"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last." How relevant that quote of Winston Churchill remains to this day! As Israeli diplomats growl at PM Blair for partly blaming the Middle East conflict for Thursday's London attacks, there is a feeling of deja vu as we await (ala post-Sept 11) to see how the UK will react and how it's foreign policy will be affected.
Having read his comments, I am not convinved that Tony Blair quite intended to lay the blame with Israel. It is not entirely misleading for him to argue that our conflict causes distress and hatred among Moslems and others worldwide. At the same time, this distress is by no means Israel's responsibility alone.
The lesson to be taken from Thursday should be that if we do not deal with terrorism at its source then it will eventually (and has) come to our shores. The source was Arafat and friends and the world must cease to ignore that source.
Without a doubt, we must seek peace and deal with the problems that stir Moslems to such horrid acts. Nonetheless, these horrid acts need to be condemned and the instigators suitably dealt with if we are going to make progress. I am frankly quite aware of Palestinian suffering, but if the enlightened world even begins to use poverty or suffering as a whisker of justification or even understanding for such acts then we lose all possibility of stopping the rot.
You can not calm a killer and you will not stop the next attack on London by praising "the Moslem British community" and recognizing their innocence in the attacks. The majority might well be innocent (as I am sure they are!) but this civilian bombing syndrome, whether in Israel, UK, USA, Iraq and elsewhere) requires complete rejection because when you have no more meat to throw to the crocodiles, they will come for you.
If the British wish to discourage further attacks, they would do well to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Israel, the USA and others in these identical wars on terror and refrain from offering a hand to these people. Give a hand, they'll take an arm.
Sadly and ironically, we have an Israeli, Anat Rosenberg, who has lived in London for some years and who refrained from returning to Israel because she was frightened of bus bombings and the like. She was on the No 30 bus in London and has not been heard from since. She was on the phone to her boyfriend as the bomb denotated.
Were you in London? Anyone of you have interesting accounts of what Rabbis etc said in shule after the attacks? Let us know - give comments below...