Melanie Phillips

So, regime change is now good

By Melanie Phillips, February 14, 2011

The reaction in Britain and America to the turmoil in Egypt has produced a number of astounding revelations.

The first is that everyone in the bien-pensant world is now apparently a neo-con. You really do have to rub your eyes very hard at this.

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Dubious claims of a peacenik

By Melanie Phillips, January 10, 2011

One of the great divisions among Jews is between those who believe the Palestinians are genuinely prepared to live in a Palestine state side-by-side with Israel, and those who believe that they are not. The former are scorned by the latter as dreamers or idiots, the latter denounced by the former as right-wing extremists and bigots.

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Canada PM shames UJIA boss

By Melanie Phillips, November 29, 2010

On a recent speaking tour in Montreal and Toronto, I was struck by the beleaguered state of many Canadian Jews. They were battling the usual mad barrage against Israel from the media, politicians on the left and rabid anti-Israel and Judeophobic lies and libels on campus. Home from home, in other words.

But perhaps the most troubling aspect was that they appeared not to possess the verbal ammunition with which to respond. It seemed to me that, as I wrote here last month, the problem was that, to a greater or lesser extent, they themselves had been sucked into the narrative of lies.

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How defenders need to attack

By Melanie Phillips, October 14, 2010

Last weekend, I was a speaker at a huge CAMERA conference in Boston on the topic of the "war by other means", the global campaign of demonisation and delegitimisation of Israel.

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The left wins… rhetorically

By Melanie Phillips, September 2, 2010

Someone I met recently posed what I thought was an interesting question.

Like me, he had read and admired the moving interview in last Sunday's Observer with the Israeli novelist David Grossman, whose son Uri was killed when his IDF tank was hit by a rocket in the final hours of the aborted war with Hizbollah in 2006.

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How to top an implacable foe

By Melanie Phillips, July 22, 2010

Among those bewildered and horrified by the fact that Israel has been turned into a pariah state, it is common to hear complaints about the uselessness of Israeli PR. But this is to miss the point by a mile. Yes, there are many examples of amateurishness or inexplicable silence on the part of Israel's hasbarah effort, although it is getting better.

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The spread of flotilla sickness

By Melanie Phillips, June 10, 2010

The flotilla episode provided the trigger for a frenzied demonstration of the world's collective loss of mind over Israel.

Israel did what it was entitled to do and what any other country at war would do: intercept boats that might be carrying weapons for an aggressor regime. Since six out of the seven intercepted boats then proceeded peacefully to Ashdod where their cargo was checked, this was demonstrably not an Israeli "attack".

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Analysis: The coalition has a long way to travel

By Melanie Phillips, May 13, 2010

Is it good for the Jews? Unfortunately, the new coalition government is unlikely to bring much relief to those British Jews who are concerned about the true perils facing the Jewish people at this time.

The main concern must be the presence of the Lib Dems in the coalition. The party is even more venomously hostile to Israel than Labour, with Nick Clegg having articulated the boiler-plate prejudices towards Israel found on the political left. This may well drag the government into a more extreme position on the Middle East.

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Insulting the Pope is no joke

By Melanie Phillips, April 29, 2010

Some Jews may - when the Sunday Telegraph revealed the offensive and infantile suggestions for the Pope's visit to Britain by a bunch of extremely undiplomatic diplomats - have found themselves, for once, on the side of mandarins in the Foreign Office.

What was uppermost in these officials' minds was the Vatican's recent record on issues such as paedophile priests, gay rights, abortion and contraception.

It is a fair bet that what was not on their minds was the attitude of Benedict XVI towards Israel and the Jews. This record is certainly a troubling one.

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Why truth beats diplomacy

By Melanie Phillips, March 18, 2010

The Obama administration's fury at Israel over the "insult to the US" of building more homes in east Jerusalem has provoked what is described as the worst crisis in US-Israel relations for more than three decades.

Leave aside, for the moment, the notable absence of "insult to the US" caused by the Palestinian Authority a day or so later, when it named a square after a terrorist "martyr" who not only slaughtered dozens of Israelis, but also in 1978 murdered the American niece of a US Democratic senator.

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The chill in the Chilcot inquiry

By Melanie Phillips, February 4, 2010

In all the stürm und drang over the Chilcot inquiry into the war in Iraq, one feature has so far escaped attention. That is the emphasis placed on Israel’s role in the crisis, not least by the inquiry panel member Sir Roderic Lyne.

To those of us of a nervous disposition, the way Lyne, formerly Our Man in Moscow, has been dragging Israel into the story of what happened in 2003 is more than a little grating.

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Aid to Livni is not pro-Israel

By Melanie Phillips, December 22, 2009

Five years ago, anti-Israel campaigners tried to arrest the then Israeli Defence Minister Shaul Mofaz for “war crimes” while he was on a visit to London.

Since then, a steady stream of senior Israeli officials have either narrowly escaped similar arrest in Britain through diplomatic immunity, or have had to cancel planned visits because such an arrest was all too likely.

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My moderate-Muslim test

By Melanie Phillips, November 12, 2009

As I understand it, auto-immune diseases are caused when the immune system which protects the body turns upon itself, mistaking friendly organisms for foes and vice versa.

One might say that just such an affliction now assails the British and American intelligentsia — with some British Jews themselves amongst the worst affected.

The latest example of this general disorder was the reaction to the jihadi attack in Fort Hood, Texas, last week when a Muslim army psychiatrist screaming “Allahu akhbar” gunned down and murdered at least 13 people, leaving dozens more injured.

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Goldstone's human wrongs

By Melanie Phillips, October 8, 2009

In the theatre of the absurd that now passes for international relations, a Jewish human-rights lawyer takes the side of those who wage genocidal war against the Jews.

This is in turn deemed profoundly unhelpful to a “peace process” that is attempting to reward with territory others waging the same genocidal war — albeit with better manners — against the same Jews, a process that now expects those Jews to make concessions to their assailants, who will themselves be exempt from making reciprocal gestures to their victims.

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Obama's dangerous strategy

By Melanie Phillips, September 3, 2009

The farce over doorknobs for centrifuges masks the fact that President Obama’s whole Middle East strategy is in the process of imploding.

Obama has been pressuring Israel to freeze every brick and widow-frame of all settlement construction as a precondition for the US “getting tough” with Iran. This has caused Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu to walk a diplomatic tightrope. But it is arguably President Obama who has the rope around his own neck.

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MidEast malice and distortion

By Melanie Phillips, July 30, 2009

The shocking rise in anti-Jewish attacks demonstrates that the way Israel is presented impacts directly on the safety of British Jews. According to the Community Security Trust, there were 609 anti-Jewish incidents in the first six months of this year, more than in the whole of 2008. And more than half the incidents reported in January made some reference to Operation Cast Lead in Gaza. Well, of course. People were being told day in, day out that the Israelis were wantonly killing Palestinian children.

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Obama’s deadly hand revealed

By Melanie Phillips, June 25, 2009

Among American Jews, a degree of buyers’ remorse has been detected recently.

Almost 80 per cent of American Jews voted for Barack Obama as President. Those of us who warned that this man would endanger Israel were scorned.

How could that possibly be, said the secular, liberal American Jews. He’s a Democrat, he’s black and he’s pro-abortion. With this triple-lock of unassailable virtue, how can he be bad for Israel? Now some of them are getting an awful feeling that they may have made the biggest misjudgment of their lives.

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Proper Jewish pride, by George

By Melanie Phillips, May 21, 2009

Against the current backdrop of rampant anti-Israel and anti-Jewish prejudice, we find ourselves once again asking the age-old question: why are people antisemites? What is it about the Jews that makes some people hate us so much?

But we might also ask ourselves the reverse question: why are other people philosemites? Why should certain people have such a deep love for the Jews? And what might be learned about the Jews from such love?

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When ‘friends’ can be enemies

By Melanie Phillips, April 16, 2009

The response of Chas W Freeman, the short-lived chairman-designate of the US National Security Council, to being forced to resign recently after protests over his lobbying activities for Saudi Arabia and China and his extreme antipathy to Israel, was not merely to pin the blame on that all-purpose scapegoat, “the Jewish lobby”, or even its modern version, “the Israel lobby”. He came up with another variation on the theme.

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Analysis: Team Obama thinks just like him

By Melanie Phillips, March 19, 2009

Although Chas W Freeman is no longer to become chairman of America’s National Intelligence Council, the disturbing questions raised by his aborted appointment remain.

Freeman, a veteran Arabist who blamed 9/11 in part upon America’s policy towards Israel, was forced out through widespread concerns over his financial links to the Chinese and Saudi regimes and his apparent support for the repression of Chinese dissidents.

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