The week the City of Lights went dark

Last week began solemnly.  It progressed immorally.  It ended tragically.

Monday, November 9.  This day was the 70th Anniversary of Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, the state-organized pogrom by the Nazis in Germany and Austria, when thousands of synagogues and Jewish homes, hospitals and businesses were attacked, ransacked, demolished and firebombed, so many, that city streets were littered with broken glass, the reason for the name of the night that will live within the dark annals of history.

Also, on that night, hundreds of Jews were killed and tens of thousands were sent to perish in concentration camps.  Millions and millions more, Jews and others, would be murdered before sanity was restored to the world.

Tuesday, November 10.  This was the 40th anniversary of the UN General Assembly resolution calling Zionism a form of racism.  This despicable act proved that insanity continued to be the hallmark of the world body, at least where Israel was concerned.

Wednesday, November 11.  Violating its own rules and logic, looking the other manufactured-products way regarding China and occupied Tibet, Turkey and occupied northern Cypress, and Morocco and occupied Western Sahara, the European Union (EU) in its infinite wisdom, misidentifying (big shock) disputed territory as occupied, demanded that products made in lands taken by Israel after the 1967 Six-day War, not be identified as “Made in Israel.”

Instead, they needed to be labeled as “Made in Settlements,” a nod to the growing Jew-hating BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement.

Thursday, November 12.  Adding insult to injury, the Obama administration, instead of condemning the – in the very least – pseudo boycott, OK’d the hypocritical and unfair new EU rule.

Thursday November 12.  In Milan, Italy, a Chasidic Jew was stabbed by a Muslim nine times; thankfully, the victim is recovering.

Thursday November 12.  43 people were killed and at least 239 wounded when two ISIS suicide bombers struck southern Beirut.

Thursday November 12.  President Obama, while acknowledging the US and its allies have not been able to completely decapitate ISIS’ command and control structure, even after the Beirut twin bombings the night before, incredibly stated, “I don’t think they’re gaining strength.  What is true, from the start our goal has been first to contain and we have contained them.”

Friday, November 13.  An Israeli father and son on their way to visit relatives were shot dead by Palestinian terrorists, the mother and another son wounded by the gunfire.  A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance’s medical personnel, contrary to international Red Cross guidelines to which the Palestinian Red Cross equivalent is to adhere, disgustingly refused to offer assistance and sped away.

Friday, November 13.  ISIS massacred at least 129 people in Paris and wounded hundreds more after six coordinated terrorist attacks.  At least one American, from Southern California, was among the dead.

Clearheaded people knew this was coming, and did their best to raise the alarm.  But sadly to many Western leaders, common sense has been a missing commodity as logical international security prioritization has been missing in action.

The EU expends irrational energy on the few products that come from businesses – a drop in multinational trade commerce – outside the pre-1967 war “Green Line,” businesses by the way, that employ thousands of Palestinians.

Yet, the EU does so as ISIS and other like-minded Jihadists infiltrate its borders and as its own growing populations of Muslims radicalize under its nose, a nose so turned-up in snobbish self-righteousness, that European Union members are unable, indeed unwilling, to smell the fetid hate-filled sewers that continue to spread within their own populations.

The Kristallnacht anniversary, commemorating a most heinous crime committed by ISIS’ Nazi precursors did not pass unnoticed by the EU.  But two days later, the at best uncaring, and at worst, complicit-with-Hitler Europe just had to smack down the Jewish State.  And for what?  To penalize a piece of chocolate from the Golan?  Or a peach-flavored drink from Judea?

I feel great anger toward the terrorists that committed the heinous atrocities last Friday.  And I feel tremendous sympathy for the victims of this latest Islamic terror barbarity in Paris, and for their families and friends.  All people of good will should mourn for the dead and have good thoughts for the wounded.

Having said that, on a political level, I feel no sympathy for France’s leaders and other Western leaders, who in my opinion, by their own actions, inactions and duplicity invited and continue to invite the terrorism.

There is no longer an “iron curtain” engulfing parts of Europe.  But I believe there is a “black cloud” descending over Europe and all of civilization.  It grows ever darker and more ominous.  A modern-day black plague of Islamic terrorists in many countries around the world, employing different Islamic names, symbolized by the black flag of ISIS.

So what do we do now, after irresponsible Western leaders ignored Syria so that it crumbled into the destabilization that caused the refugee problem and the creation of ISIS?  Isolationists here say it’s not our fight.  Must there be another 9/11 before they change their minds?  Others say the Muslim countries should do more to counter ISIS.  I agree.  But what if they don’t?  Do we wait for more and more innocents to be murdered, not just there, but over here?

Perhaps, as suggested, France should invoke Article 5 of the NATO treaty that states when one member nation is attacked, it is as though all member nations were attacked, which would lead to a collective NATO country response against ISIS.  Perhaps we need to threaten Sunni Arab countries to effectively take part in a coalition if they wish to continue to receive US aid.  And with ISIS downing a Russian plane in the Sinai a couple weeks back, we may find a more malleable Putin.

Certainly Obama should stop his political-correctness refusal to label Islamic terror as just that.  If we stay Kumbaya-diplomatic with certain entities, evil will filter through to US cities in a big way as it has in France. Also, ISIS needs to be battled resolutely, and not simply pinpricked by inconsistent air strikes.  Leaders need to lead and not hide, or try to run out the clock.

Presidents and prime ministers will proclaim their determination to fight the evil as they defiantly lead parades, arm in arm down the boulevards of different world capitals.  Again.  But I fear that once the shock of this latest Islamic terrorist outrage diminishes, obsessive scrutiny will be turned yet again toward the only democracy in the Middle East, when sanity would dictate the infatuation be turned toward the black cloud.

From the past and from the present, last week was full of lessons.  But will the civilized world learn from them?  Will the insanity stop?  Don’t hold your breath.

About the Author
Shia Altman who hails from Baltimore, MD, now lives in Los Angeles. His Jewish studies, aerospace, and business and marketing background includes a BA from the University of Maryland and an MBA from the University of Baltimore. When not dabbling in Internet Marketing, Shia tutors Bar and Bat Mitzvah, and Judaic and Biblical Studies to both young and old.
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