Former MK Aryeh Eldad, head of the Professors for a Strong Israel Forum, responded with sarcasm to the European Council’s decision to recommend the banning of circumcision as a violation of human rights.
"The Council of Europe has found at last the greatest threat to kids in the world,” Eldad said declared. “No, it’s not Assad and his chemical weapons. It’s not Khamenei and his nuclear weapons. They are already considered to be ‘the good guys’ and must’ve already been invited for a party at Catherine Ashton’s place.”
“It’s not even settlements this week,” he continued. “Now what is in their sites – unabashedly – are the foreskins of the Jews in Europe, who insist on circumcising their sons.”
Eldad expressed surprise at the Council’s decision, “What happened? Was this week Antiochus’ birthday? Was it Hadrian’s yartzheit [day of death – ed.]?”
Antiochus was the Greek ruler whose oppression of Jews in the land of Israel led to the Maccabean revolt known from the story of Hanukkah; according to the book of Maccabees, one of his decrees was to make circumcision of male infants a death penalty offense. Roman ruler Hadrian outlawed circumcision as well, along with many other Jewish practices; his repression sparked the unsuccessful Bar Kokhba revolt.
Anti-Semitism alone cannot explain the European Council’s decision, Eldad said. “The fact that they are anti-Semitic isn’t a new thing,” he said.
Eldad called on European Jews to avoid the ramifications of the Council’s decision by coming to live in Israel. “Keep in mind that most of the Jews in Israel didn’t come because of Zionism, but because of persecution… As a Zionist I condemn European anti-Semitism, but instead of begging them to cancel the decree, I call on Jews to make aliyah [immigrate],” he urged.
“For us, our word is our word,” said Eldad – a play on words, using the Hebrew word “mila” which can mean both “word” or “circumcision.”
While Eldad attacked the European Council’s decision, MK Ronen Hoffman (Yesh Atid), one of Israel’s representatives to the council, told Arutz Sheva that he believes that diplomacy and public relations efforts can stem European campaigns against circumcision.
The council’s decision should not be taken as a genuine attempt to protect babies’ rights, Hoffman added. Those who have first-hand experience with European politics and the agendas at play know that human rights are not the issue, he said.