Steve Kramer

Western leaders are throwing their brains out the window

Why are today’s political leaders in Washington, and others outside of the US, against Israel’s imperative to wipe out Hamas? The US, Germany, et al are strongly discouraging the IDF from entering Rafah, the remaining nerve center of Hamas and most likely the hiding place of its two foremost terrorist leaders inside Gaza, Yahya Sinwar and Mohammed Deif. If they survive, that will ensure that Israel loses its war against the barbaric Muslim Hamas (which includes many so-called civilians).

Hamas and its cohort raped, murdered, and pillaged Israeli communities across the Israel-Gaza border on October 7. Western leaders’ implausible reaction after their initial outrage subsided is now, “Let’s force Israel to a ceasefire and then inaugurate a State of Palestine.” We know what Palestinian leaders intend, whether Hamas or Fatah (which rules the Palestinian Authority). Ghazi Hamad, a Hamas leader, promises that ‘there will be a second, a third, a fourth’ massacre like on 10/7.

Tel Aviv [Israel], March 21. 2024 (ANI/TPS): “A survey of Palestinians living in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority released on Wednesday found popular support for Hamas remains high despite the war.The poll, conducted by the Ramallah-based Palestinian Center for Policy and and Survey Research found that 71 per cent of Palestinians surveyed viewed Hamas’s October 7 attack on Israel as correct. This perception is identical between Palestinians living in the PA and Gaza.” (

What are the consequence of a failure to incapacitate Hamas? Bad actors around the world will adopt the Hamas strategy of using its entire population as human shields – because it works. Instead of an army which protects itself with military shields, it’s better to put women and children, and men too, in the front of the terrorists to protect the Muslim jihadists. Schools, hospitals, churches, mosques, and public buildings, which are utilized as terrorist bases, will thereby be safe from attack, by positioning human shields to protect them.

What offense is then possible against an aggressor force? Are the lives of enemy “civilians” more precious than the lives of the country that was attacked? What warped mind has devised this “moral” method of warfare? Whether a country is attacked or it is the attacker, there will be collateral damage. As a matter of fact, the IDF is far more engaged in protecting non-combatants than any other army. In this war of urban warfare, the ratio of civilians killed to combatants is unbelievably low, less than 2:1 and perhaps 1.4:1.

In urban warfare, civilian casualties skyrocket. The number of actual deaths of civilians in Gaza has undoubtedly been magnified by the media, which relies on unverified figures from Hamas and doesn’t differentiate Hamas terrorists from non-combatants. Nor is it reported that roughly 1 in 5 rockets fired by Hamas falls within Gaza, killing residents. “Ninety Per Cent of War-Time Casualties Are Civilians,” the UN Security Council reported in 2022. ( That’s a 10:1 ratio of combatants to non-combatants.

I recognize that the age-old animus against Jews is at play here, but this “strategy” would backfire even against the worst Jew-haters. What if a mythical country (X) attacks its neighbor (Y). When Y counterattacks, X murders five of its own citizens for every casualty – what do the leaders care? – in “retaliation,” proclaiming this is its new strategy. Y’s defense grinds to a halt – while still being attacked – at the prospect of the poor people of X being killed. X wins the war by default. This strategy of using one’s own citizens as a shield works against effete, overly compassionate countries. Don’t count Israel in that group. The lives of our citizens are more important to us than the lives of those who attack us. Nevertheless, the IDF goes to extraordinary lengths to minimize civilian casualties.

On that subject: “Protecting and aiding [Gazan] civilians must be ‘job number one’ for Israel in the war-battered Gaza Strip, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday, March 13.” Job #1? Is this the strategy that President Roosevelt and President Truman used against Germany and Japan? Absolutely not. In fact, killing enemy citizens was a tactic of the Allied strategy for victory. Without it, the war might have gone on for years with many more casualties. (

Israelis are fighting for their lives here and they know it, often within 1 degree of connection. Hamas, with the full backing of Iran, has turned its citizens, willing or unwilling, into its defensive weapons. They have put weapons, including bombs and rockets, in nearly every home (even under baby cribs) and utilized the residential and other public buildings as an integral part of their military machine. And the Gazans have allowed this to occur, since more than two-thirds share the jihadi blood lust against Israel and Jews. Yet, the US administration and others urge Israel to retreat from Gaza without incapacitating Hamas, a surrender that Americans would never stand for.

The state of affairs in the West is dire with a cloudy future; Israel is the canary in the coal mine. In the US, the isolation and mistreatment of its Jewish citizens is rife. Today this Jew-hatred (a corollary of anti-Zionism) is mostly manifest in the colleges and universities, especially the ones which attract high-achieving Jewish applicants and students. It has reached other areas such as the media, city councils, boards of education, and more. Is there a precedent for such hatred against Jews?

Right now I’m reading the late historian Paul Johnson’s book, Modern Times, a history of the Western world from WW1 to the end of the 20th century. In chapter 3 he writes, “The Nazis did consistently better among the students than among the population as a whole and their electoral gains were always preceded by advances on the campus, where students proved to be their best proselytizers. Students saw Nazism as a radical movement, they liked its egalitarianism. They liked its anti-Semitism too. Indeed, the students were more anti-Semitic than either the working class or the bourgeoisie.”

A bit later, speaking about the Marxists, the Nazis most potent enemy, Johnson notes, “Seeing the Jews as a non-problem, the Marxists dismissed anti-Semitism as a non-problem too. They thus entered the greatest ideological crisis in European history by throwing their brains out of the window. It was a case of intellectual disarmament on a unilateral basis.”
Johnson is the author of A History of the Jews, which many of my readers have read.

Johnson is describing Europe in the 1920s, when Hitler was first consolidating power. Israel and nearly everyone knows how that turned out. Today, Israel’s situation is precarious. We see Iran and its totalitarian allies readying themselves for a war against the West. Are our Western “allies” astute enough to see the parallels from precisely100 years ago? There’s a saying that, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes.” Let’s hope that the burgeoning Jew-hatred in the West doesn’t totally cloud the minds of the Western leaders. There is no written guarantee that “everything will be all right.” The right decisions and meticulous actions must be contemplated, prepared for, and initiated if necessary. Or, a genuine World War III may erupt around us.

About the Author
Steve Kramer grew up in Atlantic City, graduated from Johns Hopkins in 1967, adopted the hippie lifestyle until 1973, then joined the family business for 15 years. Steve moved to Israel from Margate, NJ in 1991 with his family. He has written more than 1100 articles about Israel and Jews since making Aliyah. Steve and his wife Michal live in Kfar Saba.
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