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Turkish-inspired Gaza flotilla incident

Israel Does the Impossible: Brings Peace between Greeks and Turks

 By Dr. Richard Benkin  Tuesday, June 1, 2010

In singer-songwriter Tom Lehrer’s 1965 satire, “National Brotherhood Week,” we hear, “Oh the Protestants hate the Catholics, and the Catholics hate the Protestants, and the Hindus hate the Muslims, and everybody hates the Jews.”  He goes on about other groups hating one another, but left out one of the longest running national hate-fests in history:  Greeks and Turks. 

Their animosity goes back almost to ancient times and has resulted in dozens of wars, skirmishes and massacres, the most recent coming in 1974 replete with mutual recriminations of ethnic cleansing and other atrocities.  One would be hard pressed to find a conflict as deep-rooted as that between Greeks and Turks.

Yet, in the wake of the Turkish-inspired Gaza flotilla incident, Greece and Turkey for one of the only times in history found themselves in complete agreement to excoriate, you guessed it, the world’s only Jewish state, Israel.  The government of Greece responded by pulling out of scheduled joint military exercises with Israel in protest and then “summoned” the Israeli ambassador.  Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou called Israel’s actions “unacceptable.”  Turkey, of course, instigated the Gaza flotilla, and has called for Israel’s head in every international venue that would take its call since Israel stopped the attempt to break the blockade of Hamas-ruled Gaza, maintained jointly by Israel and Egypt.

One can only wonder how Greece—not to mention the UN, EU, and Arabs—would have reacted if the Turks stopped a group of international “activists” attempting to bring humanitarian aid to a truly suffering population in Turkish occupied Kurdistan.  We can bet it would be silence, which was the Greek reaction to repeated human rights violations by the Turks against the Kurds, which almost led to a cut-off of US aid under President Bush.

A coalition of the hard and soft left, in conjunction with Islamists

A coalition of the hard and soft left, in conjunction with Islamists, have determined to incrementally deprive the world’s only Jewish state of the right to defend itself against enemies dedicated to its destruction.  Their immediate target is Israel’s blockade of Gaza, which is in accordance with international law given the state of war that Gaza’s Islamist leaders maintain with Israel.  Had the Greeks, Turks, and others given Israel the same rights they accord every other sovereign state, they would have recognized the attempt to run the blockade as a provocation and demanded that Hamas’s supporters conduct an investigation of how they caused the loss of life.

Unfortunately, since Barack Obama took office, the United States no longer can be expected to fight the tide of nation to nation anti-Semitism, as was once the case.  Reaction to the incident conveyed by the State Department did not mention the international lynching of Israel but instead noted it “remains deeply concerned by the suffering of civilians in Gaza” and promising “to continue to engage the Israelis” on the matter.  Never once did it protest the international lynching of the world’s only Jewish state.

Islamic countries seeking to de-legitimize Israel

There are at least 38 countries with an official state religion (24 of them Islam).  All but a few of them have prominently joined the effort to de-legitimize Israel.  Do we really believe that it is a coincidence that they ignore each other and focus on the world’s single Jewish state?  Maybe “everybody” really does hate the Jews—and maybe it is time we called them out for what they are.

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Dr. Richard Benkin  Bio
Dr. Richard Benkin Most recent columns

Dr. Richard L. Benkin secured the release of Bangladeshi journalist Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury in 2005.  The two continue working together to fight Islamist radicals and their allies in South Asia and elsewhere.  For more information on how to help, please contact Dr. Benkin at drrbenkin@comcast.net.  Their web site is InterfaithStrength.com. Dr. Benkin can be reached at: drrbenkin@comcast.net

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