COMPARISONS ARE DANGEROUS
IN TODAY’S AGE OF TERRORISM
Jews have come back into fashion with the Left.
After all the invective about oppressing the Palestinians — after all the agitation for BDS (Boycotts, Divestments, Sanctions) of Israel and Israeli products — progressives have revealed an unexpected soft spot for historic Jewish suffering.
Have you seen the impassioned graphics and old editorial cartoons circulating online — the ones reminding us of how Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany were turned away by the U.S. before and during World War II?
Who could have known there was so much pent-up empathy over that past wrong? What a remarkable surge of interfaith charity.
I wouldn’t be surprised if the Yeshiva Boys Choir gets invited to sing “Hatikva” the next time Mahmoud Abbas’ visits Washington.
Of course, the point of those graphics is to suggest a parallel between yesterday’s rejected Jews and today’s Syrian refugees.
Excuse me if I’m a little hesitant about this sudden embrace of Yiddishkeit. I detect the merest whiff of insincerity — one that makes me suspect those gnomes in the White House basement are working overtime churning out all this stuff.
A bit of history: Economic constrictions lingering from the Great Depression may have made many Americans less than welcoming to immigrants in general. But it is undeniably true that our wartime leaders specifically shrank from challenging the anti-Semitism of their day. Consequently, they were loath to accept Jews escaping what would later be called The Holocaust.
And yes, Franklin D. Roosevelt knew what was going on in Germany and Eastern Europe. Reports of the persecutions had come from numerous firsthand sources and were verified by people close to the administration. Which surely makes this one of the more shameful episodes in our history.
But there’s a small historical detail that kinda messes up the parallel with today. Michael Savage, host of the daily talk show, “Savage Nation,” points it out with his characteristic subtlety…
“Only a mentally ill liberal would compare the Jews of the 1930s fleeing Hitler to the Syrian refugees that Obama is importing into the United States of America.
“Jewish immigrants weren’t trying to kill us. Jewish immigrants didn’t come here with suicide belts.”
As I observed in my last post, the horror of Paris has changed everything…
“People are finally focused [on the ISIS threat] — most people, anyway.
“They should be.
“And they’ve pretty much given up hope that Barack Obama has it within him to do anything decisive that can make a meaningful difference.”
Therefore: time to play the Jewish card. See?
The idea of vetting refugees on the basis of ethnicity — and especially on the basis of religion — is discomfiting, given our First Amendment-inspired tradition of openness. Then too, how can we be sure that someone’s culture reflects their true attitudes and intentions.
It’s hard to discern people’s real life situations, especially when critical information is obscured.
My local TV station recently aired an interview with a woman who had fled Iraq. Her fulsome expressions of gratitude for the chance to live freely in America were heartwarming.
There was more to the story, however. She had been an employee of the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, and so was marked for death. Which means she’s here in political asylum, not ordinary refugee status.
Also, she wore no hijab.
Is she a Christian? Is she a Jew? Is she a secular Muslim?
We weren’t told.
We don’t know.
And there’s the problem. We might be relatively confident that a lady who worked in our embassy and now has a price on her head isn’t a terrorist. But there’s far too much we don’t know about who’s mixed in among those huddled masses yearning to breath free and currently overrunning Europe.
The House of Representatives has passed a bill to tighten screening procedures — passed with a majority (including 47 Democrats) sufficient to override a veto promised by the President. Its prospects in the Senate are less clear.
As reported by Reuters…
“After the House vote, Obama’s attorney general, Loretta Lynch, called such screening both impractical and impossible.
“‘To ask me to have my FBI director or other members of the administration make personal guarantees would effectively grind the program to a halt,’ Lynch told reporters at a news briefing with FBI Director James Comey.”
So…what Lynch is saying here, then, is that the U.S. is incapable of screening out terrorists under any circumstances. Not only can’t we do it now, we won’t be able to do it if this legislation passes the Senate and beats back Obama’s veto.
There’s just no way of figuring out who the ISIS operatives are. Can’t be done. No protection against terrorist infiltration is possible.
Therefore, we should give our humanitarian instincts free reign and do…nothing.
Is this what our government is telling us?
Is this the state of national jeopardy to which we have come?
Well, not to worry. Our current fondness for Yiddishkeit won’t last.
When the suicide belts start going off and ISIS gunmen are strafing restaurants and concert halls, we can always fall back on history’s old reliable explanation for everything…
It’s the Jews’ fault.
Wow! If you thought the Left’s new embrace of Jews was startling, see how far they’re willing to go to obfuscate the refugee issue. Believe it or not, this new ad from the Democratic National Committee actually embraces — wait for it — George Bush! Someone must have swallowed hard to pull this off, but the ad holds “W” up as an icon of virtue, claiming…
“Inciting fear isn’t presidential.”
Talk about a gag line…
The New York Times compares our past anti-Semitism with current resistance to the Syrian refugees. The piece makes some interesting points, but in the end offers very few helpful insights. Read it anyway…
Meanwhile, the New York Post’s Michael Goodwin slams Obama for his “appallingly tepid response to the Paris slaughter”…
“Even after French President François Hollande gave a rousing speech to Parliament, declaring, ‘We are in a war against jihadist terrorism, which is threatening the whole world,’ and urged Obama to join a coordinated effort, the president said no.
“‘It’s best that we don’t, you know, shoot first and aim later,’ Obama said.”
Read it, but don’t let it make you feel too dispirited…
Obama has called evaluating refugees by religion “shameful” and “un-American.” But Andrew McCarthy of National Review points out that religious vetting is actually a part of immigration law. Who woulda thought?…
Since I’ve mentioned “Hatikva” (“The Hope”), here’s a stirring rendition of Israel’s national anthem. Adapted from a poem by Naftali Herz Imber, a Ukrainian Jewish poet, and set to a melody written by 16th-Century Italian composer, Giuseppe Cenci, “Hatikva” is one of the world’s most evocative religious/patriotic songs….