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Bambie Thug has exposed the rottenness of the new Ireland

Ireland’s hostility to Israel is a grotesque betrayal of its own liberatory history.

Brendan O'Neill

Brendan O'Neill
chief political writer

Topics Culture Identity Politics World

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What a thing of beauty that Israel beat Ireland in Saturday’s Eurovision Song Contest. That Israel’s serene songstress, Eden Golan, got more points than Ireland’s warbling, gurning, pseudo-Satanic they / them, Bambie Thug. That an actually decent song trumped the caterwauling of a fake punk who mistakes having tattoos, identifying as ‘nonbinary’ and saying ‘I’m queer!’ for a personality. More importantly, that a singer who was harangued by baying mobs of Hamas fanboys did better than the ‘singer’ who helped to whip up this orgy of cruelty by saying she cried when she heard Israel had made it to the final. Boo-fucking-hoo. I bet you’re crying even more now, Ms Thug.

This is the news – the beautiful news – that Israel came fifth and Ireland sixth in the Eurovision Song Contest. Of course – because they are racist and mentally unstable – Israel haters on social media are saying the Zionist octopus helped to bump up Israel’s points. One pictures Mossad agents taking a break from hunting down the anti-Semites who slaughtered a thousand of their compatriots to post memes on Facebook saying ‘Screw Bambie, Vote Eden!’. In truth, the reason Israel did so well in the public vote – getting the maximum ‘douze points’ from no fewer than 14 of the 37 nations eligible to vote in Eurovision – is because normal people don’t share the Euro-bourgeoisie’s feverish loathing for the Jewish State. It wasn’t only the emotionally incontinent Israelophobe Bambie Thug who took a beating last night – so did the entire anti-Israel middle class whose cries for a boycott of Eurovision clearly fell on deaf ears.

We shouldn’t get ahead of ourselves, of course, given it’s only Eurovision, and given that some people (me, for example) were highly motivated to vote for Israel in order to wind up the wankers of Europe. But it is undeniably delicious that, despite the pompous pleas of drag queens and other paragons of morality for everyone to switch off Eurovision this year, millions watched. Around 7.6million Brits tuned in. Yes, that’s lower than last year – when we were the hosts – but it’s higher than every year between 2015 and 2021. It will be a source of mirth for me for some time that while the LGBTQ lobby was self-importantly putting away the glitter, locking the drinks cabinet and doing their very best not to check X for Eurovision updates, the general public were watching and enjoying the daftness of it all. Rarely has the moral gulf between us and our preening cultural overlords been so starkly exposed.

Then there were the votes for Israel. It felt like a tiny rebellion against the hysteria of the elites. Brits gave Israel 12 points. So did France, Germany, Belgium, Italy and others. This was people saying ‘We don’t agree with your bullying of a young woman and your obsessive hatred for her homeland’. Even the good people of Ireland gave Israel 10 points. As someone who knows and loves Ireland, it would not surprise me one iota to discover that people there are as yawningly vexed by Bambie Thug as everyone else in Europe who enjoys the sense of hearing. The land that gifted Eurovision Dana, Johnny Logan and Riverdance now finds itself represented by a self-styled ‘goth gremlin goblin witch’ who does ‘primordial screaming’ (shorter version: she can’t sing). What a mess. I’ve been listening to Logan’s ‘Hold Me Now’ (winner in 1987) to try to liberate my brain from Thug’s narcissistic howling.

To my mind, Bambie Thug sums up everything that is rotten about Ireland’s new elites. Yes, that’s right, she (not ‘they’, FFS) is the embodiment of elite culture, however much she might fantasise about being a zany witch sticking it to The Man, or whatever post-sex term these tossers use to describe manifestations of power. ‘Do you know what makes me special? I’m a queer’, she says, giving voice to the self-absorption of identity politics with its post-Enlightenment belief that your identity counts for more than your character. (And this is leaving aside the fact that Ms Thugs seems mostly to have boyfriends. Is this another bourgeois straight trying to sprinkle a little exoticism on her missionary-position life by saying ‘I’m queer’?) There’s also her cloying sense of victimhood. She says she had a ‘horrible’ time at Eurovision – diddums – and even accused an Israeli broadcaster of ‘inciting violence’ against her. Eden Golan was met with protests by an army of haters drunk on their disdain for Israel and you want us to feel sorry for a talentless gremlin who got a bit of bad media coverage? Grow up, Bambie. You’re 31.

This, sadly, is what Ireland is all about these days. Well, Ireland’s elites. Woke, identitarian, slavishly devoted to the gender cult, ‘pro-queer’, convinced they’re the perma-victims of history. It is hilarious that Bambie considers herself a daring outlier when, in truth, she’s a chief priestess of this self-regarding elite. If you were to invent in a laboratory an individual who embodied the warped values of the post-Catholic, post-nationalist, post-self-respect movers and shakers of the Dublin chattering class, you’d get Bambie. A ‘queer’ writhing about on a Satanic star and then blubbing like a baby when someone criticises her – it’s 21st-century Ireland in a nutshell. A toxic mix of arrogance and fragility. A showy denunciation of the old religion of Catholicism combined with a feverish embrace of the new religion of victimhood. Out with the cult of God and nation, in with the infinitely worse cult of the self and the suffocating realm of emotion. Bambie’s the finger-wagging nun of the new regime.

We need to talk about the Irish upper classes’ hatred for Israel. It’s intense. Alongside Bambie crying because the Jewish State got to the final of a song contest – this isn’t normal, folks – we’ve also seen Irish politicians noisily denounce Israel and Irish sports teams refuse to shake the hands of Israeli sports teams. Well, you never know what you might catch. Ireland is considered one of the most anti-Israel countries in Europe.

It wasn’t always this way. The Irish revolutionary Michael Collins was an inspiration to the Jewish liberators of Israel from the British Mandate, so much so that Stern Gang member and future Israeli prime minister, Yitzhak Shamir, used the underground name ‘Michael’. Collins once hid from the Brits among Dublin’s Orthodox Jewish community. The great Irish Jew Robert Briscoe, purchaser of weapons for the IRA during the War of Independence of the 1920s, and later a Fianna Fáil TD, acted as an adviser to Menachem Begin, one of the leaders of the Jews’ own revolt against British rule, this time in the Middle East in the 1940s. It pains me that so many in modern Ireland are ignorant of the long history of solidarity between Irish rebels and Jewish rebels, of the tight moral links between the liberation of both Ireland and Israel from the British Empire. That the nation that birthed such moral heavyweights as Collins and Briscoe should now foist on the world a genderfluid witch who weeps because the Jewish State gets to sing a song in Malmö is beyond tragic. If all was in order, the Irish would have been cheering their sister in national liberation, Eden Golan, not libellously dissing her as a ‘genocidaire’.

The Irish elites’ distressing hostility to Israel, their turn against their former comrades in the 20th-century struggle against imperialism, reveals so much about contemporary culture. It isn’t Israel that’s changed – it’s Ireland. Ireland has abandoned the politics of liberation for the politics of victimhood, meaning it is now more concerned with ‘Palestinian pain’ than with Israel’s right to defend its hard-won nation from the new invaders. Ireland has ditched the virtues of nationhood for the vices of identitarianism, meaning it is more obsessed with signalling its correct-think pity for Palestine than with standing with Israel against the anti-Semitic armies that threaten its existence. Ireland has swapped rationalism for emotionalism, meaning it is more comfortable with ostentatiously shedding a tear for Gaza than with appreciating the dire geopolitical and moral threat that anti-Israel hysteria poses not only to Israel but to the West more broadly.

I took pride in the Ireland that inspired national-liberation movements everywhere from India to Vietnam to Israel. The Ireland that planted the seeds of global freedom. The Ireland that took the ideal of nationhood seriously. But this new Ireland that sends forth a tattooed witch to try to win brownie points from the onanistic virtue-signallers of Europe’s very online middle classes? I don’t recognise this country at all.

Brendan O’Neill is spiked’s chief political writer and host of the spiked podcast, The Brendan O’Neill Show. Subscribe to the podcast here. His new book – A Heretic’s Manifesto: Essays on the Unsayable – is available to order on Amazon UK and Amazon US now. And find Brendan on Instagram: @burntoakboy

Picture by: Getty.

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Topics Culture Identity Politics World

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