In March of this year, the North Koreans sank a South Korean navy ship, with the loss of 46 lives (according to the claims of South Korea). World reactions ranged from China’s "very unfortunate incident" and Australia’s "deeply disturbing", to Japan’s "hard to forgive" and Britain’s "blatant disregard of international obligations". Nobody, however, demanded an international commission of enquiry, the event inspired no mass demonstrations around the world, pop groups did not cancel scheduled appearances in North Korea and there were no calls to put her leaders on trial as war criminals. Furthermore, North Korea has threatened military action if the UN dares to condemn them or even question them.
Witness the difference when Israeli naval commandos board a ship carrying Muslim extremist mercenaries from Turkey, (after giving them fair warning that if they don’t put about, they will be boarded), are attacked with knives, axes, clubs and iron chains and even firearms by said mercenaries, and shoot 9 of them in self defence. The entire world is up in arms. It’s open season on Israel, in fact.
Really, the hypocrisy of the West (and of Europe, in particular) knows no bounds. I don’t know why I’m always astonished anew, you’d think I’d be inured to it by now. Britain has the gall to condemn us for "unprovoked attacks on peaceful demonstrators" and to add its voice to the demands for an international enquiry. Who are they to sit in judgement? Are they to give us the benefit of their own experience, having covered up, for nearly four decades, the fact that their own army cheerfully gunned down 13 Irish Catholic demonstrators and wounded 15 others on what came to be known as "Bloody Sunday" aka "The Bogside Massacre"?
And while we’re on the subject of the Irish – ardent supporters of the "peace" flotilla – one wonders whether they learned their hypocrisy from their British overlords during more than three centuries of British "occupation", or whether it comes naturally. One of the ships in the flotilla, the Rachel Corrie, was fitted out in Ireland and among those on board was Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Corrigan Maguire (whom I used to admire). Ms. Maguire gave an interview to Israel Television’s Second Channel last Friday, in which she evaded almost all of the searching questions put to her by interviewer Yair Lapid (note, in particular, the non sequitur with which she replies to his question regarding the Israeli offer to unload the ships in Ashdod Port and transfer the cargo, after inpection, to Gaza by the officially recognised land border) and finished the interview with the disingenuous claim to be our friend, not our enemy. Methinks the lady doth protest too much. Let’s just take a look at her record, shall we?
Ms. Maguire has devoted herself to anti-Israel causes at least since 2004, when she went to Israel to welcome Mordechai Vanunu on his release from prison after serving an 18 year sentence for revealing classified information relating to Israel’s nuclear development programme. I don’t recall her going to North Korea to protest against their nuclear programme, do you?
In April 2007, she joined Arab and left-wing demonstrators against the construction of the Israeli security fence, which has done much, over the last few years, to reduce the numbers of suicide bombers entering Israel from Judaea and Samaria (aka "The West Bank"). Two years later, in April 2009, she accused Israel of "ethnic cleansing" in east Jerusalem, even though the Arab population of Jerusalem has actually increased since 1967, due to the greater opportunities for employment to be found there, not to mention the fact that "Palestinians" with the blue identity cards of Jerusalem residents are eligible for a wide range of benefits such as social security benefits from the Israeli National Insurance Institute. In short, I think it safe to say that Ms. Maguire has established her anti-Israel credentials and any claim on her part to be our friend must be taken with a very large pinch of salt.
And finally, from one thing to another, but still on the subject of the Irish. The Irish government has decided to expel an Israeli diplomat over the alleged use of forged Irish passports in the Mahmoud el-Mabhouh execution in Dubai back in January this year. This is despite the fact that neither they, nor Britain or Australia, in whose footsteps they are following, have any proof that Israel actually was behind the execution. The Irish Foreign Minister admitted as much!
As a lawyer, and one, moreover, who was reared in the Anglo-Saxon tradition of law, which applies in all three of the countries which have expelled Israeli diplomats because of the alleged use of fake passports by the Mossad, I was brought up to believe that one is innocent until proven guilty. As time has shown, over and over and over again, the world has a different set of rules wherever Israel is concerned.