Danish Premier, Mette Frederiksen, Rebuts a Reporter Who Likens Israel to Hamas

A flash of moral clarity is offered from a European Social Democrat.

Sean Gallup/Getty Images
The prime minister of Denmark, Mette Frederiksen, on July 11, 2023 at Vilnius, Lithuania. Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Prime Minister Frederiksen of Denmark showed no patience for moral whataboutery when challenged by a local journalist over Denmark’s pro-Israel stance in the wake of the October 7 Hamas terrorist massacre.

“Mette Frederiksen,” asked the unnamed reporter, “you’ve laid flowers and shown your support here at the Israeli embassy. Are you going to do something similar in sympathy for the Palestinian civilians?”

“I have to admit that you continue drawing comparisons between things that are not comparable,” replied the Danish PM with clear annoyance in her tone. “Hamas is a terrorist organization that is attacking a democratic country, Israel. Israel has the right to defend itself and that will entail certain sacrifices.”

“It bears no comparison,” Ms. Frederiksen said, “and the fact that a Danish journalist asks this question is, for me, deeply worrying and devoid of history.”

The moral clarity on Israel shown by Ms. Frederiksen is remarkable in view of her party affiliation as a Social Democrat. Over recent decades, most European parties of the Left have gravitated towards support for the Palestinian cause and a countervailing hostility towards Israel.

Just last week, Jean Luc Mélenchon of the leftist party La France Insoumise assailed  a solidarity visit to Israel by the president of the French National Assembly, accusing her of “camping in Tel-Aviv to encourage a massacre.”

In Spain, the Leftist Podemos party issued a blistering condemnation that accused Israel of a “will to annihilate the Palestinian people.” 

The Danish PM’s forthright stance in support of Israel makes her an outlier within the European left. 


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