By Rabbi Abraham Cooper & Dr. Harold Brackman, National Post
October 23, 2012
The Estelle — the would-be Gaza “blockade-busting” ship — has been busted. Its crew, including former Canadian MP Jim Manly, is at last word on dry land in Israel, awaiting plane rides back to their respective homes.
Some might ask why the Estelle wasn’t headed for Syria. The injured, dying and trapped civilians there sure could have used a morale boost from an international activist team carrying aloft a flag bearing the message: You Are Not Forgotten! But Syria is a dangerous place: No humanitarian Ark is steaming towards the Mediterranean ports of Latakia or Tarsus. Far safer to head to Israel, where Western standards of due process are observed, and where state-of-the-art hospitals are only minutes away should the 79-year-old Mr. Manley feel faint.
No one is starving in Gaza. And it is doubtful whether the supplies on Estelle are even needed. Despite ongoing terrorist actions, Israel transits 50 tons of supplies per week to Gaza. The presence of dozens of tunnels connecting the Hamas-run enclave to Egypt has brought a wide range of consumer goods. Gaza’s magnificent villas and newly-minted luxury hotels — not to mention the abundance of iPhones — do not give the impression of a modern Warsaw Ghetto.
In 2005, Israel unilaterally left Gaza, uprooting 9,000 Jewish civilians as a peace gesture. But Hamas refuses to end its war footing, and regularly targets Israel with missiles.
Jim Manly and most of his cohorts no doubt are simply naïve do-gooders, motivated by lofty ideals. But the same isn’t true of the founder of the Free Gaza Movement (FGM) under whose banner these activist toil, Greta Berlin. She recently used her organization’s “human rights” Twitter account (@freegazaorg) to declare: “Zionists operated the concentration camps and helped murder millions of innocent Jews.” She linked to a video featuring Jew-hater Eustace Mullins, who declared: “This religious ceremony of drinking the blood of an innocent gentile child is basic to the Jew’s entire concept of his existence as a parasite, living off of the blood of the host.”
The Mullins video goes on to argue:
“What is going on is the grand Nazi scheme … You say, ‘Well, Adolf Hitler died in 1945 and that was the end of the Nazi Party.’ But that’s because you’ve never been told what the origin of ‘Nazi’ is … In 1923, there was a double agent who came to Hitler and he said to Hitler, ‘Look, your Nazi Party, your National Socialist Party, is not getting off the ground. You need an alliance.’ And he suggested that they ally with the Zionist Party. So the ‘Na’ of National Socialism joined with the Zionist Party, the World Zionist Party, in 1923, and ever after was known as the Nazis, N-A-Z-I. The ‘zi’ was for ‘Zionists.”
Berlin apologized for her Tweet as only intended for “a group of people who were discussing propaganda and racism, and this link was an example of the terrible propaganda that could be spewed on websites.” This “explanation” is refuted by her own use — since 2005 — of the libelous term “Zio-Nazis.”
The anti-Israel/anti-Jewish psychosis whipped up by Greta Berlin and her FGM is not an isolated aberration. Its Nobel Peace Prize-winning board member, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, has a track record criticizing “the Jewish” pro-Israel lobby, caricaturing Jews as an arrogant “peculiar people,” and condemning Israel as “un-Christian.” He has charged that the Jewish state is guilty of “things that even Apartheid South Africa had not done.”
Since the ill-fated 2001 UN Durban anti-racism conference, visceral Jew-hatred masquerading as “anti-Zionism” has corrupted much of the discourse of the global NGO community. By nurturing an obsessive hatred of the Jewish state, it serves to numb the world’s conscience in regard to other conflicts. That’s why Manly and his friends are wasting their time with Gaza, instead of answering the cries of Syrians, 30,000 of whom already have been slaughtered by their fellow Muslims.
For this moment at least, we are all — Jews, Middle East Christians, and innocent Syrian Muslims — victims of history’s oldest hatred: anti-Semitism.