I don’t normally read Slate, but I found this article interesting. The article is anti-Israel, subtitled “We no longer have a Netanyahu problem. We have an Israel problem,” and calls for the United States to stop backing Israel’s policies; it’s the typical leftist drivel one can expect from Slate.
But what struck me was William Saletan’s, the author’s, very concise statement concerning the election results:
In the final days of his campaign, Netanyahu pitched himself to Israelis as the candidate who would stand up to President Obama, “American money,” the “international community,” and Israel’s Arab minority. He bragged that he had used settlements to seize strategic Palestinian land, and he vowed to keep doing so. A day before the election, he renounced Israel’s commitment to a Palestinian state. He pledged that if he were re-elected, he wouldn’t permit such a state. He implored Jews to flock to the polls and drown out the ballots of Arab Israelis.
Many Americans, including me, thought these rants would hurt Netanyahu. We were wrong. In those final days, his support soared. On Tuesday, Netanyahu’s party, Likud, won a plurality of seats in Israel’s parliament. Thirty-three percent of Israelis voted for Likud or for smaller parties that officially rejected a Palestinian state. Another 15 percent voted for Jewish nationalist or ultra-Orthodox parties that have blocked Palestinian independence. A further 7 percent voted for a Likud offshoot that is expected to round out the new government. That adds up to more than 55 percent of the electorate. It’s more than 60 percent of Israel’s Jewish voters.
Mr Saletan, along with what I would guess would be the majority of Slate’s readers, supports the creation of an independent Palestinian nation, but, given every chance — and then some — to prove that they can be responsible neighbors willing to live in peace, or at least relative quiet, with Israel, the Palestinians have taken those opportunities to continue to sabotage peace, to destroy coexistence. The Palestinians shooting rockets into Israel proper is not an existential threat, and represents only random violence, which occasionally kills an innocent civilian or damages a building. Somehow, the left think that this is a tolerable situation, but that’s because the left are, well, stupid, stupid and inconsistent — they certainly wouldn’t tolerate that in their American neighborhoods, and want to disarm law-abiding Americans because they somehow think that will stop criminals — and stupid and evil.
The NCAA men’s basketball tournament has begun, and, as always, there is some support for the underdog teams in the tourney because Americans like to see the little guys win, because Americans like scrappy underdogs. And the Palestinians are, as far as the left are concerned, the scrappy underdogs in this fight.
But this isn’t between two basketball teams, isn’t between two morally alike organizations; this is a struggle between a people who are basically civilized, Western and good, and a people who allow their leaders to be barbarous and evil. If the Palestinians actually won, the left would not find life in a Palestinian state a very pleasant thing. More of our focus is on Da’ish these days, but, given real governing power, the Islamists in an independent Palestine would soon be throwing homosexuals off of buildings and executing Christians, just like the savages of Da’ish.
The left ignore all of the bad behavior of the Islamists, at least when the Islamists are behaving badly in the Middle East. The Charlie Hebdo attacks in France hit a little bit too close to home, so there was more of a reaction, but even that faded fairly quickly. The left will excuse the actions of the Islamists, because they are still the underdogs, but the Islamists stand for everything the left (supposedly) hate: mandatory religion, the subjugation and chattelization of women, restrictions on speech, the excision of homosexuals from society (and life), and government by the men with guns.
By any rational standard, the American and Western left ought to be diametrically opposed to the Palestinians, to the Islamists, to every Arab nation in the Middle East. Instead, they are supporting the very people who would slit their throats if they had to live under Islamist governments. That cannot be defined as anything other than just plain stupid.