Are Israelis paranoid? Much of the world is out to get us, and I’m not talking about the Arabs.
In his travels about Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Tuvia Tenenbom (Catch the Jew) tells of encountering massive European-funded projects, costing millions of Euros. They arrange propaganda tours (including one to Yad Vashem that is all about how Israelis are the new Nazis), pay for illegal Arab construction in Judea/Samaria, fund lawfare against the state and IDF personnel, support dozens of NGOs that work overtime generating material to demonize Israel, interfere with IDF soldiers and try to provoke violence, bring international volunteers to act as human shields in violent protests against the security fence, encourage boycotts and divestment, and — above all — support those Jewish left-wing extremists that are so important to the overall objective: to take down the Jewish state of Israel.
Ah yes, those Jewish left-wing extremists. Tenenbom interviews many of them, some well known like Gideon Levy and Arik Ascherman, and others that you never heard of, like tour guide Itamar Shapira, whose job is to take Europeans to see how Jews have ‘stolen Palestinian land’ and are the new Nazis. Tenenbom sometimes calls them ‘self-haters’ and sometimes ‘narcissists’, but I think the second description is better. These are people whose pathological obsession — there’s no better description — is to present themselves as great moral beings, saints as it were, by virtue of their unique ability to perceive the inherent evil of the Jewish state in which they live and take action against it.
Tenenbom interviews numerous Arabs, including Hanan Ashrawi, Jibril Rajoub, taxi drivers, university students and professors. All of them appear secure in their belief in the rightness of the ‘Palestinian cause’ (getting rid of the Jews) and in its ultimate success. In fact, he finds them much more appealing in their straightforwardness — for example, for the way they make up outlandish stories to support their position, and are completely unfazed when they are shown to be false — than the anti-Zionist Jews, who are self-absorbed, hypocritical, angry, bitter and consumed with hatred.
He also talks to Haredim, members of the Knesset, whores, journalists, soldiers, etc. But the one theme that recurs — in addition to how annoying the Israeli left-wing intellectuals are — is the presence of foreign money put to destructive purposes.
The line between criticism of Israel and Jew-hatred is a fine one which has long since been crossed by the anti-Israel establishment. Tenenbom’s book is anecdotal, but there is hard evidence, collected by the NGO Monitor organization, that the anti-Zionist project of the European Union, its member countries, church groups, the American New Israel Fund and other foreign sources have done much to ignite and fuel the wave of Jew-hatred and Israel-hatred that is sweeping the West today. When European football fans chant “Jews to the gas,” behavior that their governments officially deplore, they are only expressing the logical outcome of the demonization that these governments are paying for.
Recently, it was revealed that the group Breaking the Silence, which travels the world telling exaggerated, decontextualized, undocumented and plain made-up stories about IDF behavior has actually contracted to provide such ‘testimonies’ in return for payments from European government funded charities! BTS reports are used as ‘evidence’ for UN condemnations of Israel, to demonize her and to provide justifications for actions to limit her ability to defend herself.
The degree of irresponsibility shown by the governments — or maybe the out-and-out evil motive behind their project — is shocking. While the EU ambassador to Israel tells Tenenbom about solving conflicts and improving the lives of all the residents of the Middle East, Jews and Muslims alike, the concrete actions that Europeans and Americans are buying with their taxes and donations, if successful, will be the violent destruction of Israel and its replacement by an Arab Muslim entity.
Although we can do little to prevent the dissemination of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel propaganda in the West, in Israel we still have the ability to rein in the pervasive anti-state groups operating here.
Naturally, the Left in Israel, many of whom depend on foreign money for their livelihoods, oppose any such action as “anti-democratic” and claim that it restricts free speech. But I fail to see how ‘democracy’ extends to inviting hostile foreign elements to operate in our country and paying home-grown traitors to subvert it.
Israel’s new Justice Minister, Ayelet Shaked, has made the control of foreign money one of her highest priorities. This is probably one of the reasons that she has been viciously attacked with fabricated accusations of racism and support for genocide (as well as crude sexist insults). As a result of death threats, it has been necessary to provide her with bodyguards. Even her sworn political enemy, Zahava Galon of the left-wing Meretz party, found it appropriate to defend Shaked from the slime being thrown at her.
There have been attempts to put limits on foreign-financing for left-wing NGOs before, which have been bitterly opposed (and derailed) by the Left. In 2011, a bill was passed that required NGOs in Israel to report foreign donations, but enforcement has been spotty.
I’m hopeful that the new government will strongly support a law to control this practice, and to limit access of foreign activists to the country. What other country in the world would permit this?
We don’t have to. Let’s stop the flow of money and kick out foreign saboteurs.
Any action taken by the Israeli government to limit funding of anti- Israel NGO’s will meet with a litany of libelous accusations which will in turn put our government on the defensive. We have an impossible problem now because the chorus of haters has reached the mainstream media. I do not know what the answer is.
We are being increasingly limited in our legitimate capacities for response. This is a major sign of the deterioration in our situation.