Appalling apathy and deliberate denial

December 25, 2020 by Michael Kuttner
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Albert Einstein, who knew a thing or two about human nature and behaviour, summed it up perfectly.

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.”

Michael Kuttner

It seems that nothing much has changed since he penned these observations. Jews, in particular, should be more cognizant of the veracity of this statement because we have continually been more than most other ethnic groups, at the receiving end of the world’s indifference.

It is therefore with a sense of déjà vu that when one surveys the current international scene it is impossible unless you are totally detached from reality, to ignore disquieting trends. If past history is any guide then all those who value democracy, freedom of worship, the rule of law and civil liberties, should be alert to looming threats.

Unfortunately however political self-interest and an absence of moral backbones rule the roost which means that instead of nipping evolving threats in the bud they are allowed to fester, multiply and become extremely virulent. In the face of a rapidly spreading pandemic, collective steps have been taken to contain and prevent the coronavirus from overwhelming humanity. If the same determined steps would be undertaken to contain and prevent the spread of state-sponsored terror and its patrons then the world would indeed be a far safer place for all of us.

Alas, this is proving once again to be a mission impossible.

The same reluctance to face up to virulent ideologies and their consequent contagions which doomed millions to death and destruction prior to 1939 is once more manifesting itself as we are about to enter the year 2021 in the civil calendar.

As Biden and his team prepare to assume power, expectations are that the USA will return to the disastrous arrangement with Iran which enabled that country to continue amassing nuclear material, develop missiles to deliver them and gave carte blanche to the Mullahs to finance, arm and export terror far and wide. Only someone who believes in the tooth fairy would believe that Iran will be held accountable as they steadily march towards the means to sow mayhem and death.

Look at North Korea as a perfect example of how a lack of fortitude on the part of the democracies has allowed a rogue regime to attain the capabilities of threatening and menacing its neighbours while at the same time dooming its citizens to a life of deprivation, servitude and mind control reminiscent of Orwell’s worst predictions. It is exactly the same sort of spineless non action which threatens to make Iran a clone of North Korea with all its associated horrendous consequences. European nations, learning absolutely nothing from their shameless appeasement during the rise of Nazi Germany, continue on the same downward spiral enabling the regime to avoid sanctions and facilitating its acquisition of weapons of mass destruction.

The worst part is the charade that emanates from European Capitals.

On the one hand, there are expressions of contrition for past crimes against Jews and pious declarations of “never again.” Simultaneously, the Jewish State is condemned for asserting its right to self-defence, censured for reclaiming territory promised to it by the international community back in 1920 and pilloried for having the chutzpah to warn about Iran’s continual plotting to murder Israelis. As Iran kidnaps and executes political dissidents and takes over neighbouring countries to establish terror bases there the two-faced democracies of Europe and elsewhere look the other way. The International Olympic Committee, true to form, refuses to expel Iran, even though it has flouted every ethos of the movement and the UN refuses to sanction it despite its declaration of intended genocide of another fellow member.

Meanwhile, another rogue regime in cahoots with Tehran, namely Turkey, has jailed more journalists than any other country, illegally occupied northern Cyprus, ethnically cleansed Armenians and Kurds, threatens and bullies Greece and Israel and ferments unrest in the region. Once again the members of NATO are paralyzed and the Europeans tremble in the face of the demise of what was once an enlightened and liberal democracy. This is identical to the doomed appeasement strategies which enabled National Socialism to march towards domination with all its attendant consequences.

China establishes “re-education” camps for its Muslim minority and transfers them en masse. We should remember the “re-education and model” camp of Theresienstadt which the Germans established to fool the gullible Swiss Red Cross and from where Jews were transported to Auschwitz. Chinese Jews have to celebrate Jewish Holy Days in secret because Judaism is not an “approved” religion in this workers’ paradise. Where is the outrage by Israel in particular and the world in general? Chief Rabbi Mirvis of the UK to his credit has finally spoken out but his is a voice in the vast wilderness of apathy and deliberate denial.

Has nothing been learned? The answer is obviously not.

Take a look at events close to home.

When the late Saeb Erekat, the PLO’s misnamed “peace negotiator” died he was eulogized as the male version of Mother Teresa. Recently, Hanan Ashrawi, a long time PLO/ PA disseminator of mistruths about Israel and close confidante of President for life, Abbas, resigned from her position. She was immediately elevated by the media to the realms of sainthood despite her years of slandering Israel.

This same irrational knee jerk adoration of those who vilify Israel and perpetuate the misery of the Arab masses continues even in the face of changing realties. Jordan is lauded as a guardian of religious freedom at the same time as it makes clear that Jews have no rights in Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. The PA is greeted with hosannas of praise even though they make clear on a daily basis that Jews have no claims to legitimacy. All that is missing is a massed choir singing “when the saints go marching in” although no doubt that could be arranged if ever they were allowed to attain their goals.

Some latest examples of “peaceful” claims and revisionist history from the UN anointed “seekers of democracy and statehood”, documented by PMW:

·       Abbas’ advisor about the Cave of the Patriarchs:  “The Ibrahimi Mosque is a pure Islamic heritage”

·       Abbas’ advisor: “Placing of a Jewish religious so-called ‘Hanukkah menorah’ on the roof of the Ibrahimi Mosque… [is] an additional ‘war crime’”

·       Abbas’ advisor: Israel commits “crimes… that desecrate our Islamic holy sites in Hebron”

·       PA’s Supreme Fatwa Council: “The placing of a Hanukkah menorah [at] the Ibrahimi Mosque (i.e., the Cave of the Patriarchs)… is a blatant violation, a true provocation of the Muslims’ sensibilities, and an… attempt to erase the Islamic history in service of the goal to Judaize the Ibrahimi Mosque and create a fake Jewish character for it”

·       PA: All Israel is “our land Palestine” – including Safed, Haifa, Acre, and Jaffa

·       Israelis living in Haifa, Jaffa, and Be’er Sheva are “settlers”

·       Palestinians have “natural right” to “fight in Haifa, Jaffa, and Be’er Sheva”

·       “The occupation (i.e., Israel) is nearing its end”

According to the Palestinian Authority, Jesus was:

·       “The first Palestinian”

·       “The first Palestinian Martyr”

·       “The first Palestinian fida’i (self-sacrificing fighter)”

·       “A Palestinian messenger”

·       “A Palestinian par excellence”

·       “The great grandfather of the Palestinian people”

·       A prophet of Islam (not Christianity)

And accordingly:

·       Christmas is a Palestinian national holiday

Where is the international outrage? Where is the total repudiation of these nonsensical statements? Where is the recognition that a Palestinian Arab State is unwilling and unable to live in peace and tolerance with Israel and to embrace democratic norms?

There is none because appalling apathy, double standards and deliberate denial of reality are the order of the day.

Michael Kuttner is a Jewish New Zealander who for many years was actively involved with various communal organisations connected to Judaism and Israel. He now lives in Israel and is J-Wire’s correspondent in the region.


4 Responses to “Appalling apathy and deliberate denial”
  1. Liat Kirby says:

    Another brilliant expose of the situation as it is, Michael Kuttner. Passionately and coherently argued.

    Of course, we must stand-up and speak out, despite the fact that the world at large flies in the face of obvious truths, preferring the comfort of ideological delusion and false, hypocritical premises on which to base opinion and action that is Kafkaesque in real terms. Crazy. Destructive. And against all reason.

  2. Paul Winter says:

    Well said, Michael. The pity of it is that not only are the leaders of democracies staying shtum, but Jewish leaders in general and Israeli leaders are also keeping their mouths shut. And even worse, voices like yours are silenced by the – oh so clever – leaders and media who don’t want to rock the boat or to impede outreach. The Jews have come out of the ghetto, but the ghetto has not come out of our leaders.

    • Lynne Newington says:

      Quite right and certainly been to the detriment of the Jewish community in the past…..

      [DIAI] The Delegation de Associaciones Israelitis Argentinas. ….
      *Further, this body discouraged international Jewish condemnation of persecutions. Such was the degree of fear with the organisation laboured , as obedient to the ruling to the camarilla as was the Russian Orthodox Church to the Kremlin.
      Argentina’s rigid Catholic tradition lent itself to Fascist dictatorship as easily as Italy and Spain, so with a considerable Jewish population , 45.000 [a maximum estimate, to include many thousands lost to organized community through assimilation and intermarriage], antisemitism has rarely been absent from the social and political atmosphere.
      The Jews constituted less than 2% of the total population, though 9% of the desaparecidos, on whose behalf the black sashed Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo movingly demonstrated every Thursday.
      One body notably silent over this situation, never inquiring why Jews were carried off five times as frequently as their numbers would justify, was the elected Jewish representative council DAIA etc as above*
      “ The question arises, notwithstanding:
      Should not their brethren overseas, generally so passionate un defence of Jewish causes, have joined the general outcry against the junta’s brutality as it was known abroad?
      Their leaders in the United States and England, frequently welcome in the White House and Downing Street for discussions on Israel, and Russian Jewry, refrain from protest.
      The editor of the *London Jewish Chronicle visited Argentina in 1979 and years [* Ref. 19 Jewish chronicle 1984] later admitted that he was urged “not to make an issue of the disappeared”.
      The silence was broken by Jacobo Timerman, editor of La Opinion, who was tortured for months, kept in solitary confinement and then sentenced to two house arrest house arrest before his expulsion
      From Argentina in 1979.
      He fell foul of Jewish spokesmen in his own country and abroad with his devastating exposure,* Prisoner Without a Name, Cell Without a Number. [*Ref. 20 New York 1981].

      *Editor note Barnet Litvinoff The Burning Bush [pages 541- 542]
      *………His story is harrowing in the extreme.

  3. Lynne Newington says:

    Why is there no outrage by the Jewish community contributing here where there’s an opportunity to speak out.
    Forget the politics off offending.

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