George Soros: Trading in Fallacies

George Soros does not like concepts that "blind". He seems to have fewer problems with those that kill.  The 'land for peace' concept is one such concept, and has been the focus of all Israeli—Palestinian negotiations which Mr. Soros urges Israel to resume.  Since 'land for peace' spread among world diplomats and blocked their rational thought and their grasp of historical truths, thousands of people have died.

Another one of Mr. Soros' cherished concepts is the misnamed 'cycle of violence'.  He even upgraded this ubiquitous bromide to 'the vicious circle of escalating violence'.  By seeing only a circle, with no cause and effect, he exonerates the culprits of their atrocities, he tarnishes the life—preserving right to self—defense and he tacitly encourages determined murderers.  All this, presumably, in the name of peace in the Middle East.

But, his most egregious notion is that Hamas and Hezbollah should not be targeted in the war on terror because 'both have deep roots in their societies.'  The 'circular' concept may have spawned this pearl of wisdom. 

Where did these deep roots come from?  A recent poll of 1,270 Palestinians, conducted by Hebrew University on September 26, 2006, found that a majority believes in terrorism and war with Israel, and 74% believe that violence and diplomacy should be conducted in parallel.  What has been deeply rooted in the Palestinian Arab society is the murderous ideology expounded in the Hamas and Hezbollah Charters:  eradicate the State of Israel in the name of Islam and even indulge in genocidal hatred against Jews, as the Hadith "Sahih Bukhari" commands.  How can anything peaceful grow out of these deep roots? 

Nevertheless, Mr. Soros remains in his ethereal bubble and states that 'the Palestinian people yearn for peace' and that 'Israel should have gone out of his way to strengthen [Mahmoud Abbas] and his reformist team.'  Let it be known that Abbas' own party, Fatah, supports the same destructive ideology as Hamas, in words and deeds — albeit without Islamic overtones — which may explain why Abbas never complied with the first phase of the Roadmap which called for the dismantling of the terrorist infrastructure.

Mr. Soros repeatedly makes the distinction between the 'political wing' and the 'military wing' of Hamas.  He could have added two other 'wings':  the 'exiled wing' and the 'prisoners' wing', as suggested by The (UK) Times.   Regardless of the many wings that are attached to Hamas, this blood—thirsty bird has soared only to heights of infamy.  Moreover, they will pursue their relentless campaign to destroy Israel, if we believe Moussa Abu Marzouk, the deputy head of the so—called 'political wing' of Hamas:

"One of Hamas' founding principles is that it does not recognize Israel. We [participated in] the elections and the people voted for us based on this platform. Therefore, the question of recognizing Israel is definitely not on the table unless it withdraws from ALL the Palestinian lands, not only to the 1967 borders." (Interview of April 24, 2006)

Abu Marzouk was in perfect sync with the late Hamas leader Abdel Azaiz Rantisi who declared in July 2001:

"The [Hamas] political leadership has freed the hand of the ['military wing' Izzedine al—Qassam] brigades to do whatever they want against the brothers of monkeys and pigs."

The Hamas program — all 'wings' combined — could not be more straightforward.  However, diplomats believe they can skirt reality indefinitely.  They negotiate with other diplomats who share the same belief.  Guess what often comes out of these talks:  virtual reality at its most menacing level because, in time, these concocted schemes become the sole reality.  In Orwell's words,

'The past was erased. The erasure was forgotten. The lie became truth.'

This diplomatic fallacy has mired Middle East peace negotiations since their inception in the early 1990s.

Fallacy is a word that comes often in Mr. Soros' book, The Age of Fallibility.  It is not hard to find how fallacy makes its way into his article.  He condemns the war on terror because it 'strengthens Hezbollah and Hamas' and 'our actions help shape their behavior.' 

Why should this observation run only one—way?  Could it not be that since 9/11 — and many years before that in Israel — they have initiated actions and made official declarations that have shaped our behavior?  For someone like Mr. Soros, who claims to be versed in philosophy, to overlook the fallacy of such one—sided sequitur is surprising.  A possible explanation can be found in his website where he says,

'[in some instances] the truth cannot be known because it is contingent on what we think.' 

If the truth of recent facts, thoroughly documented and unassailable for the most part, is an irrelevant category and if distorting or truncating it creates no dissonance as long as it serves one's purpose, we may be entitled to ask:  what is your purpose, Mr. Soros, in showing so much understanding toward the terrorists and so little concern toward Israel?

Mr. Soros sinks deeper into a quagmire of his own making.  In an interview with Eric Schmidt conducted by the Google Authors Series on August 9, 2006, he declared,

'our biased, distorted understanding actually shapes reality. ... And this is really an amazing example of how a false perception can actually shape reality.' 

Thank you, Mr. Soros, for being so candid!  You may be eager to shape an 'alternate reality', as Bill Clinton and other 'liberals' urge the world to do, but it is not through ignorance of the facts that problems are solved.

Mr. Soros certainly invested a great deal of intelligence to create an illusion that his thought process could apprehend.  Sixty five years ago, at a time of a comparable global threat to our safety and our democracy, Sir Winston Churchill had a clearer view in his address to the Joint Session of Congress: 

'Duty and prudence alike command first that the germ—centers of hatred and revenge should be constantly and vigilantly surveyed and treated in good time, and, secondly, that an adequate organization should be set up to make sure that the pestilence can be controlled at its earliest beginnings before it spreads and rages throughout the entire earth.' 

Now is certainly not the time to bury our heads in the sands of utopia.

Salmon Benzimra contributed to this article

Contact Rachel Neuwirth.

George Soros does not like concepts that "blind". He seems to have fewer problems with those that kill.  The 'land for peace' concept is one such concept, and has been the focus of all Israeli—Palestinian negotiations which Mr. Soros urges Israel to resume.  Since 'land for peace' spread among world diplomats and blocked their rational thought and their grasp of historical truths, thousands of people have died.

Another one of Mr. Soros' cherished concepts is the misnamed 'cycle of violence'.  He even upgraded this ubiquitous bromide to 'the vicious circle of escalating violence'.  By seeing only a circle, with no cause and effect, he exonerates the culprits of their atrocities, he tarnishes the life—preserving right to self—defense and he tacitly encourages determined murderers.  All this, presumably, in the name of peace in the Middle East.

But, his most egregious notion is that Hamas and Hezbollah should not be targeted in the war on terror because 'both have deep roots in their societies.'  The 'circular' concept may have spawned this pearl of wisdom. 

Where did these deep roots come from?  A recent poll of 1,270 Palestinians, conducted by Hebrew University on September 26, 2006, found that a majority believes in terrorism and war with Israel, and 74% believe that violence and diplomacy should be conducted in parallel.  What has been deeply rooted in the Palestinian Arab society is the murderous ideology expounded in the Hamas and Hezbollah Charters:  eradicate the State of Israel in the name of Islam and even indulge in genocidal hatred against Jews, as the Hadith "Sahih Bukhari" commands.  How can anything peaceful grow out of these deep roots? 

Nevertheless, Mr. Soros remains in his ethereal bubble and states that 'the Palestinian people yearn for peace' and that 'Israel should have gone out of his way to strengthen [Mahmoud Abbas] and his reformist team.'  Let it be known that Abbas' own party, Fatah, supports the same destructive ideology as Hamas, in words and deeds — albeit without Islamic overtones — which may explain why Abbas never complied with the first phase of the Roadmap which called for the dismantling of the terrorist infrastructure.

Mr. Soros repeatedly makes the distinction between the 'political wing' and the 'military wing' of Hamas.  He could have added two other 'wings':  the 'exiled wing' and the 'prisoners' wing', as suggested by The (UK) Times.   Regardless of the many wings that are attached to Hamas, this blood—thirsty bird has soared only to heights of infamy.  Moreover, they will pursue their relentless campaign to destroy Israel, if we believe Moussa Abu Marzouk, the deputy head of the so—called 'political wing' of Hamas:

"One of Hamas' founding principles is that it does not recognize Israel. We [participated in] the elections and the people voted for us based on this platform. Therefore, the question of recognizing Israel is definitely not on the table unless it withdraws from ALL the Palestinian lands, not only to the 1967 borders." (Interview of April 24, 2006)

Abu Marzouk was in perfect sync with the late Hamas leader Abdel Azaiz Rantisi who declared in July 2001:

"The [Hamas] political leadership has freed the hand of the ['military wing' Izzedine al—Qassam] brigades to do whatever they want against the brothers of monkeys and pigs."

The Hamas program — all 'wings' combined — could not be more straightforward.  However, diplomats believe they can skirt reality indefinitely.  They negotiate with other diplomats who share the same belief.  Guess what often comes out of these talks:  virtual reality at its most menacing level because, in time, these concocted schemes become the sole reality.  In Orwell's words,

'The past was erased. The erasure was forgotten. The lie became truth.'

This diplomatic fallacy has mired Middle East peace negotiations since their inception in the early 1990s.

Fallacy is a word that comes often in Mr. Soros' book, The Age of Fallibility.  It is not hard to find how fallacy makes its way into his article.  He condemns the war on terror because it 'strengthens Hezbollah and Hamas' and 'our actions help shape their behavior.' 

Why should this observation run only one—way?  Could it not be that since 9/11 — and many years before that in Israel — they have initiated actions and made official declarations that have shaped our behavior?  For someone like Mr. Soros, who claims to be versed in philosophy, to overlook the fallacy of such one—sided sequitur is surprising.  A possible explanation can be found in his website where he says,

'[in some instances] the truth cannot be known because it is contingent on what we think.' 

If the truth of recent facts, thoroughly documented and unassailable for the most part, is an irrelevant category and if distorting or truncating it creates no dissonance as long as it serves one's purpose, we may be entitled to ask:  what is your purpose, Mr. Soros, in showing so much understanding toward the terrorists and so little concern toward Israel?

Mr. Soros sinks deeper into a quagmire of his own making.  In an interview with Eric Schmidt conducted by the Google Authors Series on August 9, 2006, he declared,

'our biased, distorted understanding actually shapes reality. ... And this is really an amazing example of how a false perception can actually shape reality.' 

Thank you, Mr. Soros, for being so candid!  You may be eager to shape an 'alternate reality', as Bill Clinton and other 'liberals' urge the world to do, but it is not through ignorance of the facts that problems are solved.

Mr. Soros certainly invested a great deal of intelligence to create an illusion that his thought process could apprehend.  Sixty five years ago, at a time of a comparable global threat to our safety and our democracy, Sir Winston Churchill had a clearer view in his address to the Joint Session of Congress: 

'Duty and prudence alike command first that the germ—centers of hatred and revenge should be constantly and vigilantly surveyed and treated in good time, and, secondly, that an adequate organization should be set up to make sure that the pestilence can be controlled at its earliest beginnings before it spreads and rages throughout the entire earth.' 

Now is certainly not the time to bury our heads in the sands of utopia.

Salmon Benzimra contributed to this article

Contact Rachel Neuwirth.