Hatred deserves no allies
Anti-Semitism is evil, wherever it is found
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Just over a week ago, Hamas invaded southern Israel in a surprise attack. Over 1,400 Israeli citizens were murdered, and nearly two hundred were taken captive. At least 30 Americans were killed, too. Much of the world rallied to Israel, but on the left and right in the United States, anti-Semites have come out of the shadows.
Campuses have descended into progressive solidarity marches chanting in support of Palestine from “river to sea,” a phrase meant to call for the destruction of Israel. In some places, the chants have been more explicit, calling for the extermination of Jews and Israel.
On the right, the anti-Semitism might be more subtle but should disturb conservatives. The conservative case for supporting Israel has long been about the strategic defense of the only democracy in the Middle East. Israel has long provided military and intelligence help to the United States, and our nation has responded in kind. Hamas has created the worst hostage crisis for the United States since the Iranian hostage crisis, while also killing dozens of American citizens and Israelis.
Some, like Andrew Tate, have explicitly championed Hamas’ side. Tate has been platformed by multiple conservatives. A number of online, supposedly conservative voices have defended Tate’s comments explicitly attacking Israel and supporting Hamas. At one point, Tate justified his support of Hamas because Israel had a COVID-19 vaccine mandate. But anti-Israeli hate is nothing new for Tate. His defenders on the right know this.
Tim Pool, a growing online presence on the right, went so far as to skeptically suggest images showing Hamas’s horror were AI-generated images. One of his podcast partners, who uses the name Redheaded Libertarian, suggested the blood of a murdered baby was fake in a released picture. They would prefer to sow doubt than dabble in truth.
Israel, our democratic ally in the Middle East, has been attacked by a terrorist regime that also controls the political processes of Gaza. That terrorist regime lives in an urban area where it uses its own citizens, sometimes willingly, as human shields. Hamas intentionally uses hospitals, mosques, and schools as its bases of operations and weapons centers to maximize casualties. There is no real “both sides” argument here. Innocent Israeli citizens were willfully murdered. To the extent Israel responds, given how Hamas operates, innocent Palestinians will most likely be killed. The former were willfully killed by Hamas and the latter were put in harm’s way by Hamas. That should not and cannot prevent Israel from responding.
Conservatism, as an ideology, tends to have a clear view of evil. We live in a fallen world. Humans are not blank slates but sinners. Conservatives understand and recognize evil. When confronted with the evil of Hamas’ butchery, we must call it out and take a stand against evil. We must also note those on the right engaged in one of the oldest Marxist tactics in debate—attempts to add complexity to situations to avoid moral clarity. There can be no “what-abouts” in this situation. Israel has the right to defend and respond to wipe out Hamas. Those on the right who are trying to muddy the water or question the truth should be driven from the movement.
Unfortunately, as we move into the post-modern era where individuals seek to elevate “my truth” over the actual truth, we risk unmooring ourselves from actual truth. Social media influencers, detached from basic moral truths and character, have a greater desire for clicks, web traffic, and the accompanying revenue than to tell the truth. They attract a following of people looking to have their ears tickled who then spread the social media influencer’s message. The post-Christian right is all about power, often at the expense of truth.
The conservative movement has sometimes shown a lack of discernment in the past decade about who it platforms and trusts. For so long, the movement seemed so insular that movement leaders embraced anyone who talked the talk and hated the left. That embedded within the movement a number of people with large platforms who are revealing themselves not just to be unconcerned with truth, but also not concerned with conservatism or the foundational Judeo-Christian underpinnings of Western conservative thought.
Some voices now seek to shout down and bully into silence those who would stand for actual truth and real justice. The conservative movement and those who believe in truth cannot internally co-exist with those who could see the horror pictures out of Israel and use their platforms to cast doubts on truth and be ambiguous between good and evil.
If legitimate influencers on the right do not purge their anti-Semites, the movement will, in short order, lose its moral credibility and be no better than the college students marching in support of Hamas’ evil. This really is a time for clarity—and for truth.
These daily articles have become part of my steady diet. —BarbaraSign up to receive the WORLD Opinions email newsletter each weekday for sound commentary from trusted voices.