Saturday, November 18, 2023

No quarter, ever

I've had several interactions with individuals that have come out in open, dilettante support of Hamas over the course of the past month or so. To one, a much-cherished friend, I responded thus and I think perhaps that this heartfelt position should be stated more universally...

Say what you like, given where and when we were born, ultimately we have the same fundamental enemy: the one that will come for us when we are in our beds, or murder us on the streets, either randomly or because we've acquired a target on our backs: Gangster Fascism.

Netanyahu is a fascist* and there are people in and around his administration that are significantly worse, as well as within his 'base'. Ditto Trump. And yet neither of these men have so far succeeded in converting their entire societies into un-free personal fiefdoms.

Guatemala's President is also a fascist. In a previous administration he ordered armed police to enter the country's biggest jail in order to 'clean' dozens of prisoners held there. He did jail time, yet now he is head of state and on the verge of turning this country into an undemocratic autocracy, just like Hamas did in Gaza.

They did this as a proxy of Iran, possibly the worst example of its kind of anti-liberal, anti-humanist, theocratic extremism. (Whatever our feelings about Israel and its armed forces, we all owe them one for taking out that reactor.)

When the gangster fascists have complete control, then the evil really commences. You only have to see the footage of Hamas leadership 'at home' to appreciate just how much they really care for the rights and dignity of Gazans.

They are like a succubus lying on top of this enclave. Yet many of the citizens are active participants, because this mindset is like a disease (see also, MAGA) and this is why not only Israel but also Egypt keeps the gate shut. Quarantine!

Fascism deserves no quarter, ever. Bullet to the head, like the living dead.

If we show the slightest weakness or lack of intellectual clarity in opposition to them, they come for us, running or perhaps shambling. Indeed, sometimes they arrive with a coup, on other occasions it is drip, drip, drip. Fast zombies or slow zombies. Either way, we look round and they suddenly, unexpectedly have their gnashers in our necks.
When you march behind people supporting totalitarian, theocratic values, chanting "shame on you", the shame is literally on you, because these values are totally toxic to everything that makes our lives worth living and none of us can afford to give them even a tiny show of approbation. If we do, Russia, Iran and even China will be belly-laughing at us, because there is nothing they want more than to erase more and more of western liberal democracy from the map and in this Israel is a kind of microcosmic wank for intolerant totalitarians everywhere, on both the extreme Left and the extreme Right.

It would be easier if this really were a Biblical battle between good and evil, but in practice it is always about confronting lesser evils - least worst options, least worst consequences. Understanding that is the lifelong duty of all liberals living in free societies.


 * It's OK to say this. It is NOT OK to refer to the state of Israel as an analog of Nazi Germany. Not only because of the obvious inaccuracy, but because those who do are knowingly making use of a disgusting anti-Semitic trope.

1 comment:

norm said...

We're on the same page here, Mr. Howard. Well said