Sunday, February 17, 2013


By Sig Demling

Observing the European Union's interloper into Middle East Affairs, Catherine Ashton, in action, I'm reminded of a conversation that Lady Nancy Astor once had with Winston Churchill when the latter was Great Britain's Prime Minister during World War II. 

Since the late, truly great Churchill had no time for fools, the exchange is as terse as could be.

LADY ASTOR: Winston, if you were my husband, I'd put poison in my coffee.

CHURCHILL: Madam, if you were my wife I'd drink it!

Substitute me for Sir Winston and Catherine Ashton for Lady Astor and you know precisely how I feel about Ashton and her disproportionately unfair treatment of Israel.

As the EU's chief "Make Things Better" authority on the Middle East, Lady Ashton seems to conveniently wear blinders when it comes to the following:

1. ENDLESS MASSACRES IN SYRIA: While the death toll from Damascus to Aleppo rises a thousand-fold, Ashton, Ltd. passively look on as if the Syrian Saga is some fictional work worthy of a literary club discussion and nothing more.  

2. CHAOS IN EGYPT: The Moslem Brotherhood has turned what momentarily was a democratic crusade into an Islamic dictatorship. The European Union's reaction can be summed up in two words ho and hum.

3. IRAN'S NUCLEAR THREAT: While the mullahs take the UN atomic experts for a collection of saps, Tehran's endless stalling tactics give Iran time to get closer to a big bomb. Does that arrest Lady Ashton's attention? How could it with her vision a good 20-20 when it comes to Israel and only The Jewish State?

The EU's nosy High Representative can't make up her mind which bothers her most from week to week --  the terrible business of Jews building homes or Arabs striking in Israeli prisons. 

It hardly matters to Ashton that Israelis have every right to build homes wherever they like whether the Arabs object or not. 

Does anyone make a fuss when Britons build in Ireland or Welsh build in England? Of course not. What's wrong with the peaceful construction of homes anywhere in the world?

Ashton's latest crusade is to make life more "livable" for Palestinian hunger strikers in Israeli prisons. 

Hey, Lady, why not check out the prisons run by Hamas in Gaza or those under the aegis of the Muslim Brotherhood before you turn your ever-handy microscope on the Middle East's only true democracy.


When it comes to Jews and Israel, Lady Ashton always makes an exception because, when all is said and done, she is nothing more than a plain-and-simple Jew-hater.

This should come as no surprise. After a recent trip to Great Britain, Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick wrote that the level of anti-semitism in England had risen to a level where Jews no longer could feel safe there. Glick closed her column with a declaration that she has visited the British Isles for the last time in her life.

What's disturbing is that Arab oil money has been able to poison thinking on Israel well beyond the pale of Lady Ashton. Former pro-Israel havens have turned into hostile centers for anti-semitism as Muslims spread their verbal venom throughout Europe and now America.

In New York City, Brooklyn College recently hosted an anti-Israel forum on divestment and when pro-Israel students attempted to be heard they were unceremoniously evicted. In Brooklyn, no less. 

How could this happen at an American university in the heart of a Jewish population center? 

Very simple.  Colleges, world-wide, have been infected -- via Arab oil dollars -- with left-oriented professors who spew anti-Israel invective with virtual impunity. Italian journalist and author Giulio Meotti offers this lucid observation:

"A seductive combination of post-colonial white guilt mixed with liberal condescension," says Meotti, "has dulled our moral senses. It has made us blind to an Islamism that conveys unleashed hatred, contempt, physical aggression, the desire to expel, to destroy and to eliminate the Jews."

That in two choice sentences is what motivates supposedly impartial observers such as the EU's Ashton to act so unfairly to Israel.

And since I launched this column with a Winston Churchill put-down, I might as well conclude it with another Churchillian gem. Just substitute Ashton, pregnant with anti-Israel sentiments, for Bessie Braddock below.

This time the Prime Minister -- a staunch friend of the Jews -- was being assailed by Bessie Braddock, a Member of Parliament who took exception to Churchill's rather large tummy.

BRADDOCK: Winston, if that belly were on a woman, she'd be pregnant.

CHURCHILL: Madam, it has been -- and she is!

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