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I see there have been a few drive-by comments by partisans of this interminable stooshie.

A few observations.

1. Anyone who thinks I'm "in the tank for Israel" is invited to google me and learn just a little of my history as a novelist and commentator.

2. Anyone who disagrees with my word choice is reminded that I am a professional writer and I will choose my words.

3. I am not responsible for your feelings about this issue. You are responsible for your feelings about this issue.

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Excellent essay. I usually try to save the weightier reading for after my first cup of coffee, but I’m so glad I didn’t follow that rule this morning.

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Great essay on a hideous subject. Thank you for posting.

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Yes.

This is also human nature once it gets going.

This is why I say - and the rest of you will discover- that Pallas Athena (democracy) is one Bloodthirsty Bitch.

Because she’s us.

Humanity unbound.

This was observed in Iraq.

That was Iraqi democracy.

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Yes all true. And as for those privileged middle class 'Progressives' joining in the appalling 'celebrations' outside the Sydney Opera House, the Israeli Embassy in London and elsewhere around the West..... I do not believe that their hostility to Israel is even primarily about a concern for the Palestinian people. The real driver is to signal that your narcissistic little wonderful self is ever on the side of 'the oppressed'. To these people 'oppression' is a shallow abstraction that serves to inflate their personal vanity as one of the good guys. This poisonous vanity has been pouring out of Western academia for decades. I still remember the drug-addled anti-Zionist 'sit-in' at my UK university in 1972.

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Great, great, great .. now where can I get my Che Guevara-inspired Hang-glider t-shirt with free next day shipping?

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It bears repeating, and the irony never gets old: most of the Westerners cheering on Hamas et al. would, under a Hamas regime, be among the first to be rounded up, lined up against a wall, and shot.

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This is an appalling comparison! First, it omits so much of the story.

The huge power imbalance between a well intrenched, illegally occupying force supported by the wealth and power of Europe and U.S., vis a vis an impoverished, occupied population who has suffered endlessly since 1948.

The acts of violence by a well funded military giant against an imprisoned, indigenous population that if it remains quite dies a slow death and if it resits is vilified to the extent that they are worse than Nazis!

Second, it actually highlights how the tactics of the Nazis, as you describe them, to hide and obfuscate their crimes are the ones that the Israelis are copying.

Third, there is so much hatred, prejudice and overt loathing of Palestinians on public display from Israeli military and political leaders, New Yorkers on the street, US politicians etc., but that's not seen as evil or disgusting as it is always justified.

It's all Hamas' fault after all.

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I couldn't put it into words, but you clarified it here. What I did write about is how people in the US are longing to do the same thing to their "enemies" in my opinion. People want to be gleefully able to have a purge of their "enemies," and it is shocking to see people celebrate this evil. I think they desire to do it themselves so they don't see what is wrong about it. That thought can be terrifying.

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Oct 12, 2023Liked by Helen Dale

Looking forward to your next piece. The fact that Harvard student groups blamed Israel for the Hamas atrocities so quickly and decisively must be questioned. What have our universities been inculcating? The delayed and lukewarm response from administration (until public outrage became overwhelming) reveals how academia has been indoctrinating its students. I don’t believe the current crop of statements in support of Israel from these administrators.

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Thank you. Despite studying history for years, I've shuddered and shielded myself from lurid details of the Holocaust. (A family member of mine liberated a camp. And was left traumatized). The gleeful bloodlust you describe is terrifying.

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Oct 12, 2023·edited Oct 12, 2023

It is a war a century or more old. War 101: demonise your enemy. This is now set in stone for Israelis and Palestinians. Until all the external actors, actors who haven't a clue because for them it is only words on paper or images on a screen, stop fuelling the fire it'll never die. Bluntly, there are only two "solutions": Maximum Israel with no Arabs; or Maximum Palestine with no Jews.

All academic to me: just as with Russia v Ukraine it ain't my war and it ain't my business. Except insofar as Islam is an existential threat and even if Israel/Palestine went pfft! overnight, Islam as existential threat would remain. Callous? We routinely ignore wars just as bad, even worse. Hypocrisy. I'm neither interested, nor do I want to know.

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Whatever do you mean by "up against"?

"Before Saturday and Sunday—the cause of Palestinian autonomy and statehood probably held the moral high ground. This was in large part because they are so outgunned: a developing-world statelet up against a militarily powerful, developed-world regional hegemon."

Seriously, WTF? Why is Hamas "up against" anyone, particularly Israel? Israel acquired the Gaza in decades ago wars initiated by Hamas' brethren in Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Syria. Israel ceded the Sanai after those wars - it was on the verge of crossing into Egypt proper but desisted. In 2004 or 2005 it walked away from Gaza. Leaving the place to the "Palestinians".

Why is Hamas up against Israel? This has to be the most incoherent thing you've written. Try to answer it coherently.

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Oct 12, 2023Liked by Helen Dale

Hard reading.

But necessary.

Thanks for articulating what most of us shy away from.

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Hey, if the swastika fits…

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