Douglas Murray tells young Israelis why he's supporting Israel during wartime

Joined on a panel by Col. Richard Kemp in Tel Aviv, the UK journalist says it is 'the honor of my life to be standing here with you'

'Extraordinary times produce extraordinary people. Moments of great trial are the moments when you produce new leaders, new ideas, new heroes and new strategies. You are producing remarkable young men and women every hour and every day, and they will be an example, not just to the people of Israel but to the whole world. It's the honor of my life to be standing here with you'
-Douglas Murray. Tel Aviv, Dec 23.

This was the moment, a packed-to-capacity Carlton hotel rose to its feet in thunderous applause. We are not used to having friends of such repute making it their personal mission to defend us. British journalist Douglas Murray’s meteoric rise to household name in Israel in the space of just a few weeks has been, in the eyes of his detractors and Israel haters, well … disproportionate.
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I am far from debating Douglas Murray on any intellectual level, but I do have a slightly different take on the above sentiment, in that it is extraordinary times that opens our eyes to those who were always truly remarkable and those destined for greatness.
Douglas Murray & Colonel Richard Kemp discuss the Israel/Gaza war
(Video: IronLinks)

Douglas himself embodies what it means to be an extraordinary advocate for truth and good in a world increasingly backward in morals and seemingly out of its collective mind.
Deborah Danan, moderating a recent fireside chat with Douglas and the equally impressive Colonel Richard Kemp last week, kicked off by asking the question on every Jewish and Israeli mind: Why?
It is no secret that the silent majority, regardless of their own opinions and feelings prefer to remain just that, silent. And when it comes to Israel, voicing your support or engaging in defense of our country, has had rather unforgiving and cruel consequences to say the least, both in the public eye and in vocational environments.
Why indeed, would become most important question of the night.
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British journalist Douglas Murray and Col. Richard Kemp talk to 20- and 30-somethings in Tel Aviv
British journalist Douglas Murray and Col. Richard Kemp talk to 20- and 30-somethings in Tel Aviv
British journalist Douglas Murray and Col. Richard Kemp talk to 20- and 30-somethings in Tel Aviv
(Photo: Courtesy)
Colonel Richard Kemp went first. “I was brought up to know right from wrong. It is my duty to support who is right and if I can do so in a relatively small way, I am duty-bound. It is much easier to stand for Israel, when you stand in Israel. It is extremely important to understand context from on the ground and not a TV screen”
Douglas was equally uncompromising with his reasoning. “I don’t like lies being told and Israel has been on the receiving end of the biggest, deepest, longest lies being told in history. It’s moral hygiene to try and clean some of this up. When 99 lies are being told and one truth, the truth will eventually win. Don’t underestimate the validity of truth in an era of lies.”
The rest of the evening flowed entertainingly through Douglas’ trademark witticisms and sharp observations. Judging by the celebrity welcome they gave him, most of the audience would have heard a lot of his thoughts already on the war raging on our borders. They were also likely abreast of his opinions on a range of topics plaguing Western culture today, proven by the long line of attendees, books under their arms, waiting patiently for his autograph after final remarks were delivered.
But there was something uniquely special about having Douglas Murray, in the flesh, take a seat on stage in central Israel, during wartime. And that something was immediately evident when he began explaining the reason for late arrival that evening; he had just finished an interview with British broadcaster Piers Morgan. Knowing nods and smiles all around, the audience lapped up his recounting of the spat he had just had moments earlier with the libelous and dishonored YouTuber Cenk Uygur. His extended thoughts on the substance of his argument was golden behind-the-scenes stuff for any fan.
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The writer with British journalist Douglas Murray
The writer with British journalist Douglas Murray
The writer with British journalist Douglas Murray
(Photo: Courtesy)
The Colonel too, was in rare form. Where Douglas’ Israeli fame is relatively new, the Colonel's staunch and consistent support for Israel over the past 30 years is rivaled by very few, and as influential as even fewer. Providing interesting insights into the historical military approach of Allied forces in the Middle East, tastefully laced with his brilliant sense of humor (see his running gag referring to Douglas as the honorable Prime Minister), it was an absolute treat for those who may not yet have heard the great military man speak before.
His tales from the hostile British media circuit were particularly disconcerting albeit not entirely surprising to the British guests in attendance, already all too familiar with the biased conduct of the BBC and others.
It was not my first time enjoying the Colonel's wisdom in person, and readers of YnetNews will already be familiar with his luminous opinions on regional topics, but if you have a chance to hear him talk in person, it is very worth the effort.
The event was organized by TLV Salon & Technion UK for English speakers in their 20s and 30s.
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