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Gary Lineker’s latest outburst about Israel is his worst yet

Gary Lineker, the BBC’s leading political commentator, believes it is unfair that he is receiving so much criticism for his comments on Israel and Gaza. “As soon as you raise your voice against what they are doing there,” he lamented in an interview with left-wing journalist Mehdi Hasan, “you are accused of being a supporter of Hamas.”

Such an accusation is clearly scandalous. I’m sure St. Gary does not support Hamas, or indeed any other genocidal Islamist terrorist group.

I think, however, that he suffers from the same problem as a very large number of Western progressives. It’s that when it comes to Israel, he has absolutely no idea how biased he seems.

He also demonstrated this during the same interview. Speaking about the war in Gaza, St Gary said: “I can’t think of anything worse I’ve seen in my life. »

This is a remarkable statement. Not least because St Gary was born in November 1960. And in the 63 and a half years since, the world has endured a great many brutal conflicts. Take the Second Congo War (1998-2003), which cost an estimated 5.4 million lives. And the Vietnam War (1955-75), which cost around 3.5 million casualties. And the Soviet-Afghan war (1979-89), which cost around 2 million lives. To name just a few.

Indeed, far from being the bloodiest conflict since 1960, the war in Gaza is not even the bloodiest currently being fought. The Syrian civil war, which began in 2011, has so far claimed more than 600,000 lives. Then there is the small matter of Russia’s war in Ukraine. And, as mentioned in Way of the World on Saturday, the ongoing conflict in Sudan. To give just a glimpse of the horror: a 17-year-old Sudanese boy told Human Rights Watch that he saw paramilitaries shoot children and then throw their bodies into a river.

St. Gary, however, says he can think of nothing worse he has seen in his life than what Israel is currently doing in Gaza, in its efforts to destroy Hamas. I have no doubt about his complete sincerity. I just wonder how he came to such a conclusion, given that so many other conflicts during his life were even more horrific and killed many more people.

Perhaps during his glory days as a player, St Gary was so constantly focused on his football that he never watched the news or opened a newspaper – and therefore simply didn’t hear about these other conflicts. I suppose that’s a possibility.


Is there anything crazier than banning cat flaps?

Lord Blencathra, the Tory peer, has had enough of our cats chasing birds. His disgust is such that he called on the government to intervene. First by decreeing that all cats must wear bells. And second, by banning cat flaps, so that cats can no longer come and go as they please.

How exactly these two new laws would be enforced, I’m not sure. For example, what should the police do if they see a cat walking down the street without ringing the bell? Stop him? Order him to give them his address, so they can arrest his owner? Or will we tell police officers to never leave the police station without wearing cat collars with little bells on them, so that the problem can be remedied immediately?

On the contrary, the ban on cat flaps seems even more difficult to enforce. Since the police are not guaranteed to appear when you report a burglar entering your neighbor’s house, it seems unlikely that they will appear when you report a cat entering the house.

The main problem with His Lordship’s proposals, however, is not that they are impractical. This is because, from an ecological point of view, they demonstrate a desperate myopia.

As I have already explained, obviously to no avail, cats can kill a lot of birds – but birds kill a lot of worms. And worms, by helping to fertilize our soil, play an irreplaceable role in the natural world.

So if Lord Blencathra truly cares about protecting defenseless creatures from insatiable predators, he should also require all birds to wear bells. Worms may not have ears, but they can feel vibrations. And since Lord Blencathra’s plan for cats will result in a dramatic increase in the bird population, we must do everything we can to give our poor and vulnerable a chance at survival.

Then again, this plan might be even more difficult to implement than the one His Lordship has already proposed. In light of this, let me suggest an alternative. Forget making humble animals wear bells. Let’s make politicians wear them instead.

After all, once the election is finally called, our city centers will be filled with these creatures, mercilessly preying on unsuspecting members of the public. The ringing of their bells would at least alert us to their presence and give us a chance to escape before they pounced on them.


Path of the world is a bi-weekly satirical look at the headlines aimed at poking fun at the absurdities of the modern world. It is published at 7:00 a.m. every Tuesday and Saturday

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