Israelis to whom I spoke during a recent visit there all said the same thing: the Muslim world is a proven enemy, but they are now facing a second enemy that shows more and more its true face: the European Union and its main members.
The European Union, France, the UK, and some other European countries -- Spain for example -- are not only the scene of rising anti-Semitism; they also behave as if one of their primary objectives now is the demonization and destruction of Israel.
European boats will apparently join the pro-Hamas flotilla, should it sail. Boycotts against Israeli products -- most recently and conspicuously in Scotland -- Israeli scientists, Israeli books and Israeli movies are being organized over the continent.
A report released in 2010 by the British Coalition against Hate Education shows that the EU and countries such as France and the United Kingdom still fund «Palestinian» textbooks promoting hate and violence against Israeli Jews.
Recently, the EU announced the transfer of 45 million euros to the Palestinian Authority to «enable payment of salaries,» despite the fact that shortly before this payment was authorized, the PA had enacted a law granting a « monthly salary» to «all Palestinians imprisoned in Israel » for terror crimes."
The EU, France and the United Kingdom are also funding non-governmental associations that work inside Israel to undermine and delegitimize the country; a parliamentary panel of inquiry into NGO funding by foreign governments was formed in Jerusalem a few month ago. Later, the Knesset passed a law requiring NGO funding transparency. European Union High Representative, Catherine Ashton, said she «regretted » the decision."
A German writer stated two decades ago that «Europeans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz»: it is clear that Europeans intend to get rid of all traces of guilt for the crime Europeans committed against Jews seven decades ago. Demonizing Israel and contributing to its destruction helps them move in that direction.
Europe also has created economic and financial ties with the Muslim world and is now prisoner of these ties. Many Europeans want to demonstrate their willingness to atone for the colonial past of Europe and are ready to use Israel as a scapegoat.
Europe is steeped in moral relativism and in contempt for what made the greatness of Western civilization. As it lies down and submits, it can only hate a country that stands up and is ready to fight to stay free.
It is also now clear to Israeli authorities that a new tactic was born: the invasion of the country by « peaceful » people who will cross the borders en masse, and push Israeli soldiers to shoot at them. This tactic was already been used by « humanitarian flotillas » last year, and a new flotilla will possibly still sail towards Gaza later this month. Those aboard are hoping to get mugged or shot by Israelis. If they are, it will be a success for them: they will have shown how the Israelis are « barbaric » and « cruel. » If they are not mugged or shot, it will also be a success for them: Israel will look defeated.
When Israel recently celebrated its 63rd anniversary, it was a day when the Israelis and friends of Israel had reasons to feel proud: despite wars, hatred, terrorism, the Israelis have built a free, strong and democratic society. They have also built a modern economy, one of the first worldwide in the high technology sector.
It was also a day when the Israelis had reason to feel concerned: most of them, according to polling, think that the present occupant of the White House is the most anti-Israeli President of the United States since the rebirth of the State of Israel in 1948. The recent speeches of Barack Obama about the « 1967 borders » did not persuade them to change their mind.
Most of them also see the entire Middle East sliding towards the predominance of radical Islam.
The potential closeness of the Palestinian Authority with Hamas indicates a reorientation of Palestinians toward a much harder line. The «Nakba Day» (Catastrophe Day), that Palestinian movements have organized since 1998 and that is supposed to «commemorate» the «catastrophe» -- the Arabs' failure to annihilate Israel in 1948 --was particularly rough this year, and accompanied by attempts to invade Israeli territory from Lebanon and Syria. On «Naksa Day» (Day of the Setback), that was supposed to «commemorate» the defeat of Arab countries by Israel in 1967, hundreds of people tried again to invade Israel, only this time just from Syria.
Israeli authorities said they know that even if flotillas do not create any major incident, the Palestinian Authority might decide unilaterally to create a Palestinian State, if the General Assembly of the United Nations votes to support its creation, and if the Palestinian Authority is not overly concerned about forfeiting US funding.
Israeli authorities also said they are preparing for all eventualities; they know anything can happen, and that journalists from the rest of the world are hungry for images that would allow them to drag Israel into the mud.
Even if the United States vetoes the resolution at the Security Council, many countries have already said they would give full recognition to the new State. Several European countries seem ready to go in this direction and to step up their pressure on the Israeli government.
Political philosophers used to say that two sets of values are in competition in human societies: resentment and achievement. Israel is fundamentally a society of achievers. Resentment is ubiquitous in the Muslim world today -- and oozing through Europe as well.