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If I have so far said little about Israel, that is because I take it for granted that its survival and that of Western civilisation are inseparable — indeed, indistinguishable. This year we celebrate the centenary of the Balfour Declaration: one of those rare moments in history when a great power makes a noble gesture that actually signifies much more than anybody at the time could know. The year 1917 was not only notable for the Bolshevik Revolution that divided the world on ideological lines, so far irrevocably, but also for the intervention of the United States in the First World War. That intervention was decisive, not only for the outcome of the war, but for the emergence of the West as a political idea. The Balfour Declaration, legitimising the return of the Jewish people to Palestine, establishing the principle that  Jews were entitled to settle there as the rightful heirs of ancient Israel, and foreshadowing their statehood, was the first great act of Western statesmanship. In the aftermath of the Second World War, the recognition of Israel was the second and most enduring such act by which Western civilisation gave effect to its most deeply held values. For all the imperfections that it shares with every other state, Israel has more than justified the hopes invested in it by the West. Like the United States, Israel had to fight for its independence; unlike Americans, Israelis live in a region where they have always been surrounded by enemies. Again and again, against the odds, Israel triumphed over them, notably 50 years ago in the Six Day War; and it has remained the sole beacon of liberty, legality and democracy in an increasingly dark and despotic region.

Why, then, do I fear that Israel may be about to be tested as never before in its struggle for survival? Because Israel is confronted by a series of dangers, physical and ideological, that cumulatively amount to a threat to its survival as a Jewish state. I shall mention seven of them, but the list is by no means exhaustive. None of them will be new to this audience, but they are routinely played down in the parliaments and chancelleries of Europe, and indeed elsewhere.

(a) The global wave of Islamist jihadism that has replaced Marxism and nationalism as the dominant ideology in the Muslim world. Thanks to the genocidal anti-Semitism that is one of its manifestations, jihadism is a mortal threat to Israel. The only cause that unites Sunnis and Shiites, Arabs and non-Arabs, “moderates” and radicals is the elimination of Israel.

(b) The spread of nuclear weapons to Muslim states, notably Iran, that openly call for the destruction of Israel, but also the proliferation of other technologies that could pose a serious threat. Israel’s ability to stay one step ahead of its enemies in defence and intelligence may become harder to sustain in the future.
(c) The indoctrination of an entire people, the Palestinians, with a fanatical hatred of Israel that is immune to compromise yet which exercises a powerful hold on global institutions and media, while preventing any normalisation of relations between Israel and its neighbours. Palestinian propaganda and terrorism show no sign of abating, nor are they likely to do so as long as the West indulges a corrupt and devious leadership that depends entirely on a culture of grievance and a cult of death.

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Eliahu Nov PhD
October 13th, 2017
5:10 AM
Ihave just finished your breath taking article 'The Fate of the West' (Hebrew version, Keren Tiqwa's 'Hashiloach' periodical). Actually, during the years (I am 74) I thought and talked along the same patterns that your article outlined. Your article only enabled me to formulate my beliefs more clearly ond orderly. However, in the present ultimate worldwide havoc situation we now need it is NOT suffice to only publish paperes and essays but to take ACTIVE steps to outline VALID PRACTICAL strategies to turn the clumsy ship to a better direction ie establishing/ organising an INTERNATIONL 'new masons'movementto fight, reveal and conquer the strongholds of both distructive powers in both extremes you elaborated in your article. Real measures must be taken to save the planet . ALL aspects (philosophical, communication, hard & soft scientific , networks, literate etc etc tools) must be discussed and published . Prominent Politicians and proffessionals must be reqruited to lift the flag of 'Re-enlightment' .

August 6th, 2017
11:08 AM
Articulate and compelling. Guarantees to Israel from Europe won't suffice. For every John 23 there is a Pius 12, even today. The ability to be an Anti-smite while occupying the moral high ground is just too attractive to many of today's Christian Europeans. Though they endanger themselves, theirs is the cry of Samson "let me die along with the Philistines". My hope is that reasonable views, such as yours, will prevail in the never ending struggle.

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