Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Nuke This

“You go on about how Israel was founded by anti-British terrorists and the Israelis still hate us in a way that the Americans or the Irish no longer do [mostly never really did in the Irish case, but of that another time], but you never mention Iranian hostility to Britain going back to the overthrow of Mosadegh.”

Well, in point of fact, I do, from time to time. But if there is anyone who argues that Britain, America or the wider Western world should organise all foreign and security policy around the Iranian interest as perceived by the most hardline and disagreeable Iranian elements, then I have yet to come across that person. Has anyone else?

With Iran’s three reserved parliamentary seats for Christians, we do in fact have a greater affinity with Iran than with Israel, although our affinity with Syria (Christian-majority provinces, Christian festivals as public holidays) is greater, and our affinity with Lebanon (a European official language, a constitutional requirement that the President be a Christian) is greater still.

But Syria was really behind Lockerbie, admittedly in itself a direct attack on an American rather than a British target. And yes, there are problems arising out of Iran’s historical relations with this country.

If for some unknown reason Netanyahu (did you see him in that skullcap as if he were the Rebbe of Lubavitch? – why don’t people just laugh?) either sincerely believed, or at least managed to convince the Knesset, that there was about to be an Iranian strike against Israel, and if Israel then took out wherever that strike was supposed to come from, then that would be Israel’s and Iran’s business, not ours.

And just how anti-British does a country have to be for certain people? Look at the Euston Manifesto Group (if it still exists) and the Henry Jackson Society, and there they all are: the old supporters of the Soviet Union or of the Boer Republic set up as an explicit act of anti-British revenge in a former Dominion of the Crown, now united in devotion to the vision of America closest to the tripe taught in schools there about the War of Independence and its background, and to the vision of Israel closest to the hanging of our teenage conscripts and the photographing of that act (within living memory, of course).

What about the Jews who were killed in the bombing of the King David Hotel? Do they not count because they were British?


  1. That last question is hugely important and needs to be asked over and over again.

    Is it your support for the reserved Jewish seat in Iran that makes you anti-semitic? Or your mourning of Clement Freud? Or your admiration for Helen Suzman?

  2. That I have ever heard of any of them is the problem. Very intimidating to some people...