“Mind your own business” is generally good advice. It is good advice for individuals. It is even better advice for families and communities. It is especially good advice for countries. Unfortunately, it is advice that is seldom followed. It is part of our fallen human nature to wish to stick our nose into the concerns of others.
It is one thing to offer unsolicited advice and opinions and to pass moral judgment on the decisions of others concerning their own affairs that in no way, shape, or form, affect us. We all do that. I am doing that in writing this essay. We can pontificate all we like and others are free to ignore us. Unfortunately some people go beyond that. They get themselves all worked into a tizzy about something that is happening miles away, among people they have no connection to, and that has no discernible impact on their lives. Then they write or call their government representative, or stage a protest or boycott, or in some other way make known their demand that “something be done about it”.
It is the people who insist that “something be done about it” that you have to watch out for. They are the perpetual troublemakers in any society and governments, especially democratic governments, have an nasty tendency to listen to them.
Twenty years ago it was South Africa’s business that everybody else was trying to run from afar. The evils of apartheid were decried in our classrooms and from the pulpits of our churches. Protesters demanded that the South African government adopt one-person, one-vote democracy, end apartheid, and release Nelson Mandela from prison. These were not South African protesters demonstrating against the policies of their own government in the streets of Preoria or Johannesburg. This was going on in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and all over Europe.
You could try to reason with such people. You could point out that Mandela was not a prisoner of conscience but a terrorist thrown in prison for violent criminal acts. You could point out that South Africa was hardly the only country in Africa to practice racial discrimination and that her achievements were such that people were flocking into South Africa from all over the African continent in search of the prosperity no other country in Africa could offer them. You could point out that the African National Congress, which stood to take over the country if their demands were met, was an obvious Communist front supported by the Soviets. For your efforts you would be denounced as a racist.
South Africa was a country that was an established, loyal ally of Canada, the UK, the United States, and all the other Western countries that foolishly listened to their progressive, left-wing fringe elements, and conspired to destroy it. Mandela and the ANC were criminal terrorists allied with international Communism. Apartheid was an unjust system, to be sure, but it was not comparable to the crimes of the Third Reich, the Soviet Union, or for that matter of the ANC regime that replaced the nationalist government in South Africa in 1994. It was not any of our business.
Today it is Israel and the Palestinian situation that has got the knickers of the bleeding-heart protesters all twisted in a knot. Earlier this year left-wing academics and their gullible protégées on campuses all across North America treated us to the latest episode of “Israel Apartheid Week”, an annual orgy of self-righteousness in which anything and everything the Jewish state does in its struggle against terrorism is routinely denounced. The other week, when the Israeli navy took to high seas piracy against a supposedly humanitarian flotilla headed towards Gaza, the self-righteousness broke out again with renewed force.
What is different about the Israeli-Palestinian brouhaha however is that the self-righteousness is two-sided. On the one hand you have the protesters, who look at the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and see heavily armed, modern soldiers beating up on primitive, poor people, and, being more heart than brains, they naturally sympathize with the Palestinians. On the other hand, you have Israel’s defenders who angrily denounce all criticism of Israel’s actions as “The New Antisemitism”.
The pro-Palestinian protesters believe that we have a moral imperative to support the Palestinians because they are an oppressed, victim, group.
Israel’s defenders, on the other hand, believe that we have a moral imperative to support Israel.
The moral imperative, however, is to mind our own business!
What the two sides are really arguing over, is not the validity of the claims of the two sides in the Middle East conflict, but over what actions the governments of Canada, the United States, and other Western countries should take towards the two sides.
The pro-Palestinian protesters want our governments to boycott Israel and place other pressure on her to conform to how they feel she should run her internal affairs.
Conversely, the pro-Israel side want our governments to back Israel with money, and military and moral support.
Both sides are interfering busybodies who should be told to mind their own business.
When it comes to Israel and Palestine it is fairly obvious which side a sensible person, who supports civilization, order, and liberty should be rooting for. While I find Israel’s practice of collective punishment towards the Palestinians for the acts of a few terrorists to be repugnant, Israel is an established, civilized society, with a functioning government, fairly decent laws, and order. She has not been established long, but neither has any other country in the Middle East. To the extent any country in the Middle East can be said to have prescriptive authority hers does. Organizations like Hamas are criminal gangs who specialize in committing acts of violence against ordinary Israelis in ordinary situations in order to disrupt everyday life and create maximum terror among the populace. No sane person would ever side with Hamas against Israel.
It is not, however, the responsibility of Western countries to maintain Israel’s security and civilization for her. If she wishes to practice collective punishment that at times borders on state terrorism she can do so without our help.
Its not like she’s been such a great ally to us after all.
Prior to her achieving modern statehood she was not above stooping to terrorism herself. The Irgun and Stern Gang waged terrorist war in the 1940’s against the British government. The significance of this for us, fellow Canadians, is that the terrorism was directed against the British Crown – which is also our Crown. In 1977 Israel showed her contempt for us by electing Menachem Begin (who had headed the Irgun) Prime Minister. In 1986 she showed that contempt again by electing Yitzhak Shamir (who had headed the Stern Gang). Neither man had ever shown any remorse or repentance over their terrorist past. Of course the Israelis can elect whoever they want, that is their business not ours, but for them to elect men who had waged terrorism against our Sovereign while expecting us to support them in their fight with Palestinian terrorists is a bit presumptuous.
Since achieving statehood her biggest supporter has been the United States which she has managed to get away with betraying in a truly spectacular manner on countless occasions. In 1954 her spies botched an attempt to fake terrorist attacks against American holdings in Egypt in order to trick the Yanks into going to war with Egypt. Five years ago she honored the spies involved in the affair. Then in 1967 she attacked an American ship, the USS Liberty during the Six-Days War. The attack was almost certainly deliberate, despite her claims that it was a case of “mistaken identity”. In the 80’s she was caught spying on the United States. She falsely denied involvement at first, then refused to return all of the information Jonathan Pollard had stolen for her, while demanding that the Americans release Pollard. Eric Margolis, writing in the Toronto Sun in 1999, speculated that she may have bartered some of the information to the Soviets. She was certainly guilty of selling American nuclear secrets to the Chinese in the 1990’s.
Then there was the revelation that she was confiscating the passports of Jews making aliyah and handing them over to Mossad agents for use in covert ops, including assassinations. She was found using the passports of Britain, France, Ireland, Germany, New Zealand and Canada in this manner. This, of course, placed every citizen, Christian, Jewish or otherwise, from any of these countries in danger of being arrested as a Mossad assassin should they be traveling abroad in the Middle East. This is a matter that IS the business of our governments.
If Israel’s actions affect the safety of Canadians, the Canadian government has a responsibility to stand up for Canadians against Israel. If her actions don’t affect Canadians, they are none of the Canadian government’s business. Our government should be neither boycotting Israel nor subsidizing her.
A couple of decades ago, our government, the American government, and other Western governments, used their influence to destroy a country that was a far more loyal ally and friend than Israel, based solely on its internal affairs that did not affect us in any way.
If the moralizing twits on the campuses of our colleges and universities have their way, we will do the same to Israel, not because of her own demonstrable history of faithlessness, but because these gullible fools feel that morality and justice are on the side of criminal terrorists seeking the destruction of a civilized country rather than the other way around.
When will we learn to mind our own business?
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