Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Decadent European Elites Hate Israel (And So Do American Academics)

From Jewish News Online:
What we have today is a moral, intellectual siege of Israel, by the academic and media elites of Europe’s chattering-class citadels. They’ve turned Israel into Global Enemy No1, the source of all the world’s sorrow, a nation to be railed against more than any other on Earth.

My dictionary says a siege is the “surrounding of a place” with the intent of making its inhabitants surrender. Could there be a better description of European progressives’ myopic singling out of Israel for invective, and their shunning of its wares, books and even people via the BDS movement? People in Israel feel this moral siege, this intellectual blockade, very strongly.

Some Israelis I spoke to seemed more upset about the turn against Israel in Europe than they were about the more immediate threat posed Islamists in the Middle East. It wasn’t hard to work out why. As one said, “We considered Europe a friend”: “We thought Europe and Israel had a lot in common, being Western and democratic.”

This cuts to the heart of the Euro-elites’ paranoia about Israel, their turn against it: it is really European values, the ideals of modernity and democracy, they’ve given up on. The thing that riles them most about Israel is that it reminds them of what they used to be like, of the values they once espoused, before they lost the moral plot and sank into the cesspit of relativism and post-Enlightenment self-loathing.

Plucky, keen to protect its sovereignty, considering itself an outpost of liberalism… Israel is a painful reminder to today’s morally anchorless European thinkers and agitators of what their nations once were.They hate Israel because they hate themselves.

Israel has become the whipping boy of guilt-ridden Western liberals who’ve given up on the very idea of the West.
Of course, the same critique applies to leftist elites in the U.S., who are reflexively anti-Israel. Academics (especially in the humanities and social sciences) are the most typical examples of this sort of decadence. As reported by Frontpage:
Seeming to give proof to Orwell’s observation that some ideas are so stupid they could only have been thought of by intellectuals, yet another academic association—this time the National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA)—has followed the lead of the American Studies Association, the American Anthropological Association, the Asian Studies Association, and several others by ignobly voting to approve another academic boycott of Israel.

With the characteristic pseudo-intellectual babble that currently dilutes the scholarly relevance of the social sciences and humanities, the NWSA’s recommendation to approve a boycott announced that, “As feminist scholars, activists, teachers, and public intellectuals we recognize the interconnectedness of systemic forms of oppression,” that “interconnectedness,” no doubt, justifying the singling out of Israeli academics for their particularly odious role in the oppression of women in the Middle East. “In the spirit of this intersectional perspective,” these moral termagants continued, “we cannot overlook the injustice and violence, including sexual and gender-based violence, perpetrated against Palestinians and other Arabs in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, within Israel and in the Golan Heights, as well as the colonial displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians during the 1948 Nakba.”
As Orwell made clear, corrupt language indicates corrupt thinking, and we have it in spades here.

And the fact that feminists think this way is particularly bizarre.
Perhaps it has escaped the notice of the NWSA experts on gender and sexuality issues that if one wanted to punish any Middle Eastern country for its subjugation and abuse of women, Israel would probably not be the first nation to come under reasonable or justifiable scrutiny for a group dedicated “to principles of human rights, justice and freedom for all, including academic freedom.” Totalitarian and despotic regimes throughout the region have created an oppressive group of social pathologies that negatively affect women, including genital mutilation, stoning of adulteresses, “honor” killings by fathers and brothers who have been shamed, cultures of gender apartheid in which women are seen as property with no emotional or physical autonomy, ubiquitous sexual assault, and a general subjugation of women, complete with regulations governing behavior, movement, speech, and even requirements that women be covered by burqa or hijab.
This is just more evidence, if any is needed, that feminism isn’t about women. It’s about left-wing politics and a set of cultural biases typical among leftists.

And among advanced industrial nations, American is the most like Israel. Which is why the leftists elites don’t like America either. And why ordinary Americans (especially Republicans) like Israel.

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