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Opening Arguments

A libertarian divide

Libertarians are not of one mind when it comes to Israel and Hamas:

I think that the libertarians who tend to be anti-Israel tend to be in the [Murray Rothbard wing] of the libertarian movement. They tend to be anarchists. They tend to have a deep rooted hatred of government. And it’s interesting [because] they tend to hate free governments more than they hate totalitarian governments. They tend to focus their hatred much more on the American government [and] on the Israeli government than they do on Hamas…

If you’re libertarian, that is if you claim to care about individual liberty, Hamas should be one of the top most hated regimes in the world. You should be celebrating that they are being destroyed and that the Palestinian people might have a chance to be freed from such a totalitarian evil regime like Hamas is.

And yet, libertarians don’t seem to care about the Hamas government, or actually support it, and they focus all their ire [and] all their hatred [and] all their focus on the Israeli government, a government that is in relative terms a rights respecting government, at least as rights respecting as any Western government. Essentially there’s free speech in Israel. There’s freedom of contract. There’s private property, not as much private property as those of us who believe in liberty would like, but much much better than 90% of the countries in the world.

… So I think that this is one of the ugliest manifestations of this fringe element – or not so fringe element – within the libertarian movement, their attitude towards Israel, their attitude towards the United States, their attitude towards foreign policy in general…

As someone with strong libertarian leanings, I've always resented what I considered the cartoonish picture of that philosophy painted by non-libertarians, usually liberals but sometimes conservatives as well. Just because we want less government and saner government, we get called no-government-can-tell-me--what-to-do anarchist cavemen. But there are obviously anarchists among us. I don't know if there are enough of them to be more than a fringe group, but it's more than I woule like.

And I just don't understand the apparent paradox here. Since anarchists ar supposed to hate all government, why in the world do they support a bunch of totalitarian Islamist extremists instead of a democracy like Israel? Is there any other expkanation besides anti-Semitism?