Melanie Phillips

23 May 2011

And now, those who are on the side of civilisation

Published in: Spectator

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In these terrible times when western elites are dominated by the fellow-travellers of Islamo-fascism and genocidal Judeophobia, it is very important to realise that there are also some outstandingly decent, courageous and rational individuals who are putting their heads above the parapet and speaking up for Israel, truth and justice.

One such is Canada’s Prime Minister, Stephen Harper. Within a few hours of Obama’s call for Israel to return to the ‘Auschwitz borders’ with land swaps (as if the Arabs really do own the territory beyond the Green line, which legally, historically and morally they most emphatically do not) Harper was saying ‘not in our name’:

The Harper government is refusing to join the United States in calling for a return to 1967 borders as a starting point for Mideast peace, a position that has drawn sharp criticism from Canada’s staunch ally Israel.

At a briefing ahead of the upcoming G8 summit in France, federal officials said the basis for the negotiations must be mutually agreed upon. ‘What the government of Canada supports is basically a two-state solution that is negotiated,’ a senior federal official said.

...The Prime Minister’s director of communications, Dimitri Soudas, added that Canada’s position continues to be the search for a two-state solution. ‘No solution, ultimately, is possible without both parties sitting down, negotiating and agreeing on what that final outcome will look like,’ he said.

Then there’s Col Richard Kemp, formerly commander of British forces in Afghanistan and who has previously spoken up in Israel’s defence during Operation Cast Lead and to the Goldstone commission. At a recent Bicom conference in London, he delivered this tremendous address. Please do read it all, but here’s a sample:

This malevolent portrayal of the Israeli Defence Forces is carefully and systematically planned, cultivated, developed, expanded and relentlessly driven forward. It is the key part of what amounts to nothing less than a pernicious and increasingly dangerous global conspiracy of propaganda aimed at the total delegitimization of the state of Israel. A conspiracy that has so far exceeded in its international scope, anything dreamt of even by that master of propaganda, Dr Josef Goebbels himself, spreading the idea that Israel is so evil that it has no right even to exist, aiming for the point where that idea becomes an acceptable, mainstream argument in our societies.

It is no surprise of course that such a campaign has great popularity in the Arab and the wider Islamic world any more than Goebbels’s twisted propaganda machine succeeded in persuading so many Germans to his murderous cause. But what is truly shocking is the traction that this propaganda has gained in the west among student bodies, teachers, university authorities, academics, think tanks, human rights organizations, aid agencies, parliamentary bodies, and – perhaps most damaging of all, the mass media.

...The Report of the UN Fact Finding Mission into the 2009 Gaza Conflict, better known as the Goldstone Report, accused Israeli forces of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity, deliberately killing, wounding and terrorising innocent civilians...only last month, Judge Richard Goldstone retracted the most serious allegations that he had made, saying that Israel did not in fact intentionally kill or wound innocent civilians. He wrote that if he had known at the time of his investigation what he knows now, the Goldstone Report would have been a very different document. Well, I, with my far more limited resources and access, could have told him a great deal of what is now apparently new to him.

In fact, I did tell him at the time of his report, in evidence I gave to the United Nations Human Rights Council in October 2009:

“During its operation in Gaza, the Israeli Defence Forces did more to safeguard the rights of civilians in a combat zone than any other army in the history of warfare.”

I based my opinion on 30 years of experience fighting terrorists and insurgents, of my detailed study of Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, of my extensive knowledge and understanding of the Israeli Defence Forces, and of my knowledge of Hamas and its military strategy and tactics. The same strategies and tactics used by insurgents and violent jihadists in Iraq, Afghanistan and many other parts of the world.

Many people have contradicted my assertion about the IDF. But no one has been able to tell me which other army in history has ever done more to safeguard the rights of civilians in a combat zone. In fact my assertions about the steps taken in that conflict by the Israeli Defence Forces to avoid civilian deaths are inadvertently borne out by a study published by the United Nations itself. A study that shows that the ratio of civilian to combatant deaths in Gaza was by far the lowest in any asymetric conflict in the history of warfare.

The UN estimate that there has been an average three-to-one ratio of civilian to combatant deaths in such conflicts worldwide. Three civilians for every combatant killed. That is the estimated ratio in Afghanistan: three-to-one. In Iraq, and in Kosovo, it was worse: the ratio is believed to be four-to-one. Anecdotal evidence suggests the ratios were very much higher in Chechnya and Serbia.

In Gaza, it was less than one-to-one.

This extremely low rate of civilian casualties flatly contradicts many of Goldstone’s original allegations, and the bleating insistence of various other human rights groups about Israel’s alleged crimes against humanity.

As with Operation Cast Lead, the tragedy of the Gaza flotilla incident almost exactly one year ago has been widely exploited as part of the conspiracy against Israel. The anti-Israeli activists on board the ship Mavi Marmara set out deliberately to provoke the Israeli boarding party into an attack that would cause bloodshed to be exploited in the world’s media. Which of course is exactly what happened.

The Turkish humanitarian group IHH were prominent among the organizers of the Flotilla, and had purchased the Mavi Marmara for that purpose. As well as being a genuine humanitarian aid group, the IHH is a radical Islamic organization: vehemently anti-Israeli and anti-American, with extensive connections to international jihadist groups including Al Qaida.

According to a French investigative magistrate specialising in terrorism, the IHH played an important role in an Al Qaida plan to carry out a mass-casualty attack at the Los Angeles International Airport on the eve of the millennium. So – not an entirely innocent humanitarian organization attacked without justification by vicious Israeli thugs, as presented in the world media, by governments and by the UN.

Richard Kemp: living proof that the lion-hearted land of liberty has not yet been erased forever, and that there are still great Englishmen who will fight to the death for truth, freedom and justice. In this civilisational battle now raging all around us, Col Kemp and Stephen Harper understand that there is a choice to be made. If you fight for Israel, you fight for civilisation; if you are Israel's enemy, you are an enemy of civilisation. Yes, it really is as stark as that. These men get it. There are others who do too; some will never do so; and yet others eventually will, but too late.

About Melanie

Melanie Phillips is a British journalist and author. She is best known for her controversial column about political and social issues which currently appears in the Daily Mail. Awarded the Orwell Prize for journalism in 1996, she is the author of All Must Have Prizes, an acclaimed study of Britain's educational and moral crisis, which provoked the fury of educationists and the delight and relief of parents.

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Books

  • The World Turned Upside Down
  • Londonistan
  • The Ascent of Woman
  • America's Social Revolution

Contact Melanie

Melanie Phillips
Daily Mail
Northcliffe House
2 Derry Street
London W8 5TT

Contact Melanie