartment hotel in the village of Serfaus, but the owner replied by e-mail that although the room was free, she did not want to take in Jewish guests because of "bad experiences" in the past.
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'No Jews' policy employed at Austria hotel - Haaretz - Israel News

Chesler Chronicles » The Montreal Massacrist and Hasibullah Sadiqi Have the Same Kind of Father

Chesler Chronicles » The Montreal Massacrist and Hasibullah Sadiqi Have the Same Kind of Father

Israel Matzav: Video: Pope's (disappointing) speech at Yad Vashem

Israel Matzav: Video: Pope's (disappointing) speech at Yad Vashem

Israel Matzav: 'An American-Zionist conspiracy'

Israel Matzav: 'An American-Zionist conspiracy'

Israel Matzav: Vile Sheikh has done this before#links#links

Israel Matzav: Vile Sheikh has done this before

Israel Matzav: American training and equipment being used to capture Israeli spies in Lebanon

American training and equipment being used to capture Israeli spies in Lebanon

Haaretz reports that some $1 billion in training and equipment that has been provided by the United States to Lebanon since 2006 has resulted in the capture of numerous Israeli spies in Lebanon.

Lebanon arrested five people over the weekend suspected of belonging to an intelligence cell transmitting information about Hezbollah to Israel, the most recent arrests in a two-month crackdown apparently aided by American training and equipment.
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Israel Matzav: American training and equipment being used to capture Israeli spies in Lebanon

Israel Matzav: Arabs feel the love from Obama

Arabs feel the love from Obama

They still hate America, but in the Arab world they feel the personal love from America's President Barack Hussein Obama (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).

Ipsos said its poll, conducted in March, involved 7,000 adults in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan.

Of those surveyed, 33% had a favorable view of the United States, 43% had a negative view, 14% were neutral and 10% said they did not know, Ipsos said.
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Israel Matzav: Arabs feel the love from Obama

Israel Matzav: Iran produced 8 times as much enriched uranium in 2008 as in 2007

Iran produced 8 times as much enriched uranium in 2008 as in 2007

Look what slid under the radar screen in March.

Iran has dramatically increased the amount of low-enriched uranium produced by its growing number of centrifuges that are part of its nuclear fuel production system.

According to a CIA report to Congress, "During the reporting period, Iran continued to expand its nuclear infrastructure and continued uranium enrichment and activities related to its heavy water research reactor, despite multiple United Nations Security Council Resolutions since late 2006 calling for the suspension of those activities."
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Israel Matzav: Iran produced 8 times as much enriched uranium in 2008 as in 2007

Israel Matzav: Crying over human rights

Crying over human rights

Writing in Monday's New York Times, former Czech President Vaclav Havel decries the 'elections' that are due to take place for places on the UN 'Human Rights Council' later this week, because once again countries with poor human rights records are going to be elected in uncontested elections.

Only 20 countries are running for 18 open seats. The seats are divided among the world’s five geographic regions and three of the five regions have presented the same number of candidates as there are seats, thus ensuring there is no opportunity to choose the best proponents of human rights each region has to offer.
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Israel Matzav: Crying over human rights

Israel Matzav: Abdullah: 'Peace now... or war next year'

Abdullah: 'Peace now... or war next year'

Abdullah II, the King of Palestine, threatens Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu through a front page article in Monday's Times of London: 'Peace now (on the Arabs' terms) or war next year.'

“What we are talking about is not Israelis and Palestinians sitting at the table, but Israelis sitting with Palestinians, Israelis sitting with Syrians, Israelis sitting with Lebanese,” said the King, who hatched the plan with Mr Obama in Washington last month. He added that, if Mr Obama did not make good his promise for peace, then his credibility would evaporate overnight.
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Israel Matzav: Abdullah: 'Peace now... or war next year'

DoubleTapper: How to stop Iran

Iran needs to be stopped. It's within your power to help.

Both the American Enterprise Institute and United Against Nuclear Iran, have published excellent online databases of companies who do business with Iran.

Right now Iran is in trouble economically, mostly due to the recent collapse in the price of oil. Now is the time to hit them in their wallets.
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DoubleTapper: How to stop Iran

The Torah Revolution: Ostereich

The Torah Revolution: Ostereich

The Torah Revolution: Re: # 5 & 6 Use your heads please

The Torah Revolution: Re: # 5 & 6 Use your heads please

ESSER AGAROTH - Banned From Britain!

Banned From Britain!

17 of the Second Month 5769

My neighbor Jewish rights activist Yekutiel, recently made the news, having been "banned" from entering the United Kingdom. Some of Yekutiel's responses are interspersed below in blue.*

Jewish Telegraph: Zionist Chief Backs Ban On "Violent" Guzofsky

The leader of Britain's major Zionist organisations has supported the Home Office decision to ban a Jewish activist from entering Britain.

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ESSER AGAROTH:Banned From Britain!


Blogmaster's Comment: I am an American Jew and I am ashamed of my countries betrayal of one of our closest friends and the deliberate sacrifice of brave individuals who were fighting Hizbullah and Islamic Terrorism. The actions of our intelligence community are in this instance, egregious and reprehensible. The assistance given that resulted in the arrest of these men will without doubt, cause their torture and execution at the hands of our enemies. All I can say is “Never Trust the United States”! We screwed the Chinese after WWII, we screwed the Cuban Liberators at the Bay of Pigs, and we betrayed the Vietnamese – handing their country to the Communists and causing the death and torture of thousands. It is no wonder that we are hated around the world. And now what do we do? We push our best friend under the bus. Go figure! .

U.S. helps Lebanon nab Israeli spy rings

This is not a Which-Side-Is-Obama-On-Alert -- like so many short-sighted programs that ultimately aid the global jihad, it began before he was President. It was begun, no doubt, by learned analysts trained in realpolitik and blissfully ignorant of the jihad doctrine and Islamic supremacism. They no doubt believed, and believe, that this would be a good way to win hearts and minds in Lebanon. They probably won't realize how deeply they've aided in the betrayal of a U.S. ally that is on the front line of the jihad until it is too late.
"U.S. helps Lebanon crack alleged Israeli spy rings," by Yoav Stern for Haaretz and AP, May 10 (thanks to Chetz):

Lebanon arrested five people over the weekend suspected of belonging to an intelligence cell transmitting information about Hezbollah to Israel, the most recent arrests in a two-month crackdown apparently aided by American training and equipment.
Al Jazeera TV broadcast images yesterday of a small table containing hidden communication devices, a modem concealing transmission equipment and forged passports - all allegedly used by the suspects.

Hezbollah-controlled Al-Manar television reported that the suspects' job was to collect information on potential targets such as the group's installations and the homes of its leaders.

The suspects are among 17 people allegedly belonging to six espionage cells who have been arrested in Lebanon in the past two months on suspicion of transmitting intelligence information to Israel....

The Internal Security Forces have long been accused of representing the interests of Lebanese parliamentary majority leader Saad Hariri, son of slain prime minister Rafik Hariri, and his supporters.

"This organization is seen as a more reliable one than the army, which still appears to be close to Syria and Hezbollah," one of the sources said.

The United States has provided $1 billion in aid since 2006, including $410 million in security assistance to the Lebanese military and police. But U.S. officials have said they would review aid to Lebanon depending on the results of the June 7 election, which could oust the U.S.-backed government.

Israel has expressed reservations about American aid to the Lebanese army and security services, saying those organizations will ultimately be unable to contend with Hezbollah and that any aid is liable to serve Hezbollah's interests.
taken from : B'NAI ELIM (http://bnaielim.blogspot.com/)


Israel's Diplomatic Isolation

By John R. Bolton

Commentary magazine

Even though it shares the same island with some of the most imaginative theatrical talent in the world, the United Nations prefers comforting, dull, tedious repetition to interesting, unexpected, dramatic surprise. That is especially true when it comes to Israel, which is always cast in the role of villain and for which matters are therefore certain to end unhappily.Thus, every year the UN General Assembly approves resolutions highly unfavorable to Israel by huge majorities, often with only Israel, the United States, and a trusted ally like Palau voting against and a few European stragglers abstaining. On occasion, the Security Council will meet in emergency session to consider an alleged crime against humanity committed by Israel; the Council chamber is filled to capacity with delegates and spectators, many heated speeches are given, and Israel is saved from condemnation only by the threat or exercise of the U.S. veto.

In 2006, the anti-Israel UN Human Rights Commission was replaced by the newly minted UN Human Rights Council. But to the shock and wonderment of absolutely no one, the new HRC turns out to be just like the old HRC, spending most of its time criticizing Israel, or preparing for conferences like Durban II that are political free-fire zones against Israel.

These and similar set pieces have become so commonplace they rarely receive much U.S. media coverage; most Americans have simply and understandably lost interest in the clichéd theater of the United Nations. In the world outside the United States, the story is very different. Even the most heavily scripted, unspontaneous, and intolerably pedantic UN meetings generate substantial press attention abroad, and that press attention, in turn, adds to the growing sense that Israel is among the most solitary nations on the face of the earth.
Nor does that isolation seem limited to the UN's chilly corridors. Israelis are concerned about a growing estrangement from the nations of the European Union (EU)--not just a lack of substantive support from Western Europe, but an acute lack of the warmth and empathy that was directed toward the Jewish state from the continent in earlier days. Even more profoundly, Middle Eastern hostility to Israel's creation and continued existence is now reinforced by the growth of a radically politicized, militant Islamism. And the new administration in Washington has already demonstrated that it will not match its predecessor's sense of connection to the democratic bright light in the Middle East. If America's responses to the threats before Israel, such as Iran's nuclear weapons program, prove less robust, will Israel find itself in a circumstance in which it will have only its own will and capabilities to rely upon?

Israel's protection against existential threat begins at home.

These are legitimate questions, but fortunately, the answers are not as clear as they might seem to distressed friends and frightened supporters of Israel. Unquestionably, Israel's diplomatic position is different from earlier times, but a dispassionate analysis suggests that it is not necessarily worse--if, that is, the standard for judgment is not Israel's popularity but rather its ability to maneuver and function as an actor of moment in the international community.

Most important, even in the midst of economic crisis, the United States is far stronger than it was at the Cold War's height, both comparatively and absolutely. Neither the United States nor Israel can be defeated in conventional military hostilities by any conceivable coalition of adversaries. There are, to be sure, acute, even existential threats caused by the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the spread of international terrorism, but the problems of the 1950s and the 1960s are over. That is unequivocally good news.

And yet Israel still suffers emotionally from the slings and arrows aimed at it. A significant cause of the angst is the entirely understandable sentiment that after all the difficulties Israel has faced over its 61 years, there should come a point where it is "accepted," after which its singular external troubles will subside. This is a very European sentiment, both feudal and social-democratic in its roots, resting on the idea that stability is the norm and threat the exception. Unfortunately, however, neither for Israel, nor the United States, nor anyone else, is there one fixed point of stability or safety that can be reached. Such a point simply does not exist. The nations of Western Europe, however, seem intent on believing otherwise.
Israel's chief external strength, its closeness to the United States, may be ironically responsible for some aspects of Western Europe's diplomatic turn against it. Whether at the United Nations or elsewhere, the nations of Western Europe know that Israel will not be politically eviscerated by resolutions or actions because the United States will intervene before terrible damage can be done. In the tedious business of drafting resolutions, ministerial statements, or press communiqués, most EU foreign ministries know that the United States will do the heavy lifting--and shoulder the blame from Israel's adversaries--in order to achieve acceptable verbiage.

The certainty of American action has freed Western Europeans from bearing any diplomatic responsibility in relation to Israel. They need not demonstrate sympathy for Israel's position, even if they might be inclined to feel such sympathy. Indeed, it is clear that the central American role has granted them precious liberty to cast a free vote--a vote they can use for their own political purposes, both domestic and international.

This attitude is desperately painful for Israelis, especially older ones, many of whom cannot help but hark back to the two decades following World War II. Europe then seemed both viscerally and operationally more engaged with Israel; indeed, at the time, the collectivist convictions of many Israeli leaders and the country's socialist domestic policies generated more empathy from like-minded Europeans than from the determinedly individualistic and capitalist United States. Kibbutzim? Not in Kansas, Dorothy. Indeed, in certain sectors of the American Right, Israel's original ideological path was a generator of a hostility that still burns today, even as the country is moving to supplant its socialist economy with a system that more closely approximates the free market. In those halcyon days, among leftist elites in Europe's great capitals, Israel looked like a chip off the old block.

That was then. Whatever commonality European socialists might once have felt with Israelis has long since passed. Even more important, Western European guilt about the depths of anti-Semitic sentiment across the continent and the role it played in stoking the flames of the Holocaust has all but dissipated. Monuments, memorial ceremonies at cemeteries, and obligatory passages in official speeches are all that remain.

Just as Europe's gratitude to America for liberating it from fascism only lasted so long, so too with the continent's sense of guilt about what took place on its soil and in its name. And neither gratitude nor guilt will be motivating factors in European policy anytime soon.
Israel's estrangement from Western Europe is one of the most pronounced diplomatic markers of the profound lassitude, the end-of-civilization weariness that has EU members at the UN and other diplomatic venues in its grip. It is beyond my scope here to deal with the causes of this continental fatigue--declining birthrates, aging populations, expensive social welfare programs, immigration--but suffice it to say that their combined effect is overwhelming. Add to that the desire of many Europeans to believe they can now be liberated for all time from transnational conflict, and Israel's Europe problem becomes insoluble. From the European perspective, threats to international comity come not from external hostile forces--for them, such forces barely exist--but rather from seemingly friendly quarters, like the United States and Israel. They believe they are endangered by those nations that have decided (so far) that they cannot afford to fall prey to the false dream of extricating themselves from the world's dangers by remaining in slumber or going prone in the wake of attack.

What Western Europe's ennui and its descent into a fantasy of having moved beyond history demonstrate is that little or nothing will change the continent's attitudes toward the Jewish state. Both Israel and America can and should do diplomatic damage-control with the European Union's member countries to try and ballast Israel's position; that is, after all, what diplomacy is for. But mitigation of Europe's concerns will not be enough to change Europe's course.

Instead, Israel needs to look elsewhere to decrease its isolation. Surprising though it may sound, the prospects for success in other parts of the world are far from dismal. The first place to look is the Middle East, where Iran's growing menace has created significant possibilities for ad hoc alliances of convenience.

Iran's decades-old nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs, and its role as the central banker of international terrorism, obviously constitute direct, mortal threats to Israel. But not solely to Israel. Other international terrorist groups supported and assisted by Iran, the Taliban and al Qaeda foremost among them, threaten regimes like Pakistan. Arab regimes are increasingly alarmed by the growing implications of Persian aggression. Tehran's support for terrorists is nonsectarian, including both predominantly Sunni groups like Hamas, Taliban, and al Qaeda, as well as Shiite terrorists like Hizballah. Thus, the six oil- and gas-rich members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GC)--among them Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates--fear Iranian support both for dissident Shiite populations in their own countries and for terrorism by other Islamic extremists.

Just as Iran has effectively assumed hegemony over largely Sunni Syria, and through Hizballah now effectively has sway over Lebanon, so too other Sunni Arab countries could be at risk of domination by Iran's allies. In Egypt, the succession crisis that will arise when the eighty-one-year-old Hosni Mubarak passes from the political scene will offer a real opportunity for the Muslim Brotherhood, the parent of Hamas.

Arab leaders do not wish to become Iranian satellites in the manner of Damascus. Moreover, watching the bullheadedness of radical Palestinian leaders pursuing their own political objectives at the expense of the day-to-day well-being of average Palestinians, more and more Arab leaders now appreciate how much Hamas's agenda stems from Iran's objectives rather than Arab solidarity. One must be careful not to overstate all this--the Arab vs. Persian conflict that now seems to be surfacing is opaque and multifarious, and the political tectonic plates shift frequently. Still, the malevolent role of Iran in the broader Middle East is something from which no Arab leader can afford to avert his eyes.

An Iran with nuclear weapons is a palpable risk not only for Israel, and the Arab states know it. That is what accounts for the mysterious silence on the part of the Arab world in September 2007, when Israel bombed the nearly completed North Korean nuclear reactor on the Euphrates River in Syria. Israel exposed and degraded yet another Middle Eastern clandestine nuclear program, one that could not have come into being without some measure of Iranian support, and the lack of Arab protest was deafening.

Arab states were comparably muted, at least at the outset, during the 2006 Hizballah-Israel war and more recently during Israel's military operation in Gaza. Only when the conflicts dragged on did the iron laws of the anti-Israel catechism require Arab states to join in the condemnation. But make no mistake: in various Arab capitals there was no mourning for the body blows dealt to both Hizballah and Hamas. In the same fashion, should Israel undertake the targeted use of military force against Iran's nuclear program, there will be voiceless thanksgiving in those same capitals.

There is, it would appear, a propitious route for quiet Israeli diplomacy, especially through back channels and unofficial contacts, to seek common ground against the common foe. Among possible areas for fruitful cooperative action are: first, exchanges of intelligence information on dual-use nuclear and ballistic missile trading by Iran; second, common efforts against Iran's terrorist assistance, training and equipping, and financing; and third, establishing notification procedures and mechanisms to reduce subsidiary conflicts in the event of Iran-related hostilities.

Obviously, virtually none of this would ever become public, at least if it is working right. Nor would it change much of the public rhetoric of the Arab states on matters like the Palestinians and Jerusalem. Nonetheless, by shifting the common focus toward defending against Iran, time can be gained during which other breakthroughs might be possible, even if unlikely. At a minimum, shadow diplomacy and cooperation against the common foe could buy breathing time for Israel and the Palestinians to consider alternatives other than the increasingly dead-end "two-state solution."

Another place for Israel to go fishing is within the so-called Non-Aligned Movement (NAM). The movement, a Cold War relic initially proposed by Marshal Tito of Yugoslavia comprising nations that sought to associate themselves neither with the United States nor the Soviet Union, is still active at the UN. Sometimes joined by nations in Latin America and Asia, the NAM coalition is now largely made up of African and Arab states. It can and often does constitute an overwhelming voting bloc in the UN General Assembly. Sundering this coalition on key issues is both doable and desirable, and should be a long-term Western goal in the UN and elsewhere.

In 1991, the decisive 1991 General Assembly vote repealing the infamous "Zionism is racism" resolution of 1975 was the direct result of a successful effort to introduce divisions into NAM. It was a difficult and time-consuming task, but in the end, many African nations voted for the 1991 repeal or abstained; Latin America (with the exception most notably of Cuba) also voted to repeal, as did India and other Asian countries. The Arabs were left isolated and defeated.

Working to split the NAM coalition should be a key aspect of Israel's diplomatic strategy going forward (and America's), in hopes of creating new breakthroughs on the model of the "Zionism is racism" repeal. Today, Africa has its own problems with Islamic extremism, on the Mediterranean, in the Sahara, and in the vast Sub-Saharan region.

India, an early leader of the NAM, also has a grave terrorism problem, and could play a role in turning the NAM away from knee-jerk attacks on Israel and toward objectives actually helpful to the citizens of its members. In any event, even occasional political forays behind NAM lines could serve to distract its members from helping Israel's adversaries burn it at the political stake at the UN.

Having the ability to undertake such diplomatic counterattacks does not mean that the anti-Zionist theater at the UN and elsewhere is meaningless. The public abuse that Israel is experiencing along with the accompanying rise of anti-Semitic agitation in Europe undermines the Israeli public's morale. The drumbeat of criticism aimed at delegitimizing its acts of self-defense against terrorism can also deter its political leadership from undertaking other initiatives that might stir up even more criticism.

Nevertheless, recognizing the declining role of former supporters and the surprising rise of new and tricky diplomatic opportunities has to be the real policy for avoiding or at least minimizing the threats to Israel, of which isolation is only one, and by no means the most significant. What has only become more important is the role of the United States, for which there is simply no substitute. This is something Israel's well-wishers must keep firmly in mind, especially in the United States: Israel's protection against existential threat begins at home.

John R. Bolton is a senior fellow at AEI.

taken from : B'NAI ELIM (http://bnaielim.blogspot.com/)


Israel Today, the West Tomorrow

Mark Steyn:
May 2009

On Holocaust Memorial Day 2008, a group of just under 100 people—Londoners and a few visitors —took a guided tour of the old Jewish East End. They visited, among other sites of interest, the birthplace of my old chum Lionel Bart, the author of Oliver! Three generations of schoolchildren have grown up singing Bart’s lyric:
Consider yourself
At ’ome!
Consider yourself
One of the family!
Those few dozen London Jews considered themselves at ’ome. But they weren’t. Not any more. The tour was abruptly terminated when the group was pelted with stones, thrown by “youths”—or to be slightly less evasive, in the current euphemism of Fleet Street, “Asian” youths. “If you go any further, you’ll die,” they shouted, in between the flying rubble.
A New Yorker who had just moved to Britain to start a job at the Metropolitan University had her head cut open and had to be taken to the Royal London Hospital at Whitechapel, causing her to miss the Holocaust Day “interfaith memorial service” at the East London Central Synagogue. Her friend, Eric Litwack from Canada, was also struck but did not require stitches. But if you hadn’t recently landed at Heathrow, it wasn’t that big a deal, not these days: Nobody was killed or permanently disfigured. And given the number of Jewish community events that now require security, perhaps Her Majesty’s Constabulary was right and these Londoners walking the streets of their own city would have been better advised to do so behind a police escort.
A European Holocaust Memorial Day on which Jews are stoned sounds like a parody of the old joke that the Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz. According to a 2005 poll by the University of Bielefeld, 62 percent of Germans “are sick of all the harping on about German crimes against the Jews”—which is a cheerfully straightforward way of putting it. Nevertheless, when it comes to “harping on,” these days it’s the Jews who are mostly on the receiving end. While we’re reprising old gags, here’s one a reader reminded me of a couple of years ago, during Israel’s famously “disproportionate” incursion into Lebanon: One day the U.N. Secretary General proposes that, in the interest of global peace and harmony, the world’s soccer players should come together and form one United Nations global soccer team.
“Great idea,” says his deputy. “Er, but who would we play?” “Israel, of course.”
Ha-ha. It always had a grain of truth, now it’s the whole loaf. “Israel is unfashionable,” a Continental foreign minister said to me a decade back. “But maybe Israel will change, and then fashions will change.” Fashions do change. But however Israel changes, this fashion won’t. The shift of most (non-American) Western opinion against the Jewish state that began in the 1970s was, as my Continental politician had it, simply a reflection of casting: Israel was no longer the underdog but the overdog, and why would that appeal to a post-war polytechnic Euro Left unburdened by Holocaust guilt?
Fair enough. Fashions change. But the new Judenhass is not a fashion, simply a stark reality that will metastasize in the years ahead and leave Israel isolated in the international “community” in ways that will make the first decade of this century seem like the good old days. A few months after the curtailed Holocaust Day tour, I found myself in that particular corner of Tower Hamlets for the first time in years. Specifically, on Cable Street—the scene of a famous battle in 1936, when Sir Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists, in a crude exercise of political muscle, determined to march through the heart of Jewish East London. They were turned back by a mob of local Jews, Irish Catholic dockers, and Communist agitators, all standing under the Spanish Civil War slogan: “No Pasaran.” They shall not pass.
From “No Pasaran” to “If you go any further, you’ll die” is a story not primarily of anti-Semitism but of unprecedented demographic transformation. Beyond the fashionable “anti-Zionism” of the Euro Left is a starker reality: The demographic energy not just in Lionel Bart’s East End but in almost every Western European country is “Asian.” Which is to say, Muslim. A recent government statistical survey reported that the United Kingdom’s Muslim population is increasing ten times faster than the general population. Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Antwerp, and many other Continental cities from Scandinavia to the Côte d’Azur will reach majority Muslim status in the next few years.
Brussels has a Socialist mayor, which isn’t that surprising, but he presides over a caucus a majority of whose members are Muslim, which might yet surprise those who think we’re dealing with some slow, gradual, way-off-in-the-future process here. But so goes Christendom at the dawn of the third millennium: the ruling party of the capital city of the European Union is mostly Muslim.
There are generally two responses to this trend: The first is that it’s like a cast change in Cats or, perhaps more precisely, David Merrick’s all-black production of Hello, Dolly! Carol Channing and her pasty prancing waiters are replaced by Pearl Bailey and her ebony chorus, but otherwise the show is unchanged. Same set, same words, same arrangements: France will still be France, Germany Germany, Belgium Belgium.
The second response is that the Islamicization of Europe entails certain consequences, and it might be worth exploring what these might be. There are already many points of cultural friction—from British banks’ abolition of children’s “piggy banks” to the enjoining of public doughnut consumption by Brussels police during Ramadan. And yet on one issue there is remarkable comity between the aging ethnic Europeans and their young surging Muslim populations: A famous poll a couple of years back found that 59 percent of Europeans regard Israel as the greatest threat to world peace.
Fifty-nine percent? What the hell’s wrong with the rest of you? Hey, relax: In Germany, it was 65 percent; Austria, 69 percent; the Netherlands, 74 percent. For purposes of comparison, in a recent poll of Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates—i.e., the “moderate” Arab world—79 percent of respondents regard Israel as the greatest threat to world peace. As far as I know, in the last year or two, they haven’t re-tested that question in Europe, possibly in case Israel now scores as a higher threat level in the Netherlands than in Yemen. To be sure, there are occasional arcane points of dispute: one recalls, in the wake of the July 7 bombings, the then London Mayor Ken Livingstone’s somewhat tortured attempts to explain why blowing up buses in Tel Aviv is entirely legitimate whereas blowing up buses in Bloomsbury is not. Yet these are minimal bumps on a smooth glide path: The more Europe’s Muslim population grows, the more restive and disassimilated it becomes, the more enthusiastically the establishment embraces “anti-Zionism,” as if the sinister Jewess is the last virgin left to toss in the volcano—which, given the 13-year old “chavs” and “slappers” face down in pools of their own vomit in most British shopping centers of a Friday afternoon, may indeed be the case. For today’s Jews, unlike on Cable Street in 1936, there are no Catholic dockworkers or Communist agitators to stand shoulder to shoulder. In post-Christian Europe, there aren’t a lot of the former (practicing Catholics or practicing dockers), and as for the intellectual Left, it’s more enthusiastic in its support of Hamas than many Gazans.
To which there are many Israelis who would brusquely reply: So what? Pity the poor Jew who has ever relied on European “friends.” Yet there is a difference of scale between the well-established faculty-lounge disdain for “Israeli apartheid” and a mass psychosis so universal it’s part of the air you breathe. For a glimpse of the future, consider the (for the moment) bizarre circumstances of the recent Davis Cup First Round matches in Sweden. They had been scheduled long ago to be played in the Baltiska Hallen stadium in Malmo. Who knew which team the Swedes would draw? Could have been Chile, could have been Serbia. Alas, it was Israel.
Malmo is Sweden’s most Muslim city, and citing security concerns, the local council ordered the three days of tennis to be played behind closed doors. Imagine being Amir Hadad and Andy Ram, the Israeli doubles players, or Simon Aspelin and Robert Lindstedt, the Swedes. This was supposed to be their big day. But the vast stadium is empty, except for a few sports reporters and team officials. And just outside the perimeter up to 10,000 demonstrators are chanting, “Stop the match!” and maybe, a little deeper into the throng, they’re shouting, “We want to kill all Jews worldwide” (as demonstrators in Copenhagen, just across the water, declared just a few weeks earlier). Did Aspelin and Lindstedt wonder why they couldn’t have drawn some less controversial team, like Zimbabwe or Sudan? By all accounts, it was a fine match, thrilling and graceful, with good sportsmanship on both sides. Surely, such splendid tennis could have won over the mob, and newspapers would have reported that by the end of the match the Israeli players had the crowd with them all the way. But they shook ’em off at Helsingborg.
Do you remember the “road map” summit held in Jordan just after the U.S. invasion of Iraq? It seemed a big deal at the time: The leaders of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the U.S. president, all the A-list dictators of the Arab League. Inside the swank resort, it was all very collegial, smiles and handshakes. Outside, flags fluttered—Jordan’s, America’s, Saudi Arabia’s, Egypt’s, Palestine’s. But not Israel’s. King Abdullah of Jordan had concluded it would be too provocative to advertise the Zionist Entity’s presence on Jordanian soil even at a summit supposedly boasting they were all on the same page. Malmo’s tennis match observed the same conventions: I’m sure the Swedish tennis wallahs were very gracious hosts behind the walls of the stockade, and the unmarked car to the airport was top of the line. How smoothly the furtive maneuvers of the Middle East transfer to the wider world.
When Western governments are as reluctant as King Abdullah to fly the Star of David, those among the citizenry who choose to do so have a hard time. In Britain in January, while “pro-Palestinian” demonstrators were permitted to dress up as hook-nosed Jews drinking the blood of Arab babies, the police ordered counter-protesters to put away their Israeli flags. In Alberta, in the heart of Calgary’s Jewish neighborhood, the flag of Hizballah (supposedly a proscribed terrorist organization) was proudly waved by demonstrators, but one solitary Israeli flag was deemed a threat to the Queen’s peace and officers told the brave fellow holding it to put it away or be arrested for “inciting public disorder.” In Germany, a student in Duisburg put the Star of David in the window of an upstairs apartment on the day of a march by the Islamist group Milli Görüs, only to have the cops smash his door down and remove the flag. He’s now trying to get the police to pay for a new door. Ah, those Jews. It’s always about money, isn’t it? Peter, the student in Duisberg, says he likes to display the Israeli flag because anti-Semitism in Europe is worse than at any other time since the Second World War. Which is true. But, if you look at it from the authorities’ point of view, it’s not about Jew-hatred; it’s a simple numbers game. If a statistically insignificant Jewish population gets upset, big deal. If the far larger Muslim population—and, in some French cities, the youth population (i.e., the demographic that riots) is already pushing 50 percent—you have a serious public-order threat on your hands. We’re beyond the anti-Semitic and into the ad hoc utilitarian: The King Abdullah approach will seem like the sensible way to avoid trouble. To modify the UN joke: Whom won’t we play? Israel, of course. Not in public.
One Saturday afternoon a few weeks ago, a group wearing “BOYCOTT ISRAEL” T-shirts entered a French branch of Carrefour, the world’s largest supermarket chain, and announced themselves. They then systematically advanced down every aisle examining every product, seizing all the items made in Israel and piling them into carts to take away and destroy. Judging from the video they made, the protesters were mostly Muslim immigrants and a few French leftists. But more relevant was the passivity of everyone else in the store, both staff and shoppers, all of whom stood idly by as private property was ransacked and smashed, and many of whom when invited to comment expressed support for the destruction. “South Africa started to shake once all countries started to boycott their products,” one elderly lady customer said. “So what you’re doing, I find it good.”
Others may find Germany in the ‘30s the more instructive comparison. “It isn’t silent majorities that drive things, but vocal minorities,” the Canadian public intellectual George Jonas recently wrote. “Don’t count heads; count decibels. All entities—the United States, the Western world, the Arab street—have prevailing moods, and it’s prevailing moods that define aggregates at any given time.” Last December, in a well-planned attack on iconic Bombay landmarks symbolizing power and wealth, Pakistani terrorists nevertheless found time to divert one-fifth of their manpower to torturing and killing a handful of obscure Jews helping the city’s poor in a nondescript building. If this was a territorial dispute over Kashmir, why kill the only rabbi in Bombay? Because Pakistani Islam has been in effect Arabized. Demographically, in Europe and elsewhere, Islam has the numbers. But ideologically, radical Islam has the decibels—in Turkey, in the Balkans, in Western Europe.
And the prevailing mood in much of the world makes Israel an easy sacrifice. Long before Muslims are a statistical majority, there will be three permanent members of the Security Council—Britain, France, Russia—for whom the accommodation of Islam is a domestic political imperative.
On the heels of his call for the incorporation of Sharia within British law, the Archbishop of Canterbury gave an interview to the Muslim News praising Islam for making “a very significant contribution to getting a debate about religion into public life.” Well, that’s one way of putting it. The urge to look on the bright side of its own remorseless cultural retreat will intensify: Once Europeans have accepted a not entirely voluntary biculturalism, they will see no reason why Israel should not do the same, and they will embrace a one-state, one-man, one-vote solution for the land between the Jordan and the Mediterranean.
The Muslim world has spent decades peddling the notion that the reason a vast oil-rich region stretching thousands of miles is politically deformed and mired in grim psychoses is all because of a tiny strip of turf barely wider than my New Hampshire township. It will make an ever more convenient scapegoat for the problems of a far vaster territory from the mountains of Morne to the Urals. There was a fair bit of this in the days after 9/11. As Richard Ingrams wrote on the following weekend in the London Observer: “Who will dare to damn Israel?”
Well, take a number and get in line. The dust had barely settled on the London Tube bombings before a reader named Derrick Green sent me a congratulatory e-mail: “I bet you Jewish supremacists think it is Christmas come early, don’t you? Incredibly, you are now going to get your own way even more than you did before, and the British people are going to be dragged into more wars for Israel.”
So it will go. British, European, and even American troops will withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan, and a bomb will go off in Madrid or Hamburg or Manchester, and there will be nothing left to blame except Israeli “disproportion.” For the remnants of European Jewry, the already discernible migration of French Jews to Quebec, Florida, and elsewhere will accelerate. There are about 150,000 Jews in London today—it’s the thirteenth biggest Jewish city in the world. But there are approximately one million Muslims. The highest number of Jews is found in the 50-54 age group; the highest number of Muslims are found in the four-years-and-under category. By 2025, there will be Jews in Israel, and Jews in America, but not in many other places. Even as the legitimacy of a Jewish state is rejected, the Jewish diaspora—the Jewish presence in the wider world—will shrivel.
And then, to modify Richard Ingrams, who will dare not to damn Israel? There’ll still be a Holocaust Memorial Day, mainly for the pleasures it affords to chastise the new Nazis.
As Anthony Lipmann, the Anglican son of an Auschwitz survivor, wrote in 2005: “When on 27 January I take my mother’s arm—tattoo number A-25466—I will think not just of the crematoria and the cattle trucks but of Darfur, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Jenin, Fallujah.” Jenin?
You can see why they’ll keep Holocaust Day on the calendar: In an age when politicians are indifferent or downright hostile to Israel’s “right to exist,” it’s useful to be able to say, “But some of my best photo-ops are Jewish.”
The joke about Mandatory Palestine was that it was the twice-promised land. But isn’t that Europe, too? And perhaps Russia and maybe Canada, a little ways down the line? Two cultures jostling within the same piece of real estate. Not long ago, I found myself watching the video of another “pro-Palestinian” protest in central London with the Metropolitan Police retreating up St. James’s Street to Piccadilly in the face of a mob hurling traffic cones and jeering, “Run, run, you cowards!” and “Allahu akbar!” You would think the deluded multi-culti progressives would understand: In the end, this isn’t about Gaza, this isn’t about the Middle East; it’s about them. It may be some consolation to an ever-lonelier Israel that, in one of history’s bleaker jests, in the coming Europe the Europeans will be the new Jews.
taken from : B'NAI ELIM (http://bnaielim.blogspot.com/)
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