By John F. Di Leo -
I am sickened – admittedly, not for the first time – by the theater community’s embrace of a new play called Oslo, which won a couple of Tony awards this week.
Now, I have no idea how well-written and well-acted the show is. Obviously, if it won Tony awards, we can assume that it was both well-written and well-acted.
But the content of such a celebration is utterly destructive… and the giddy pacifist fools cheering its success don’t even realize what a damaged ideology they are championing.
Oslo (the play) is basically a celebration of the horrific, treasonous acts of Shimon Peres, Yossi Beilin and others, who – way back in 1993, engaged in clandestine meetings on behalf of Israel with leaders of the Palestine Liberation Organization – yes, the PLO – with whom it was utterly illegal to meet at all.
By 1992, the PLO was really on its last legs… they were still despised by much of the world, recognized as an evil, utterly illegitimate terrorist organization, and deservedly so.
The Oslo Accords that resulted from that those meetings legitimized the PLO.
Once the world’s anti-semites could say that the PLO was “recognized” by the Israeli government, all the gloves could come off; the world could now view these homicidal communists as valid political players.
The Oslo Accords paved the way for other countries to recognize the PLO who hadn’t before (“After all, who are WE to refuse to meet with them, if Israel, their target, is willing to meet with them?”)… and for other countries to donate to them… and deal with them… and treat them as if they were their own country.
The Oslo Accords paved the way for the utter monstrosity of declaring a “Palestinian Authority” within the borders of Israel, in Gaza, Judea and Samaria, and even giving the PLO’s vile heirs – the terrorist mafias known as Fatah and Hamas – the pretense of actually acting as just another legitimate government amid the family of nations.
This lunacy simply wouldn’t have happened without Oslo.
According to reviews (obviously, I haven’t seen it, and wouldn’t, on principle) Oslo (the play) celebrates the Oslo Accords’ fluffy liberal goal of “the peace process,” while leaving the audience saddened that the Accords failed, as peace did not in fact last.
But as we Israel-watchers know, in truth, the Oslo Accords only “failed” from Israel's perspective; they were a resounding success for the terrorists.
The terrorists never wanted peace in the first place; they wanted a second lease on life as terrorists, with the new sources of funding and political support that would come from recognition. The Oslo Accords have been very good for the mass murderers of the middle east.
Just look at the timeline: The mid-1990s marked the beginning of the modern era of daily terrorist incidents, replacing the pre-Oslo era in which terrorist incidents were infrequent enough that every such attack made the news.
Inspired by the message of Oslo – “Terrorism doesn’t land us in jail, it gets us a seat at the table!” – the intifada of the late nineties began in Israel and spread quickly across the world. Today, there are so many attacks - bombings and shootings and kidnappings and fires - across the world every day that news outlets have to choose which ones are noteworthy enough to cover.
Every terrorist group now dreams that if they do enough damage, in Iraq or Nigeria, in Afghanistan or Georgia, they’ll become notorious enough to get their own Oslo Accord – to get the recognition, funding and other support that the PLO got out of Oslo.
If you like the status quo – this costly, dangerous hell on earth known by so many names: "the quest for the caliphate," "the jihadist movement," or our necessary response, "the War on Terror" – it’s not an exaggeration to say that, at least in part, you have Oslo to thank for it.
Do theater-goers necessarily realize this, as they buy their tickets and fund this celebration of equivalence between decency and the demonic? Of course not. They watch Sweeney Todd, and it’s no endorsement of cannibalism; they watch Arsenic and Old Lace, and it’s no endorsement of mass murder.
But there is a difference. In Sweeney Todd, Arsenic and Old Lace, and the vast majority of other theater that involves criminal activity, even when there’s an effort to build compassion for the criminal, there is no effort to pretend that the crime should really be accepted. We may love the sweet old ladies who serve poisoned elderberry wine to visitors, but we know they should never have done it, and we know they must be stopped.
The sin of Oslo is that it serves the political goal of empowering the terrorists, of rewarding them for their years of maiming and killing innocent people. The sin of Oslo is that it encourages other terrorist organizations to choose the same path: Just be violent enough, big enough, horrific enough, and you could be rewarded with a seat at the United Nations and a Swiss bank account to rival Yasser Arafat’s.
The theater community should be ashamed to have been hijacked this way.
Copyright 2017 John F. Di Leo
John F. Di Leo is a Chicagoland-based international trade trainer, writer, and actor. His columns are regularly found in Illinois Review.
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