The Face of Evil
Vol: 114 Issue: 16 Wednesday, March 16, 2011
I heard somebody on television the other day decrying the onslaught of evil that has befallen our world. It is an interesting observation, given that for many today, ‘evil’ does not exist. And in a manner of speaking, they would be right.
Evil does exist, but only in the same sense that injustice exists. What is injustice? Try this – attempt to define it without using the word ‘justice’ or some form of the word ‘justice’ or another word that means ‘justice’.
You can’t define injustice by itself — because by itself, it does not exist – injustice is the absence of justice. Justice is something – injustice is not.
One is a positive thing, capable of existing alone – something we might call “perfect justice.” The other is a negative thing that cannot exist except as a measure of the lack of the positive thing.
But in this universe, both are necessary.
In that sense, the physical universe is like a battery. There must be both a positive and a negative for the positive to have any power. Good would be powerless if there were no evil to overcome.
‘Rich’ would be a meaningless term if there were no poverty. One couldn’t be healthy if there were no sickness. The angels were created perfect in every respect – which is probably why “healthy” is the one word you’ll never find used to describe angels.
So evil exists as a measure of the absence of good, but it is more than that. Good simply is – whereas evil requires intent. Allow me to demonstrate.
A tree can be good. A ‘good’ tree is healthy and strong and productive. Now, describe an ‘evil’ tree. A tree can be “bad” — sick, unhealthy, unproductive — but it can’t be evil. Things can be ‘bad’ – but evil requires intelligence.
The deaths of 10,000 innocent Japanese following the quake and tsunami was very bad, awful, catastrophic, tragic . . . but not evil.
It was a consequence of the damage that one would expect from a 9.0 earthquake and a thirty-foot tsunami wave. The earthquake wasn’t evil – it was the natural and expected result of two tectonic plates colliding and one plate snapping and then sliding under the other, forcing the earth to shift.
The tsunami wave wasn’t evil – it was what happens when billions of gallons of water are suddenly displaced. An earthquake isn’t good – neither is a tsunami – but they aren’t evil.
A warrior meets another warrior on the battlefield and in the course of open combat, one warrior kills the other. Good for one, bad for the other.
But ‘evil’ would not necessarily apply. Was King David evil? Joshua? Elijah?
We’ve looked at examples of good and bad. Now let’s look at evil.
“Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.” (3rd John 1:11)
On Friday night shortly after 10 PM, just hours after the commencement of the Jewish Sabbath, two knife-wielding intruders broke into the home of the Fogel family, murdering the mother and father in their bed along with their three-month old baby girl.
They then stormed one of the children’s rooms, slashing to death two boys, ages three and eleven. Two other sleeping children – aged two and eight – managed to survive when the terrorists failed to notice them sleeping in the other bedroom.
A twelve-year old daughter came home from a Sabbath function to find the gruesome scene. Twelve years old!
Tracks from the scene of the crime led directly to the nearby Arab village of Awarta. When news of the murders broke, Palestinians throughout the West Bank and Gaza cheered and passed out candies and sweets in celebration.
They celebrated the slashing murder of a three-month old infant! That is not bad. It isn’t a catastrophe. It isn’t a tragedy (except for the victims and their loved ones). It is EVIL.
Pure, unadulterated evil incarnate. Evil of the kind that would even make Hitler look away. Incomprehensible evil. How could a human being take a knife and cut the throat of a sleeping infant? Any human being?
How could anyone celebrate such an act as a good thing? What kind of people are they?
I would argue they might well be the most evil population concentrated in any one place on Planet Earth in the 21st century.
Evil requires intent. How’s this for another example of evil? “Suspecting Palestinians, Israeli Military Hunts for Killers of Five West Bank Settlers.”
That headline is a masterpiece of evil. The Israeli military is “suspecting” Palestinians? Who else? Disenchanted rabbis?
What does the Israeli military have to do with it? Well, they are the ones that ‘suspect’ the murders were committed by Palestinians. They are the ones hunting down the killers.
But by bringing the military into the headline, a cold-blooded, murderous massacre of a family is subliminally framed as a military operation against an Israeli enemy.
Lastly, the victims – “Five West Bank Settlers.”
AHA! They were settlers – (intended to be read as “squatters on Palestinian lands”) which implies they probably had it coming. “Five settlers” – one eleven, one three and one an infant.
According to the New York Times, the murder of a sleeping family isn’t ‘evil’ – but building settlements in the West Bank somehow is.
The United Nations and Western governments carefully worded their condemnation of the murders so as to create the impression of moral equivalence between Israeli military and the Palestinians who would either slash the throats of infants — or cheer the slashers on.
“Attacks on any civilians are completely unacceptable in any circumstances.” What does THAT mean? Does Israel “attack” civilians? I couldn’t say it any better than TownHall columnist Ben Shapiro when he wrote:
“This is what the United Nations does when faced by implacable evil: it reverses the roles. Israel is always the bully, and those who slit children’s throats and soak their toys in blood are the victims. Jewish blood is cheap at the U.N. But it isn’t cheap for Americans, who foot the taxpayer bill for that stinking, festering pustule of moral incoherence. “
When it comes to Israel, no atrocity against Jewish settlers is so horrible that the media can’t find some moral equivalence between it and the Israeli government.
The intent of the Palestinian murderers was to kill Israelis – the more innocent and helpless, the better. The method was the coldest, most brutal and painful way imaginable. The mission was to prevent peaceful coexistence between the two sides because the goal is to annihilate the State of Israel.
Still unsure about the identity of evil? “PLO: Israel Has Exploited Itamar Murders:”
“Abed Rabbo, speaking after the PLO meeting which was chaired by President Mahmoud Abbas, said the Palestinian leadership “reject the attempts to take advantage” of the killings, and called for “Israeli public opinion not to be dragged by attempts of its government to slander the Palestinians.”
Rabbo called Israel’s reaction to the murder of a sleeping family by Palestinian terrorists an ISRAELI effort “aimed at destroying all political efforts aimed at reviving the peace process.”
The face of evil in this generation has been so effectively disguised that the New York Times can argue that evil looks like a sleeping three-month old . . . ummmm, “settler.”
As to the Palestinian murderers, the Times explains that because they are Palestinians, they really aren’t murderers in the strictest sense of the word.
“Palestinians have often justified the killing of Israeli civilians, especially settlers, as a legitimate response to the Israeli occupation of territory conquered in the 1967 war, or in the case of radicals, as part of a broader struggle against Israel’s existence.”
Just in case you thought murdering a sleeping family was evil instead of “a legitimate response to the Israeli occupation” — now you know better.