In his 2011 interview with Iran’s Press TV, our would-be PM said that in practically – if not exactly – so many words.
Here’s what he said exactly: “I think there is a bias [at the BBC] towards saying that Israel is a democracy in the Middle East, Israel has a right to exist, Israel has its security concerns…”
(If you can’t believe that a Western politician with far-reaching ambitions could have said such a thing publicly, take 36 seconds to watch this clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-ARelZMMqw)
When someone accuses someone else of bias, he expressly disagrees with whatever it is his opponent is biased to. For example, whenever I take issue with the BBC’s left-wing bias, I don’t thereby pledge support for that organisation’s ideological bend.
Hence Corbyn denies that Israel is a democracy, that it has a right to exist and that it has security concerns. This can be safely reduced to a simple statement cutting right to the chase: “I hate Jews”.
This isn’t to say that criticism of Israel is always a tell-tale sign of Jew hatred. For Israel isn’t perfect. Like all human constructs it’s susceptible to human folly. That’s why in this life we aren’t blessed with perfect institutions, nor perfect states.
If we accept this, then we’re forced to apply comparative standards. That method will probably show that there are more obvious objects for criticism in that region, which is what snipers call a target-rich environment.
However, criticism can proceed not only from hate but also from love, when the object of one’s affection falls short of the high standards one expects. If you’ll forgive another lapse into solipsism, only yesterday I wrote a scathing piece about the English, who are nonetheless by far my favourite people.
Thus any country including Israel is open to criticism. However, one questions the motives of those who focus on finding fault with Israel too much and too often.
This reminds me of an old Texan joke. A woman buying a chicken holds the bird up to her nose, smells under the wings and between the legs, and says to the butcher: “This chicken smells.” “Lady,” replies the butcher, “are you sure you could pass the same test?”
A similar thought was in the past expressed with greater elegance: “He that is without sin among you…” Still, by all means criticise Israel if such is your wont. Why, I’ve done so myself on occasion.
However, there’s a difference between that and denying Israel’s right to exist – especially if we realise that, out of the world’s 195 countries, only Israel is singled out for such strong feelings.
If, for example, I were to question Jeremy Corbyn’s right to exist, you’d be justified to suspect I hate him. And you wouldn’t be far wrong, although ‘despise’ would be closer to the mark.
Even if we knew nothing about the virulent anti-Semitism within the ranks of today’s Labour Party, nor about Corbyn’s protestations of friendship with Hamas, Hezbollah and all Muslim terrorists having Israel in their sights, that one interview would make this an open and shut case.
But since we do know all those things, everything snaps together with an audible click. Corbyn is a visceral anti-Semite moulding his party in his own image. His election would put British Jews in jeopardy.
That message was communicated the other day by the Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, who called on them not to vote Labour. One would think it would be hard to argue against the underlying accusation.
For you and me, maybe. But not for Len McCluskey, who, in his capacity as General Secretary of Unite, is Labour’s paymaster.
Suggesting that anti-Semitism within Labour is “sanctioned from the top,” fumed McCluskey, is “poison”. By way of antidote, he offered this statement: “Labour has fought, Jeremy Corbyn has fought, I’ve fought all my life against anti-Semitism.”
Yes, quite. So did Hitler, Stalin, Ayatollah Khomeini and Osama bin Laden.
I’m not suggesting that Corbyn is a full equivalent of those gentlemen, only that he’s demonstrably as anti-Semitic as they were, if not yet in possession of the means to put his passion into practice.
Vying with McCluskey in the inanity stakes is the official response by the Labour Party spokesman: “Jeremy is committed to a comprehensive peace in the Middle East based on a two-state solution – a secure Israel alongside a secure and viable state of Palestine.”
In other words, he’s committed to the solution Israel has put on the table time and again. Her only condition is that the Palestinians (and other Middle Eastern groups) acknowledge Israel’s right to exist and abandon their pledge to “drive Israel into the sea”.
Since this has been consistently and resolutely denied, it would be suicidal for Israel to accept a “viable state of Palestine” whose doctrinal raison d’être is to perpetrate another Holocaust.
It’s touching to observe that the chap who wishes to lead our country shares such sentiments. For, if Israel is deprived of her right to exist, what’s going to happen to the 6-odd million Jews who live there? Just consider the numeral, and you’ll know the answer.