Falkland Islands
Falkland IslandsiStock

Michael Kuttneris a New Zealand writer actively involved in Jewish causes and a regular columnist for Israel Behind the News.

One of the blights plaguing humanity these days is the increasing pollution which is causing ecological damage to our oceans and poisoning the air we breathe.

There are, unfortunately, additional forms of pollution that result in short and long-term casualties.

Jews throughout history have been the targets of these vile verbal assaults, and since the re-establishment of Jewish sovereignty in their ancient homeland, the intensity and frequency has ratcheted up to epidemic proportions.

One of the unique features of this phenomenon is the way that it manifests its potency in the verbal utterances of Jews who feel that their mission in life is to denigrate, criticize and condemn each and every act that Israel may or may not do.

We have always been afflicted with self-loathers who have delighted in joining forces with those who wish us ill. With the rise of social media, their presence has become so much more malignant.

It seems that almost everyone nowadays has an urge to pontificate. It has become so prevalent that one wonders whether there are any other problems in the world or whether Israel is the sole threat to peace and security.

This past week has provided a perfect example of the polluted atmosphere now prevailing.

One would think that with all its accumulating domestic problems and threats to world peace increasing by the day, the Biden Administration’s priorities might somehow reflect these looming crises.

No such luck is evident, however, as every “Tom, Dick and Harry” instead feels compelled to denounce, comment and interfere in Israel’s domestic affairs.

The sight of Jews building homes in places that have seen a Jewish sovereign presence for two millennia produces convulsions.

Apparently, visiting the Temple Mount on Tisha B’Av, Judaism’s national day of mourning for the destruction of both Temples, is anathema and poses such a serious threat that it calls for condemnation. In the face of Islamic threats, Jews are pilloried for having the audacity to visit their holiest site and forbidden to utter any prayers there. Instead of calling out and denouncing the hypocrisy emanating from those who are religious freedom abusers, the US blames Jews. Ignored and shamefully swept under the carpet is the fact that those who today lie and incite that the settlers are “storming” the Al Aqsa Mosque are the very same people who barred Jews from the Kotel from 1948 to 1967.

One could perhaps expect that our own politicians and diplomats might expose this ongoing scandalous situation but seemingly, this is another case of not making waves. The end result, of course, is that the media, with their collection of anti-Israel commentators, have a field day in disseminating misinformation.

The continuing mayhem over judicial reforms is another example of interference in Israel’s internal affairs. You can imagine the uproar which would ensue if Israeli officials were to comment and disapprove of each and every domestic move taken by the US or European Governments. Righteous indignation over the chutzpa of Israeli interference would be overwhelming. Yet, when the same suspects meddle in our local disputes, apparently, that carries a kosher stamp of international approval.

A favourite mantra is “the inalienable rights of the Palestinians.” This is rammed down our collective throats at every opportunity. What you won’t hear are their “inalienable obligations.” These include a cessation of fabricating a fake Palestinian history, recognizing the Jewish legal claim to their ancestral homeland, eliminating hate and incitement from their media and school books and actually putting in place some semblance of democratic governance. It also means respecting human rights, tolerance towards non-Islamic faiths and eliminating the permanent refugee status of millions of their own long-suffering people. International aid should not be used to pay terrorists and their families and building terror tunnels. Palestinian Arab obligations should also mean giving up on any idea of eliminating a Jewish presence.

We would all be much better off if Biden, the EU and the UN were to concentrate their focus on these elementary threats to peace instead of obsessing about Israel every minute of the day.

Apparently, there are approximately ten thousand Israelis currently residing in Berlin. Whatever reason they may have to make Germany their home it certainly is not to seek a better and more meaningful Jewish life. Salaries may be higher, the nightclubs may be livelier and cottage cheese cheaper, but beneath the surface there are clear signs that sooner rather than later the ancient virus of hate will once again break forth. It is already percolating but just as pre-war Jews preferred to ignore it until it was too late, today’s Jewish locals and Israeli expats prefer to concentrate on the perceived good life in the resurrected fatherland.

The mutated hate which now targets Israel is an endemic disease for which there is no cure. It is, therefore with incredulity that a news report revealed that the Israeli Ambassador to Germany was evicted from a Berlin café. The most amazing revelation is that the owner of the café is an Israeli expat who now calls Germany his home. The ostensible reason given by this man, according to the report, was

“Because he represents Israel, and since he implements an invalid and manipulative policy, which claims that any criticism of Israel is antisemitic.”

In other words, this ex-lover of Zion cannot stand the obvious fact that holding Israel to a standard no other country is expected to live up to, is not somehow a sign that irrational hate is present. An Israeli banning the Israeli Ambassador is about as low as one can get. Doing this in the German Capital of all places is an incredible act of self-loathing which unfortunately seems to be a common trait of many these days.

In the not-so-distant past there were signs in German shop windows that proclaimed “no dogs or Jews allowed.” It is a symptom of the sickness afflicting those suffering from historical amnesia that this disgraceful behaviour did not seem to evoke any public outrage by the media or even members of Parliament who are usually so proactive in attacking Israel.

The other day I came across a news item that perfectly encapsulates the double standards we face these days.

It seems that the United Kingdom Government was very upset that the European Union had referred in a report to the Malvinas instead of calling it the Falkland Islands. By using this terminology the EU implied that these British-occupied islands were actually Argentinean, which in reality is what they are. After a vigorous protest from the UK Foreign Office the EU rapidly backtracked.

Think about this for a moment.

Judea and Samaria are referred to by the international community as the “occupied West Bank.” We all know what this implies, especially as the big lie has become the accepted narrative of historical revisionists. Nothing it seems, can induce the UN to reverse itself.

On the other hand, faster than the speed of sound, the EU reverses its “mistaken” description of the occupied Falklands and its British settlers.

Do you discern a glaring inconsistency between these two situations?

The Falklands were seized by the British from Argentina in 1833, and the Argentineans living there at the time were expelled. Judea and Samaria has had a Jewish sovereign presence since Biblical times and is part of the territory allocated by the San Remo Agreement for Jewish settlement.

Who has the better legal claim?

It shouldn’t be too difficult to work out.