Since the start of Israel’s war with Hamas, the Independent has been competing with the Guardian to see who can most effectively demonize the Jewish state while excusing or ignoring the reactionary Islamist group running Gaza. And, though today’s commentary in the Indy may not represent the defining contribution in this race to the moral bottom, it should at least be noted in the category of great achievements in modern manifestations of ancient anti-Jewish calumnies.
Leave it to Mark Steel, a commentator and comedian, to even outdo fellow British comedian cum anti-Israel activist Alexei Sayle – who had compared Israel to a child rapist, in a video highlighted by both the Indy and Guardian – in an op-ed titled ‘How silly of me to assume it was Israeli bombs causing all the damage in Gaza‘.
Here’s Steel’s attempt at mockery, likening Israelis to a community of child murderers.
In recent years most of humanity has become more tolerant of groups who once seemed to be on the margins of society. But until now it’s still been acceptable to be offensive about one minority: the child murdering community.
At last it seems the mood is changing, and finally we’re beginning to hear the child murderers’ point of view.
Steel, again evoking the Israeli child murderer theme, mocks Israeli ‘claims’ that Hamas uses Palestinian non-combatants, including children, as human shields to protect their fighters and to score PR victories by the resulting civilian casualties – a strategy that Hamas spokesmen (and some journalists in Gaza) have openly acknowledged.
Benjamin Netanyahu spoke out for child murderers’ civil rights by informing us the Palestinians deliberately arrange the “telegenically dead” to be filmed, to attract sympathy. So it seems Hamas stroll round bomb sites, placing the prettiest corpses on view for film crews, otherwise we’d all think “it doesn’t matter that the Israelis killed that kid, he was an ugly little bastard anyway”.
Steele then alludes to Israeli ‘ethnic cleansing’.
As the bombing continues I expect we’ll hear more reasons why the Palestinians are to blame for being bombed. An Israeli minister will say, “These people in Gaza are always complaining that they live in a densely populated area, so we’re trying to help them out by reducing the population as much as we can to give them more space. But they’re still not happy. Some people are never satisfied.”
In this passage, Steele actually seems to suggest that there is a dearth of inflammatory headlines about Palestinian suffering in the media.
In less enlightened times, those responsible for such murder would be snarled at in the street and their pictures displayed on newspapers under inflammatory headlines. But thankfully we’re growing more liberal, and can only regret that more thought wasn’t given to treating murderers kindly in the past.
Steele then evokes the crimes of Fred West, the British serial killer who, over a span of twenty or so years, tortured and raped scores of young women and girls.
Poor Fred West, for example, instead of barely being given a chance to make his case, could have sat in television studios saying, “Of course I regret the deaths of civilians. But you have to understand these people I murdered could be a bloody nuisance. I was lured into killing them, and I’m not even sure I did kill them until I’ve carried out my own investigation. Some of them kill themselves to get sympathy by booby-trapping their ironing boards, you know
Steele finishes with the following flourish, evidently incredulous in the face of widespread evidence that Hamas uses mosques, schools and clinics to hide rockets and other military hardware.
As times change, maybe Netanyahu and his spokesmen will become more forthright, and organise “Child Murderer Pride” in which child murderers can get together for a procession and carnival, where they can at last feel safe, and no longer feel looked down on for carrying out their basic human right to bomb a school to bits.
Though I must admit to at times being tone-deaf to British humour, I have enough experience deciphering the musings of the pseudo ‘sophisticated’ liberal left in the UK to deduce that the witty Brit who penned the Indy column honestly believes that political and military leaders of the Jewish State – perhaps just for kicks, or maybe motivated by some sadistic homicidal fantasy – intentionally murders innocent children.
No doubt it was lost on Steel – who evidently sees nothing to remotely offensive, yet alone mockable, in calls by Hamas’s religious and political leaders to literally exterminate the Jews – that his meme regarding ‘Jewish blood lust’ comports perfectly with a decidedly medieval element of the Palestinian Islamist group’s historically familiar propaganda campaign.