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Not Dan Hannans finest hour this.Speaking only for myself I'm a fervent Eurosceptic but am not one of those who believe in blindly supporting the Israeli government in everything it does.
As regards his references to the Civil War,aren't most Tories sympathies with the Cavaliers? As far as I'm concerned the only good Roundhead was a dead one!

As I suggested in the article I submitted on Monday, there is a difference between being a "friend of Israel" and offering blinkered support for thier military actions.

Nice to see Dan relaxed and voluble again after his betrayal by William Hague over the EPP.

He always is able to find an optimistic and interesting note regardless of the desperation of the circumstances.

It's encouraging to hear that eurofascist, anti-nation state generation are a dying breed, and that the young are pro-democracy, anti-EU, and pro-nation state.

If only the parallels to the Civil War were a bit stronger. We could execute all traitors, declare independence from EU totalitarian power, and relaunch Britain now.

As it is the Conservative Party suffers from a small eurofascist rump that controls everything that moves. I'd be in favour of the use of some 17th century political methods. Why should the Conservative majority labour any longer under the yolk of the Eurofascists?

Dan's a survivor. He knows we have to endure for longer. At least he manages to stay cheerful.

Interesting article, but I think Dan Hannan is deflecting from his complete non-response to the fudged EPP issue. If you remember, he was going to honour David Cameron's word for him. He hasn't. So let's talk about something else........

In April, as a constituent of his, I asked Mr Hannan to obtain a copy of an EU Aid report. On 12th August I am still waiting for the report itself or an explanation as to why he has failed to obtain it. In the meantime the Green MEP for the South East area has succeeded where he failed. I now know why. Mt Hannan has been too busy writing Euro-Septic articles for the Daily Telegraph to do his handsomely paid and expensed day job.

This Cavalier lost his sense of humour long before the end of Mr Hannan's article. The Cavalier/Roundhead metaphor is mildly interesting at the beginning of it but is done to death by the end. Much of the pro Hezbollah, anti Israeli sentiment in the UK appears to stem from latent anti-Semitism. One only has to look at a black-shirted Galloway exulting in the Israelis getting "a bloody good hiding" to see that in action.

"Are Eurosceptics more likely to be friends of Israel?"

I'm bloody well not.

Too many otherwise sensible people subscribe to the either/or fallacy. EITHER we must accept that our fate is to be further subsumed into the European Union, OR we must sell ourselves body and soul to the United States.

Why not do neither? "Il faut cultiver notre jardin".

Dan disappointed me with this His generalisations just do not square with reality as other have already mentioned.

I have a personal and perhaps unique input to this as I was with the British army in Palestine in 1945-1947. I saw the Jewish settlers preparing for war and attacking our forces. The Arab population THEN was quiet [it hadn't been pre-war] . I was IN the King David Hotel the day before it was blown up and I personally witnessed the bodies of 3 British sergeants hanging from orange trees. All this and much more made me very anti-Zionist. Indeed I caused a slight stir at a Palestine police party by saying that the jewish attitiude to the Arabs reminded me of the Nazis' attitude to the Jews.

Just after I left the UN agreed a "Two-state" partition plan. The Jewish settlers accepted this but the surrounding Arab countries rejected it, and Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt swept with their armies into Palestine. On paper they should have crushed Israel at birth but were roundly defeated and have smarted over this humiliation ever since.

Moving on and half a century and several wars later Israel is an established fact and some Arab countries have come to terms with this.

However Iran under the Mullahs is detemined to dominate the Middle East and uses a jihad by its proxy Hizbollah as a means to this end. Hizbollah started the northern war from Lebanon and have rained down about 3000 rockets onto civilian targets in Israel. This is unaccepable to Israel and should be to us too.

How does that lengthy story square with Dan Hannan's simpistic scenario???.

To be fair to Dan Hannan, his scenario may be 'simplistic', but it attempts to be objective. Yours, Christina, may be a 'lengthy story' (it isn't), but it is purely subjective and empirical, and leads you to assert a superior 'reality'. This rarely results in cogent analysis.

Sorry Daniel, you are talking rubbish. Sad to hear you speak in such cliched and generalistic terms. I am an arch-Eurosceptic (former Referendum Party Candidate), and I hate the EU for what it is doing to our country and our continent. I believe this country should leave the EU immediately. However, I oppose totally the way the arabs have been dispossessed and abused in Palestine. The invasion / annexation of southern Lebanon and the killing of civilians, and laying waste of that nation is utterly unacceptable. I believe in justice for the arabs, so I must be an "arabist".

Oh, by the way, in case anyone trots out another pathetic cliche - I am strongly pro-jewish: they are great people as individuals, and I admire judaism for its common-sense morality and approach to life. I am just pro-justice as well, and I believe that the zionist state has caused much of the hatred and carnage we see across the world, and pareticularly in the middle east.

As for the Civil war... being a staunch royalist, I abhor the roundheads...

I suggest you stick to telling us the truth about the anti-democratic abomination which is the EU - you are a world-leader when you speak in that subject.

Christina Speight, that is a very important posting. I recall meting the wife of a former POW of the Japanese. At the time I worked for a major Japanese company with Japanese. My point to her was simple. What had been done to her husband and millions of others by the Japanese then gave them every reason to hate; and I would respect their right to hate for what was done to them.

It did not however require me to hate; my frustrations with the Japanese were different, more modern, and did not cause me to hate them at all.

It is for each generation to carry its scars, and to remember those who suffered and those who made them suffer; but we must look at modern times so we gain our own scars.

As for Daniel Hannan, I confess I was non-plussed. He seemed to be hanging a political argument on a convenient peg. I frankly did not see the dichotomy; I believe people can be pro-European Union and very supportive of The State of Israel.

I do not believe Israel has carte-blanche, but it obviously faces an existential threat none of us in Europe have faced since 1945 in reality. But imagine being Polish in the 1920s with USSR and Germany pawing at you - long before Hitler...........or being Lithuania............

Israel has to be a snarling cat it cannot lie before the fire............but I do not believe it is true to say that Mainland Europe is anti-Israel, quite the contrary.

It's another of those stupid 'with us or against us' type of comments. All it does is create division where it needn't exist. You may as well say that all left handed people are eurosceptics it's that barmy.

Surely some mistake.
It merely demonstrates the individuality and requirement to be self governing and free.

The only universally agreed generalisation in the above comments is that we must exit the EU. Isn't it time for the Conservative Party to swing round to withdrawal from the EU - if that is what Conservatives want?

Our MEP's cannot speak openly in the Euro Parliament. There is no Freedom of Speech.

Daniel and Chris HH are quitting the Euro Parliament. There is no longer any hope that we can reverse the democratic deficit. We should become completely Cromwellian and get out.

The Israeli situation is currently shrouded in the fog of war. Dan trying to see clearly through the fog is obviously not cutting much ice.

Tam Large is right. Dan must open up on his usual target. Maybe he will when secures a seat in Westminster. He carries much hope for many of us.

Like any generalisation or analogy it never applies 100% - but finding out whether someone is anti-EU gives you more than a sporting chance of being right when you say that person might be pro-US, pro-Israel, pro-liberty and pro-democracy. As opposed to working for the FCO for example...

I think the point is there are similarites in logic particulararly among the better informed partisans of these positions. the anti Eu position/ pro Isreal position has a greater emphais on the importance of coutnry's being governed democratically and a lesser emphais on the importnace of international bodies than the pro EU/ anti-Isreal position. Obviously this doesnt' mean that there arent' exceptions-but apart from Richard INgrams I find it hard to think of a right wing or centrist political commentator whose intersted in both who does take such a position, eg Peter hitchens (whose anti-war to show life is complicated) is both very anti-Eu and very pro-Isreal

I would also say Daniel Hannan is rare in being very well informed on both. I find it intersing that those are the two issues his at his most rightwing by Uk standards unlike say social issues!

Of couse pro-US, pro-Israel, pro-liberty and pro-democracy are not all the same and I definitely don't subscribe to all of them (not the first two, I'm pro UK and pro-nobody in the middle east). I don't think that Bush does either (despite his protestations), if so then why is he supporting Saudi and Pakistan? He lies every time he talks about freedom and democracy, he doesn't believe in either of them.

Cardinal - you go beyond scepticism (or should that be septicsm?) into wilful blindness.

I assume that you can at least see that Bush does believe that the spread of democracy and freedom would be in the geo-political interests of the US.

Bush supports Saudi and Pak to the extent that he does because he has no choice.

sorry cardinal that was intemperate of me.


This is a very odd article.

The idea that Israel is any kind of 'archetype' for a nation state is absolute baloney; it is too young (and atypical) as a nation to be talked of in these terms.

Hannan then glides from the idea of the nation state to the idea of the 'Anglosphere'. This is just naive rubbish and the spectacles through which Hannan views the USA are as rose-tinted as those through which Ken Clarke and co. view the EU. The truth is that the US revelled in the death of the British Empire and crippled us with the interest on war loans after WW2, just as the EU bleeds us for subsidies now. For the US we are just Airstrip One, I'm afraid, and as a right-wing Tory I am sick of being told that we have to blindly support the USA in whatever madcap adventures they wish to get up to. I would also like an independent short-range nuclear deterrent next time please, not one designed solely for use on America's say-so. Enoch Powell saw all this and was as implacably suspicious of the USA as he was of the EEC. Sadly it seems that there are no such independent voices left on the Right of the Conservative Party.

As for Hannan himself, he is deeply compromised, I am afraid. Cameron broke his word on the EPP but Hannan has basically bitten his lip and sat on his hands, for all his posturing beforehand. I too, once hoped that Hannan might be a refreshing change in Westminster but I am told that he has no such intentions of switching from Brussels (presumably the paycut puts him off!) I know for a fact that he spends at least half his time working for the Daily Telegraph in London in spite of his drawing a very handsome salary as an MEP in Brussels (shades of Kilroy!). Where are the inspirational, independent-minded figures on the Tory Right with a clear and pragmatically self-interested view of foreign policy and an Oakeshottian suspicion of grand schemes?

I am not sure that is fair. Occasionally in life we all have to do things we don't want to do in order to achieve greater things. To do so occasionally should be seen as a sigh of maturity not weakness.

The point is that Hannan's whole position is hypocritical. For all his insightful reports on EU corruption and incompetence he still draws a hefty salary (+ allowances) from Brussels and he still treats being an MEP as a stipend, enabling him to work as Comment Editor for the Telegraph (surely a pretty time consuming job?)

You can't be poacher and gamekeeper at the same time!

To give Hanan his due, he has argued stalwartly with successive Conservative leaders for withdrawal from the EPP and he supported Cameron in the leadership election on this basis and urged others to do so. Now that Cameron has reneged on his promise, however, it is hard to see how Hannan can continue to bite his lip and retain any credibility.

T & E, apology accepted :-)

It's just that every time I see Bush talking about democracy, my first thought is that he's not even attempted to nudge such countries as Saudi in that direction.

There's a kernel of truth in Hannan's point, but only as far as most people are followers on many issues. Anti-EU types tend to take their lead from the US, whose media reflects the public in offering uncritical one-sided support to whatever Israel does. At heart, I don't see any core values being reflected by such replication of beliefs - it's little more than groupthink.

Personally I'm EU-sceptic, pro-European, pro-Jewish culture, yet contemptuous of countries which are careless with human life. Israel is one of those - like many regions accustomed to death it has adopted extremely dirty methods at times, and the reluctance to discipline its soldiers for fear of comprimising their effectiveness leads to daily killings of civilians in the West Bank. Regardless of Israel's relationships with its neighbours, there's no excuse for that.

On Dan Hannan's money, I had an interesting email correspondence with him. I was amazed at his public support for Cameron during the leadership battle, and thought he might have been pro-Liam Fox.

I emailed him as I get his update every so often, and said that I was absolutely convinced Cameron's promise was false (I wobbled later on as did many after the frequency of Cameron reassurances), and just a ploy, and I would like to bet him £100 that the Conservatives would still be in the EPP a year later.

I was surprised to get a reply from Dan. He agreed to take on the bet as one way or another, he said that he would be out of the EPP within a year. (I don't think he intended to mean that he would quit the Euro Parliament!)

However, showing a little less certainty, he said he would only bet £10. I replied in shock that an MEP should never bet in chicken feed.

He replied explaining that he doesn't draw his expenses like most and that he is not as flush with EU funds as I thought he might be. He sportingly agreed to bet at £50 though, obviously implying that he had every intention of quitting the EPP if Cameron welched on his promise! I don't think anyone was expecting that William Hague would threaten MEP's with deslection if they lost the Party Whip. That was a betrayal beyond the imagination of any member of the Conservative Party's imagination, and a step which proves that the Party has no intention of trying to speak openly about the known corruption going on in Brussels, as Roger Helmer dared to do.

Hague's threats are the final straw in the Conservative EU coffin. If our representatives cannot even speak in the Euro Parliament to carry out their manifesto commitments - except as permitted by the EPP, we must get out of there.

I haven't yet called in my win with Dan. I thought I would see what happened next. My information is that he is hoping to get a Westminster seat, or at least attempt to win one. Hopefully I can allocate the £50 to his campaign costs when he does.

Needless to say I would far prefer to have lost the bet.

Complete rubbish by Hannan. I think we should withdraw from the EU; I think Israel should withdraw from ALL occupied territories, including east Jerusalem. And I know many people that feel the same way. Poor show by Hannan.

Andrew @ 13:19 - Israel is not uniformly careless of human life. I've read statements allegedly made by various Israeli politicians and generals, which I won't reproduce, which suggest that in their eyes the lives of non-Jews, and particularly Muslims, and even more particularly Palestinians, are worth little compared to the lives of Jews. Whether or not these alleged statements are authentic I can't say, but it's consistent with the heavy reliance on remote bombardment with the risk of innocent civilian casualties, rather than putting Israeli troops at great risk on the ground. On the other hand, their enemies seem genuinely careless of all human life - Muslim, Jewish, civilian, old, young, male, female, whatever. Of course there is a fundamental imbalance between the small population of Israel, and the much larger and rapidly growing populations of its enemies, which means that Israel has to husband its manpower and can't afford to sacrifice its people to save the lives of Muslim civilians, while its enemies are under no such constraint.

An article in the latest Spectator discusses the IDF and its values, which centre around the importance of human life and the duty of israeli soldiers to preserve it. However, the state of Israel also defines its duty to its citizens' lives as more important to the duty it owes to, say, Lebanon's citizens.

Not hard to see the logic there when expressed in those terms...

Well, it's said that there's a total of about 13 million Jews in the world, and if anything that number is slightly declining, with about 5 million in Israel:


Just restricting attention very narrowly to "Palestinians", it's said that there are now about 10 million in the world, and on current trends that number will double in the next 23 years, with about 3.8 million in the Palestinian Territory, 1.1 million in Israel, 3.0 million in Jordan and 0.5 million in Syria:


Well said, Dan Hannan. Am I alone in finding the tone of some contributors to this forum almost dementedly anti-American?

Of course, there are some Eurosceptics who are also anti-US (and, often, anti-Israel). They tend to come from the mildly demented UKIP end of the spectrum and are consumed with bitterness and a sense of loss over the end of Empire.

However, the better type of Eurosceptic believes in two things: national sovereignty and Western values. Israel represents both of these, often in very difficult circumstances. Three times since WW2 - 1948, 1967 and 1973 - numerically superior Arab forces have attempted to wipe the Jewish state off the map. Since then various terrorist groups - PLO, Black September, Red Army Faction, Islamic Jihad - have kept up a relentles campaign of savagery against Israelis (and Jews worldwide). Now, both Hizbollah and Hamas keep up the offensive while Ahmadinejad trumpets the old war cry 'wipe them out'.

Anyone who has been to Israel - democratic, pluralist, multicultural with a thriving free media and tolerance of alternative lifestyles - knows that, for all its faults - it is a bastion of Western values in the grim sea of oppression and ignorance that is the Middle East. THAT is why its critics, European and Arab alike, hate it.

For many on the Left, Israel's failure to fall to its knees in the face of primitive, atavistic, Islamic aggression is as inexplicable as it is infuriating. The Left's script - greedy, immoral Western Capitalist societies are on their last legs and only socialist revolution can save them - is not being followed in the Holy Land, and, boy, does it make them mad.

Eurosceptics, Atlanticists and Zionists are united in their determination to uphold Enlightenment values in the face of our enemies, be they the sick, self-hating white Left or the demented, envy-filled Jihadists of the East.

Two enemies, many battlefields but one struggle.

Well I'm euro-sceptic but think the Israeli's are a bunch of warmongering fruitcakes.

Daniel Hannan's attempt to draw a historical line from Cromwell to the direct democracy movement is very interesting, but ulitmately it does not work. Cromwell was no democrat - remember his summary dismissal of Parliament and rule
through the Major Generals, for example. Cromwell's heirs are Blair and New Labour, who are centralising more and more power in the hands of a few.

For me, being a Tory is about the preservation of meaningful tradition, actions that are truly in the long-term national interest and a government that in the main trusts individuals to be the best judges of how to live their lives. A policy of positive engagement with Europe and a balanced approach to the Middle East is in the best tradition of my kind of Toryism. Similarly, moves towards an increased quality of local democracy are very much part of that thinking.

I am proud to be a Cavalier - and for that matter, a Jacobite - in spirit, but in all reality these historical parallels are of limited use when determining the battle lines of modern politics.

Some would say, however, that there is still a Tory/Whig split within the modern Conservative Party, which is a topic that deserves a thread all of its very own!

Dan Hannan has come up with a nice comparison in his article, though the cavalier/roundhead bit is overcooked.
What is clear, is that euroseptics are pro-democracy and against big government. The actions of the EU over the last few years is a clear demonstration that they have an aversion to the democratic process (tending to disregard referenda) and would rather get on with the grand plan and have the little people in their places, tugging forelocks and bowing. Europhiles are of course pro a large state apparatus as it gives them the opportunity to dispense largesse and dependancy, which promotes corruption and indeed embeds it into the system.
Most right minded people would like to keep a measure of control over politicians, unfortunately our continental brothers and sisters have been party to a system that has ridden roughshod over them for years and they have got used to the smell of the manure.
I tend to think that Dan does a good job of popping the Euro balloons and puncturing the overweening ambition and ego's of those posturing tossers in Brussels and Strasbourg.

Long live the revolution and off with their heads.

An excellent set observations from Dan Hannan. This diverse opinions expressed on this page only serve to reinforce my belief that the Party is rapidly heading towards an interesting - and possibly divisive debate - about the future of British foreign policy. Over the next decade or so, I expect this issue will gain significant traction as a topic of conversation with party members and MPs “taking sides” (Arabist or Atlanticist/pro-Israel) in a similar way to the debates over the European Union throughout the 90s/early 00s.

Don Wilson. You are trying to find a division where none exists. I have no truck with UKIP, am pretty eurosceptic but dislike the activities of Israel and the US, am not bothered in the slightest by the empire but Israel's democracy is not one to be held up as an example (and as for the nebulous 'values' that really is going into UKIP nutty territory!)

Putting people in boxes, ends up, when everyone has finished complaining about who they are being put in a box with, with numerous little boxes, all with in an individual in it.

Robert Buckland - excellent post, I agree wholeheartedly.

Good God whatever next from the EU obsessed Daniel Hannan. I genuinely thought it was April 1st when I read this morning's Telegraph article. I am fervently Eurosceptic and think Israel are acting irresponsibly and making a bad situation much worse. Will Daniel Hannan stop at nothing to have a dig at the European European Union!

Don Wilson is a typically naive neo-con. Those on the thoughtful Right realize that blind allegiance to foreign policy made in Washington is not the best way to promote our national interest or assert our sovereignty. How does Don's 'national sovereignty' sit with having US air-bases on British soil (I am no Francophile but I am sure as hell that the French would never endure such an indignity)? With the US invasion of Grenada (without warning) in 1983? With US reservations about the Falklands invasion? With the US betrayal over Suez? With the fact that the US stripped us of territories and demanded the repayal of warloans at commercial rates of interest after WW2, whilst giving the Germans and Japanese huge injections of cash which were never repaid?
It is up to Don and co. to demonstrate how unconditional support for Israel and the invasion of Iraq is in the UK's financial, military and strategic interests in tangible material terms. Waffling on about 'Western values' doesn't cut it for me or anyone else of a forensic frame of mind.

That depends why they are hostile or suspicious to the EU if they are and why they are pro Israeli if they are, as to whether currently more people who are pro-Israeli are also Eurosceptic or Euro-Realist that's another matter, that would show a basis for unity or not. Anti-Semitic movements appear to have been historically much stronger in parts of the continent notably in Spain, France, Germany and parts of Central and Eastern Europe - the Pogroms, the Dreyfuss Affair, The Spanish Inquisition, The Concentration Camps during the war and the Jews in Europe had always been herded into Ghettos, basically without these events there probably would have been no major movement to create a State of Israel in the first place - of course most Israelis are European ethnically although of course it's not quite as simple as that there being Arab Christian and Muslim Israelis as well as Arab Jews.

Certainly the EU took a more sceptical line with regard to Israel than the USA has done, however in Suez the USA stopped the coalition marching into Egypt and it was France who was allied with Israel and the UK.

I don't think though that unless someone is actually Zionist that the issue of Israel in itself is likely to be much of a factor in deciding whether they support UK membership of the EU or not - I get the impression that actually Eurosceptic Labour MP's are more likely to be Anti-Israeli or neutral than Pro-Israeli, Conservative Eurosceptics on the other hand have tended to be Pro-Israeli, although this probably has more to do with the Ba'athist movement and other Socialist Arab movements and with Israel having links with the USA who Marxists see as being the Capitalist Great Satan, in fact now that Israel has abandoned the Kibbutz model of farming this tendency might have intensified although perhaps in Arab countries and in Iran there has been more of a tendency towards more market orientated solutions.

There will always be exceptions, of course, but Daniel Hannan is right on the money. Defending yourself against attack is the most fundamental response from a sovereign nation, and i'd guess the same people calling for Israelis inherent right to self defence to be reigned in by unelected international bureaucrats in the UN are the same ones calling for Britain's inherent right to self defence to, again, be hampered by unelected international bureaucrats, this time in the EU.

although perhaps in Arab countries and in Iran there has been more of a tendency towards more market orientated solutions.
Really I should have ended that with of late, or than there had been before - certainly in the 20th century many Arab countries forged links with the USSR and many in Labour were either secretly Communists or had Soviet links; Soviet agents infiltrated Student organisations, Trade Unions and political parties.

Im Eurosceptic but am not afraid to criticise Israel or Arabs. That was a pretty bad thing for Hannan to come out with as its clear he didnt really think it through.

It amazes me that people see comments like Hannan's as black or white - he said "often" not "always". So there will be pro-Israeli Europhiles and Arabist Eurosceptics but he's saying the distributions are skewed.

The points he raised about the Tory/Whig inheritance (tracking that back to Cavalier/Roundhead) was interesting. There has alaways been a tension between the populist (Tory/Roundhead) wing, Mrs Thatcher?, and the patrician, we know best (MacMillan? Hurd?) wing in this party. It does probably reflect the Liberal Unionist and Conservative merger. The Whiggish side tend to view democracy as dangerous with poujadist tendencies whereas the Tories are distrusting of the diplomatic, consensual approach of the Whigs.

Question is whether Cameron is more a Tory than a Whig? Will he in the end trust the people or is he another patrician prefering to leave decisions to the wise men? It's not clear yet - his behaviour on the A list, where he acually seems uncomfortable with his own proposal points to Tory, while the EPP mix-up has distinct Whiggish overtones.David Davis comes across as a Tory, Kenneth Clarke as a Whig.

We change our descriptions - Cavaliers, Whigs, Wets v Roundheads, Tories, Dries - but Hannan does have a point in the tension between those who believe in a privleged, better informed elite (Kings, Aristocrats or EU/UN) and those who trust the wisdom of the masses. It's not a clear division - the Roundheads after all ended up rejecting the Levellers etc and re-creating a psudo-Kingship based on Puritan Divine authority and the nearest England ever got to a theocracy - but there is a degree to which the Conservative Party still carries within it the differing genes inherited from two very different approaches to political practice.

I know this discussion applies to UK politics but in the USA it is notable that the so-called paleoconservatives are more sympathetic to the Arabs than the less nationalistic pro-Israeli neoconservatives.

Over here I expect that those most likely to be anti-EU and pro-Arab (to put it crudely) are likely to come from the old Right wing of the Conservative Party (Monday Club etc) as opposed to the new Right wing (Thatcherites) who are more pro-American and pro-Israel. That just leaves the Wets who were pro-EU and pro-Arab. Of course my generalisation could be totally wrong.

Over here I expect that those most likely to be anti-EU and pro-Arab

Richard, do you mean 'anti-EU and anti-Arab'?

I think being anti-EU is justifiable as the EU is an identifiable unit with known characteristics, non-democratic, corrupt and deceptive.

Arabs are a race. Generalisations about people usually turn out to be mistaken, as you suggest. We will win in the Middle East by identifying those who we can work with, as well as identifying those who are exceptionally dangerous to our security.

This has to be the most ridiculous argument ever posted on this site.

In my experience if there is any indication of someone's views on Israel it has tended to be that anti-EU (ie pro-free market) Tories lean towards the Arab states but I would say that's only about 55-45 - hardly a rule of thumb.

Hannan is clearly either suffering from too much sun or he's going down the road of labelling Arabists "wets" as a means of belittling their arguments - there is no greater path to condemnation in the Tories than to be associated with "pro-Euro wets".

If Hannan and CFI are getting that desperate then they must be worried that the scared-into-silence Arabist contingent in the Tory party are winning the argument.

The answer it seems is that when all else fails, compare them to Ted Heath.

Dan Hannan is absolutely right to set the debate on Israel and our view of its recent actions into the wider politiacl context.

Most certainly my experience in the European Parliament has more than satisfied me that those Tory MEPs who are most supportive of the " European Project" and in favour of keeping the link with the EPP are more likely to be critical of Israel. Those who take a different view of Europe are similarly more supportive of Israel's position. As in the House of Commons, there are some who have no strong views either way and this is not a rule set in concrete. Exceptions do exist but the opinion in Dan's article is broadly true.

As to the wider world, there can be no doubt that the Anglosphere takes a more vigorous view of the threat of international terrorism and the need to confront and deal with it, whether in Israel or closer to home, than do many of our European partners. Again, there are exceptions but the broad truth is clear for all to see.

So there is a thread and I see no harm in pointing this out. After all, was it not Churchill who referred to the eternal British and Conservative dilemma of choosing between 'Europe and the open sea'? That dilemma remains today and attitudes to Europe and the Middle East - not just in Israel but in Iraq and Afghanistan - reflect that.

Not sure whether your colleagues are truly represantative Mr Sumberg.Looking at this thread and a similar one on Iain Dales' blog the vast majority of commentators are Eurosceptic and would therefore be supportive of Dan Hannan but only a minority appear to be blindly supportive of the actions of the Israeli government.Therefore it doesn't appear to me that the premise of Dans article is 'broadly true' at all.Quite the opposite in fact.
Not at all sure that the 'Anglosphere' really exists in fact either.I see no Canadian or Kiwi troops in Iraq nor do I believe that our foreign policy goals always coincide with those of the USA despite Mr Blairs best efforts.

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