BRITISH AUTHOR MELANIE PHILLIPS ADDRESS PHILADELPHIA AUDIENCE By Lee Bender
The “other” Arab and Muslim war against the Jewish People – the ideological war — must be reconfigured, and Israel’s advocates must be aggressive if the Jewish state is to survive and thrive.
This was perhaps the key take-away from British author, analysis and commentator Melanie Phillips during a recent local appearance. The Zionist Organization of America’s Greater Philadelphia District brought Phillips in to discuss: “How the West Undermines Israel’s and Jewish Survival- and What We Can Do About It.” The event took place at Congregation Beth Or in Maple Glen.
ZOA National President Morton Klein introduced Phillips. About 120 people, including some who traveled from as far away as Atlantic City and Wilmington, attended the event
Ms. Phillips is perhaps most famous for her ground-breaking book, Londonistan, which documented the establishment and growth of Muslim extremist groups and their sympathizers in London, and the administrative incompetence and cultural weakness that permitted it to happen- even in light of the suicide bombings carried out in London in 2005 by British homegrown Muslims.
What was evident from the outset is that Phillips isa fearless and clear speaker who is unafraid to name the dangers to Western civilization from the forces of evil, which are enabled and protected by a virulent agenda of multiculturalism.
Specifically, “with regard to Jews, the problem the West has with Israel is not properly understood,” Phillips said. “To the liberal intelligencia, anti-Semitism has morphed into the collective Jew, their state, Israel. The victim is blamed and the victimizer gets a free pass. Decent people subscribe to these lies, and unfortunately many of these are Jews themselves.”
The prominent current example she stated is the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement. Phillips explained: “The anti-Israel animus is anti-truth, anti-reason and irrational. The lower down the social order, interestingly but not surprisingly, the more decent people are regarding Israel as a rule of thumb.” On the opposite end, she noted, “the higher the class and education, the more lost, bigoted, irrational and worse the people. Ideology has replaced truth with power; facts and evidence are irrelevant and get in the way because ideas are not allowed to be challenged; religion is bunk; ‘un-religion’ is where reason now lives- and you have to be stupid to question and accept a “biblical-based” reality.” In short, she noted sarcastically, secular goals can never be challenged.
Phillips stated that the central secular tenet and idea revolves around “equality”- which, ironically is “biblical-based.” To the liberal elite class, “identity” is the defining feature, and “everyone is entitled regardless of how they behave.” Once again mocking her ideological opponents, Phillips offered: “It is impermissible to say that my lifestyle is better or worse than yours, otherwise you are excluding and discriminating.”
“Consequently,” she continued, “everything is on an equal level, or you will be considered a racist. Thus, liberal values are good, and the only decent societies are multi-cultural.” This applies even to Muslim societies which devalue women and non-Muslims. Why? She explained: “Because the West has oppressed them, it is our (i.e. West) own fault, we enslaved them and exploited them. The developing world is a victim and they can do no wrong. This is the trap within which the West has ensnared itself. Victimizers are always wrong, and victims are allowed to hurt us back because we hurt them. That is how after 9/11 many of these people felt that America had it coming. This is the weird logic of ‘equality.’”
“Victimology is key to understanding what is happening” Phillips emphasized: “Victims are defined as people without power.” Who is designated as a victim and victimizer?: “Women, of course are obvious victims”- and are especially victims in Muslim culture though that is somehow excused. However, she stated, “Christians cannot be victims because they are the ruling creed of the West”- even though she pointed out they are being murdered and wiped out by Muslims in the Middle East, North Africa and now Europe. She continued: “America is the classic ‘Great Satan’ who has exploited and oppressed the world. And Israel, the land of the Jews, who is armed to the teeth by America, is the powerful ‘Little Satan’ doing its bidding and thus is a rogue state.”
The media is complicit, Phillips noted: “Airbrushed out of history and the media is the incessant existential attacks upon Israel” including the thousands of rockets fired at its civilian centers, knifing and stabbing attacks, suicide bombings, car rammings and terrorist attacks. It is vital to note that according to Phillips, British media do not inform the citizenry about the stabbings and missiles, and thus they do not even know about these attacks – only the Israeli “attacks.” Moreover, she said, “Palestinian Arabs cannot ever be victimizers, they are never held responsible for their violent actions or their culture of hate and death.”
Yet, Phillips remarked, if one dares speak out against this “appalling conflation of one lie upon the next; if you dare speak up about the truth that is purposefully not reported; about the atrocities committed by these ‘victims’- then you are to be vilified and obliterated.” As she sarcastically stated: “It is the left-wing that is virtuous, that cares for the vulnerable and those who think otherwise are morally wrong. The right-wing is wicked and evil and driven by selfish motives, because their ideas go against those of the left,” and any evidence they muster “must be denied so they don’t infect others. Facts, evidence and truth are demonized; feelings count for everything. ‘Smart’ people know opinions; there are many narratives, and everything is relative. Only ‘stupid’ people believe in objective truth. The only legitimate values are universal values, and this presents an impossible problem for Jews who are a people apart; have a unique history and moral precept revolving around the Bible and ‘Brotherhood of Man.’”
She explained further that it is secularism that is supreme because it alone respects “human rights, equality, and justice. It does not matter who started the wars, fights, the terrorist attacks (here she mentioned Gaza where Hamas fired thousands of rockets into Israel, unprovoked for years before Israel finally responded). What counts is only the numbers of people who were killed, and there were more Palestinian Arabs/Gazans killed than Israelis. Israel is rejected because it is a particular nation, not universal, it is a race, religion, nation, an ‘ugly colonizer’ even though they are the indigenous people in the region.
“No one hears the truth of the IDF protecting Palestinian civilians, at great cost to themselves,” Phillips said, nor the warnings of impending surgical military attacks that no other army in the world does in a war setting. “That can’t be reported because it does not fit the narrative. The young are taught that Jews and their state can’t be like any other country, can’t be universalists.” Yet, of course she alluded the Muslims and their 22 Arab states and 57 dominated countries in the world are not considered in this light. “Only Israel is considered to be in flagrant violation of international law.”
Then Phillips hit her key observation: “there is no solution because the problem is misstated. The two-state solution is not axiomatic. Why are they fighting? It is not because of the absence of a Palestinian Arab state. The Arab world wishes Israel’s destruction, which is why this is the conflict that never seems to end. The Arabs have been incentivized by the West to engage in aggression and they are not punished.”
She noted that “The British Mandate for Palestine was designed to settle the Jews in their national and historical homeland.” After this but historically and overlooked, in 1922 the British lopped of 78% of the land and created an Arab state east of the Jordan River, initially called Transjordan (later Jordan). Thus this is the ‘two-state’ fact. She presented this as the “two-state problem” because the British designed it to solve a problem with the Arabs, not to make peace between Arabs and Jews. (The British not only gave Arabs land that was designated by the international community, the League of Nations, to be for the Jews, but it rewarded Arab aggression and terror and prevented Jews from developing the small 22% western portion of the land.)
Phillips emphasized that “Arab rejectionism is driven by ideological hatred of Jews; you cannot deal with people like these who are beyond reason and steeped in pure unadulterated anti-Semitism.” For instance, she alluded, the Hamas Charter (Hamas, a Sunni terrorist group, is the Islamic Resistence Movement, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood) calls explicitly for the elimination of Israel and the Jewish People, who run the West.
As for the current “Muslim invasion of Europe”- which has been taking place for the past 40 years- she stated, “the West has ignored or worse forgotten history. Islam is a medieval ideology that at its core makes a distinction only between its believers and infidels.” Islam, per Phillips, seems incapable of reform- unlike Christianity- and “cannot or refuses to control its jihadists. The West is impotent to challenge this reality, and thus European/Western culture is teetering on survival.”
Phillips had yet another important observation: “The West can only defend itself properly if it treats Israel fairly and defends it.” According to Phillips, no one cares that Israel is engaged in humanitarian actions worldwide; that it treats Arabs in its hospitals; that it invents and creates miraculous things for the modern world (ie high-tech devices, for computers, cell-phones, water technologies for third-world, biotech, medications, etc) “because Israel is a rogue state- plain and simple.”
Ms. Phillips then drove home her point: “The entire narrative must be reframed and unscrambled in the Western brain because the intelligencia are narcissists to whom reputation is everything. They believe they are nice people; virtuous; care about the vulnerable and are inherently anti-racist. Instead, we must go on the offense, in the language the multiculturalists use. We must use their tactics backed with the truth, and accuse them of backing evil and terror. We must educate people on the morals of the IDF, the history of Israel in the Middle East,” in other words, the Jewish connection of 3500 years to the land.
She continued: “We must hold Western governments’ feet to the fire and force them to stop incentivizing violence, and we must name and shame these officials. We must publicize the Palestinian-Muslim Jew-hatred that links Israel with the Nazis. We must force recognition that Israel is the unfinished business of World War II,” after it allowed 6 million Jews in its midst to be murdered. “We must ask them why they support the ethnic cleansing of Jews – and bring them down, treat them as the enemy.”
Also, she stated: “We must stop the false equation of Islamophobia and anti-Semitism. Islamophobia is thrown around too causally as a device to smear and suppress the lies and hatred; it is not a term exclusively racist. We must recognize and stop the persecution of Christians in the Middle East,” and force the Christian community out of their slumber to speak out against it. And: “We must stop the West from abandoning Muslim reformers and Jews. And with regard to America, we are losing our kids to secularism and multi-culturalism.”
The key missing link for Jews, she said, has been there all along: “observance of Jewish traditions and customs and practice. It is evident that the less observant, the lesser the connection to Israel. Jews must be unafraid truth-tellers, which is what we have always been throughout history.”
Phillips also offered some optimism to her audience. “Israel will in due course be seen as the last man standing as the West becomes more desperate. And despite it all, Israelis are amongst the happiest peoples in the world, with a growing economy and birthrate. The main thing for us as Jews is to reinvigorate ourselves” to and “re-connect with our roots. We must get off our back foot (ie retreat) and move forward on our front feet;” be fighters for the truth and our survival.
“Jews” indeed “must also be seen as victims when targeted,” she stated. This was slow to be recognized until Jews were targeted in Paris at the kosher supermarket after the Charlie Hebdo italic attacks in 2015, “but perceptions are beginning to change; that we are facing a common enemy.
She remarked that “Israel must also remain optimistic and strong enough to wean off dependency from the United States” and see a new world order, where Asia, India and China don’t have the historical anti-Semitism baggage from the West. Also, “Israel must not be infantilized by the West.” Israel is starting now to be viewed not to be “the central actor in the Middle East,” in the ongoing civil wars amongst the anti-democratic, theocratic, autocratic Arab states and interreligious Muslim wars between Sunnis and Shias. This “upheaval is not due to colonization or the West.”
Ultimately, according to Ms. Phillips, the West “will come around,” even going so far as borrowing what is successful in Israel and that is happening gradually. She asked rhetorically: “Would you rather be profiled or alive? The West must not preclude itself from looking at Islam as innocent and Islamic violence as somehow un-Islamic or unrelated to Islam itself. Only a re-Christianized Europe can fight Islam, and only when Christians realize that their own survival is tied to that of Jews will this occur.”