David Calling

‘Hamas’ and ‘Free Palestine’ Are Mutually Exclusive Slogans

Demonstrators have been gathering outside the Israeli embassy in London these last few days. Huge numbers of police form a cordon that keeps the peace and a helicopter buzzes overhead for long hours. Those in the street who seem to look English are mostly either superannuated Sixties hippies with white hair tied in a ponytail, or student types with a keffiyeh to help them act the part. What experience or thought process has made them into a mob shouting slogans against Jews? And what is the world picture of the women in burqas or hijabs, and the men speaking Arabic or Urdu? Many carry placards, the most popular of which say “Hamas” and “Free Palestine.” But if there were a Palestine under Hamas, it would be a clerico-fascist tyranny not free at all. As things are already in Gaza, the law is what Hamas says it is. Arbitrary execution, torture, suppression of freedom of speech and assembly, the militarization of children and the embezzling of public funds, are all commonplace. Should these people get their wish, then, they will have condemned tragic numbers of Palestinians to live without freedom. 

David Pryce-Jones is a British author and commentator and a senior editor of National Review.

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