In the Mail, Professor Doug Stokes explores how Western individuals and groups, knowingly or unknowingly, back organisations like Hamas, despite their actions being in conflict with Western values and principles. Here’s how his article begins:
On a summer’s day, a parade of young people and children march for gay rights, waving the rainbow flag, in Ramallah, on the Palestinian West Bank.
Suddenly, a masked mob of Islamists storm into their midst, beating and kicking them, screaming abuse. Security forces look on in apparent approval, doing nothing, according to Amnesty International.
That vicious, depressing incident in July seems comparatively trivial now compared to the unimaginable horrors of the Hamas terrorist attack on Israeli settlements near Gaza, and the slaughter at the Nova peace music festival.
But it has grim significance as we try to comprehend the global threats to Western civilisation and to our democratic way of life.
It might seem obvious, given the strength of calls for LGBT rights in Britain and the U.S. over the past half a century, that gay campaigners would be vehement in their condemnation of Hamas. But no. The opposite is true.
Actors and TV personalities, many always so eager to be seen as advocates or allies of LGBT people, have tied themselves in knots to avoid condemning the atrocities.
Many have condemned Israel, oblivious to the fact that it is on the front line of a broader conflict of values, or to what might be the fate of those who tried to speak out for LGBT rights in Gaza.
The truth is we have reached a point of madness where Left-wingers in the West now seem to support groups, however barbaric, whatever their crimes, to signal their contempt for our civilisation.
The immense irony is that they can do this only because of the precious values of free speech and democracy. Three decades ago, the liberal Left was brimming with smugness at the end of the Cold War. The darling of the intellectuals was historian Francis Fukuyama, whose book The End Of History predicted Western values were now accepted the world over. In as many words, he claimed that religion, communism and intolerance were aberrations of the past.
That view provoked a counterblast from the political scientist Samuel Huntington, whose book, The Clash Of Civilisations, warned that war in the future was inevitable but it would be fought between cultures, not countries.
Instead of wars between opposing monarchs, nations and ideologies, he foresaw the future of conflict caused by clashing ‘civilisation states’. We can now see how wrong Fukuyama’s optimistic, triumphal End Of History thesis was. The world has not become blandly centre-Left, some sort of global New Labour rainbow regime.
Huntington’s Clash Of Civilisations theory has proved partially right. The rise of Al Qaeda, Isis, and now Hamas, shows that Islamist death cults pose an existential threat to all Western values. Russia and China both fit Huntington’s template. They have no doubts about how essential it is to protect their own cultures.
Worth reading in full.