Diana West's latest piece is worth taking a look at for two reasons. One is to remind us that the West, along with much of Israel, is still in denial over the true nature of the Islamist enemy at the gates. Only a few days ago we heard about how nicely attended X-mas celebrations in Beit Lechem were, ignoring the fact that the Chrisian population of the Palestinian Authority is shrinking at a rapid rate due to persecution from the Muslim majority. America and Europe are practically tripping over themselves to hand money to the Arabs despite their track record of corruption and redirection of that money to Swiss bank accounts.
But the second reason is more fascinating. West notes recent, troubling quotes by Bernard Lewis, the elder statesment of MiddleEast history:
What was startling about the message, however, was one of the messenger's: none other than the eminent historian Bernard Lewis. He declared that anti-Semitism didn't even exist in the Middle East until European Christian colonizers brought it. You don't need to be a scholar of Lewis' stature to know that European colonization of the Middle East didn't begin until some 1,100 years after Islamic anti-Semitism got going in the Koran, the canonical commentaries on the Koran, and in a long and painful (for Christians also) historical record.
What is it with senior politicians and intellectual figures that causes them to go senile despite a lifetime of decent public service? Few have achieved what Lewis has in his career, yet if he is really speaking like this, he is making a mockery of not only the truth but his own life's work.
The canard that the Arabs loved the Jews until those darned nasty Zionists showed up on the scene in one that must be constantly fought. As Joan Peters' proved long ago, Arab hatred of Jews is as old as the Koran. Within Arab societies, Jews could only hope to be well-tolerated second class dhimmi, subservient to their Muslim overlords. Far from learning from the Europeans, such things like distinctive badges, ghettos and mass killings originated in the Arab world and made their way north and west. The State of Israel's appearance aggravated the situation much in the same way a rape victim might enrage her attacker were she to suddenly pull out a taser and fire it at him. Aggressors always hate it when their targets fight back.
The whole situation remains one of insanity, one in which a corrupt, ethnic-based dictatorship remains favoured over a multi-party and culturally diverse democracy. We can only see such behaviour as a sign that God is hardening the heart of the nations as a prelude to our final redemption. May we see it speedily in our days.