The recent drama in British politics unfolded like a Purim story. No fiction writer could have devised a more amazing and unlikely set of events.
A Prime Minister chose to call a General Election totally unexpectedly, looking as though she would achieve a landslide victory. Her opponent was perceived nationally as an extremist, eccentric misfit – disliked by most of his own MPs – who was as likely to win the election as fly to the moon.
Seven weeks later the situation was unrecognisable. The “unelectable” opponent nearly reached Downing Street and had almost his entire party cheering and praising him. The Prime Minister, who just survived in office by a whisker, had thousands of her former supporters calling for her blood. As it says in the Megillah ” V’nahafoch hu” – “and it was turned upside down”. The story even concluded with a hanging. Not, thankfully, of a person, but of Parliament itself.
The most powerful reminder to us all from this incredible fiasco is that in this world human beings are not in charge. Everything in terms of national affairs, international relations and political trends is utterly unpredictable. Good can turn to evil, order to chaos and seemingly decent human beings into monsters – in the blink of an eye.
In the wake of the election results I took a closer look than before at the footage of Jeremy Corbyn addressing a welcoming meeting for Hezbollah representatives at the House of Commons three years ago. He referred repeatedly and deliberately to “our friends” both in Hezbollah and Hamas, describing the former as people who sought peace and should not be condemned as terrorists. I studied his subsequent pernicious remarks , in which he compared Israel’s Government with ISIS. Both speeches were chilling. Hostility seemed to ooze from his eyes
The very notion that an old-fashioned communist like Corbyn could become the leader of this country is enough to fill any decent freedom-loving person who understands history with dread. Many people I canvassed during the campaign said that if this man and his henchmen ever achieved power they would seriously consider emigrating. I believe they meant it.
The decision to call the snap election, which I am sure Mrs. May did not make on her own, proved to be a terrible mistake. So was the lack- lustre nature of the Conservative campaign. I hope that by the time this article is published either the Conservative party will have decided, notwithstanding the setback, to unite behind Mrs. May for the foreseeable future or she will have resigned to make way for a relative speedy new leadership contest
There is a positive side to all this. The results could have been far worse. The Conservatives still have by far the largest party in Parliament. With the support of Ulster’s ten Democratic Unionists they can certainly form a stable government with a small working majority. The DUP are Conservative in all but name, right wing with a social and moral conscience , strongly loyal to the unity of the UK, very pro-Israel, pro-Jewish and anti-terrorist. They harbour a healthy loathing for Jeremy Corbyn and his left-wing ilk, who are typecast as ardent supporters of Sinn Fein and the IRA
Jewish people are enjoined by the Mishnaic Sages to pray for the welfare of the government. Let us not forget that the past two governments, of Cameron and May, were more actively supportive on Jewish issues, in combating anti-Semitism and backing Israel, that any previous one in British history. For this we should all be grateful.
My own prayer would be along the following lines. That the Conservative party be granted the good sense to unite behind its leader, be it Mrs May or any future successor , so that it can continue to govern effectively. That the party does not rip itself apart with internal squabbles and disputes about the appropriate “hardness” of Brexit. That the government becomes more sensitive and people-friendly in the presentation of its policies- especially when it comes to senior citizens and the youth, whose views and voting clout cannot be ignored.. The alternative – Heaven forbid – a socialist government led by Corbyn and his comrades, could cause irreparable damage to the freedom and relative prosperity we enjoy in this country.