Winnipeg Jewish Review  
Site Search:
Home  |  Archives  |  Contact Us
Features Local Israel Next Generation Arts/Op-Eds Editorial/Letters Links Obituary/In Memoriam

Brussels, Belgium, the city where the offices of the European Union are located
photo by Rhonda Spivak

photo by Rhonda Spivak

photo by Rhonda Spivak

Original Thinking: European medicine is bad for Israel, and for Middle East peace

By BARRY SHAW, July 31, 2013

And the Europeans think this is in the best interest of people in the region. They have been so very wrong in the past, and are dead wrong today.

We have arrived at the moment most of us reckoned we would never see.

How often have European diplomats and politicians incorrectly forecast events in the Middle East? What they called the Arab Spring turned into the Islamic Winter. Didn’t they force Israel to allow Yasser Arafat, the world’s first Islamic arch-terrorist, to return from his enforced exile in Tunis by acclaiming him as Israel’s peace partner? He spoke about “peace of the brave” as they awarded him with their Nobel Peace Prize, but he gave us “peace of the grave” as soon as he landed in Ramallah. Didn’t they encourage us to forcefully uproot 8,000 people from their homes in the Gaza Strip in the name of peace with the Palestinians, and didn’t we get rockets instead? Now they have the chutzpah to aim an EU directive banning their European members “from cooperating with Israeli entities in the West Bank, Golan Heights, and east Jerusalem.”

As Daniel Seaman of the Prime Minister’s Office reminded us on his Facebook page, “the Europeans found an unequivocal voice when it comes to Israel, but still can’t declare Hezbollah a terrorist entity. Ironically, while Europeans try to define our ancestral borders, the Muslims are redefining theirs.”

Seaman added, “With Europe’s record regarding the Jewish people’s past [Greece, Rome, Spain, Russia, France, Poland, Germany, Britain], they have no moral say in determining the Jewish people’s future.”

But that’s not stopping them. They have officially declared that what they call the West Bank (but Jews call Judea and Samaria) and east Jerusalem are no longer part of the State of Israel.

See how they have twisted historical fact and legitimacy. In their eyes, the Jewish homeland went from being mandated the National Home of the Jewish People to a “disputed territory” when recaptured from the Jordanians in 1967, before then being transmuted into “occupied territories” as the Europeans acted to appease the radical Arab voices.

When did, fact, history and law dissolve into lies, false definitions and actions that to citizens of the Jewish state seem eerily akin to the Nuremburg laws? What happened to European patience and desire to allow the current peace initiative to take root? Instead of a quiet and orderly diplomatic route to negotiations we now have the heavy hand of European unilateral bias against Israel. As usual, it is dressed up in fine language to make it appear that they are taking altruistic steps for the good of all of us in the region.

Europe! You are not our parents, and we are not little children forced to take your nasty-tasting medicine because you insist it is good for us.

You are wrong and you should not be surprised if Israel refuses to quietly take your medicine, and here is one reason why: On December 10, 2012, the European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council stated that “all agreements between the State of Israel and the EU must unequivocally and explicitly indicate their inapplicability to the territories occupied by Israel in 1967.”

Taken at face value, this means that the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple, which was liberated from Jordan in 1967 and where I have just celebrated a family Bar Mitzvah, and where many thousands of Jews from around the world just commemorated Tisha Be’av, the date of the destruction of both our holy Temples, is not part of the Jewish State of Israel.

This alone should have world Jewry demonstrating their rage and fury. It should also bring out millions of Christians that identify with an ancient heritage that no EU diplomat dare overturn.

Earlier this year I wrote an article that appeared in The Jerusalem Post. It was entitled, “Palestinian flags flying over Jerusalem.” It detailed the significant real estate sites that will fall into the hands of Hamas when misguided outside forces side with Palestinians’ evil intent. When writing that piece I never thought such a decisive step in this direction would be taken by Europe within a few short months.

The EU blunder has brought that unthinkable moment forward. The Hebrew University, the Rockefeller Museum and Hadassah Hospital are, by the new EU definition, now prime targets for a European boycott.

We are not just talking here about Israeli industry located on land that will remain as part of Israel in any future peace agreement, and that employs in excess of 30,000 Palestinian workers to boot, but also of the research, academic and medical centers that do so much good for mankind that lie at the foot of the European guillotine.

And the Europeans think this is in the best interest of people in the region. They have been so very wrong in the past, and are dead wrong today.

The author is the Special Consultant on Delegitimization Issues to The Strategic Dialogue Center at Netanya Academic College. He is also the author of Israel Reclaiming the Narrative.

<<Previous Article       Next Article >>
Subscribe to the Winnipeg Jewish Review
  • Jewish Federation of Winnipeg
  • Fillmore Riley
  • Jewish Federation of Winnipeg
  • Winter's Collision Repair
  • Gray Academy
  • Jacqueline Simkin
  • Coughlin Insurance
  • Joyce Rykiss
  • CHW
  • The J Hansen HVAC Group
  • Munroe Pharmacy
  • The Lazareck Family
  • Imperial Soap
  • GTP
  • Piston Ring
  • Nick's Inn
  • Lori Shenkarow
  • Roseman Corp.
  • Tyler Bucklaschuk
  • TD Canada Trust
  • Sobey's
  • Daniel Friedman and Rob Dalgliesh
  • The Lipkin Family
  • Booke and Partners
  • Bruce Shefrin Interior Design
  • Fair Service
  • Daien Denture Clinic
  • Thovaldson Care
  • Laufman Reprographics
  • Amalgamated Drywall Systems Ltd.
  • Maric Homes
  • Artista Homes
  • Tradesman Mechanical
  • Accurate Lawn & Garden
  • Ronald B. Zimmerman
  • Commercial Pool
  • Lanny Silver
  • Fetching Style
  • Rudy Fidel
  • Shindico
  • Dakota Chiropractic Office
  • Myrna Driedger
  • Shirley and Bob Freedman
  • The Chisick Family
  • Carol and Barry McArton
  • The Shinewald Family
  • Dr. Ted and Harriet Lyons
  • Munroe Dental Centre
  • Ixtapa Travel
  • Hill Sokalski Walsh
  • D'arcy and Deacon
  • The Charach Family
  • Esther and Sid Halpern
  • Myers LLP
  • The Lazar Family
  • Dr. Marshall Stitz
  • Cavalier Candies
  • Cdn Visa
  • Kowall Chiropractic Centres
  • Dr. Brent Schacter
  • Doheny Securities
  • Ambassador Mechanical
  • Peerless Garments
  • Pitblado
  • Cindy Lamoureux
  • HUB International
  • Philip Kahanovtich
  • Global Philathropic Canada
  • Sorrento's
  • Taverna Rodos
  • Aziza Family
  • Western Scrap Metals
  • Cascade Financial Group Inc.
  • James Bezan
  • Larry N. Maguire
  • Malaya Marcelino
  • Candice Bergen
  • Safeway
  • John Orlikow
  • Ross Eadie
  • Orthodox Union
  • Saul Simmonds
  • Bridges for Peace
  • Chochy's
  • City Sheet Metal
  • Superlite
  • Stephen Rosenfield
  • Abe and Toni Berenhait
  • The Lofchick Famiy
  • Stringer Rentals
  • John Wishnowski
  • Ingrid Bennet
  • Winnipeg Board of Jewish Education
  • Asper Jewish Community Campus
  • Jewish Federation of Winnipeg
  • Grant Kurian Trucking
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
  • Gulay Plumbing
  • Kristina's
  • West Kildonan Auto
  • The Center for Near East Policy Research Ltd.
  • Sarel Canada
  • Santa Lucia Pizza
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Roofco Winnipeg Roofing
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Nachum Bedein
  • Maric Homes
Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.