Eurovision: is once-tolerant Sweden now anti-Israel?

Eden Golan wins fifth place despite anti-Israel protests (Photo by Martin Sylvest Andersen/Getty Images)


The outrageous reception given to the Israeli candidate in the recent Eurovision song contest, Eden Golan, illustrates the enfeeblement that Islamic militancy has inflicted upon Western Europe by its long campaign of violence-tainted attrition.

There is no excuse for lumbering any contestant in such a contest with political events in that individual’s home country. And it is particularly scandalous and shaming that she was so loudly and rudely subjected to verbal abuse given that her only offense was to be a citizen of a country that was the victim of a barbarous cease-fire violation in October that resulted in the invasion and massacre of over a thousand for countrymen, many in the most brutal and sadistic manner and many of them among society’s most defenseless people: children including babies, women, and the elderly.

It is also an outrage that the audience was so disrespectful given that Ms. Golan had announced in advance the dedication of her song, which she wrote, to the hostages seized by Hamas when it invaded Israel.

This year’s Eurovision competition took place at Malmo, Sweden, a country with a commendable record of resistance to anti-Semitism, that sheltered many Jews and other fugitives from Nazism in World War II.

There has never been any historic controversy over the role of Jews in Swedish society. The Israeli contestant was born in Israel but lived for many years in Russia and represented Russia in song competitions but moved with her family back to Israel several years ago, mainly because of the discomfort they felt over the anti-Semitic atmosphere in Russia which has a long and sanguinary history going back to the pogroms of the Cossacks and including some of the darker moments of the Stalin era.

It is a credit to the professionalism and the fairness of the organizers of the Eurovision song contest that they were unmoved by the scandalous public reaction to the Israeli performer and confirmed her as a contender who ranked fifth on the night.

It is not clear whether a concentrated effort was made to pack the venue for the contest with militant Islamicists or paid hooligans of the kind that are now rampaging around American campuses until the invertebrate administrations of most of the universities summoned the courage to telephone the police to have them removed.

It is thus impossible to judge to what extent Swedish public opinion is hostile to Israel for responding as any country would to a provocation so immense and barbarous as that perpetrated against Israel by Hamas on October 7. But the waffling and weaselling of many of the European governments applying the baneful and time-raddled unjust cop-out of relativism to the cold-blooded massacres of terrorists and the righteous response of a democratic society seeking its own reasonable security invites us to fear the worst.

Hamas has declared that if it survives this war, it wins. And Israel has declared that it must eliminate Hamas as a terrorist organization, or it will lose.

The act of war committed against Israel by Hamas on October 7, 2023, is as great a casus belli as the Japanese inflicted upon the United States with the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 or Al Qaeda and its supporters and enablers committed against the United States on September 11, 2001.

On those occasions there was no discussion of proportionality, and the issues were so clear that the nations of the world were essentially for or against the provocative acts and neutrality was only adopted as a tactic for war avoidance by some countries unusually vulnerable to terrorists.

There is mounting evidence that the demonstrations at American university campuses are chiefly mounted by people having nothing to do with the universities and largely paid and commissioned by foreign or known domestic subversive elements.

The Biden administration, having recited the incantation that its commitment to Israel’s defense was “ironclad,” is now threatening to withhold armaments and munitions voted by Congress and promised by the president for Israel unless it consents to withdraw from Gaza, hand over thousands of Hamas terrorists in exchange for 132 hostages, and leave Gaza with promises not to return.

The Biden administration is now aligned with Hamas against Israel. As Martin Luther King said, “In times of crisis, what is remembered is not the accusations of your enemies but the silence of your friends.”

If the Biden administration has so corrupted and diminished the dwindling habitual support of the U.S. Democratic Party that it feels obliged to compromise the American alliance with Israel to appease Islamist extremists and rabid anti-Jewish elements in Minnesota and Michigan, although all polls indicate a heavy majority of Americans support Israel in its war against Hamas, then it is time for societal changes more profound than the likely replacement of the present American government.

There is no reason nor any rationale for anti-Semitism in the world now. The Jews are only about 15 million people in a world population of nearly 8 billion, of whom only about twelve percent are in a state of outright poverty.

Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state was recognized by the world in 1948 and is today recognized by practically every relevant country except Iran and that is for entirely tactical reasons related to Iran’s status as the world’s premier promoter of terrorism.

Swedish authorities should determine the source of the regrettable incident at the Eurovision song contest. Of course, everyone has a right to signify disapproval of a vocalist at a public entertainment, but all countries where unreasonable and inexplicable anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish demonstrations suddenly arise should identify the source of these actions and ensure that they do not in practice reduce the freedom or security of any law-abiding component of their national communities.

The Western world, at least, should have outgrown mob rule, and if it has not, we should know why not.