Andrew L. Urban
Calling for Israeli restraint and/or a ceasefire, Australia’s Foreign Minister Penny Wong has joined French President Emanuel Macron in demonstrating unfortunate ignorance of the Hamas mindset.
This ignorance is a fundamental problem for the West, where many share it, from leaders to voters.
Perhaps the biggest mistake of the American intel world is to have imagined that Russians think like Americans. They don’t, writes Rebekah Koffler in her book Putin’s Playbook – Russia’s Secret Plan to Defeat America (Wilkinson), a page-turner revealing Russia’s multi-pronged, psychologically mature war against the US, masterminded by Putin over decades.
Likewise, Western leaders and populations have made the same mistake; failing to take into account the mindset of pro-Palestinian terrorists and activists.
It takes a Russian to know a Russian, says Koffler… who is Russian-born and raised, in Kazakhstan. With her native Russian language skills and her lived experience of life under Soviet rule, coupled with her love of America and its freedoms, she was the perfect intelligence analyst inside the US security community.
An insider’s valuable perspective … here is another, this time relevant to the current war against Israel by Iranian proxies including Hamas. Dor Schachar is a young Palestinian who found refuge in Israel. He escaped the indoctrination of ‘death to the Jews’; most haven’t.
His story is published in The Epoch Times of November 10, 2023:
“Yes! We need to kill Jews.”
Dor Shachar grew up as Aiman Abu Suboh in a Muslim family of five in the Gaza Strip city of Khan Yunis. At age 7, he was taught in school that he had to kill Jews. At the age of 12 1/2, he ran away from home and lived on a construction site in Israel.
Dor Shachar: When I started school, in first grade, for about a month, they taught us to write letters in Arabic and read. After a month, they began teaching us to kill Jews. They told us at school, “It’s a great commandment to kill Jews because they took your land, and you will fight until the last drop of blood to regain the land.” They explained to us that the land includes Jaffa, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the entire country of Israel, basically.
I knew Jews who came to the market [in Khan Yunis] to shop. It was a time when there was no intifada, nothing; it was absolute quiet.
They told us in school that Jews have three legs, that they kill children, women, men, and the elderly. That once they were Muslims, but they turned into Jewish infidels, and the biggest commandment is to kill Jews. All the students in the class had to say, “In the name of religion, in the name of God, in the name of Mohammed of Islam—kill Jews.”
When he resisted, he was hit with a rubber hose and the principal called his father, who confirmed the hateful message. “After about 10 minutes, my dad entered the classroom. He started hitting me and said, “Yes! We need to kill Jews.”
No, Hamas does not think like we do.
“ … the Russians … create dissent within American Society on important issues, undermine Americans’ faith in the integrity of the electoral process, diminish US defence policy planners’ ability to augment America’s military might and to pursue other similar objectives….Having pressed the right hot buttons, Russia’s strategy to agitate American voters into a frenzy worked,” writes Koffler. And continues to work. It also works in the Middle East. We just haven’t cottoned on.
The West’s foreign affairs ‘expertise’ is woefully uninformed, not only about Russia but Afghanistan and everywhere else. And, says Koffler, “anyone who dares to challenge their longstanding groupthink analytic line or policy prescription is a threat to their self-appointed ‘expert ‘title and cushy nine to five government job with ‘extra’ benefits.”
Andrew L. Urban is co-author of Zelensky the Unlikely Hero (Wilkinson), with a foreword by Koffler.