Video emerges of Israeli soldiers shooting an unarmed demonstrator in the head and cheering the shot.
Especially revolting features.
1. The demonstrators appear to be a good five hundred yards away. Other than Israeli soldiers shooting and killing people, there’s nothing threatening going on. Certainly the soldiers themselves feel relaxed and secure.
2. Although they’re speaking in Hebrew, they use various Americanisms. ‘Bro,’ for example. This is our little baby, all grown up and murderin’ people. It fills one with such pride, doesn’t it?
3. Israeli politicians are defending this act. It’s no longer ‘murder.’ ‘Murder’ is a killing the society in question disallows. In Israel, such a killing of an unarmed, innocent person is a legitimate act.
I have heard people objecting to the use of the word ‘evil’ to describe Israel.
However, there comes a point where the social science paradigms cease to be appropriate, and the need for some sort of moral judgement comes to the fore. We could understand a nationalist, aggressively militarist reaction in Germany to the humiliation of defeat in World War One and the moral, diplomatic, and economic failures of the Weimar years; but the Holocaust was a bit much. We DON’T explain it; we condemn it.
Israel drifts over this line. These soldiers and the politicians — and the people — who defend them are no longer something we wish to understand and perhaps hence excuse. They have become something morally repugnant. They are evil, in a word.