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Congressman Tom McClintock

Representing the 4th District of California

In Defense of Israel

July 30, 2014
Speeches

In Defense of Israel
July 30, 2014

 

Mr. Speaker:

We are watching the rise of Islamic fascism on a scale unprecedented in modern times.  It may be wrapped in different symbols and trace its genealogy through a different line, but at its core, it is fascism.  Listen to its virulent anti-Semitism, the explicit promise of genocide, the utter rejection – indeed, disdain – for fundamental principles of democracy, justice and human rights.  There can be no doubt what is happening.

European fascism might have consumed all of Europe except for one gritty holdout – for more than a year, Great Britain stood in the breach.  Had it fallen, the consequences would have been unthinkable.

Today, one gritty holdout stands against the rise of Islamic fascism in the Middle East.   Israel is the only island of democracy and civilization left in that region, and it is standing alone and in the breach.

The current conflict between Israel and Hamas offers a clear line between good and evil.  

Israel took control of the Gaza Strip as a result of the 6-day war in 1967.  It granted self-governance to the region in 1994, and in 2005, unilaterally withdrew its forces.   

The resulting Hamas government has since militarized Gaza and used it as a launching site for continuing and escalating attacks on the Israeli civilian population with the avowed objective of wiping Israel off the map.

The Arab Spring welcomed by the Obama Administration brought the Muslim Brotherhood to power in Egypt.  During its brief tenure, it opened a road for the mass importation of weapons to Hamas.  These weapons, and others smuggled by sea, were strategically placed in schools and hospitals and fired upon Israeli cities without provocation.  

As Churchill once said of Britain, Israel did everything it could to secure peace.  Perhaps it did too much.

Facing thousands of rocket attacks and many terrorist incursions by Hamas aimed solely at its civilian population, Israel finally did what any civilization must do under such circumstances: it fought back.

Hamas has deliberately staged its attacks from hospitals, schools and mosques, using children as human shields – leaving the Israelis the Hobson’s choice of enduring the killing of Israeli civilians, or taking out the instruments of destruction that are deliberately sited in schools and hospitals.  They have chosen to defend themselves.    

There is absolutely no doubt of Hamas’ objective and that of its allies.  They have been crystal clear and unwavering on their intention to destroy Israel and kill every Israeli.  They seek to eradicate the Jewish homeland, whose history in the region stretches back more than three thousand years.

Their allies have been intent on annihilating every Christian and Jew in the Middle East, and they are well on their way toward achieving this goal.  It would be the height of naivety to believe they will stop there.

Yet this administration and many on the Left seem to view the two sides as moral equivalents.  

Israel has made the decision to forcibly demilitarize Gaza.  It is now making serious progress in degrading Hamas’ ability to make war.  That is the only true path to peace.

Yet the Obama administration is now working to halt this progress and allow Hamas the time to resupply and regroup and resume its attacks.  This serves only the objectives of Hamas and is a prescription for prolonged war and bloodshed.

Hamas has broken every cease-fire it has agreed to and Israel has abided by every cease-fire – often holding its return-fire for hours after Hamas has broken these accords.  There is no reason to believe Hamas will abide by future cease-fires the moment it has recovered its war-making capabilities. 

Why would the administration interfere in this manner – the effect of which is to take sides against the only pro-western regime left in the Middle East?  

Today, all that stands between a peaceful and free world and a fanatical fascist caliphate stretching from the Bosphorus to North Africa is the state of Israel and the influence of the western democracies – particularly that of the United States.

In 1929, Churchill warned of Britain’s irresolution in the Middle East.  He said, “Any appearance of lack of will-power on the part of the British Government or of lack of confidence in its mission in these countries blows like a draught of air on the dull, fierce embers.”

At this perilous hour, let us not repeat the mistakes of history.