The Arab world is now enjoying a Ramadan treat, courtesy of Egyptian state television. The pan-Arab celebration comes in the form of the hit mini-series Knight without a Horse, which is based on the anti-Semitic tract Protocols of the Elders of Zion. The fact that Egypt, which receives $2 billion in US aid annually because of its peace treaty with Israel, is directly promoting anti-Semitism through the 41-part series is hardly surprising and almost unworthy of note.
After all, under President Hosni Mubarak, practically the only area in which Egyptian citizen-subjects are given the right to express themselves freely is in the sphere of anti-Semitism. Just last month, an Egyptian administrative court outlawed the Cairo Association for Peace, which was devoted to cultivating peaceful ties with Israel. The suit against the association was brought by attorney Ibrahim Yusri, former director of the Foreign Ministry's Department of International Law and Agreements.
Given Egypt's leading role as an inciter of hatred against Israel and the Jewish people, it was also not surprising that Cairo hosted this week's Palestinian terror conference between Fatah and Hamas. Hamas terrorist extraordinaire Abdul Aziz Rantisi told the Palestinian Information Center earlier this week that the dialogue was taking place to find common ground among all the Palestinians. He said, "We hope that [the] resistance option would be the common ground of this dialogue and any other future dialogue."
Osama Abu Hamdan, Hamas's representative in Lebanon, who also attended the talks, lauded the Egyptian role in hosting them and pointed out that Hamas delegates had held numerous conversations with Egyptian government officials. Media accounts over the past week reported that the head of Egyptian intelligence was personally handling all Egyptian talks with Hamas.
Slightly more surprising is that the European Union sponsored the conference. Alistair Crook, EU Middle East envoy Miguel Moratinos's security adviser, was in Cairo. According to Javier Sancho, Moratinos's spokesman, the EU's role was "to facilitate" the dialogue as "part of its ongoing efforts to stop terrorism."
Also as part of the EU's efforts to stop Palestinian terrorism – or at least some Palestinian terrorism – this week it was reported that the EU recently held talks with one Muhammed Naifa in an effort to persuade him to limit Fatah terror attacks to Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.
Sancho explained to me that the EU does not hold discussions with members of the Aksa Martyrs Brigades, which the EU defines as a terror organization. "We only talk with Fatah," he said.
Apparently when the EU representatives spoke to Naifa, he must have been wearing his Fatah hat. Since they are the same organization, saying he is from Fatah was not a lie.
Naifa, of course was the mastermind of the Kibbutz Metzer massacre, as well as the massacre at the French Hill junction in Jerusalem this past June in which seven people, including five-year-old Gal Eisenman and her grandmother, Noa Alon, were murdered.
One wonders what Moratinos was thinking about when on Tuesday, as his security adviser was ensconced at the terror summit in Cairo, he attended the joint funerals of Metzer massacre victims Revital Ohayon and her young sons Matan and Ohad. He told reporters "I have come to identify with the victims."
But how could he identify with them? He, who just recently had his representatives meet with their murderer to try to cut a deal. He, who insists that Fatah is not a terrorist organization even when Fatah's Web site published the Aksa Martyrs Brigades' announcement of the "qualitative operation in the settlement of Metzer" in which their comrade killed "five Zionist colonizers."
The announcement also warned us that the murder of little boys and girls is an actual aim of Fatah today. "We will continue to strike in any place, targeting their children as well," it read.
How could Moratinos possibly be capable of identifying with the Ohayons? Just this week, Chris Patten, the European Commission's foreign relations chief, said that he needs an investigation of PA abuse of EU funds "like I need a hole in the head." Moratinos, like Patten, refuses to stop the EU's monthly $10 million payments to the PA even though the government and the IDF have provided them both with documented proof that those funds are used to finance Fatah terror cells.
It is a puzzle how people of reasonable intelligence and of purported liberal values can fund, meet with, and even sponsor conferences for known murderers in the name of saving lives. It was this puzzle that was troubling me, when I received an e-mail from the Zionist student group at Harvard University. It contained the minutes of the group's meeting last week at which programming decisions were discussed. One of the participants encouraged the group to work with the new "Palestine Solidarity" organization on campus. Although he admitted that he had been treated with overt hostility when he attended its meeting, he argued that it is an organization "very similar to Harvard Students for Israel." No one dissented.
The Harvard students' decision to work with a group whose battle cry is pressuring Harvard to end its investments in companies that do business with Israel jibed well with a similar incident at Georgetown University a few weeks back. According to Rod Dreher in The National Review, the Zionist students organization sponsored a lecture about human rights in Arab countries that was given by Dr. Bat Yeor and her husband, historian David Littman. Both lectures were met with hostility by Arab students, who opposed their historical account of Islamic jihads that were followed by discrimination against non-Muslims in conquered lands.
In the aftermath of the lectures, the same Jewish students who had invited them to speak wrote a letter to their school newspaper in which they condemned their own guests. "We denounce the views brought forth by Bat Yeor and David Littman," they wrote, and accused them of making "no effort to make a clear distinction between pure, harmonious Islam, and the acts of a few who falsely claim to act in the name of Islam."
At both Harvard and Georgetown, we find examples of the products of fine liberal Jewish upbringings. In both cases, these liberal Jewish youths are completely incapable of making a case for why it is reasonable for Jews to defend themselves or understand the inadmissibility of hatred, terror, and mistreatment of Jews.
What has happened to these flowers of Jewish American society that would make them defend those who represent the total rejection of their right to defend themselves as Jews or to defend the Jewish state's right to exist? Unfortunately, we have no need to look as far as the US for
such examples of unwillingness of Jews to defend themselves against attack or their refusal to blame the attacker rather than the victim.
The day after the Metzer massacre, kibbutz members extolled their harmonious relations with their Arab neighbors. Just last month members of Metzer organized demonstrations with those neighbors to protest the proposed location of the separation fence – being built to protect them from terrorist infiltrations – because the fence is set to be built 800 meters east of the Green Line.
Speaking to Ha'aretz at that time, kibbutz member Doron Liebler explained, "I fear that after the fence is built, the gates of hell will open up. The minute there's a fence here, we won't be able to take afternoon strolls without firearms."
Translated into real terms, what Liebler was actually saying was that if Israel builds a fence to protect its citizens, the Palestinian response will be to butcher Jews. So
if this is the case, then the belief in peaceful ties is nothing but a fantasy.
In what liberal, peace-loving society can one reasonably expect one's neighbors to react to the expropriation of 800 meters of land with terrorism against civilians? The answer is in no such society would one reasonably expect such a response.
How many times over the past nine years have we heard it said by our politicians and sober-minded peaceniks, and even the EU and the UN from time to time, that the Palestinian Authority "is not doing enough to stop terror."
The real question, of course, is how could one expect the Palestinian Authority, which is doing everything it can to promote terror, to do anything at all to stop it? What is it that leads people of goodwill and liberal conscience to make common cause with people who are not only fighting to destroy the very liberal, human values they espouse but are also murdering their children?
Perhaps on college campuses it can be chalked up to simple ignorance and naivete. But when it comes to the EU and the messianic Israeli left, the answer is seemingly far more foreboding. It appears, that by clinging to patently false assumptions about the nature of those that murder Israelis in the face of all facts on the ground, these diehards either do not really believe in the values they so vehemently proclaim, or they believe in them only in cases where Jewish lives are not at stake.
Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.