Israel Shrugged

If there is any chance Ayn Rand filled out a 2012 NCAA March Madness bracket , now would be a good time to get your hands on it. In things as unpredictable as the annual college basketball tourney and…say…world politics, clairvoyance is at a premium.
In Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, the iconic novel filled with many brilliant scenes illuminating the mind of the backwards liberal ideologue, protagonist Hank Rearden receives a pep talk from his ally and friend Francisco d’Anconia. Rearden had just been viciously maligned by the liberal intelligencia and put on trial by the liberal judiciary for failing to consider the ‘greater humanitarian wellbeing’ in his business dealings. In shock, D’Anconia bellows:
All your life, you have heard yourself denounced, not for your faults, but for your virtues. You have been hated, not for your mistakes, but for your achievements…You who’ve created abundance where there had been nothing but wastelands and helpless, starving men before you, have been called a robber…You, the purist and most moral man among them, have been sneered at…Have you stopped to ask them: by what right? By what code? By what standard? Man’s motive power is his moral code. Ask yourself where their code is leading you and what it offers you as your final goal. A viler evil than to murder a man is to sell him suicide as an act of virtue.
Sound familiar?
Earlier this week European Union Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton called on Israel to “preserve” the health of Palestinian prisoner Khader Adnan who had been on a hunger strike for 63 days. For good measure Richard Falk, the UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, urged the international community to pressure Israel on Adnan’s behalf, adding, “the improper treatment of thousands of Palestinian prisoners by the government of Israel should be of great concern to the international community, and it is a problem that I am paying close attention to in the context of my ongoing visit to the region.”
Adnan was arrested “for activities that threaten regional security” (essentially ''terrorism'' in some form or another) yet the evil Zionist empire still offered him food. It is he who refused to eat it.
On Tuesday the State of Israel struck a deal with Adnan to not renew his detention. Score another win for the twisted liberal.
I must ask those who were in favor of this deal, ‘pioneers of human rights’ Ashton and Falk included: By what right? By what code? By what standard?
Is it the same code that allowed you to sit silently as 19 year old Nachshon Wachsman was being held captive by the Palestinians? The same code that raised no voice against the monsters who booby trapped the house he was being held in with the explosives that would eventually kill him in an IDF rescue mission? Where were your standards then?
Or was it the same virtues that prompted you to applaud Israel for trading live terrorists for the dead bodies of captive soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser as a great act of humanitarianism? The same code that allows you to ignore that fact that Israel is a country that holds more humanitarian concern and compassion for its citizens when they are dead than the Palestinians have ever lent to their living population?
Perhaps we should ask Gilad Shalit if your code needs adjusting.
So I sit with a knot in my stomach as one contemptible ‘human rights visionary’ after another sells Israel the idea that its own suicide is a virtue, and as I contemplate how on earth we have come to adopt such a perverse social order, I, like Atlas, can only shrug.