“Jews didn’t desert New York after 9/11 so why on earth does Netanyahu want them to run away now?” asks one of our more objectionable columnists.
In other words, he fails to see the difference between flying planes into buildings full of multi-national, multi-cultural and multi-confessional victims, and attacks that target specifically Jews.
Since such a deficit of both logic and sensitivity is surprising even in a modern hack, one would expect Morgan to expose the intellectual structure supporting his comment.
He duly obliges:
“At least 270 Jews are known to have died in the attacks on the World Trade Centre on 9/11. Possibly as many as 400. That’s between 10 and 15 per cent of all the victims. I don’t remember hearing anyone, least of all Benjamin Netanyahu, declare then that every Jew in New York should immediately quit the city and go and live in Israel.”
Why do you think that was, Piers? I get it. Netanyahu was so reticent then because New York Jews make up a great part of the US Jewish lobby, itself a part of the worldwide Judaeo-Masonic conspiracy.
Netanyahu wanted them to stay in New York so that they could continue to help Israel both politically and financially. Is that about the size of it?
I’m sure Morgan would throw up his arms in horror if such crude thinking were ascribed to him. Well, crude it may be, but at least it has some inner logic, mad and perverse though it is.
That is more than can be said for his own crepuscular thinking.
The 9/11 atrocity brought Jews and gentiles, and more broadly all Americans, together because it was an attack on America.
The attackers neither knew nor cared about the ethnic and religious composition of their victims – and neither did the survivors. Their natural instinct was to close ranks and fight back, together.
An attack on a kosher grocery or a synagogue is different. Rather than reinforcing the feeling that French Jews are Frenchmen, American Jews are Americans and Danish Jews are Danes, it reminds them that some of their countrymen see them as a discrete, pernicious group slated for destruction.
Jews in general and European Jews specifically can be forgiven for being ever so slightly sensitive about that sort of thing. After all, almost half of the world’s Jewish population was wiped out in a few short years when my parents were already adults.
Then too German Jews felt they were German first and Jews a distant second. Jews in the rest of Western Europe felt roughly the same way, though the Dreyfus affair did give French Jews a chance to stop and think.
And then all those Germans, Dutchmen and Frenchmen, most of whom weren’t even religious Jews, met in the gas chambers operated by their erstwhile countrymen and neighbours.
In our time dominated by psychobabble we don’t bat an eyelid when a woman claims she was severely traumatised when a male colleague made a remark about her figure. We nod our sympathetic understanding when a ginger-haired man seeks psychiatric help because of all the crude jokes he had to endure at school.
Yet we deny the same sympathy to those whose whole families were gassed like rats in concentration camps.
Just close your eyes and imagine those barely living skeletons, naked, starving, robbed of any human dignity, herded into a tight space. Then the hissing sound comes and they all know what it means…
Now imagine they were all English: your grandpa Nigel, your aunt Jane, your granny Florence. How would you feel if today’s English people were targeted for attacks specifically because they are English?
The difference between Germany at the time of Kristallnacht and Europe today is that now European Jews have a place to flee to. That option was well-nigh nonexistent then, and many countries –including Britain – were indirectly complicit in Nazi crimes by denying refuge to the Jews.
The prime minister of Israel, a country constituted along Zionist lines, is duty-bound to remind European Jews that, if they feel unsafe in their home countries, there is another home waiting for them.
Morgan mocks this impulse in his usual hare-brained fashion. Netanyahu himself, he says, claims that his country could be nuked by Iran. So it makes no sense for Jews to move to Israel.
True, Israeli Jews may die, as they have died in four wars launched by the virulent anti-Semites who surround them. But there is a difference between dying with honour defending your country and being slaughtered as part of a helpless and impersonal herd.
Morgan then mobilises his severely challenged intelligence to come up with another argument. Jews, he says, weren’t the only victims of the recent terrorist attacks.
True. Similarly Jews weren’t the only victims of the Second World War and they weren’t the only group exterminated in Nazi concentration camps. Gypsies suffered a similar fate. So did homosexuals. So, incidentally, did 2.5 million Russia POWs.
But Jews were a major group specifically targeted en masse then, as they are now. If a Gypsyland or a Homoland had existed back in the 30s, one would have expected the prime ministers of those countries to extend a welcoming hand in the same manner as Netanyahu has done.
Morgan describes Netanyahu’s invitation as “cowardly, self-serving, crassly insensitive and overtly political.”
I especially like the word ‘cowardly’, as applied to a man who fought with suicidal commando units in three different wars, who led innumerable raids behind enemy lines and was wounded several times.
Obviously, Morgan’s own background in commissioning scurrilous pieces based on phone hacking makes him an unimpeachable judge of courage.
Many European Jews are fleeing to Israel, doubtless feeling that too early is better than too late. It’s a decision only they can make, and it’s not up to any gentile, and certainly not the transparently anti-Semitic Morgan, to pass judgement on that decision.
Make no mistake about it: European Jews are in real danger, if only because of the chronic inability on the part of our own ‘cowardly, self-serving, crassly insensitive and overtly political’ leaders to recognise and combat the growing Muslim threat.
How Jews choose to deal with this danger is up to them, both collectively and individually. Some will leave, most will stay, and we should all pray that their fears prove to be groundless.
As to Morgan, I’ll punch him next time I espy him in our local supermarket. Since he’s both bigger and younger than me, unfortunately this promise isn’t likely to make him do a runner.