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Politically Speaking – November 21, 2023


Last week was another crazy week. I said that in the near future Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) might be throwing his hat in the ring for President after he announced he wasn’t running for re-election in the Senate. So where does the Senator stand as of right now? It’s apparent after listening to him late last week that he doesn’t want Trump to be elected in 2024. And he doesn’t want Biden, who at this point is more than an embarrassment. So don’t be shocked if he runs on the Democratic ticket against Biden. Time will tell.

And speaking of Biden, someone needs to tell him that calling President Xi Jinping of China a dictator two times this year — even though it’s true — isn’t very diplomatic. Especially when you could be so close to World War III. It could be dangerous. Any encounter involving Biden and a foreign leader meeting could jolt the world order, especially when it comes to Washington and Beijing. What might seem trivial (like name calling) becomes very serious.

Biden did spend about four hours with Xi Jinping last Wednesday at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco. Xi Jinping talked for three hours and Biden talked about one hour, probably about the weather. Sadly, again he did appear to be confused while standing with world leaders. He mispronounced other world leaders’ names, Biden turned 81 this week. How can others in power keep pretending, while those of us with a brain know he’s incompetent?

Poor Antony Blinken, U.S. Secretary of State spends most of his time in a state of shock every time Biden opens his mouth or walks across the room or shakes hands in mid-air. So what came out of the event? Biden again raised alarms after agreeing to shut down fossil fuels, I’m sure leaving Xi a happy man. And during the $40,000 per plate dinner for China’s bootlickers like BlackRock leader Lawrence Fink along with his partners; Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY); and Governor Gavin Newsom (D-CA) all was good. They got to dine with China.

On to the anti-Israel protest held in front of the Democratic National Committee headquarters on Capitol Hill in Washington last week. There was only one arrest, while six capital police officers were hurt. Keep in mind that there are some still in jail after three years without a trial over the January 6th staged protest. The Capitol was actually locked down during the anti-Israel protest. Gee, AOC, what say you now?

Until next week.

On to Rich Lowry.


Anti-Israel demonstrators hate the West

By Rich Lowry, Editor of the National Review

The cataract of anti-Israel sentiment on college campuses has been shocking, but it shouldn’t be surprising.

It is the poisoned fruit of teaching a generation of college students to despise their own civilization.

Jesse Jackson famously led a chant at Stanford University in 1987, “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Western Civ has got to go.” He was talking about the college course, but he might as well have been talking about the thing itself.

Jackson and his allies had extraordinary success in extinguishing the teaching of Western Civ. Not only have we largely stopped transmitting the story of our own civilization, we have substituted an alternative narrative that the West is reducible to racism, imperialism and colonialism.

It is in this context that the current outburst of anti-Zionism has to be understood. Yes, it has been fed by anti-Israel agitation on campus over the decades and yes, students are susceptible to witless radicalism in the best of circumstances. Yet the loathing of Israel is particularly intense because it is viewed as an outpost of Western civilization and all its alleged ills.

The hatred of Israel is tainted by and, in some cases, driven by anti-Semitism. Another way to look at it, though, is that it’s not so much about hatred of the “the other,” as progressives put it, as hatred of ourselves and all our works.

It is, on one level, incorrect to consider Israel exclusively an artifact of the West. The Jews are indigenous to the region going back to Abraham, with their story caught up in the story of the land. A large proportion of the current population traces its origins from the Middle East and North Africa, rather than Europe.

But there is no doubt that Israel is a Western society — in its political system, in its respects for rights, in its innovative economy, in its mores. Someone sitting in a coffee shop in Tel Aviv could easily think they were in any thriving coastal society in the West.

From any rational perspective, this would be something to celebrate. Many legitimate criticisms can be made of Israel, and indeed are a feature of the Israeli domestic debate itself, but there’s no doubt that it is a flourishing society.

If Gaza were equally Westernized, it would be worrying about whether it’s overbuilding seaside real estate rather than having to get water and electricity from the neighboring country its governing authority — a savage terror group — is trying to destroy.

Yet this is the society that anti-Western opinion holds up and wants to sweep all before it. This point of view loves Gaza for its failure and hates Israel for its success; loves Gaza for its terror and hates Israel for its self-defense; loves Gaza for its vicious anti-Western sponsors and hates Israel for its Western allies, especially the United States.

If this seems perverse, it’s what you’d expect of students and young people who have absorbed the premises of Michel Foucault, Howard Zinn, Edward Said and their imitators. Even if students have never heard of them, these men and their thoughts suffuse higher education.

But what about the violence? How can these kids look past it, or implicitly endorse it?

Violence is part of the radical anti-Western vision. The anti-colonial bible, “The Wretched of the Earth,” written by Frantz Fanon in 1961, is widely taught on campus. Fanon sketched out a woke worldview before anyone used that term, arguing that, as a New Yorker essay put it, “the Western bourgeoisie was ‘fundamentally racist’ and its ‘bourgeois ideology’ of equality and dignity was merely a cover for capitalist-imperialist rapacity.”

Fanon wrote that “decolonization is always a violent phenomenon,” and in a preface to the book, the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre declared that the wretched of the earth “become men” through “mad fury.”

By this standard, Hamas is a good and worthy anti-colonial organization, and there’s no wonder it has found supporters and useful idiots among the West’s self-loathing radicals.

© 2023 King Features Synd., Inc.

The Shoppers Weekly

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Cathy Stuehmeier

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