CHANUKAH AND JEWISH HISTORY...Will We Be Maccabees Or Victims?....Bernard J. Shapiro
ISRAELI SOVEREIGNTY AND AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY....Bernard J. Shapiro
REFLECTIONS ON CHANUKAH...Guest Editorial....Yoram Ettinger
NOT FOR THE SPINELESS...Guest Editorial....Prof. Paul Eidelberg
TO BUSH AND BLAIR: We Don't Want Peace, We Want Our Homeland, Israel...Guest Editorial....Ariel Natan Pasko
REPENTANCE or DISSECTING SHARON (3 Parts)....Boris Shusteff
EXPECT NO RESPITE....Boris Shusteff
POLLARD SPEAKS - TROUBLE IN THE HOLY LAND....Aaron Klein
GAZA: AN OCCUPIED TERRITORY or LAND OF ISRAEL?....Yoram Ettinger
WHAT IS A SECURE & SOVEREIGN JEWISH STATE OF ISRAEL?....Emanuel A. Winston
STRATEGIC AND POLITICAL ANALYSIS
THE SOCIAL IMPACT OF TERRORISM: A Human-Centered Perspective....Louis Rene Beres
IRANIAN TARGET: The Jewish State....Arieh O'Sullivan
TERROR EXPERT YOSEF BODANSKY: Al-Qaida WMD Attack US Soon....Etgar Lefkovitz
IS ISRAEL'S SECURITY BARRIER UNIQUE?....Ben Thein
SYMPOSIUM: The Terror War: How We Can Win
IDF UNVEILS DIGITAL ARMY OF THE FUTURE AT TELECOM 2004....Arieh O'Sullivan
DO AS I SAY, NOT AS I DO....Evelyn Gordon
WHO, US? ANTI-SEMITES? US?....Steven Plaut
ONLINE [ISSN 1087-9404] Edited by Bernard J. Shapiro
TO MAKE A TAX EXEMPT
DONATION VISIT: http://www.freeman.org/paypal.htm
CHANUKAH AND JEWISH HISTORY
Will We Be Maccabees Or Victims?
The year is 70 C.E. and a young Roman legionnaire stands on a hill overlooking Jerusalem. While he watches it burn, he says to his comrades in Latin, "Judea Capta Est" (Judea is conquered).Yet like the legendary phoenix, rising from the ashes of its own destruction, Israel burst onto the world's stage 2000 years later, with the cry of a lusty infant yearning to breathe free. Five Arab armies tried to destroy that new life before it could take hold. With blood and fire, including the sacrifice of one per cent of its population (6000 of its best young people), besieged Israel secured its independence.
Just nine short years earlier, European Jewry faced its most devastating experience, the Holocaust. In the areas under Nazi occupation, the Jewish death rate was 90%. Despite revolts in dozens of camps, and heroic resistance with the partisans of free Europe, the Jews were unorganized, unarmed and ultimately became victims. During both the Holocaust and Israel's War of Independence, the world and its leaders were indifferent, if not hostile, to the fate of the Jews.
Jews in their own land, with their G-d, have great power, much more than the sum of arms and men. For example during Israel's War of Independence, some 6000 Jews were killed. A horrible number and a great sacrifice, but ONLY 1% of the Jews of the Yishuv. Compared to the Holocaust we see a great transformation in the power of the Jews to defend themselves. Unfortunately with the advent of Oslo in 1993, the price of Jewish blood is again becoming cheap.
During Chanukah we should recall the legacy of the Maccabees. Remember how two "Hellenized Jews," Jason and Menelaus tried to destroy Judaism and force assimilation on the Jewish population. For generations we have taught our children about the evil Antiochus and his attempt to suppress the Jews. In reality, there were traitors among our own people who led the way for Antiochus.
There arose in Israel, an almost similar situation when Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Yossi Beilin led a leftwing coalition that was blatantly hostile to everything Jewish. They forced Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin to go along with their nefarious schemes. They pushed through the Oslo Accords in the Knesset which surrendered the heartland of Eretz Yisrael, promised in perpetuity to Abraham and his descendants by G-d. The educational system in Israel was then revamped to eliminate the study of Jewish sources like the bible. They cultivated hatred of all things Jewish and especially religious Jews. Units of the Israel Defense Forces were recruited from the non-religious population for the sole purpose of suppressing and possibly destroying the religious villages of YESHA.
Peres, Yossi Beilin, Avraham Burg and other extreme leftists, anxious to win favor with the Arabs, much like Jason and the Greeks, planned to give away Israel's strategic assets. Territory is not important if your new god is economics. While the Israeli government renounced anything Jewish, including Holy Sites, the Arabs sought strength and comfort in a revived Islam. Nothing portrays the difference better between the Arabs and the Jews than how each views his religion. Young Arab men, promised paradise, cry "ali Akbar" (G-d is Great), then sacrifice their lives to kill Jews in one great jihad. Jewish soldiers filed to respond to the enemy, uncertain about their open-fire instructions, demoralized by a government, which lies to them about the advent of peace.
The Israeli people rose up in the 1996 election and threw out the party of appeasement that had abandoned Eretz Yisrael. Benjamin Natanyahu became Israeli Prime Minister and the National/Zionist/Religious groups breathed a collective sight of relief. ONLY RELIEF DID NOT COME. For some reason known only to him, Netanyahu (and now PM Ariel Sharon) proceeded to implement the very same Oslo (now called the Road Map) agreements the voters had rejected. And Sharon has decided to retreat from Gaza and encourage the development of a Palestinian State. Such a terrorist state would create a major strategic and existintial threat to Israel's survival. What should we do?
Let us be Maccabees again. Let us go into battle with the Maccabee cry, "All who are with G-d, follow me!" With the words: "Who is like untoThee O G-d (the acronym of which spells out he word Maccabee in Hebrew) inscribed on their flags, the G-d inspired Jewish army swept the much larger enemy from the field in a great victory. It is this victory for which we celebrate Chanukah and not just the miracle of the oil burning eight days.
There is a simple but crucial lesson for us all in the above events. If we as Jews turn our backs on our religion and our G-d, we can expect disaster. The current government of Israel has brought down the wrath of G-d on the Israeli people for turning its back on our heritage. Like Judah Maccabee, angered by the treason of Jason and Menelaus, and outraged by Antiochus, we must revolt against Sharon as we did against Peres and Rabin. The nationalist opposition in Israel must unite behind one Zionist banner. They must fill the streets and jails with protesters. City after city must be shut down.
Victory will not fall into our lap. It must be fought for and won. We must demonstrate that the strength of our will and the power of our belief can not be defeated. Only then will victory come.
ISRAELI SOVEREIGNTY AND
AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY
A Maccabean Perspective
By Bernard J. Shapiro
This article is quite critical of American Foreign Policy, therefore, I would like to say a few positive things up front. The American people when properly polled come out consistently in support of Israel. There are at least 50 million Evangelical Christians who are friends and dedicated supporters of Israel. Many of America's presidents have bucked the US State Department to help Israel with arms and money. The US Congress and Senate have consistently been friends of Israel. Martin Luther King, Jr. expressed his love of Israel many times. My own grandfather, for whom the Freeman Center was named, expressed his love of America upon his arrival on our shores:
"But what a change in life upon arriving in America - Free America. Here I suddenly found myself unbridled, the air free, no stifling, atmosphere - I could give free expression to the cravings of my soul! Life began to have a different meaning. What a blessing to have free assemblage, free speech free press! Can an American who has always enjoyed these blessings appreciate what it means to one who was deprived of them until manhood?"
Unfortunately there are institutions in America that don't love Israel as much as most of us do. Israel's relations with America go back even before statehood in 1948. During the critical years of WWII, the Zionist community of both America and Israel appealed to President Franklin Roosevelt to take action to stop the Holocaust. They were rebuffed at every turn. It was apparent that neither America nor any of its allies were very interested in saving Jewish lives. England was the most persuasive when arguing that the Jews saved would want to go to Palestine. This would anger the Arabs and should be avoided at all cost. It is true that European Jewry would have been a vast reservoir of new citizens for the emerging State of Israel. Their sheer numbers would have eliminated the Arab demographic problem in the new State. American policy came down solidly on the side of dead Jews as opposed to live Jews.
When Israel declared its independence in 1948, we were all pleased that the American president, Harry S. Truman, made America the first nation in the world to recognize the Jewish State. Yet even here there was a dark side to American Foreign Policy. The State Department had argued in vain against the recognition of Israel. When they didn't succeed at that they successfully placed an embargo of arms to Middle Eastern States. Seemingly neutral it only affected Israel since the British and French were arming the Arabs. So we have the spectacle of American recognition of Israel's independence while at the same time refusing the arms it needed to survive, to defend their lives.
Following Israel's Sinai Campaign in 1956, Eisenhower and Dulles forced Israel to withdraw with little political gain. Two "benefits" appeared to be: a UN Force in Sinai to guarantee free passage for Israel in the Gulf of Eilat; and an American promise to guarantee such free passage. In 1967 the UN Force disappeared, as did the American promise, which the State Department claimed they could not verify.
In the period since 1967, the US State Department has devoted an excessive amount of time developing and promoting plans to force Israeli withdrawal to the 'suicide' borders of pre-1967. With amazing regularity, the State Department has failed to be honest about violations of the agreements it has negotiated between the Arabs and Israelis. The US has been blind to Arab violations from the failure to see missile movements in Egypt (1970-76) to the failure to see Palestinian violations of the Oslo and Wye Agreements. This US blindness has always been one way. The Israelis are subjected to constant misinterpretations of agreements. For example, never having agreed to a freeze in Jewish building, US spy satellites are active daily counting houses in YESHA. And then publicly rebuking Israel for a normal activity of a sovereign country.
In order to pressure Israel, stories appear on a regular basis claiming that Israel is transferring American technology to third parties. In every case they are proven false, but the constant repetition is meant to weaken Israel diplomatically. The State Department has orchestrated a media campaign to damage Israel's reputation in general. A few examples:
1. Sharon was labeled a hardliner or rightwing extremist until he began his plan to retreat from Gaza. Other world leaders are Statesman and Arafat was a 'leader'.
2. Ethnic cleansing is bad in Kosovo but the ethnic cleansing of Jews from YESHA is good.
3. All disputed land in YESHA 'belongs' to Arabs even when Israel has clear title.
4. All foreign capitals are recognized 'except Jerusalem'.
5. Israeli soldiers defending themselves from attack have been treated by the media as the 'bad guy'.
6. Rock throwers who can crush your skull have been treated as 'demonstrators or protesters' by the media.
7. Jewish villages are 'settlements' and 'illegitimate' while Arab villages are all considered legitimate.
8. Today we find that creating a Palestinian State on Israeli land has become the "goal" of American foreign policy.
The list could on but now we must say something that should have been said years ago. It is very important for Israel to disengage from its close embrace with American diplomacy. It should be obvious to all that American and Israeli interests differ markedly in relation to the negotiations with the Palestinians. America has by its own admission ceased to be either pro-Israel or a neutral mediator (the Americans claim to be 'even-handed'). American policy in the final analysis will leave Israel with indefensible borders and an irredentist Palestinian neighbor yearning for all the land "from the river to the sea." Then, of course, they will also want Jordan.
Much more can be gained for Israel by negotiating directly with the Arabs. This used to be Israeli policy. In reality, the Arabs have ceased negotiating with Israel and now are negotiating only with Washington.. It may be necessary to give up American aid dollars and possibly weapons to break out of the current US embrace. It will certainly be difficult, but in the end, there will exist a truly free and sovereign Israel.
You shouldn't worry about severe consequences for Israel when it asserts its sovereignty for several reasons. For one, Israeli military technology is in very high demand in the American Armed Forces. Israeli aid to the United states in both high technology and intelligence far out weighs what Israel receives from America. Simply put, it is in the US self interests to maintain strong ties to Israel. And another major point is that the US population has a deep appreciation of Israel on a moral and religious basis and faces a common enemy: Islamic terrorism.
The alternative is to learn nothing from history: placing Israel's destiny in America's hands as was done during WWII. America won the war, but 90% of Europe's Jews were already dead. I would prefer Israel to survive.
REFLECTIONS ON CHANUKAH
by Yoram Ettinger
1. CONTEMPORARY RELEVANCE: Simon the Maccabee - who succeeded Judah and Jonathan the Maccabees - responded to an ultimatum by the Assyrian/Greek Emperor Antiochus (Maccabees A, Chapter 15, verse 33: "We have not occupied a foreign land; We have not ruled a foreign land; We have liberated the land of our forefathers from foreign occupation." Thus responded Simon the Maccabee to Emperor Antiochus' ultimatum to end "occupation" of Jaffa, Jerusalem, Gezer, Ekron and GAZA.
2. SOME OF THE FOUNDING FATHERS OF THE USA, as well as Paul Revere and the organizers of the Boston Tea Party, viewed the Maccabees as their own role-model. However, some of the successors of the Founding Fathers consider the Land Of The Maccabees, where heroic battles were conducted (northwest of Jerusalem), as "occupied territory."
3. ORIGIN OF "Give me liberty or give me death" and "Live Free Or Die". The politically-INcorrect Maccabees launched a principle-driven war in defense of ideas and tradition, in defiance of domestic pressure and external threats. Their sacrifice and political INcorrectness - in contrast with the accommodation, appeasement and vacillation displayed by the Jewish establishment those days - has preserved today's Jewish religion, language, culture and sovereignty. They followed in the footsteps of Abraham, Pinchas the High Priest (grandson of Aharon), Joshua, Calev, King David and Elijah.
4. ORIGIN OF THE NAME, MACCABEE. Yehuda's middle name was Maccabee, derived possibly from the Hebrew word MAKEVET (The Power Hammer), which described Yehuda's tenacious fighting capabilities. It may have derived from the Hebrew verb CABEH (to extinguish fire), which described the fate of Yehuda's adversaries. Another possible interpretation of the name is that MACCABEE is the Hebrew acronym of "Who could resemble you among Gods, Jehovah" ("Mi Camokha Ba'elim Adonye" in Hebrew).
5. ORIGIN OF THE NAME, CHANUKAH (THE HOLIDAY OF EDUCATION). According to the first book of The Maccabees, Yehuda (who succeeded Mattityahu) ordered the Jewish People to observe an eight day holiday on the 25th day of the month of Kislev, in order to commemorate the INAUGURATION (CHANUKAH in Hebrew) of the holy altar and the Temple, following Syrian desecration. Some have suggested that the 8 day celebration was designed to make up for the holiday of Tabernacles, which could not be celebrated by the Maccabees due to the war. Also, a key feature of Chanukah is the EDUCATION of the family on the historical background of the holiday. The Hebrew word for education is CHINUKH, spelled with the first four of the five letters of Chanukah. The Hebrew word, Chanukah, consists of two words, CHANU (they rested/stationed) and KAH (25), which refers to the fact that the Maccabees re-consecrated the Temple on the 25th day of the month of Kislev (purging it from the idolatries installed by the Seleucids). Some have suggested that the celebration of Christmas on December 25th and the celebration of the New Year 8 days later (January 1) have their origin in the 25th day of Kislev (which always "accompanies" December) and the 8 days of Chanukah as well as the eight days of circumcision.
6. HOLIDAY OF LIGHT AND REMEMBRANCE. The first day of Chanukah - the Holiday of Light - is on the 25th day of Kislev. The 25th (Hebrew) word in Genesis is LIGHT (OR). The 25th stop of the People of Israel - on their way from Egypt to the Promised Land - was Hashmona (same root as Hasmoneans, or Hashomonayim in Hebrew). Chanukah commemorates the victory of Light over Darkness. While Light stands for REMEMBRANCE, Darkness (Chashecha in Hebrew) stands for FORGETFULNESS (Schichecha/forgetfulness in Hebrew, spelled with the same Hebrew letters as Chashecah/darkness).
7. HISTORICAL CONTEXT. Alexander The Great - who held Judaism in high esteem and whose Egyptian heir Ptolemy II translated the Torah to Greek - died in 323BC. Consequently, the Greek Empire disintegrated into five, and thirty years later into three, kingdoms: Macedonia, Syria and Egypt. The Land of Israel was always militarily contested by Syria and Egypt (and Gaza was always the main invasion route!). In 198BC, Israel was conquered by the ancient Syrians. In 175BC, a new king assumed power in Syria, Antiochus (IV) Epiphanies, who viewed the Jews as pro-Egyptians and held Judaism with contempt. In 169BC, on his way to Syria from a military victory over Egypt, he devastated Jerusalem, massacred a large number of Jews, forbade the practice of Judaism (including the Sabbath, circumcision, etc.) and desecrated Jerusalem and the Temple. The rebellion against the Syrian (Seleucid) kingdom featured the Hasmonean (MACCABEE) family: Mattityahu, a priest from the small town of Modi'in, and his five sons, Yochanan, Yehuda, Simon, Jonathan and Elazar. The heroic (and tactically creative) battles conducted by the Maccabees, were consistent with the reputation of Jews as superb warriors, who were hired often as mercenaries by Egypt, Rome and other global and regional powers.
8. HOLIDAY/MONTH OF OPTIMISM. Saddam Hussein was captured during the Hebrew month of Kislev, the month of miracles. The first two Hebrew letters of Chanukah are those spelling the name NOAH. The Hebrew month of the post-flood RAINBOW of hope was Kislev. Moses completed the construction of the Holy Arc on the 25th day of Kislev, as was the date of the laying the foundation of the second Temple by Nehemaya.
9. PRINCIPLES AT ANY COST. While Passover and Purim are also national liberation holidays, Chanukah is a special national liberation holiday. The heroes of Passover and Purim had no choice but to defy their enemies. The Maccabees had a choice: They were offered physical peace in return for spiritual assimilation and a sellout of the Cradle of Jewish History and Jewish principles. However, they were willing to pay ANY price for the protection of their values and heritage. Chanukah symbolizes the victory of CONVICTION and ROOTS over SHORT-TERM CONVENIENCE and OPPORTUNISM/CYNICISM (currently known as "pragmatism").
10. NO FREE LUNCH FOR SOVEREIGN PEOPLES. Chanukah serves as another reminder that free people must be ready to fight - and sacrifice - for the RIGHT to be sovereign, especially in violent and unpredictable neighborhoods.
11. THE FEW AGAINST THE MANY, Right vs.. Wrong, Truth vs.. Lies. The Maccabees were a tiny minority - condemned by the "pragmatic" and "enlightened" establishment - upon launching their rebellion against an oppressive super-power. They were referred by Jewish "intellectuals" as "the enemies of peace" and "extremists." They prevailed due to their principle-driven, determined and can-do state-of-mind, which was compatible with reality, rather than with wishful-thinking, with Right rather than Wrong. WALKING AGAINST THE GRAIN, the Maccabees fought against overwhelming demographic, economic and military odds, just like the 1948-1992 leaders of the Jewish State. MAY CONTEMPORARY LEADERS OF THE JEWISH STATE REGAIN THE SPIRIT OF THE MACCABEES.
NOT FOR THE SPINELESS
By Prof. Paul Eidelberg
Israel is at war, a war for its very survival. One would hardly know this judging from Israel's Neronian Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon. Like Nero, Sharon fiddles while his country burns, but unlike Nero, Sharon doesn't know he's fiddling.
Moral cowardice permeates the Sharon government. No outrage by Likud ministers when Sharon reneged on his pledge to abide by his party's referendum on unilateral disengagement -- the policy he campaigned against in the January 2003 election.
And of course no public denunciation of Sharon's electoral thievery and political skullduggery. But what can one expect from people that have been conditioned by Israeli governments to tolerate the murder and maiming even of Jewish women and children? What can one expect from ordinary citizens given the spineless character of Israeli prime ministers?
And what about the Israel's general staff? Not a single general resigned from the Israel Defense Forces in protest against Sharon's indefensible disengagement policy, or to the sacrificing of Jewish soldiers to avoid killing anything but innocent Arab civilians.
So I write for another day. Perhaps men will yet rise to take the helm of state. With them in mind I offer, or rather adapt, some guidelines which another author penned for America in its war against an enemy related to Israel's.
I. Accept the fact that Israel is hated, not misunderstood.
A. Israel is hated because
1. Jews inhabit land which Muslims claim, rightly or wrongly, as theirs.
2. Israel is a sovereign and independent state, whereas Jews, according to Islam, are supposed to be dhimmies.
3. A Jewish majority in Israel rules an Arab minority, overturning Islam's moral universe.
4. Israel has defeated Arab armies, thereby assaulting Arab pride -- for which affront Arabs must wreak vengeance on the Jewish state.
5. Israel is an outpost of American cultural imperialism, of materialism and hedonism, which may infect and corrupt Islam.
6. Israel is a democracy, a threat to the power structure of Islamic autocracies.
7. Israel's existence places Islam in question as well as Allah.
B. Hasbara -- information programs -- will not endear Jews to Arabs or Muslims.
1. Better to be feared than loved, for fear depends on you, whereas love depends on the other.
2. Truth has never been the currency of nations.
II. Israel's security depends on its ability to kill its enemies.
A. Daintily applying military power -- such as targeted killings and brief incursions into Arab-held territory -- only prolongs the war.
1. Moderation or self-restraint in war arouses Arab contempt for Israel
2. Moderation in war undermines martial virtue and undermines the soldier's confidence in the justice of Israel's cause.
B. To secure its way of life, Israel will have to use military force in the way the U.S. used military force in France and on the Pacific Islands, and from skies over Dresden and Tokyo.
1. Progress in war must be measured by the pace of killing and, sorry to say, by body counts.
2. Among Israel's enemies the dead will include as many or more civilians as combatants because most of Israel's enemies wear no uniforms or provide havens for those who do.
3. This bloody-mindedness may not be admirable, but it will shorten the war and reduce casualties on both sides.
III. Cant will kill more and more Jews
A. Cease trying to make war civilized.
1. Enough of this deadly nonsense that "self-restraint is strength"!
2. Stop the moral clap trap about "purity of arms."
B. Israel, to repeat, is in a war for survival.
1. Stop moralizing by saying "we do not want to stoop to the level of our enemies" -- which is sheer cant, the language of moral cowardice and defeat.
2. War is hell, hell, hell. American ferocity in World War II did not damage the nation's moral fiber.
3. Don't worry about world opinion. Israel is condemned for killing one terrorist. Kill as many as possible in the shortest possible time, but do not stop until the enemy is completely disarmed and utterly incapable of waging war another day.
No doubt some readers will be outraged by these guidelines. Would that such rage would erupt among Jews whose fellow-citizens were reduced to human debris.
Prof. Paul Eidelberg is a member of the Board of Directors of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies.
TO BUSH AND BLAIR: We Don't
We Want Our Homeland, Israel
By Ariel Natan Pasko
Arafat just died (or did he die last week?). His body's barely cold and the vultures are flying overhead. No, not to pick at his disease-ridden carcass, there's nothing of value there, but to see what they can take from the Jews and Israel.
The prize; the Holy Land!
For centuries and millennia, Crusaders and Muslim hordes, Romans and Babylonians, have tried to take away the "Promised Land" (Genesis 12:7), the land that "G-D's eyes are upon it from the beginning of the year to year's end" (Deut. 11:12), from the Jewish people, (the "apple of G-D's eye" Zech. 2:12).
No sooner than that evil, sick, terrorist, homosexual, pedophile, serial mass murderer is finally out of the picture; than Bush, Blair, and most of the world jump on the opportunity to continue his legacy.
For what is more specific to his legacy, than to take away the Jewish people's ancient, historic, and G-D promised homeland?
Upon official announcement of Arafat's death, the Whitehouse issued in President Bush's name a statement:
"The death of Yasser Arafat is a significant moment in Palestinian history. We express our condolences to the Palestinian people. For the Palestinian people, we hope that the future will bring peace and the fulfillment of their aspirations for an independent, democratic Palestine that is at peace with its neighbors. During the period of transition that is ahead, we urge all in the region and throughout the world to join in helping make progress toward these goals and toward the ultimate goal of peace."
Bush, high on his victory against the left-leaning John Kerry has already begun spreading the seeds of his own destruction. He and his supporters in America and Israel claim "he's the best friend Israel has ever had in the Whitehouse."
Well, here's some friendly advice for him and especially his bible-believing supporters: "Keep your hands off the Jewish people's homeland".
Just where exactly are those Babylonians and Romans today? What became of the Crusaders? They've become the "Europeans," the EU, and Eurabia? The French? And those Muslim hordes; well, just as Sadat, Arafat, Haffez Assad of Syria and King Hussein of Jordan have gotten it (and Saddam Hussein is about to get it), they will too, if they persist in trying to steal the Land of Israel away from "G-D's inheritance," (the Jewish people, Deut. 9:26, 29; 1 Kings 8:51, 53; Psalm 78:71 and elsewhere). Look at the backwardness and poverty of the Arab/Muslim world today.
Is that what you want George W.? Is that what you want America?
Tony Blair, Prime Minister of the UK said, "I would like to! express my condolences to the family of President Arafat and to the Palestinian people. President Arafat came to symbolize the Palestinian national movement. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 jointly with Yitzhak Rabin in recognition of their efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East. He led his people to a historic acceptance and the need for a two-state solution."
What a whitewash, if Arafat wanted "peace" he could have accepted Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's offer back in 2000. Arafat's never wanted a two-state solution, the PLO covenant (never properly changed) calls for one state, "Palestine" to replace Israel. Arafat's "Palestinian national movement" more properly called Amalek, is a "death machine" and Arafat's henchmen (those coming to power now), Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Iran, al-Quaeda and the greater Islamic world want the "Holy Land" not "peace".
They want The Holy City of Jerusalem...
"Ten measures of beauty descended to the world, nine were taken by Jerusalem." (Talmud: Kiddushin 49b)
Blair continued, "That goal - of a viable Palestinian state alongside a secure Israel - is one that we must continue to work tirelessly to achieve. Peace in the Middle East must be the international community's highest priority. We will do whatever we can, working with the US and the EU, to help the parties reach a fair and durable settlement."
After the announcement of Arafat's death, Shimon Peres rushed to call on the Israeli prime minister and government to renew dialogue with the new Palestinian Authority leadership. Even Ariel Sharon said that the death of Yasser Arafat could be a "historic turning point" and he intends to continue his give-away plans.
But the Prophet Jeremiah already warned us about their lies, they will say, "Peace, peace, but there is no peace." (Jer.6:14).
Blair praised Yasser Arafat for making the issue of "Palestine" the most important global issue. Blair wants the entire world to work to take Jerusalem (the so-called 1967 "occupied territories") away from G-D and the Jews. And he wants Bush and America to help him.
G-D is abundantly clear what will happen when they try, "Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of poison to all the people round about, when they besiege both Judah [the Jews and the Land of Israel] and Jerusalem." (Zech. 12:2, see also Ezekiel ch. 38-39).
Anyone or any country that tries to take Jerusalem, or any part of the Promised Land away from its rightful inheritors (the Jewish people) will be severely punished. "On that day, I [G-D] will destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem." (Zech.12:9 and elsewhere).
Yet to the Jewish people, the Prophet Isaiah declares, "Comfort, be comforted My people, says your G-D. Speak to the heart of Jerusalem, and proclaim that her [Israel's] exile among the nations has ended." (Isaiah 40:1-2). We have returned home forever.
One last Warning...
According to rabbinic tradition, there are three gates to Gehinam (Hell); one of them is in Jerusalem. (Talmud: Eruvin 19a).
Arafat's already in Hell, anyone else, world leaders or Israelis, who block G-D's plan, and try to take away the Jewish people's homeland, will end up there too.
We don't want your peace; we want our homeland!
Ariel Natan Pasko is an independent analyst & consultant. He has a Master's Degree in International Relations & Policy Analysis. His articles appear regularly on numerous news/views and think-tank websites, in newspapers, and can be read at: www.geocities.com/ariel_natan_pasko
(c) 2004/5765 Pasko
REPENTANCE or DISSECTING SHARON
(Part 1 of 3)
by Boris Shusteff
The time is long overdue for those supporters of Israel who desperately WANTED TO BELIEVE that Ariel Sharon represents the nationalist camp to soberly reassess the situation and admit that we were wrong. It is time to acknowledge that behind the image of the "hard-line hawk" hides someone who only aligned himself with the nationalist camp because it gave him the most direct route to the reins of power.
The memorable image of Sharon from the time of the Yom Kippur War, with his head bandaged, has prevented us from seeing that he does not belong to the nationalist camp, because he lacks a nationalist ideology. We mistook his aggressiveness, ruthlessness and indefatigable energy in dealing with enemies of the Jewish state for his beliefs. We did not want to think that he could turn all these traits against his former allies, if he perceives them to be a stumbling block on the road toward his goals.
Not all, however, have been blind. Symbolically, two voices spoke up in unison, from two opposite camps, pointing out that everything that Sharon does, he does first and foremost for the sake of his own advancement. The first of these is Psychologist Vadim Rotenberg, MD, PhD who wrote an article titled "Ariel Sharon -- a Simple and Boring Story":
"I assert that the main theme of Sharon's behavior at all phases of his carrier was the achievement of success and self-affirmation. Ideological concerns were never determinative for him in contrast, for example, to Menachem Begin. Begin could make mistakes, but these mistakes were caused by his comprehension of the situation, and the motivation for him in all cases was not his personal success, but always the success of the cause he represented. From this perspective Sharon is the complete opposite to Begin. When Sharon was fighting terror... it was good for his society and facilitated Sharon's success as well. However, because it was good for Israel, by no means does this imply that Sharon's interest in his own success did not play an important, and even pivotal role. In this case there was simply no conflict between the interests of the individual and of society."
For many years Sharon's interests coincided with the interests of the Jewish state. The crossing of the Suez Canal during the Yom Kippur War, the promotion of settlements in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, and especially the War in Lebanon (when, with the help of the leftist press Sharon was transformed, as Rotenberg puts it, "into a hero and a martyr of the right camp") convinced us that all the pieces of the puzzle had fallen into place -- Sharon became seen as a politician of the nationalist camp.
However, when Sharon became Prime minister he "found himself at the epicenter of the battle between the 'right' and the 'left' camps" and the puzzle fell apart. According to Rotenberg, Sharon, lacking ideological motives, calculated that it would best serve his interests if he aligned himself with the leftist camp. Thus he became the protector of Israeli leftist politicians guilty of shoving the Oslo accords onto Israel, and this immediately calmed the attacks on him from the leftist Israeli media. At the same time the right wing was competing in trying to figure out what secret motives were driving Sharon's obviously not right-oriented politics, while not seriously considering an alternate candidate as their leader.
The conclusion that Rotenberg derived from analyzing Sharon's behavior was the same conclusion at which the leftist Israeli journalist Uzi Benziman arrived, in his controversial biography of Sharon "Sharon, an Israeli Caesar," published in 1985. Several episodes from Sharon's life documented in the book are extremely revealing in proving that Sharon not only lacks a nationalist ideology, but that he is a foreign element in the Likud.
It is a well-known fact that Sharon was the driving force behind the creation of the Likud. His ceaseless energy brought together several right-oriented parties into a new political organization. However, our memory conveniently forgets that this happened only because the Labor party rejected Sharon. As Benziman puts it, "The Labor Party Government apparently had little respect for his skills as a military leader and, therefore, was easily willing to see him leave the army. His [Sharon's] political goal was to remove this government."
In spite of the fact that Sharon received a Revisionist education at home he was a full member of the Labor movement from his youth. Thus it is not his views or ideology that caused Sharon to side with the nationalist camp but his desire to gain power. His decision to forge an alliance of right-wing parties was a calculated one, and was based on his good understanding of Israeli politics. "He read the political map of the country well and understood that the people were looking for a serious alternative to Labor," writes Benziman.
It is interesting to note that when Sharon started negotiations with Begin, the latter suggested that he join the Liberal Party, and not his own Herut party. Since both parties were elements of the main opposition party, Gahal, Sharon followed Begin's advice. He was not concerned with differences between the parties. How prophetic seems the episode described by Benziman, in which Elimelech Rimalt, an elder statesman, presented Sharon with his membership card. Rimalt "emphasized that the membership card was not simply a piece of paper, but a symbol of one's loyalty to a particular political philosophy."
Political philosophy? At that time Sharon knew only one type of philosophy -- that of a military commander. This philosophy was dictated by a superior officer, and in accordance with it the higher the military rank of a commander, the more people followed his philosophy. Therefore, responding to Rimalt, Sharon said that he would continue to work toward the creation of a major political party that would "transform the country." As Sharon saw it, if the Likud were to become a major party everybody would follow its philosophy.
Although the Likud gained 38 seats in the Knesset, the election results "disappointed Sharon as his dream of converting the Likud into a potent political force capable of removing the Labor Alignment from power remained unfulfilled." Though he was elected to the Knesset, his whole nature rebelled against the boring routine of political life. He was "soon discovered to be an impatient politician, who held his colleagues in the parliament and in his party in complete contempt."
Disappointed by the slow pace of the democratic governing process, Sharon began looking for a way of returning to the Army. Soon after Rabin was elected Prime Minister, Sharon resumed his attempts to becoming the Chief of Staff of the Israeli Army, by exploiting the deteriorated relationship between Rabin and Peres. In June 1975, he was appointed as a special advisor to the Prime Minister. Although this meant that he would need to support the Labor Party, for him this was not a big problem. He "explained his willingness to cross party lines by referring to the severe defense situation and the dangers which the country faced. In practice, however, Sharon's only motivation was his personal ambition to become Chief of the General Staff."
The next two sentences from Benzman's narrative are important in understanding Sharon's ideology, or, to be more precise, lack thereof. "Sharon had long since become tired with his political activity in the Likud and he faced no particular ideological or moral problems in supporting and contributing to a government that he had so vociferously opposed until recently. Indeed, from the moment he received his appointment [in the Labor government], he stopped all criticism."
Eight months later, after realizing that he could not play any significant role in Rabin's government Sharon resigned from his post and started scheming inside the Likud, trying to convince its separate constituent parties that he and not Begin should be at the top of the Likud's list. When his attempts to usurp Begin's leadership failed, Sharon decided to cut his relations with the Likud and to establish his own political party.
(End of Part 1 of 3)
REPENTANCE or DISSECTING SHARON
(Part 2 of 3)
by Boris Shusteff
Immediately after the announcement of the creation of his own political party Sharon began his attacks on the Likud. At a press conference in Tel-Aviv he declared: "the alternative (i.e. the Likud) is no better than the ruling party!" He told the journalists present at the press conference that,
"for him a political party was only a means and not an end in itself [emphasis added]. Sharon stated that he could not believe in a political framework that has lost its basic content. If good ideas cannot be fulfilled within a given framework, it was perfectly appropriate to seek alternative means."
Knowing in retrospect that eventually Sharon would become the leader of the Likud, it is interesting to note that Sharon "assured those present that he would under no circumstances return to the Likud [emphasis added], even if his own political attempts failed."
Sharon not only promised never to return to the Likud but also accepted a "moderate political tone intended to make his party appear to have a love for peace and a willingness to make concessions in order to achieve it." He wanted to present his new party "Shlomzion" to the voters as a sturdy and respected body and therefore "negotiated with a variety of political figures, demonstrating a remarkable willingness to compromise and reformulate his political positions."
Among others, Sharon approached Yossi Sarid, a very well known left-wing politician, and asked for a meeting. He offered to Sarid the opportunity to join Shlomzion, with the guarantee of being given the second position on the party's list of candidates. Sarid asked, "How do you think we can appear on the same list while our outlooks are so different?" Sharon responded that he was convinced that the public was less concerned with foreign policy and the Arab conflict than it was with domestic and social issues. "We both seek the well-being of the people of Israel. What can be the big difference between us? -- Sharon told the incredulous Sarid."
Future Meretz leader Yossi Sarid was not the only leftist politician whom Sharon courted. He also tried to enlist the small Independent Liberal party, well known for its dovish positions. When its leader Moshe Kol asked Sharon whom he would send to negotiate, Sharon answered, "Wait and see."
The next several paragraphs from Benziman's book, which we quote here verbatim are a must read for everyone who wants to understand Sharon's readiness to part with Jewish land:
"To everyone's surprise, Amos Kenan, a famous journalist known for his extreme dovish position and advocacy for full recognition of the rights of Palestinians, appeared as Sharon's representative. When asked how he could possibly reconcile his support for Sharon with anything he believed in, he answered that they were good friends and he was convinced that Sharon could make a major impact for the good in bringing about the changes necessary for the country.
Amos Kenan's role as Sharon's liaison did not end here. Kenan was instructed by Sharon to try to arrange a meeting between Sharon and Yasser Arafat or one of his deputies. ... A meeting was tentatively scheduled to take place in Paris, but at last minute, the PLO leadership turned down this chance.
...Sharon's dovish position went so far that even Uri Avneri, the champion of a free and independent Palestinian state, was prompted to discuss his possible connection to Shlomzion."
We must pause here to allow readers to catch their breath. One can bet that not many of them knew of Sharon's flirting with Yossi Sarid and Uri Avneri, and his attempts to meet Yasser Arafat, at a time when the PLO was already considered a mortal enemy of the Jewish state.
However, Benziman's story not only reveals Sharon's lack of ideological principles but also clearly shows that the line he uses today of making "painful concessions" with the promise to "never sacrifice the security of Israeli citizens" has its predecessor. As Benziman writes, " In discussion with Kenan, Sharon agreed to the transfer of the entire West Bank to Palestinian sovereignty on condition that all security arrangements be left in the hands of Israel."
It is hard to imagine where Sharon and Israel would be today if his overtures to the leftist camp had succeeded. But, though in his negotiations with the Independent Liberals, he "did not fight for any of the key polices he had so strongly advocated at the founding of the Shlomzion party," the alliance failed. This happened because in contrast to Sharon, the leaders of the Independent Liberals cherished their positions and were concerned that "Sharon's previous declarations presented too great a risk for this old and respected party."
When his attempts to attract the well-known political blocs and figures from the left failed, Sharon changed course. "He now portrayed himself as the guardian of the extreme right wing, forever faithful to the tenets of nationalism. He preached the need to expand Jewish settlements on the West Bank and solemnly warned of impending war, certain to start 'in the coming summer or fall'. He met with the leaders of Gush Emunim "the key proponents of the idea of 'Greater Israel'" but they, perhaps knowing of Sharon's previous flirting with the leftist politicians, refused to support him officially. "In anger Sharon declared that he no longer wanted to see or hear from 'those whores.'"
Sharon became desperate, sensing that Shlomzion had very little chances of achieving anything beyond the minimum representation in the Knesset. Therefore, forgetting his previous declarations that he would never return to the Likud "he began taking steps to assure his own political future by reopening his talks with the Likud." The negotiations did not go well because the leaders of the Liberal Party earlier betrayed by Sharon adamantly opposed the inclusion of Shlomzion in the Likud list. Finally when it became clear to Sharon that the Likud would submit its list without Shlomzion, he conceded to all of the Likud's demands, meaning that "Sharon would receive the sixth position on the new Likud list and the other Shlomzion candidates would be relegated to unrealistic positions between the 47th and 51st candidates."
However, even this was not the end of the story. The leaders of the Likud managed to torpedo Sharon's final efforts at joining the party. Sharon was extremely disappointed. He told Begin, who called to let him know that he was unable to persuade his colleagues to accept Sharon: "I am more than ever convinced of the wisdom of my move to leave the Likud. Anyone who saw the ugly maneuverings of the Likud knows why it is impossible to join forces with such a party."
When the Likud won the election, while Shlomzion obtained only the minimum two mandates, Sharon called Begin to congratulate him. "Your place is with us" -- responded Begin.
The circle was complete. After promptly writing on Begin's advice "a conciliation letter to Ehrilch [the leader of the Liberal Party]" the prodigal son returned to the Likud that he had smeared so heavily. The adventure with Shlomzion was over. The party had served its purpose and was no longer needed. Benziman writes:
"Those who had joined Shlomzion as a political organization in the hope of establishing a new political party capable of change were disappointed. The warnings of those who had reported that Sharon would use people for his own personal interest and then discard them should have been heeded. They understood that the leadership of the Likud would remain within Herut and given the tenuous state of Begin's health, Sharon was preparing for the battle of succession. But there was no stopping Sharon. With the same energy and determination that he had invested in establishing the party a mere six months ago, he now set about dismantling it."
In addition to dismantling the Shlomzion party, Sharon needed to repair the damage to his image that was done while he had been courting left wing politicians. He understood very well that if he were to succeed Begin, his road to absolute power would go only through Herut. Benziman writes that Sharon needed "to become completely assimilated into Herut. He therefore began assiduously courting Herut staffers and creating the impression of being the most avid supporter of Herut's ideology."
(End of Part 2 of 3)
REPENTANCE or DISSECTING SHARON
(Part 3 of 3)
by Boris Shusteff
The main reason behind Sharon's restlessness that pushed him toward the creation and subsequent destruction of Shlomzion was his inability or unwillingness to do what he was told to do by others. During his military career, he had always made it clear that he was the only one who knew what to do and how it should be done. Nearly in all of his positions he continually and loudly challenged the orders of his commanders. He had the same problem in the civil life, as well.
Appointed in 1977 as an Agriculture Minister, and chairman of the cabinet committee on settlement, Sharon was in charge of defining and implementing the government's policy for the settlement of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, in addition to his agricultural responsibilities. He realized very quickly that the Ministry of Agriculture was futile for his ambitions. Thus he simply ignored the needs of his ministry. Benziman writes that during his tenure Sharon made only "two important decisions in the field of agriculture proper: to increase the resources devoted to the growing of flowers and the expansion of the poultry industry. Both proved catastrophic and resulted in the bankruptcy or near collapse of many farms." The reason for the failure was Sharon's "ignoring the advice of experts in the field as well as his desire to impress everyone with the grand scale of his actions."
At the same time, Sharon's grand vision was a blessing for the proponents of expanding the settlement enterprise. It would be impossible to find anyone more energetic and forceful in his actions than Sharon. Following the so-called "Sharon plan" he "initiated the establishment of as many new settlements as possible. Although most consisted of only a small handful of settlers, he saw them as the nucleus for their future development."
The nationalist camp must be eternally grateful to Sharon, because he saw the development of settlements as a "potent tool to intervene in all aspects of government policy." This was a time when Israel conducted peace negotiations with Egypt. Certainly Sharon wanted to play an important role in it. However, he was not allowed into the small group that was making the decisions, which consisted of Begin, Moshe Dayan, and later Ezer Weizman. In spite of this, Sharon found a way to be influential. He did it through settlement construction.
"Settlements were being established with no thought for their future viability and with no connection to any broad Zionist vision, but solely to enhance Sharon's own political reputation and to provide him with a means to intervene in the decision making process regarding the peace talks with Egypt."
Several times, at sensitive moments in the negotiations, Sharon initiated new settlement construction making sure that the information was leaked to the press. It happened in January and then in March 1978. But even when, in April, Begin made a change in the decision-making process in such a way that the cabinet committee on defense, rather than Sharon's committee on settlements became responsible for approving the establishment of new settlements, Sharon remained successful at forcing the government in a corner.
One of the greatest incentives for Sharon's deeds was his "competition" with Ezer Weizman. He was envious of the fact that Weizman had been chosen above him for the Defense Minister position, which he coveted. Benziman writes: "His perceived rivalry with Weizman was so extreme that it could be said that the timing behind the settlement initiatives was planned mainly to embarrass and confound Weizman at critical junctures in the peace negotiations, rather than to promote Israeli settlements on the West Bank."
Benziman makes one more point in explaining Sharon's often-unpredictable settlement policy. He brings attention to the fact that every time Sharon was removed from involvement in the peace process with Egypt, he accelerated the building of settlements. And to the contrary, each time he was brought into making decisions related to establishing peace with Egypt, his settlement activity subsided.
Certainly the best-known story is Sharon's involvement in the destruction of Yamit. After twelve days of negotiations at Camp David between the Israelis and the Egyptians, almost all issues were resolved with the exception of the Israeli settlements in northern Sinai. Begin was in an extremely difficult situation, especially because prior to his departure for Camp David he promised the settlers that under no conditions would he forsake them.
General Avraham Tamir, Sharon's former comrade-in-arms, and a member of the Israeli delegation was regularly updating Sharon on the developments. When the talks stalled, Tamir called Sharon and told him that if he were to call Begin and to tell him that he, Sharon, the champion of settlement policy would support the evacuation of settlements, this would encourage Begin to make his last concession.
The choice was Sharon's. Based on his "persistent declaration of support for the establishment of new settlements and his frequent criticism of the peace process with Egypt," one would be surprised that Tamir even made this request at all. However, apparently Tamir knew that Sharon's lack of a nationalist ideology would allow him to speak with both sides of his mouth.
Perhaps he remembered Sharon's "willingness to limit all new settlements to a mere military presence on the West Bank in his talks with Yigael Yadin in 1977" when Sharon was creating Shlomzion. Or maybe he recalled that after Nasser's death, Sharon shocked everybody with his proposal for achieving peace with Egypt.
This last episode went as follows. It happened when Sharon was appointed to be a member of a high-level team to come up with alternatives for achieving peace with the new Egyptian leader. Benziman writes,
"Sharon presented a detailed proposal under which Egypt would have complete civilian control over the entire of the Sinai Peninsula, while the Israeli army would continue to maintain military control for 15 years. During this time, each side would have the opportunity of examining the other, with the goal of shortening this period of military occupation as some measure of mutual trust was developed. Egypt would commit itself to reopening the Suez Canal and reconstructing the canal-zone cities, and Israel would withdraw its forces from the canal waterline. Sharon's proposal startled everyone on the General Staff: how could this moderation be reconciled with his belligerence toward Egypt since the Six Day War?"
The answer came very soon. The proposal that formed the basis of the General Staff's recommendation was not accepted by Prime Minister Golda Meir. For Sharon that meant that his plan was rejected, i.e. that somebody else was going to make major decisions instead of him. His reaction could have been predictable. He immediately changed course and "adopted a position completely opposite to the one he proposed to the General Staff. He now called for the rapid settlement of the eastern Sinai and for the effective annexation of this area and the Gaza strip."
Translated into plain language, Sharon was actually saying with his new approach, "If you did not like my suggestion, fine. But now I am going to make your life hell. I will do everything to undermine your plans. At the end you will understand that I was right and you will come back to me begging for help."
So now, when Tamir called him, it was the moment when they needed him. It is he, Sharon, who would make the call that would "transform the country." And Sharon called Begin and told him that "making concessions was preferable to ending talks at an impasse over the fate of the settlements." This one telephone call demonstrated, as Benziman puts it, that "his position on settlements had not been based either on emotional or ideological grounds."
It is worth remembering that Sharon continued playing his role of defender of the settlers until the very last moment. Although he told Begin that he supported the evacuation of the settlements, he voted against the peace treaty when it was brought to a vote at the Cabinet level, keeping the hopes of the settlers alive. However, when the time came for the Knesset vote he voted in favor of the treaty, and then personally directed the activities to destroy Jewish life in Yamit and all of Sinai.
Seeing today that Sharon is ready to uproot 21 settlements in the Gaza strip and four in northern Samaria, we must admit that Sharon told the truth when he said in a Haaretz's 2001 interview that he has not changed. It is exactly because he has not changed that he announced several years ago that he made a mistake by destroying Yamit. This statement allowed him to improve his position as a true right wing leader, which he maximally exploited in order to become Prime Minister. It is exactly because he has not changed that he wants to transfer the Jews out of Gaza today.
Make no mistake - there should be no doubt whatsoever that Sharon really cares about Israel's safety and wants Israel to prevail over her enemies. But that doesn't mean that he cares any less about remaining in power. It is precisely because he knows that Israel is the only superpower in the Middle East that he is ready to part with the Gaza strip. He believes that with all her military superiority and might, Israel can afford this loss. Perhaps he is not even sure himself of how far Israel will need to go with future concessions. That is not important for him right now. Today with his power base in the Likud crumbling, he desperately needs to attract the Israeli center and the left, which is why he feels that abandoning Gaza will do the trick for him.
Menachem Begin's Likud Election Platform of 1977 clearly stated: "The right of the Jewish people to the land of Israel is eternal and indisputable... therefore ...between the sea and Jordan there will only be Israeli sovereignty." Long ago Elimelech Rimalt explained to Sharon that the party membership card is a symbol of one's loyalty to a particular political philosophy. By declaring his readiness to forfeit Israel's sovereignty over parts of the land between the sea and Jordan, Sharon shows his disloyalty to the Likud.
This only proves that Sharon does not belong to the Likud, and the healthy nationalist forces within the party must direct their efforts towards demonstrating to its voters the incompatibility between Sharon and the Likud's ideology. They should make it clear that the Likud with Sharon is not Begin's Likud any more. It is either the Likud or Sharon. They cannot keep walking together.
And at the same time they should also emphasize that Sharon is not only wrong about his decision to destroy Jewish life in Gaza and Northern Samaria, but that he does not have a monopoly on the truth, which is clear from the many wrong judgments made during his long career.
Actually it is just enough to recall that on September 19, 1973 Sharon declared, "Israel now awaits a period of unparalleled quiet in terms of national security. ...In terms of our country's defense, we are now in the most advantageous position Israel has ever seen and, in fact, given the nature of our current borders, we face no security problems whatsoever..."
In two and a half weeks history proved Sharon to be completely wrong. The Yom Kippur War, the bloodiest in Israel's history, and which brought the Jewish state to the verge of destruction started on October 6, 1973.
Boris Shusteff is an engineer. He is also a research associate with the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies
EXPECT NO RESPITE
by Boris Shusteff
Judaism does not encourage the celebration of the deaths of enemies. As it is written in Proverbs: "Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth" (24, 17). But this does not prohibit us from telling the truth. Pirkei Avot -- The Sayings of the Fathers -- teaches us "By three things is the world preserved: by truth, by judgment, and by peace; as it is said, Judge ye the truth and the judgment of peace in your gates." And it is truth that is the most grievously suffering victim of the decades long Arab-Israeli war. It is because so many efforts are directed towards its obfuscation that all hopes to achieve peace between the Arabs and the Jews are destined to failure.
The most recent example of this is Yasser Arafat's death. World leaders mourn the arch-terrorist as if he were a wellspring of virtues. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan named him a "defender of justice", and "a man who strove towards peace." French President Jacques Chirac called him "a man of courage and conviction." Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he was "a great political leader of international significance." And all this praise for a villain whose activity in the last 11 years has led to the murder of nearly 1,300 Jews. Extrapolated proportionally to the American population, this number is equivalent to 65,000 dead Americans.
The virus of mad lies has not spared the Jewish state either. How is it possible that official representatives of the Jewish state declare with straight faces that they will do their best to dignify the arch-murderer of their people? But these are exactly the words of the official Israeli statement: "The Israeli Defense Forces are deploying to allow a dignified funeral ceremony of Chairman Arafat." Can we imagine that the Jews would provide for a dignified funeral ceremony for Adolf Hitler?
Make no mistake, for the Jews Arafat has been the Hitler of the last 40 years. The similarity is undeniable. Hitler declared that his goal was eliminating the Jews and Arafat declared that his goal was eliminating Israel, the collective Jew. He even marred the word "peace" with his hatred of Israel, saying that for him "peace means Israel's destruction, nothing else." As General Munteanu, Romania's chief Middle East expert, who spent countless hours in conversations with Arafat, said "His hatred of Israel is literally in his blood."
Arafat's inability to fully clothe himself in Hitler's mantle was not limited by any lack of desire to destroy the Jews but only by insufficient weaponry and ammunition. Undoubtedly, if Arafat had had in his possession the might of Nazi Germany's Wehrmacht, the Jewish state would have drowned in a sea of Jewish blood.
But is it really reason to distinguish between Hitler's and Arafat's actions based on the number of murdered Jews? Judaism teaches that every person is a complete world. Does it really matter for the mother of a Jewish child torn into pieces by a suicide bomber that the number of Jews murdered in Arafat's war against the Jews is calculated in thousands and not in millions, as in Hitler's war? For her the whole world is ruined and destroyed forever. She has perished with her child, though she still walks the earth and is counted among the living.
A study conducted in September 2004 by Haifa University Professor Gavriel Ben Dor and Dr. Daphna Kanti-Nissim found that as a result of the latest terror onslaught on Israel organized and unleashed by Arafat one out of five Israeli Jews has lost at least one close friend or relative. And this is with use of the meager resources that Arafat had at his disposal. Just imagine what would have happened if he had access to the equivalent of Hitler's military machine.
Moreover, while Hitler's demise brought a stop to the annihilation of European Jewry, with Arafat's departure from the scene the death toll among Israeli Jews continues to grow. Even as Arafat lay on his deathbed in Paris, three more Jews were murdered by a suicide bomber brainwashed by the ideology of hate flourishing within the Palestinian Authority. On November 5, when Arafat was already brain-dead, a poll conducted among the Palestinian Arabs by An Najah National University revealed that if Israel withdraws from the Gaza strip 56.3% of them will "support launching attacks against Israel from inside the Strip," i.e. from the area that Sharon plans to clear of Jews, making it judenrein.
Some have hope that with Arafat's death, the enmity of the Arabs toward the Jews will subside, but such hopes are sure to be frustrated. The seeds of hatred so zealously sown by Arafat will grow into the fruits of new murderers, and much more Jewish blood will be spilled long after he is gone. The vicious anti-Jewish and anti-Israel indoctrination disseminated by his Palestinian Authority will not disappear with Arafat's departure. Already on the day after Arafat's death, Reuters quoted a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades -- the military wing of Arafat's Fatah -- saying, "We will kill anyone who would try to bargain over issues president Arafat rejected. No for concessions, no for settling refugees. We will not rest until we drive the Zionists out of our land."
One should not be shocked by such vitriolic speech. These pronouncements do not deviate at all from the Palestinian National Charter, which is alive and well, and proclaims an Arab homeland in all of Palestine within the "boundaries it had during the British mandate" (Article 2), i.e. including all of Israel. And the recipe it prescribes for achieving this is "armed struggle." It is "the only way to liberate Palestine" (Article 9).
This "armed struggle," called "the peace process" by the naïve, reached a pinnacle in the post-Oslo years, with various Palestinian groups indiscriminately murdering Jewish elderly, women and children in their houses, buses, restaurants and shopping malls, adding ten thousand to Arafat's list of killed and maimed Jews. This terrorist madness took its toll not only on the lives of the Jews but on the polices of the Israeli government as well. It is terrorist violence that has caused so many shameful defeatist pages to be inscribed into the annals of Jewish history.
The most disastrous shift in Israel's policy is its acquiescence to giving up Jewish land in order to create a new Arab state. Whether or not the Palestinian Arabs are actually a distinct people is a question we won't delve into here. What is undoubtedly true, however, is that the strongest passion unifying them is the hatred for Israel that Arafat has taught them for nearly two generations. And yet, Israel has not only accepted the idea that this "Palestinian people" deserves a new independent state, but it is now ready to part with Jewish lands in order to allow this state to be built. The Israeli position strongly articulated by Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Yosef Tekoah 30 years ago has been totally abandoned. His declarations from the UN General Assembly rostrum that "the Palestinian Arab state of Jordan" already exists and that "without the Palestinians, Jordan is a state without a people" are completely forgotten.
Therefore, nobody even bothers to ask the question of why the Palestinian Arabs should have two states while all other peoples should be satisfied with one. Of course, if the Israeli Prime Minister himself speaks about the necessity of having such a state, who are other world leaders to contradict him? But it is Israel's readiness to abandon land that was an absolutely taboo subject not long ago, is exactly what makes Arafat dangerous to the Jews even after his death. He remains the ticking time bomb that threatens to explode by sending more martyrs on their way to "liberate Jerusalem" in order to bury him there. Saeb Erakat, the former chief Palestinian negotiator, vowed that "the president will be buried in Jerusalem, on the Temple Mount, when it is the capital of a Palestinian state." Israeli Arab Member of Knesset and form! er Arafat advisor Ahmed Tibi concurred, saying in remarks broadcast on November 10 by Israeli radio: "In the end... a day will come when there is a sovereign Palestinian government, a Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem, and Yasser Arafat will be buried in the mosque of Al-Aqsa." And though Jerusalem for the Israelis was once an uncrossable red line, the city's future is now also on the negotiating table, waiting to join the long list of initial Israeli "no"s and "never"s that have, without exception, became shameful "yes"s.
It would be wishful thinking to believe that with Arafat's passing the Arab war against the Jews will end. It did not start with Arafat and it was not only Arafat's war. Tiny Israel is a foreign body within the immense multitude of Arab lands. The Arabs cannot tolerate a situation in which a dhimmi people lives in sovereignty on land the Arabs consider their own.
In truth, there is nothing to suggest that the attitude in the Muslim world toward the Jews has changed from October 28, 1937, when Abdel-Aziz ibn Sa'ud, king of Saudi Arabia told the British political agent Colonel H.R.P. Dickson:
"Our hatred for the Jews dates from God's condemnation of them for their persecution and rejection of Isa [Jesus], and their subsequent rejection later of His chosen Prophet. ...Verily the word of God teaches us, and we implicitly believe this, that for a Muslim to kill a Jew, or for him to be killed by a Jew ensures him an immediate entry into Heaven and into the august presence of God Almighty."
We must be weary of succumbing to the already-widely-repeated myth that Arafat's death will bring a turning point to the conflict. As before, this war is being waged by the whole Arab world against the Jews. And not only by the Arab world, but by all those who mourn the death of Arafat -- the death of a murderer, of whom Ariel Sharon said in 1995: "I don't know anyone other than Arafat who has as much civilian Jewish blood on his hands since the time of the Nazis." In contrast with the fall of Nazi Germany, which halted that war against the Jews, Arafat's death will not lead to the reprieve that Israeli Jews so desperately seek.
Boris Shusteff is an engineer. He is also a research associate with the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies.
Worldnetdaily - November 21, 2004
TROUBLE IN THE HOLY LAND
By Aaron Klein
'They want to trade me for a murderer,' says Israeli spy of Sharon government'
Israel has been grooming convicted killer Marwan Barghouti to become the next Palestinian Authority leader, holding a series of clandestine meetings with him, incarcerated Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard, who media reports claimmay be part of a prisoner exchange involving Barghouti, told WorldNetDaily.
Israeli officials said last week they may release several jailed Palestinians as a "goodwill gesture" toward the future PA leadership. There have been a few reports that Barghouti, who was recently sentenced in Israel to five life terms for planning gun ambushes and a suicide bombing, may be considered for release, but Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is said to have rejected the idea. Reports list Barghouti as the widely favored candidate for PA president.
Even with Jerusalem officially dismissing the possibility of releasing Barghouti, Israeli Interior Minister Avraham Poraz speculated last week, "We are looking for a partner for the Gaza withdrawal. It seems that this will have to include releasing prisoners ... [perhaps even] including Barghouti."
Israel's Army Radio also quoted unnamed Israeli officials speculating Barghouti could be released.
Barghouti is serving multiple life terms for his role in the killings of four Israelis and a Greek monk. Israeli security sources also tell WorldNetDaily Barghouti was one of the architects of the current intifada, the terrorist war waged on Israel after Arafat, at Camp David in 2000, turned down an offer of a Palestinian State in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.
Barghouti has been arrested several times, including a four-year stint that began in 1978 for planning terror attacks against Israelis. He was arrested again in 1985 before being deported to Jordan in 1987, where Israel says he played a key role in starting the first Palestinian intifada.
Barghouti was among hundreds of Palestinian deportees allowed to return to the West Bank upon the signature of the Palestinian-Israeli interim Oslo peace accords in 1993. But Israel says he continued to plot several Palestinian attacks, and was instrumental in the founding and supporting of Fatah's al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, a terrorist group that carried out several suicide bombings against Israeli civilians.
Denying his involvement with the Aqsa Brigades after his arrest, Barghouti nevertheless praised some of the group's operations that involved attacks on Israeli military targets, but claimed from his prison cell that he opposed suicide bombings against civilians.
Pollard's name has been publicly mentioned as a possible "American gesture" in a three-way prisoner exchange that would release Barghouti, allowing him to run in PA elections, and could also involve Egypt releasing imprisoned Israeli textile engineer Azzam Azzam.
But in an explosive development, Pollard, who today begins his 20th year of incarceration at the U.S. federal prison in Butner, N.C., for spying for Israel, has composed a speech to be delivered on his behalf in Jerusalem at a demonstration rally planned for later today. It states Israel has held clandestine meetings with Barghouti throughout the Palestinian leader's imprisonment, and has been grooming Barghouti as a candidate to succeed the late PLO leader Yasser Arafat.
In the speech, obtained in advance exclusively by
WorldNetDaily, Pollard claims, "Officially Israel insists it
will never free Marwan Bargouhti. He is a murderer sentenced to
multiple life sentences. Freeing him, they claim, would undermine
the rule of law. Unofficially, sources, including one very close
to the prime minister, admit that Israel has been grooming
in prison to be the next leader of the Palestinian people."
Pollard says that "when news of the proposed three-way deal broke, my close contacts began to investigate, and learned important things from reliable sources in the U.S. and Israel."
"It is an open secret in Israel that top officials have been secretly meeting with Barghouti throughout his incarceration. He is taken out of his prison cell and brought to clandestine locations for these meetings, to enlist his help in promoting various initiatives with the Palestinians, such as cease fires. These secret sessions are part of the 'grooming' process," says Pollard.
Pollard says sources told his contacts that Israel, not the PA or Barghouti's military Tanzim, leaked the story last week about Pollard and the talks aimed at putting together the three-way swap for Barghouti's release.
"Officially, Israel reviles Barghouti and dismisses any possibility of releasing him. Unofficially, Sharon's Government and his closest people believe Barghouti is someone that they can work with, someone who can control the Palestinian street. They see him as someone who can unite the warring factions among the Palestinian militias and hold them in check."
Pollard says sources told him Israel has been supplying positive material to the media about Barghouti.
"More than just whitewashing Barghouti, Israel is seeking to create the impression that there is such popular support amongst the Palestinian people for Barghouti that it cannot be resisted or denied. This is an attempt to create an atmosphere where the U.S. feels it must step in and direct events. The Americans can then 'force' Israel to release Barghouti, and Israel can do so with 'clean hands,'" says Pollard.
Pollard says Arab public opinion prevents Israel from releasing Barghouti outright, and has resulted in Israeli officials seeking Pollard's release.
"Israel must make it appear that it is being forced to free Barghouti, and that a high price has been paid for his release. Unless Israel gains something very valuable in return for Barghouti, the Palestinian 'street' will consider him a traitor, a collaborator, an Israeli stooge; his credibility will be zero and his life in danger," says Pollard.
"There are not many high-priced bargaining chips left, and fewer yet, of great value that won't cost the Palestinians anything. They want to use my release as that chip."
Pollard says he is "completely opposed" to the possibility of being released from prison in a deal that would also release Barghouti, whom he refers to as "a mass murderer of Jews."
"I have always been opposed to gaining my freedom in exchange for the release of murderers and terrorists. My position has not changed. I deserve to be released because my sentence is unjust and because the U.S. has promised my release on more than one occasion, including a commitment by the president of the United States at the Wye Summit in 1998."
"Unfortunately, nothing I say about my own unwillingness to have any part in such a morally degenerate scheme will make any difference. The government will do whatever it must, to get what it wants, regardless of what I or anyone else may say or do."
In the speech, Pollard quotes a book recently released by former U.S. envoy to the Middle East Dennis Ross, who played a key role in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in which Pollard's release was reportedly pledged, as evidence of "the way the U.S. has made me into a high-priced political pawn."
In the book, "The Missing Peace," Ross writes that at the 1998 Wye River Summit President Clinton asked him if freeing Pollard would be important to Israel. "Yes," Ross writes he replied, "because he is considered a soldier for Israel and there is an ethos in Israel that you never leave a soldier behind in the field."
Ross added: "I also said I was in favor of [Pollard's] release, believing that he had received a harsher sentence than others who had committed comparable crimes. I preferred not tying his release to any agreement ..."
But, Pollard says, "no sooner does Ross acknowledge the injustice of my sentence and that I deserve to be freed unconditionally, than he advises the president not to free me. Why? Because of my great value as a political asset and a bargaining chip."
Ross writes he cautioned the president against releasing Pollard until greater concessions from Israel could be secured during final status talks. "[Pollard's release] would be a huge payoff [for Israel]; you don't have many like it in your pocket ... You will need it later, don't use it now," writes Ross.
"By understanding Ross' attitude towards me as an asset, not a person," says Pollard, "it becomes possible for the first time to understand Prime Minister Sharon's indifference towards me ... He too sees me as a political asset, and not as a human being."
"Sharon is apparently reserving me for a time that my release will be the fig leaf for some very, very dastardly initiative.
Perhaps something as dastardly as enabling another mass murderer of Jews to become president of the PA, just as Israel once did for Yasser Arafat," says Pollard.
Pollard, a former U.S. Navy intelligence analyst, was convicted in 1985 of one count of passing classified information to an ally, Israel, and sentenced to life imprisonment in spite of a plea agreement that was to spare Pollard a life sentence.
Pollard's sentence is considered by many to be disproportionate to the crime for which he was convicted - he is the only person in the history of the United States to receive a life sentence for spying for an ally. The median sentence for this particular offense is two to four years.
Bio Note: Aaron Klein is WorldNetDaily's special Middle East correspondent, whose past interview subjects have included Yasser Arafat, Ehud Barak, Shlomo Ben Ami and leaders of the Taliban.
Jonathan Pollard's 20th Year in Prison Anniversary Speech
Presented at the Handcuffed Human Chain Rally in Jerusalem, November 21, 2004
What do Marwan Barghouti, Dennis Ross and I have in common?
Marwan Barghouti is serving multiple life sentences in an Israeli prison for murdering Jews.
Dennis Ross, a Jew, is the former US Special Envoy to the Middle East (1988 to 2000).
I, Jonathan Pollard, am serving a life sentence in America for my activities on behalf of Israel.
The common thread that links us all is the amorality of the Israeli Government, and its constant willingness to sacrifice its people on the altar of political expediency. I would like to discuss that idea with you today in honor of an historic occasion.
On this day, 20 years ago, an historic record was set. For the first time in modern history, a bona fide agent was expelled from the embassy of the country he served, and thrown out into the street to be arrested by local security services. The nation he served became the first and only nation in the history of modern espionage to cooperate in the prosecution of its own agent. Indeed, they did such a thorough job, that he received an unprecedented life sentence for an offense that usually merits a 2 to 4 year sentence, or less.
I am that agent; and Israel is the nation I served.
Now in my 20th year of a life sentence with no end in sight, it is irrelevant to talk about whether or not I was abandoned and betrayed by the country I served. The facts speak for themselves.
Lately there has been a barrage of speculation in the Israeli media about a new proposal to secure my release. The deal is that I may be traded, along with Azzam Azzam (the Israeli Druse in prison in Egypt) for the release of Marwan Barghouti, murderer of Jews and mastermind of the Intifada.
Let me state from the outset that I have always been opposed to gaining my freedom in exchange for the release of murderers and terrorists. My position has not changed. I deserve to be released because my sentence is unjust and because the U.S. has promised my release on more than one occasion, including a commitment by the President of the United States at the Wye Summit in 1998.
Someone who fundamentally agrees that I should be released because my sentence is unjust, and not in return for unilateral concessions by Israel, is the former US Special Envoy to the Middle East, Dennis Ross.
In his new book, "The Missing Peace" (Farrar Straus Giroux, N.Y., 2004) Ross writes that at Wye the President asked him if freeing me would be important to Israel. "Yes," [Ross replied] "because he is considered a soldier for Israel and there is an ethos in Israel that you never leave a soldier behind in the field." (page 438)
In a footnote on the same page Ross added: "I also said I was in favor of [Pollard's] release, believing that he had received a harsher sentence than others who had committed comparable crimes. I preferred not tying his release to any agreement..."
No sooner does Ross acknowledge the injustice of my sentence and that I deserve to be freed unconditionally, than he advises the President NOT to free me! Why? Because of my great value as a political asset and a bargaining chip.
Ross writes that he cautioned the President against releasing me until greater concessions from Israel could be secured during final status talks. Referring to me as "it", he told the President: "It would be a huge payoff [for Israel]; you don't have many like it in your pocket...You will need it later, don't use it now." (page 439)
By understanding Ross' attitude towards me as an asset, not a person, it becomes possible for the first time to understand Prime Minister Sharon's indifference towards me. Sharon has deliberately, calculatedly ignored every opportunity to secure my release ever since he took office. Why? Because he too sees me as a political asset, and not as a human being. Sharon is apparently reserving me for a time that my release will be the fig leaf for some very, very dastardly initiative. Perhaps something as dastardly as enabling another mass murderer of Jews to become prime minister of the P.A. just as Israel once did for the arch murderer, Yassir Arafat.
In the meantime, the Government of Israel recognizes that the Americans regard me as a very valuable bargaining chip. But instead of pressing for my release, Israel has learned how to exploit the bargaining chip without ever having to pay the price. Israel has learned how to manipulate my name and my fate in the media in order to sell the Israeli public on its morally repugnant actions.
Over the years, when it was calling for relinquishing the Golan Heights; when it was determined to divide Jerusalem; when it abandoned Hebron; when it wanted to renounce the Temple Mount -- and so on -- the Government publicly raised the hope that I would be released as a reward for making these terrible concessions. Each time the Nation comforted itself, thinking, well at least we will get Pollard... But it was a lie.
Even at Wye, the bid for my release was simply to be the fig leaf to sell a bad deal to the Israeli public. As Dennis Ross puts it (page 455): "[The Prime Minister] said he couldn't do the deal without it. He said that he'd made concessions on the prisoners based on the assumption that he would have Pollard and on that basis he could sell the prisoners [release], indeed, could sell the whole deal". But like anything expendable, I was dropped from the agenda when the Americans reneged on their commitment to free me. And Israel released the Arab murderers and terrorists all the same.
More recently, when debate was raging in the media about the morality of swapping terrorist chiefs Obeid and Durani, plus hundreds of terrorists, for 3 dead Israelis and one live Israeli, Tanenbaum, my name was linked to the deal to soften the blow. As soon as the Israeli public got used to the idea of this obscene deal, my name was dropped and the deal was done. There was never any intention of including me in the deal, only of raising the Nation's expectation that I would be.
Now, apparently, Israel is planning to do the same thing in order to justify releasing Marwan Barghouti, the multiple murderer of Jews. But this time, the stakes are higher. And this time, Israel might actually be forced to follow through.
When news of the proposed 3-way deal broke, my close contacts began to investigate. Here is what we have learned from reliable sources in this country and in Israel:
1. It is Israel, not the Arabs, who is pressing for Barghouti's release.
Officially, Israel insists that it will never free Marwan Bargouhti. He is a murderer sentenced to multiple life sentences and freeing him, they claim, would undermine the rule of law.
Unofficially, sources, including one very close to the Prime Minister, admit that Israel has been grooming Barghouti in prison to be the next leader of the Palestinian people.
It is an open secret in Israel that top officials have been secretly meeting with Barghouti throughout his incarceration. He is taken out of his prison cell and brought to clandestine locations for these meetings, to enlist his help in promoting various initiatives with the Palestinians, such as the cease fires. These secret sessions are part of the "grooming" process.
2. It is Israel, not Barghouti's military Tanzim, who leaked the story that there are talks aimed at putting together a 3-way swap for Barghouti's release.
Officially, Israel reviles Barghouti and dismisses any possibility of releasing him.
Unofficially, Sharon's Government and his closest people believe that Barghouti is someone that they can work with, someone who can control the Palestinian street. They see him as someone who can unite the warring factions among the Palestinian militias and hold them in check.
3. It is Israel, not the Arabs, which is now secretly supplying positive PR material to the media about Barghouti.
More than just whitewashing Barghouti, Israel is seeking to create the impression that there is such popular support amongst the Palestinian people for Barghouti, that it cannot be resisted or denied. This is an attempt to create an atmosphere where the U.S. feels it must step in and direct events. The Americans can then "force" Israel to release Barghouti, and Israel can do so with "clean hands."
4. It is Israel, not the Arabs, which is attempting to recast Barghouti as the Palestinian version of Nelson Mandela.
Israel has done more behind-the-scenes work in the media in the last week to ensure the release of the murderer Barghouti and his subsequent election as Prime Minister of the PA, than it has over the past 20 years to lay the foundations of my release!
In fact, in the last 2 decades, Israel has never done anything in the media to help explain my case to the American public or to the Israeli public -- in spite of my repeated requests for this kind of help. My contacts tell me that for Barghouti, they are working overtime.
Israel's behind-the-scenes diplomacy and secret advocacy for Barghouti is just another reflection of government amorality. It is not a question of ethics but of expediency. Morality has nothing to do with it, and that is what makes this so contemptible.
5. It is Arab public opinion, not Israeli public opinion which prevents Israel from releasing Barghouti outright.
Israel must make it appear that it is being forced to free Barghouti, and that a high price has been paid for his release. Unless Israel gains something very valuable in return for Barghouti, the Palestinian "street" will consider him a traitor, a collaborator, an Israeli stooge; his credibility will be zero and his life in danger.
There are not many high-priced bargaining chips left, and fewer yet, of great value that won't cost the Palestinians anything.
Unfortunately, nothing I say about my own unwillingness to have any part in such a morally degenerate scheme will make any difference. The Government will do whatever it must, to get what it wants, regardless of what I or anyone else may say or do.
And if they succeed?
If they succeed, remember that only G-d knows how the full story will turn out. It says in Tehillim that sometimes G-d allows evil to flourish, only to cut it down all the more thoroughly (Psalm 92, Verse 7). Although some may believe that they rule the world, our fate both as individuals and as a Nation is, was, and always will be in the hands of the Almighty.
As G-d fearing Jews we take our motto from Tehillim (Psalm 62,Verse 7): In G-d is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge is in G-d!
Twenty years ago, on November 21, 1985, when I was thrown out of the Israeli Embassy, the Torah portion of the week was Vayeitzei . Literally: "And he went out". And I went out of the Embassy. This week, for the first time in 20 years, the Torah Portion corresponding to the November 21st anniversary is once again Vayeitzei. Let us hope that this time, Vayeitzei means, "And he went out of prison."
May the G-d of Israel bless us all and keep us safe from harm! May He speedily redeem us all - individually and collectively - to do His will. May He return me and my beloved wife, Esther, swiftly to the Land so that the next time we meet at a Pollard rally, it will be for the purpose of Hodaya (giving thanks to HaShem.) Amain! Ken yihi ratzon!
GAZA: AN OCCUPIED TERRITORY
or LAND OF ISRAEL?
By Yoram Ettinger
Enclosed you'll find the English translation of the latest full page ad, which was published on Friday, November 12 in Ma'ariv's news section. The layout of the Ad - with a specially designed map - and previous ads are posted at www.acpr.org.il/hatikvah (Hebrew, English and Russian editions).
The full page ad campaign has been the ONLY Educational, Sustained, Focused, Targeted and Long-Term campaign on the consequences of the proposed Palestinian State and of the proposed plan of disengagement. The Ads constitute the most comprehensive compilation of data and assessments on these two critical issues.
Each Ad has been mailed to some 3,000 political players in Israel, faxed and e-mailed to over 5,000 movers, shakers and multipliers in the Washington, DC area and throughout the US. A PowerPoint presentation has been posted on www.acpr.org.il/hatikvah, combining a few Ads, and presenting the most comprehensive case for the security irreplaceability of Judea & Samaria. More presentations will be shortly produced.
Each Ad costs $10K. Contributions may be made through the Houston-based Hatikvah Educational Foundation (c/o Steve Finkelman, 8020 Blankenship Dr., Houston, TX 77055-1018) or through a foundation of your choice.
Wishing you a tasty turkey and a pleasant Thanksgiving, and appreciating your constructive criticism, or your positive consideration of the request for support,
GAZA: AN OCCUPIED TERRITORY or LAND OF ISRAEL?
By Yoram Ettinger
Fact: In October 1946, Kfar Darom (a current settlement in the Gaza Strip) and ten other Jewish communities were established, in order to avert the British plan of disengaging the Negev from the Jewish State.
Fact: Kfar Darom was established on the site of the 3rd-4th century Talmudic Jewish town of Kfar Darom. The Jewish farmer, Tuvia Miller, planted an orchard in Kfar Darom, which was destroyed during the 1936-39 anti-Jewish pogroms. The newly established 1946 Kfar Darom was uprooted following the 1948 Egyptian military invasion. Would the 1967 rebuilt Kfar Darom be uprooted by the Jewish State?
Fact: Gaza and Tiberias substituted Jerusalem during 135-600 AD -- as a pilgrimage site -- following Jerusalem's decimation by Rome.
Fact: Gaza's Jewish community was uprooted during the 1929 anti-Jewish riots, which annihilated the Jewish community of Hebron.
Fact: The Castil family headed a large of Jewish refugees from Spain (1492), who bolstered the Gaza Jewish community. The traveler Ovadia of Bartenura documented the 1488 Gaza Jewish community.
Fact: The Ottoman Empire facilitated settlement of Jews in Gaza.
Fact: The 17th century Gaza Chief Rabbi, Israel Najarah, composed the hymn "Ya Ribon Olam" and was buried in Gaza.
Fact: The eerie Shabtai Zvi declared himself a Messiah at the Gaza synagogue.
Fact: The Gaza synagogue was located on the hilltop, which is currently named by Arabs, Khart Al-Yahood (the Jewish neighborhood). The synagogue was destroyed, in 1831, by Egypt's Ibrahim Pasha.
Fact: The known travelers Georgio Gucci (1384) and Meshulam of Voltera (1481) praised Gaza's Jewish community for its wine production and wealth.
Fact: The Old Testament refers to Gaza as an integral part of the Land of Israel: Abraham was punished for his disengagement from Grar (today's Dir Al-Balakh, Genesis 21); The tribe of Judah inherited Ashdod, Ashqelon and Gaza (Joshua 15:47, Judges 1:18); King Solomon and King Hezekiah controlled Gaza (Kings A 5:4 and 18:7). Jonathan the Maccabee liberated Gaza in 145 BC, Simon the Maccabee settled Gaza and King Alexander Yanai-Janeus renewed Jewish presence there in 96 BC.
Fact: Rome's Constantinus The Great failed to convert and uproot Gaza's Jewish community (4th century).
Fact: Rarely have nations agreed to trade away land for peace.
Never have nations agreed to disengage themselves from their
Cradle of History in return for peace. Can a nation disengage
itself from its roots without dooming its future?
WHAT IS A SECURE &
JEWISH STATE OF ISRAEL?
by Emanuel A. Winston
Mid East analyst & commentator
When President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Gen. Earle Wheeler to do a study in June 1967 on what was needed by Israel to survive as a nation, without American needing to come to her rescue, the following was concluded:
That Israel needed its furthest borders at key positions to be able to withstand the frequent assaults by the Arab nations. This study was to be a top secret document because not only did it advise Israel how to survive but, it was also self-serving for the U.S. who did not want to be called in to fight the Arab armies in order to save the Jewish State. This highly secret study was researched by each of America's Armed Forces including Air Force, Army, Navy and several of its key Intelligence Agencies.
Israel was advised not to abandon her furthest borders and whatever high ground she held. This secret June 29, 1967 report was released by the WALL ST. JOURNAL March 9, 1983. We happen to have an original copy #32 and a re-done line drawing of the secret map available on request by FAX. Please send your FAX number.
According to the report that accompanied the map, the Joint Chiefs said: "Returning Israel to pre-1967 boundaries would drastically increase its vulnerability. Israel would be threatened by West Bank artillery and tactical SAMs - a sword constantly over its head and the need to maintain readiness with prohibitive mobilization costs. For stable future Arab-Israeli agreements, Israel must feel it can wait out a crisis rather than strike pre-emptively. Israel should retain....the Gaza Strip, mountains and plateaus of the West Bank, the tip of the Sinai, Sharm el Sheikh, the Golan Heights east of Quneitra and ALL of Jerusalem."
Four were negotiated away. The last two have been declared by various Israeli governments as 'negotiable'. Nevertheles, the Arabs all say that ALL Jews must go.
This report not only focused on Israel's military defensive positions but also contemplated water resources as a strategic necessity. Needless to say, a gaggle of exceptionally naive Israeli Prime Ministers were ready to give up the vital water aquifers under the Judean Hills and the Golan tributaries which feed the Lake Kinnerat (Sea of Galilee) - Israel's main fresh water source.
Needless to say, our shallow Jewish leaders through the years ignored this vital advisory and caved in to political pressure from a mix of pro-Arab interests, namely the U.N., E.U., U.S. State Department, 'et al'. So-called Jewish leaders gave up a huge chunk of this land and its attendant defensive values for short term gains they expected to receive through their appeasement of adversaries by abandoning G-d given Jewish land. The gains never came and the threat of war coupled with Terror continued and grew exponentially.
The 1993 Oslo Accords provided the Arab Muslim Terrorists with a great leap forward as territory was traded for virtually nothing but empty words.
Now, once again, the current Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, like his predecessors Rabin, Peres, Beilin, Barak and Netanyahu wishes to pull back from vital territories. Sharon is unilaterally retreating from the Gaza Strip - which was always the southern entry point of Israel's enemies from Egypt. This abandonment of 8,500 Jewish men, women and children will only bring the missiles and rockets of the Arab Muslim Terrorists closer to Israel's population centers - like the cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon, Beer Sheva, Sderot, Beit Shemesh, Tel Aviv and suburbs.
As Oslo and Barak elevated Arab Muslim Palestinians expectations, Sharon, the once great warrior in the eyes of the Arabs and Muslims, will prove that all Jews can be made to run.
ALL of the Terror organizations have pledged to continue their war to annihilate the Jews, regardless of whatever Israel gives up as one of those infamous "gestures" of Peace.
Yassir Arafat, the creator and godfather of modern Terrorism and Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) has already been selected to run in his place - although many of the Terror Organizations have already said they want their own Terror leader to be the Top Dog. Abbas has accepted the role of candidate with the accompanying comments: that he will follow Arafat's platform, to include the right of return for several million hostiles to Israel's center. Another Palestinian State on the entire West Bank with Jerusalem as its capital. Marwan Bargouti, in prison for 5 life sentences for murder, will also run - which means that Israelis will likely be kidnaped 'en masse' in order to trade Bargouti for Jewish hostages.
The qualifications needed to be the leader of the Palestinian Muslims is a background of Terror and a pledge to continue that Terror until Israel disintegrates and is replaced with an Arab Muslim State.
The Oslo Gang gave the Arab Muslims the foothold they needed to strengthen their bases of Terror in Jenin, Schehem (Nablus), Ram'Allah, Jericho and other areas. Barak gave Hezb'Allah a power vacuum in Southern Lebanon by abandoning and retreating in the middle of the night. Now Southern Lebanon is filled with Hebz'Allah and 12,000 missiles (some with chemical warheads) capable of reaching much of Northern Israel.
Netanyahu gave up 80% of Hebron, now one of the epi-centers and operational bases of Terrorists. He, too, thought he was appeasing the Arabs and the American State Department under then President Clinton. They all ignored his 'Faustian' bargain and along with the Palestinians, demanded far more.
Now, we have Arik Sharon retreating from Gaza at the behest of friends and enemies - even as the Terrorists have introduced longer range Kassem rockets already being fired into what Sharon calls "Israel proper". Sharon has been advised by his own Military and Intelligence that Iranian missiles with a range that can easily reach Tel Aviv and Haifa will be shipped into Gaza - a technique exposed when the Karina A boat-load of munitions from Iran to Arafat was captured by Israel. Sharon has persistently ignored the role of Egypt in transferring weapons to the Palestinians even to the point of inviting them into Gaza to guard security in Gaza. In brief, Sharon has invited the Egyptian Army to the Sinai, in effect, scraping the Camp David Accords which ordered the Sinai to stay de-militarized.
Sharon weakly tells all that Israel will control Gaza ship ports, airfields, the Sinai border at what is called the Philadelphi Road. But, Sharon knows that he is simply lying to push his single-minded, simple minded "Disengagement Plan".
Arik knows that, once our patrols and checkpoints are removed from Gaza, we cannot stop the inflow of munitions, missiles and the inevitable unity of all the Global Terror Organizations. Arik knows that the U.N., E.U. and soon-to-be introduced forces from NATO will prevent Israel from interfering with the build-up of a Global Terror site.
Arik knows that the Mujahaddin now fighting American troops in Iraq will immigrate into Gaza and whatever land from which Sharon will retreat next in the center of the country.
Arik has not only ignored the conclusions of Gen. Earle Wheeler's report recommending NOT giving up the Land but, Arik has himself actually launched an Israeli government-driven Civil War against Israel's population. He has introduced a PR campaign, demonizing hard working settlers on the pretext that, retreating once more will 'somehow' pacify the Terrorists and make city centers safer.
Clearly, it is time for a Regime Change. Whatever Ariel Sharon was in his early days, he is no longer that person or General. Not only has Prime Minister (Gen. - retired) Sharon ignored the advisory of the American Joint Chiefs of Staff but, has shut out his own Generals and Intelligence who have advised against abandoning Gaza - which is certain to become a fully operational Terrorist base.
In his advanced years all that remains is that inflated ego which he uses to harass and beat anyone who opposes his ideas of shrinking the Jewish Nation of Israel in order to accommodate a hateful people and foreign interests.
Emanual A. Winston is a member of the Board of Directors and a research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies.
THE SOCIAL IMPACT OF
A Human-Centered Perspective
By Louis Rene Beres
A Speech Presented to Purdue University`s Homeland Security Institute Published Exclusively In The Jewish Press
What is the social impact of terrorism?
As scholars, we like to approach issues of Homeland Security analytically. Analytically, of course, the social impact of terrorism is contingent upon a number of factors, especially:
1. The nature of weaponry involved (WMD terrorism vs. conventional terrorism);
2. The degree to which vulnerability is generally felt;
3. The actual vulnerability of people, structures, and institutions;
4. The extent of area affected (limited/localized attacks would likely elicit more efficient governmental response and recovery);
5. The capacity of society and government to react and recover (itself contingent upon many other factors); and
6. The actual and expected duration of terror.
But, candidly, we don`t have to get too analytical to understand that the social impact of terrorism is normally captured far better by poets than by the physicists or political scientists.
We may recall with benefit a famous poem by W.B. Yeats, with its grievously prophetic imagery of horror: "The blood dimmed tide is loosed/and everywhere the Ceremony of Innocence is drowned."
Like Yeats, Bertolt Brecht was also right on the mark. Says Brecht:
"Truly I live in dark times... The man who laughs has simply not yet heard the terrible news."
We, here in this Purdue University assembly this afternoon, HAVE heard the terrible news. We KNOW, with little hesitation, that mega-terror is already on the way, and that there is little that can be done to prevent it altogether. Whether it be a form of bio-terrorism and/or a "dirty bomb," our enemies are dedicated to enlarging the "blood- dimmed tide," and their capacities to carry this out are undeniably considerable.
Here in Indiana, at the Newport facility, there is enough stored VX nerve agent to literally kill or injure a staggering number of people (some scientists even speak of millions of possible casualties). How shall we extrapolate from such unimaginable levels of lethality to questions of "social impact?"
We seek answers to precisely this question this afternoon. We who are in the Homeland Security field must continue to look for viable remedies. We have no other choice.
As someone who has worked closely for almost a quarter-century with Israeli and American intelligence communities, I know that there ARE ways to deal with even the most barbarous forms of terrorism. But these ways have various unpalatable qualities, and are difficult at times to reconcile with democratic principles and the laws of war. Moreover, as we now face instances of WMD terror, the prospective costs of terrorism are so overwhelming that distasteful trade offs between individual liberties and public safety could become irresistible and altogether necessary.
For a brief look at the true human meaning of terrorism, we have distributed copies of an Op Ed piece that I wrote especially for The Jewish Press with Chicago-area radiologist Dr. Michael Messing. Please read it closely. For another, consider these comments from a physician friend of mine in Israel, Dr. Moshe Rosenblatt (a general surgeon) about one of his many encounters with the victims of suicide- bombing terrorism. These comments were written a few years ago, after one of many Palestinian terror attacks upon Israeli women and children:
``The terrorist attack took place at the other end of my street, some 800 meters from my building. I`ve been many times in this wedding hall, so I could easily have been one of the people there. I would be dead now, and/or my wife and children.... ``Despite the fact that I`m the director of a surgical outpatient clinic, on these events I naturally always go to Hadera`s hospital to help my colleagues. That`s what I did today. I ran to the operating room where I entered into an almost heroic operation to save the life of a middle-aged woman. One of the terrorist bullets had ruptured her liver, stomach, bowels and major vessels. We couldn`t stop the bleeding. So we opened her chest to cross- clamp the aorta, while undertaking direct heart massage. All in vain. She died of massive hemorrhage; blood and feces were strewn everywhere.
``I then changed my surgical clothes and entered another operating room to begin another operation. This time the patient was a young guy with an abdomen full of shrapnel. We had to resect the lower part of his ruptured large bowel, but -- at the end of the operation -- he was still bleeding profusely through his wounded hip. I left the room while the orthopedic surgeons began to operate on his right hip. I`m sure that he will also die.
``Many other patients were treated by other surgeons. My surgical dress was covered in blood. I took a shower and here I am, at 4:00 in the morning, writing to you, my dear friend in Indiana. I just can`t sleep now. Although very tired, I`m too distraught because after all these years of seeing blood and death on my hands, I never quite get used to it."
So here is what lies behind the news reports of terror; behind the sanitized statistics; behind the anesthetized and hermetically-sealed calculations of the scholars.
This report concerns a very "limited" instance of terrorism, at least relative to what we now face in both Israel and the United States. And this report is from a hardened battlefield surgeon. My friend Dr. Moshe Rosenblatt has stitched up countless torn bodies in three major wars.
(To be continued)
Copyright (c) The Jewish Press, 2004. All rights reserved.
LOUIS RENE BERES (Ph.D., Princeton, 1971) is the author of ten major books and several hundred articles dealing with terrorism, war and international law. He has worked for over a quarter-century with American and Israeli counter-terrorism communities, and is current Chair of "Project Daniel," advising Israel`s Prime Minister on nuclear security issues. His columns have appeared in such newspapers as "The New York Times"; "The Washington Post"; "USA Today"; "The Chicago Tribune"; "The Indianapolis Star"; "Haaretz" and "The Jerusalem Post." Professor Beres is Strategic and Military Affairs columnist for The Jewish Press in New York City.
The Jerusalem Post - November 25, 2004
IRANIAN TARGET: THE JEWISH STATE
by Arieh O'Sullivan
Iranian rocket scientist Col. Ali Mahmud Mimand fell into semi-consciousness at his desk. It appeared to be a heart attack. As the brain behind Iran's efforts to produce the Shihab-3 missile capable of reaching Israel, his anxious subordinates rushed him to a hospital. He died en route. It was July 2001 and rumors quickly spread throughout Teheran that Mimand had been assassinated by either Israeli or US agents.
His family, however, said the Iranian Revolutionary Guards had arrested him on suspicions he was spying for the Americans, tortured him nearly to death and then dumped his body in his office.
Whatever the truth, the incident shows that there are numerous events and stumbling blocks confounding Iran's efforts to get nuclear-tipped missiles capable of reaching Israel.
International pressure, internal strife and technical challenges are all obstacles the ruling theocracy has faced in its 19-year effort to get nukes.
In Israel, opinions are divided.
Senior officials in the government and military agreed to speak candidly about Iran, but only on condition they not be named. The IDF assessment is that the Iranians have not reached the point of no return and that with the right pressure they can still be prevented from getting the bomb. But some in the defense establishment believe it is deterministic and that sooner or later Iran will get the bomb. Yet they say this doesn't mean there is nothing to be done or that a showdown won't take place beforehand.
Officially, Israel does not see Iran as an enemy, but rather as an existential threat. With no common border, Iran's military does not pose a serious conventional threat. The extremist and hostile mullahs have opted for going straight to a plan to annihilate the Jewish state. To do this they are developing rockets that can hit the country one day with nuclear warheads, not to mention fomenting hatred of the "Zionist regime" in the Arab world as they try to export their Islamic revolution.
Iran is the only country that openly calls for wiping the Jewish state "off the face of the earth." It tries to undermine and indeed halt all peace efforts between Israel and our Arab neighbors through terrorist proxies like Hizbullah in Lebanon and an increasing number of Palestinian terror groups.
"They want the bomb and will do everything they can to get the bomb," says one senior Israeli security source. "They are not crazy, but they do have an irrational streak and are very calculated. They do not take any spontaneous actions or actions out of context. History has shown that rogue nations tend to use diplomacy as a cover while they complete their work," he says.
BACK IN 1992, IDF intelligence put on the agenda the Iranian nuclear efforts as a potential existential threat. A few years later, reports started to surface of an Iranian missile project to make a rocket capable of reaching Israel. At the time, experts differed on the Iranian capabilities, but the basic assumption was that it was to be an extended process and in any case, was for self defense.
But gradually this thinking changed and in 1996 the IDF began to focus most of its long-range planning and armament against Iran. The Mossad, too, began to see as its main task the prevention of weapons of mass destruction reaching Israel's enemies and terrorist groups. Insiders say that today more than 40 percent of the Mossad's activities concern Iran.
Israel heavily invested in spy satellites, improving the Arrow-2 anti-missile system and began purchasing sophisticated and long-range aircraft (F-15I and F-16I) the defense establishment loudly and repeatedly boasted were capable of reaching Iran. In reality, these expensive moves were just shoring up doomsday scenarios. The real war was not likely to be a repeat of the 1981 IAF raid on the Iraqi Osirak reactor, a bold move taken singlehandedly by Israel. But Israel had to portray an image that it could if it wanted to.
It's clear that Israel can't subjugate Iran, a nation of 70 million, nor could it likely totally destroy all of its nuclear sites, which the Iranians have spread out to prevent a repeat of Osirak.
With Iran, it has been a race against time. The strategy chosen was to enlist the world against Iranian efforts to produce nuclear weapons. The goal is if not to stop it, then at least slow it down enough so that if and when they do go nuclear, the radical ayatollahs will have been toppled and the mullahs won't be the ones with their fingers on the trigger.
Israeli diplomatic pressure has only proven to be partially successful, as witnessed by Iran's recent announcement that it was suspending, temporarily, its uranium enrichment program in return for incentives in trade and energy from Europe (and to avoid UN sanctions).
The United States has been the leader in the effort to prevent Iran from even "peaceful" nuclear ambitions because any country capable of producing nuclear energy is potentially capable of producing enriched uranium for nukes.
AT LEAST 30 nations could make nuclear weapons unassisted today if they chose to, and another 60 or so could do so with some outside help. Nine have the bomb, if you include Russia, the US, France, Britain, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea.
The nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) states that all non-nuclear states would stop attempts to get the bomb and those with the bomb would pursue the elimination of nukes. South Africa was the first and only country to actually give up its nukes voluntarily, other than post-Soviet Kazakhstan and Ukraine.
Iran signed the NPT in 1970 and its leaders have denied they have any intention of developing the bomb. They have insisted, however, that it is their right to enrich uranium to use for nuclear energy, which is what they have been doing with the help of China and Russia.
As the world's fourth largest oil-producing country and sitting on 11% of the earth's known oil reserves, Iran justifies its need for nuclear energy by saying it wants to sell all of its oil while basing its own, relatively modest, energy consumption on nuclear power.
Western and Israeli analysts find several motives for a bomb.
"Iran wants to be among the countries that count. It is a prestigious endeavor for its citizens to belong to that exclusive club," says a Western diplomat. "They also want to bring the bomb to the Arab world."
It is also seen as an insurance package against Western intervention because, with all due respect to faith and fanaticism, they are nothing without these weapons.
"The Iranians have a paranoia about their regime being toppled," says Prof. Meir Litvak of the Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies at Tel Aviv University. "The Iranians see the nuclear weapons as a security bond against this. They look at the international arena and see how the US brought down Saddam's regime because he didn't have nuclear weapons and they see how the Americans are using kid gloves against North Korea, which has violated all agreements it has signed, because it has nuclear weapons," Litvak says. "Iran wants international immunity."
But it has been a nerve-wracking game of brinkmanship and deception for years. Teheran's efforts have been designed to gain time. They are excellent at playing the West for apparent concessions. Israeli intelligence has confirmed that Iran is actually running a double nuclear program, one that is open to inspections and access by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the other a secret one run by the military to make nukes.
Senior military sources told the Post that in the worst-case scenario, Iran could produce a nuclear bomb within two years. Alireza Jafarzadeh, a former spokesman for Iran's exiled opposition National Council of Resistance, has reportedly said "between 350 and 400 nuclear physicists" are involved in the weapons program.
IN THE late summer, speculation ran high that the two countries were on a collision course and that Israel was about to take military action.
"If the state decides that a military solution is required then the military has to give a solution," IAF Commander Maj.-Gen. Elyezer Shkedy told the Post in September. "For obvious reasons, it's clear we aren't going to speak of specifics."
Iran responded vehemently, warning it would unleash horrific retaliation.
"We will have no choice but to engage in a wide-scale act of vengeance. Iran possesses diverse methods on the regional behavior level and Iran's strategy against those threats is based on asymmetrical warfare," said Iranian Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani.
The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Gen. Mohammad-Baqer Zolqadr said with bravado that Israel's threats were only "propaganda."
"Given the internal crises in the Zionist regime and its military, security and geographical vulnerability, Israel is not capable of attacking Iran," he was quoted as saying.
Iran has tested and fielded Shihab-3 missiles with a range of 1,200 kilometers capable of reaching Israel. Reports from the United States last weekend said that Iran is already completing complicated plans to arm them with nuclear warheads. IDF sources said the Iranian test launches of the Shihab-3 rockets conducted in August and October were part of a program to extend their range. The source said that the tests were "not necessarily successful."
Iran has been trying to develop a Shihab-4 with a range of 2,000 kilometers and Shihab-5 with a 3,000- to 4,000-kilometer range. These would put Europe and Asia in its reach.
Obviously, what ends up being done with all this military-technological development depends on social and political processes.
THE ISLAMIC revolution in Iran flourished because frustrated students and intellectuals thrived in the protected grounds of the mosques and religious clubs, ultimately generating revolutionary ideas in religious garb that sparked the revolt against the Shah and burned ties with Israel.
Since then, however, the revolutionary fervor has given way to political repression. Much like the non-revolutionary Middle East, the mullahs have spent billions on the distribution of political patronage. And like most other Muslim nations, Iran is also haunted by demographics, with two-in-every three Iranians under 30 and nearly one-in-three jobless, according to Western estimates. It is no secret that many of those disenfranchised by this social malaise are hungry for political and economic change.
"They are not cut off. There are four million Iranian exiles abroad and they see how they have succeeded and ask, 'Why not me?'" says one Iranian observer. "They want the good life, too."
Under the Shah, Iran's economy was at one point the size of Spain's. But 25 years of theocracy have seen Iran's per-capita income shrink to a third of what it was before the revolution.
When only a couple of years ago reform seemed to be an unstoppable force rolling downhill, it ran head-long into puritanical Islam and the hardliners beat back their challenges viciously, rigging elections and ensuring their theocracy would stay intact. The majority of the people chose to back off. According to Iranian observers, only some 11% of the public even bothered to participate in the most recent elections.
When Iranian President Muhammad Khatami was swept into power in 1997, there were high hopes he would lead a reform and usher in a moderate regime. But as he prepares to leave office this May, it is clear that his was a promise never delivered, and that the hardliners have politically castrated him.
For their part, the mullahs are focused on safeguarding their rule; their one indulgence is Israel.
"Iran doesn't care about a Palestinian state. It wants the destruction of Israel," says Litvak. "Iran sees itself as the last ideological standard bearer in the conflict against Israel. This is the last remaining ideological banner that the Iranian regime has left. It has furled away all the other banners."
Iran can allow itself to keep this banner because it doesn't pay any price for it - not economically, not politically and not militarily. It is comfortable to keep this fig leaf hiding its other failures, says Litvak. "They see Zionism as an imperialistic tool to oppress the Islamic world. It is the fire that keeps alight the revolution that is dimming in so many places."
ACCORDING TO Israeli security sources, Iran through its proxy Hizbullah in Lebanon, is becoming more and more involved in radicalizing Palestinians against peace moves. Iran has financed and orchestrated a number of terrorist cells and gives direct orders to the Islamic Jihad. It has also moved to recruit Israeli Arabs to their ranks.
That said, Palestinians close to Fatah fighters have admitted to journalists they have taken the money, but have ignored the Iranian ideology.
Iran is also moving into the vacuum left by the deep decimation Israel inflicted on Hamas over the past four years of conflict. It was Iran that supplied the weapons on the Karine-A and other vessels known to have been intercepted by the Navy. Shin Bet sources say Iran is also providing the arms shipments being smuggled into the Gaza Strip from Sinai. The assessment in the IDF is that the present post-Arafat scenario in the territories could spark even greater Iranian attempts to prevent the development of a peace process.
"A dialogue with Israel is anathema to the Iranians and they will take many measures to stop it," says a senior IDF officer, adding that should Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas make positive moves to renew peace talks, there could be a risk that the Iranians would move to "eliminate" him.
IN LEBANON, Iran's military build-up is impressive. Hizbullah's estimated 13,000 rockets pointed at Israel, some capable of reaching as far as Haifa and Afula, add up to a strategic threat that irks the defense establishment.
And while the US declared Iran part of the "axis of evil," the Bush administration went after the alleged weapons of mass destruction in Saddam Hussein's Iraq instead.
Iran watched the Iraqi insurgency's attacks on US and British troops and gained confidence. Teheran was also buoyed by the past year's dramatic rise in oil prices, which allowed it to set aside $20 billion in surplus income from energy exports.
LAST SUMMER Iran revealed the existence of its nuclear sites and invited the IAEA to inspect them. It agreed with the Europeans to suspend uranium enrichment, but by September reneged on it, saying Europe wasn't keeping its part of the deal. Like a bad case of d j vu, the same scenario is repeating itself. In Israel, the international efforts are starting to be seen as a farce, as Iran clandestinely moves closer to getting the bomb. One senior official intimately involved in the matter admitted that Iran's maneuvering and the West's "spinelessness" was a source of great frustration.
"We are swallowing bile," he says. "The Russians are continuing to help them because the money is good and they don't really believe this present (mullah) government will be around when the nuclear program will be in place."
In Israel the views are divided.
National Security Adviser Giora Eiland has said that Iran is reaching the point of no return. IDF intelligence believes this won't happen for another six months.
Ephraim Kam, author of From Terror to Nuclear Bombs: The Significance of the Iranian Threat, and deputy head of the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, echoes IDF intelligence when he says he does not believe the path to the Iranian bomb is deterministic. He believes that with the right pressure they will be slowed down and even halted.
"The fact that the Iranians twice caved in shows that international pressure has impact," he says. "These decisions are made in light of the threat of sanctions and military options. If the delay is greater than months, it can set them back by years. My hope is that in the future a more moderate regime will arise."
Others in the defense establishment believe it is already too late. According to them, Israel's best policy now would be to seek the mullahs' replacement with a more pragmatic government.
WHAT WILL happen once Teheran acquires nuclear weapons? Is it possible to reach a strategic balance with a nuclearized Iran? Most analysts reject this, saying such an arms race would be joined by others like Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, a nuclear Iran could serve as an umbrella for terrorists or other enemies of Israel and could be used to blackmail its own neighbors.
Still, conventional wisdom and history has shown that once a nation gets the bomb its leaders calm down. Will Iran be the exception?
"The world has 60 years of historical experience with nukes. To my mind, so far, without any exception, nukes have always caused a country to calm down. And that included Stalin, Mao and Nixon," says Prof. Martin van Creveld of the Hebrew University, who is often counted among the world's leading military historians. "Once you have the absolute weapon, war ceases to be fun. It becomes suicidal." "The Iranian government is very opaque. Not many people can claim to understand how it really works. But I would say the same would happen to them."
The military establishment in Israel refuses to even countenance this possibility.
"We can't take that sort of risk," says one senior officer.
Is it possible to even hope to have a relationship with the Islamic state that once sold us our oil in return for our weapons?
Some believe the relationship that flourished between the two nations before the Khomeini Revolution can be renewed. In the long run, the Islamic regime can't last indefinitely, they say.
"You can't keep a society under this kind of control forever. There is the street and when they are ready they will rise," says a senior official who once had close ties with Iran. "There is a process. Their interests are closer to us than to the Arab world. There will be a mutual approach. I believe the Islamic regime won't completely fall, but will be replaced by a more moderate one. How much and when - I can't say."
The Jerusalem Post - November 29, 2004
Terror Expert Yosef Bodansky:
Al-Qaida WMD attack on US likely soon
by Etgar Lefkovitz
An al-Qaida attack on the US with non-conventional weapons is virtually "inevitable," and the organization is likely "tying up the knots" for such an attack, Yossef Bodansky, former director of the US Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday.
"All of the warnings we have today indicate that a major strike -- something more horrible than anything we've seen before -- is all but inevitable," he said.
Bodansky, here for the second annual Jerusalem Summit, an international gathering of conservative thinkers, added that "the primary option" for the next al-Qaida attack on US soil would be one that would use weapons of mass destruction.
"I do not have a crystal ball, but this is what all the available evidence tells us, we will have a bang," Bodansky said.
He said that al-Qaida has not carried out a second major attack on the US until now for internal psychological and ideological reasons, but after the reelection of President George W. Bush, it has gotten "the green light" to do so from leading Islamic religious luminaries, as well as from "the elites of the Arab world."
According to Bodansky's reading of Osama bin Laden's mind-set, after the elaborate attacks of 9/11 there was no need for the "bin Ladens of the world" to carry out a second major attack in the US, both because the target audience of the attacks -- the Arab and Islamic world -- had gotten the message that America could be penetrated, and because a second attack would necessarily have to be more grandiose.
Following the attacks and the US-led war on terror, a debate started within the operational arm of the organization over the potential use of weapons of mass destruction, Bodansky said.
If, in pre-9/11 days, the theme used by bin Laden was that perpetual confrontation and jihad against the US was the only way to protect Islam, the argument now used is the ability to punish American society, Bodansky said.
"Just as the West was challenging the quintessence of Islam by means of the globalization era, there was a parallel need by Islamic extremists to strike at -- and hurt -- the core of American society, this time with weapons of mass destruction," Bodansky said.
A subsequent theological debate emerged within the organization, and its supporters in the Arab world, he said, over whether the mass killing of innocents is permissible.
While bin Laden and his associates argued that by virtue of their participation in US democracy, US citizens were enabling their rulers to fight, other Islamic luminaries contended that this does not permit such massive attacks, Bodansky said. The reelection of Bush in November, he said, was viewed by bin Laden and his cohorts as a decisive answer to this deliberation, with Americans now "choosing" to be the enemies of Islam. In bin Laden's mind-set, he said, the stage was set for a non-conventional attack.
Bodansky said that while there may still be some vestiges of debate and doubt within Islamic circles, he believes that planing for such an attack is finished. "They got the kosher stamp from the Islamic world to use nuclear weapons," he said.
Moreover, Bodansky said that America is losing the war against terrorism, noting the number of recruits bin Laden is able to count on, as his call to arms gains widespread support throughout the Muslim world.
In the pre-9/11 world, Bodansky said, jihadists could count on 250,000 individuals trained and willing to die, and 2.5 million -- 5 million people willing to help them in one way or another. He cited intelligence estimates from this summer that suggest that as many as 500,000-750,000 people are willing and trained to die, 10 million are willing to actively support them, short of killing, while another 50 million are willing to support such a movement financially.
IS ISRAEL'S SECURITY BARRIER UNIQUE?
by Ben Thein
Middle East Quarterly
On July 9, 2004, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that Israel's security barrier was a violation of international humanitarian law and human rights law. Eleven days later, the United Nations General Assembly voted 150-6 to condemn Israel and demand removal of the barrier. All twenty-five members of the European Union supported the motion. The EU position would not have been so offensive had it not then undertaken an act of stunning hypocrisy. In August 2004, the EU put out tenders for companies to construct a European separation fence to prevent migration into the EU from countries excluded from it. European officials undertook to build a wall less than one month after condemning Israel's barrier at the United Nations.
EU countries are not the only ones to display hypocrisy. Several states voting to condemn Israel themselves have built barriers on disputed land, often as a response to terrorism. Israel's decisions rest on firm precedent. India, for example, has built a barrier along its line-of-control with Pakistan. Following a number of violent confrontations with Yemeni soldiers and tribesmen, the Saudi Arabian government unilaterally began constructing a barrier on land disputed by its southern neighbor. Morocco has built a barrier against Algerian infiltration in the disputed territory of Western Sahara. Ironically, while both British foreign minister Jack Straw and Turkish foreign minister Abdullah Gül condemned Israel's security fence, both their countries have built their own barriers to combat terrorism. In Cyprus, it is the U.N. itself that, at significant hardship to the local populace, sponsored a security fence reinforcing the island's de facto partition.
The idea of physical separation between Israelis and Palestinians predates the current Palestinian intifada. A brutal 1992 terrorist murder of a teenage girl in Bat Yam helped motivate Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin to negotiate the Oslo accords. Physical separation was not yet on the table. But in 1994, in response to a suicide attack in Tel Aviv, Rabin declared, "We have to decide on separation as a philosophy."
While Rabin's assassination sidetracked the barrier plan, Prime Minister Ehud Barak revived the idea. Shortly before the collapse of the July 2000 Camp David summit, Barak gave a speech arguing that separation would both guarantee security and preserve the Jewish identity of the state. Barak continued to state that "a physical separation" would be "essential to the Palestinian nation in order to foster its national identity and independence, without being dependent on the state of Israel." However, it would be a Likud government that would actually bring the goal to fruition. On February 21, 2002, following a rash of suicide bombings, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon declared his support for the barrier. Whatever resistance there was in his government was swept aside the next month after Palestinian terrorists killed 80 Israelis and wounded 600 in twelve ! different suicide attacks. On April 14, 2002, Sharon's security cabinet approved a plan to build three "buffer zones" in areas where terrorists had frequently infiltrated Israel; construction began two months later. While the West Bank security fence is long by Israeli standards at about 500 miles when complete, it is, nevertheless, small in comparison to other barriers in existence.
A case in point is the separation barrier between India and Pakistan. Upon their independence in 1947, a massive exchange of populations took place. Millions of Muslims streamed from India into Pakistan while millions of Hindus fled in the opposite direction. The two countries fiercely disputed possession of the provinces of Jammu and Kashmir, fighting three wars in subsequent decades. In 1989, the Indian government, frustrated at the continued infiltration of terrorists from Pakistan, constructed a security barrier along the frontier in the states of Punjab and Rajasthan. The barrier worked and infiltration subsided. Five years later, India sought to extend the barrier 620 miles through Jammu and Kashmir. More than 80 percent of the barrier's planned route was on disputed land.
The Pakistani government's reaction to India's barrier-building was harsh. Islamabad accused India of violating both the U.N. charter and the two countries' cease fire agreement. In July 2003, Pakistani military spokesman, Shaukat Sultan, declared,
the border in Jammu and Kashmir remains un-demarcated ... any measure to alter the status of these and any attempt to erect a new impediment is a direct violation of international commitments, and Pakistan opposes it. Border fencing is not allowed.
But the Indian government disagreed, citing its right to defend itself against terrorism. After all, since 1989 more than 40,000 people have perished in Jammu and Kashmir in terrorism and insurgency-related violence. And, just as Israel has found its barrier to be a successful deterrent, so, too, has India. According to the chief-of-staff of the Indian army, Nirmal Chand Vij, the number of terrorists inside Jammu and Kashmir plummeted almost 50 percent in the year after the barrier's construction. The fence stopped almost 90 percent of infiltration attempts. India's vote against Israel's West Bank barrier</FONT may have undermined its own position, a fact that was not lost on at least one Pakistani senator. In a July debate in the Pakistani senate, Ishaq Dar suggested that Islamabad parlay the ICJ ruling into a move to condemn India's fence construction along its line-of-control.
The kingdom of Saudi Arabia, one of Israel's most vociferous critics in the Middle East and a staunch financial supporter of groups such as Hamas, has also constructed a border fence on disputed land. Saudi Arabia and Yemen have disputed their border for more than seventy years. Both countries dispute the demarcation laid out in the 1934 Taif treaty, and today, almost 1,000 miles of desert and mountains remain undefined. While both countries may initially have been content to live with the status quo, that changed with the 1990 discovery of oil in the disputed zone. The Saudi government moved to build a "military city" near the disputed border. Violence occasionally flared. In November 1997, for example, after a Yemeni soldier lowered a Saudi flag in the disputed area of Qarqa'i, several Saudi and Yemeni soldiers died in an exchange of fire. Another bloody clash took place in January 2000 when Saudi troops occupied Jabal Jahfan, a mountain long controlled by Yemen. A June 2000 attempt to resolve the dispute failed. While both Saudi and Yemeni leaders signed the resulting Jeddah treaty, the text left unresolved large tracts of the border.
Violence erupted in 2002. In the Saudi border town of Jizan, Saudi border guards confronted Islamists smuggling weapons from Yemen. Thirty-six Saudi soldiers died in the ensuing firefight. Following additional violence along the border, the kingdom decided unilaterally to build a security barrier along their border with Yemen. Saudi officials claimed that this barrier would stem the weapons flow and almost daily attempts at infiltration by Islamist insurgents from Yemen. Talal Anqawi, the head of Saudi Arabia's border guards, dismissed any parallels to Israel's security barrier, telling the Arabic daily Asharq al-Awsat,
What is being constructed inside our borders with Yemen is a sort of a screen ... which aims to prevent infiltration and smuggling ... it does not resemble a wall in any way.
If Anqawi sought to create a litmus test for the permissibility of barriers, he failed. While the ICJ referred to Israel's security fence as a "wall" throughout its decision, less than 5 percent of the barrier is actually concrete slab. The rest is a network of fence and sensors. While the Saudi government presses the U.N. to sanction Israel to force compliance with the ICJ decision, the kingdom, through its own actions and statements, has actually created a precedent for Israel. Saudi statements labeling Israel's security barrier an "internationally wrongful act" and demanding its "destruction," illustrate the hypocrisy of both the Saudi and ICJ positions.
While Pakistani and Saudi criticism may not be anything new to Israel, some of the most vociferous criticism has come from an unexpected quarter. For much of the last decade, the strategic partnership between Turkey and Israel has grown although it recently has taken some hits at the hands of Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). Their bilateral relations were based not only on their common interests as the region's only democracies but also on the common threat posed to both by terrorists. Therefore, it came as a surprise when the Turkish prime minister so harshly condemned Israel's barrier.
The Turkish stance is more surprising given its own positions vis-à-vis two other barriers, both of which are built on disputed land. In 1939, Turkey annexed Hatay, a province populated primarily by Turks but claimed by Syria. Syrian maps still depict Hatay as part of Syria. Throughout the 1980s and through most of the 1990s, Syria supported the Kurdistan Workers Party (Partiya Karkaren Kurdistan, PKK) in their terrorist campaign for a Kurdish state in Turkey. The Turkish government responded by fortifying their frontier -- including those portions around Hatay still hotly disputed by the Syrian government -- and by constructing a high fence along the length of the border and laying over 500 miles of minefields. While no serious international lawyer questions the status of Hatay -- a 1937 League of Nations referendum recommended separation from Syria -- the Turkish government's condemnation of Israel's barrier may provide the Syrian government with unwanted ammunition should they decide to pursue more seriously their complaint against Turkey.
Turkey's experience with barriers extends beyond the Syrian frontier. When Cyprus became independent in 1960, its constitution was intended to balance the interests of the Turkish minority with the Greek majority. In 1974, the Greek government supported a coup that installed an ardent Greek nationalist who promised to unite the island nation with Greece. Turkish troops intervened, enforcing a division of the island. In 1983, the Turkish sector formally proclaimed itself the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus but was recognized only by Turkey. The green line separating the two sides stretched 120 miles. The U.N.-monitored buffer zone varies in width from less than 20 meters to more than 4 miles. Five villages lie in the buffer zone, and approximately 8,000 people live or work in a no-man's land. Hardest hit was Nicosia, the capital, where some streets remain divided by cement partitions. Ironically, while the U.N. has condemned Israel's wall for inconveniencing Palestinians, in Cyprus, it was the U.N. itself that constructed the barrier in order to preserve peace and security.
The Israeli government chose not to argue its case before the ICJ, maintaining that the court did not have jurisdiction. The court's ruling was political; it blatantly ignored numerous precedents. However, while in the case of India and Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, and Turkey with both Syria and Cyprus, disputes occurred between recognized states, in the case of Israel and the West Bank, an exact parallel does not exist. While the Palestinians claim the West Bank and Gaza, those territories are in fact disputed rather than formally occupied, for the Palestinians have never been independent nor do they have a precedent for their claim. Prior to the 1967 Six-Day War, Jordan controlled the West Bank, and Egypt managed Gaza. Before World War I, they were Ottoman territory.
A somewhat analogous case exists on the periphery of the Arab world. Until November 1975, Spain controlled a 100,000-square-mile stretch of desert on the northwest coast of Africa. Upon the Spanish withdrawal, both the governments of Morocco and Mauritania, as well as the indigenous (but Algerian-supported) Polisario Front (Popular Front for the Liberation of the Saguia el Hamra and Rio de Oro) laid claim to what became known as the Western Sahara. On October 16, 1975, the ICJ pushed aside Moroccan claims to the contrary and ruled that the local Sahrawi tribes had the right to self-determination without regard to Moroccan claims of traditional suzerainty. The subsequent low-intensity conflict has been long and bitter. The Spanish government initially sought to supervise a joint Moroccan-Mauritanian administration but withdrew from the arrangement the next year. Mauritanian forces, bloodied by the Algerian-backed Polisario Front, gave up the fight in 1979, allowing Morocco to take almost complete control of the region. The Polisario Front launched attacks on both Moroccans and Sahrawis, causing a refugee exodus into Algeria.
Amid the shadow of continued Polisario terrorism, in 1983, the Moroccan government began construction of a massive 1,500-mile, 3-meter high barrier of sand and stone. The Moroccan army laid more than one million land mines along the barrier, all of which was constructed on territory claimed by a non-state liberation movement. Approximately 120,000 Moroccan soldiers guard the line. The barrier has been remarkably effective at providing security for Moroccans once harried by Polisario terrorists. Some Sahrawis have not been as fortunate. The barrier divides communities; Sahrawi accessibility and mobility is severely constrained. While the Israeli supreme court ruled on June 30, 2004, that Israeli planners needed to take not only security concerns but also Palestinian hardship into account when constructing the barrier, the Moroccan government has labored under no such constraints.
Despite having taken far more aggressive actions in response to a terrorist threat that is considerably less severe, the Moroccan government, nevertheless, filed a written statement to the ICJ objecting to Israel's security barrier. The Moroccans accused Israel of "annexation of Palestinian territory" and demanded the barrier's dismantling.
Outside the Islamic world, one of the security barrier's fiercest critics has been Great Britain. British foreign secretary Jack Straw joined other European Union leaders calling for Israel to dismantle the barrier. According to Straw, "Whatever the claimed short-term advantages of the barrier, actions such as this are unlikely in the long term to deliver the peace and security Israel seeks."
Straw's statement ignores not only the success of the Indian, Turkish, and Moroccan barriers, but also the United Kingdom's own experience.
The British government partitioned Ireland in 1921, largely along sectarian lines. While twenty-six counties gained independence as the Republic of Ireland, six other counties remained in Great Britain. Beginning in the late 1960s, the Provisional Irish Republican Army initiated a terrorist campaign to reunite Ireland, in the course of which more than 3,500 died and 30,000 were wounded.
The British government's response to the terrorist campaign was the creation of a "peace line" dividing Catholic and Protestant neighborhoods in Belfast. In some places, barriers traverse backyards and separate houses. Some of the barriers are more than thirty feet high. Exposing Straw's hypocrisy, Belfast's barriers have actually proliferated during Prime Minister Tony Blair's administration. In 1994, there were 15 of them; a decade later there are 37. But, the "peace line" has been effective from a counterterrorism perspective. Prior to the barriers' construction, it might take a dozen policemen to secure any give neighborhood. After the British government erected the barriers, two policemen could do the same job. The <I!Daily Telegraph, generally the British broadsheet most sympathetic toward Israel, pointed out the hypocrisy of the British government's position toward Israel in a February 24, 2004 editorial:
Israel's fence exists to prevent suicide bombings. The Belfast peace lines exist to prevent large-scale intercommunal disorders ... but a barrier is a barrier, whatever its name ... their [British and Israeli] policies towards the nationalist areas of Belfast and the Palestinian areas of the Holy Land have one thing in common ... to provide security."
When the ICJ ruled on July 9 that Israel's security barrier was illegal, it based its decisions exclusively on interpretation of international humanitarian law. Fourteen of the fifteen judges ruled that Israel should raze its barrier. The one dissenting justice, Thomas Buergenthal, was American. He argued that the court failed to consider all relevant facts. He wrote, "The nature of these cross-Green Line attacks and their impact on Israel and its population are never really seriously examined by the court." While the ICJ claimed that Israel could not invoke "the right of legitimate or inherent self-defense," Buergenthal disagreed. After all, in resolutions 1368 and 1373, the U.N. Security Council reaffirmed the right to combat terrorism without limitation to "state actors only."
And there is little doubt that the security barriers work. Suicide attacks in Israel declined 75 percent in the first six months of 2004 compared to an equivalent period in 2003. The Israeli government is not alone in this conclusion. Many of the most vocal critics of Israel's security barrier have employed the same defense. Their immunity from ICJ and U.N. criticism illustrates both the politicization of the International Court of Justice and the inherent bias of the United Nations. U.N. secretary general Kofi Annan's criticism of Israel's security barrier, especially when juxtaposed with his silence regarding the region's other security barriers, illustrates the double standard.
Perhaps the greatest tragedy of the ICJ decision, however, is that it creates a precedent that allows terrorism to trump security. Israel will not be the only victim. The Turkish government, which vociferously condemned Israel, unwittingly undermined its own security with regard to Syria. Some Pakistani politicians already seek to use the ICJ's decision on Israel to undermine India's self-defense. While separate peace processes proceed in Cyprus, Western Sahara, and Northern Ireland, it was the dampening of terrorism made possible by the security barriers that allowed the space for diplomats to resume negotiations. On a number of levels, the ICJ decision was a ruling against peace and security, not only in Israel but also across the region and elsewhere.
Ben Thein, a student in international relations, economics, and business management at Clark University, was an intern at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
 The New York Times, July
 Israel Business Arena, Aug. 12, 2004.
 David Makovsky, "How to Build a Fence," Foreign Affairs, Mar./Apr. 2004, p. 52.
 Ehud Barak, "Peace as My Paramount Objective," Mideast Mirror (London), June 28, 2000.
 The Jerusalem Post, Apr. 15, 2002.
 Ibid., June 12, 2002.
 "Concept and Guidelines: A Fence, Not a Wall," Israel Diplomatic Network, at http://securityfence.mfa.gov.il/mfm/web/main/document.asp?SubjectID=45874&MissionID=45187&LanguageID=0&StatusID=0&DocumentID=-1.
 Frontline (Chennai, India), Sept. 15-28, 2001, at http://www.flonnet.com/fl1819/18191290.htm.
 PakTribune, Mar. 26, 2004, at http://www.paktribune.com/news/index.php?id=59496.
 The Washington Post, July 30, 2003.
 BBC News, Nov. 25, 2002, at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/353352.stm.
 The Peninsula On-line (Doha), May 22, 2004, at http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/Display_news.asp?section=world_news&month=may2004&file=world_news20040522749.xml.
 "General Assembly Emergency Session Overwhelmingly Demands Israel's Compliance with International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion," U.N. press release, July 20, 2004, at http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2004/ga10248.doc.htm.
 PakTribune, July 23, 2004.
 Dore Gold, Hatred's Kingdom: How Saudi Arabia Supports the New Global Terrorism (Washington, D.C.: Regnery Publishing, Inc., 2003), pp. 126-7.
 BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, Dec. 12, 1997.
 Ibid., Jan. 27, 2000.
 Brian Whitaker, "Commentary on the Border Treaty," Yemen Gateway, July 1, 2000, at http://www.al-bab.com/yemen/pol/border000629.htm.
 The Independent (London), Feb. 11, 2004
 The Guardian (London), Feb. 19, 2004.
 Asharq al-Aswat (London), Feb. 9, 2004, quoted in ibid. "Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territories," written statements to the ICJ, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Jan. 30, 2004, at http://www.icj-cij.org/icjwww/idocket/imwp/imwpframe.htm.
 The Guardian, June 4, 2004.
 E. Melhem, "The Sanjak of Alexandretta: A Forgotten Syrian Territory," Az-Zawba'ah, Nov. 1998, at http://home.iprimus.com.au/fidamelhem/ssnp/.
 Interview with Turkish military official, July 2004.
 "Facts and Figures," U.N. Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus, at http://www.unficyp.org/Facts+figures/facts+fig.htm.
 "Western Sahara, Advisory Opinion of October 16, 1975," ICJ, at http://www.icj-cij.org/icjwww/idecisions/isummaries/isasummary751016.htm.
 "Western Sahara," Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, 2001, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, Mar. 4, 2002, at http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2001/nea/8281.htm.
 The Guardian, Dec. 19, 2003.
 "Legal Consequences," written statements to the ICJ, Kingdom of Morocco, Jan. 30, 2004, at http://www.icj-cij.org/icjwww/idocket/imwp/imwpframe.htm.
 The Birmingham Post, July 22, 2004.
 Associated Press, July 11, 2004.
 The Irish Times (Dublin), Mar. 5, 2003.
 "Our Very Own Berlin Wall," The Daily Telegraph (London), Feb. 24, 2004.
 "Legal Consequences," declaration of Judge Buergenthal, ICJ, July 9, 2004, at http://www.icj-cij.org/icjwww/idocket/imwp/imwpframe.htm.
 Ma'ariv (Tel Aviv), June 23, 2004.
 Los Angeles Times, Nov. 30, 2003.
 Kofi Annan, news release, U.N. headquarters, New York, July 21, 2004, at http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2004/sgsm9427.doc.htm.
SYPMPOSIUM: THE TERROR WAR:
HOW WE CAN WIN
By Jamie Glazov
November 15, 2004
The Bush administration has now entered its second term in office. What strategies must it now renew -- or pursue -- to sow the seeds for victory in the War on Terror? Frontpage Symposium has assembled a distnguished all-star panel to discuss this question. Our guests today are:
Walter Laqueur, the former director of the Institute of Contemporary History in London. He is the author of some of the basic texts on terrorism, most recently Voices of Terror (Reed Publishing, 2004);
Ion Mihai Pacepa, the former acting chief of Communist Romania's espionage service, whose book Red Horizons was republished in 24 countries. He is still sentenced to death in Romania;
Robert Leiken, the director of the Immigration and National Security Program at the Nixon Center and the author of Bearers of Global Jihad? Immigration and National Security after 9/11;
Ralph Peters, a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and the author, most recently, of "Beyond Baghdad: Postmodern War and Peace".
FP: Gentlemen, welcome to Frontpage Symposium. It is an honor to be in the presence of such distinguished scholars and gentlemen.
We're going to get to Bush's election victory and what it means for the terror war, but first, let's see if we are on the same page in terms of our definitions and assumptions on our Islamist enemy.
Let me give it a shot to stimulate the discussion:
The West is at war with Islamism, a modern day totalitarian ideology that is a close cousin of fascism and communism. Based on the worship of totality, Islamism, like its two 20th century despotic counterparts, yearns for mass death and suicide for no particular rational reason --although, yes, in part, it finds a surface inspiration in its Islamic component that promises other-worldly rewards for jihad, etc.
Islamism ferociously despises individual freedom and democracy -- because liberty poses a deadly threat to its own existence. It must, therefore, annihilate human freedom wherever it sees it. This explains why militant Islam must wage war on the two nations which most powerfully symbolize, buffer and protect human liberty: the United States and Israel.
Is this a solid start for our discussion? Or have I misdirected us?
Mr. Leiken, let's start with you.
Leiken: Thanks Jamie. It is always a mistake to underestimate the enemy or its appeal. Yes we are at war vs. Islamist terrorism. But the basis of Islamism runs deeper than irrational animosity against the West and freedom. Islamism is a combination of an anti-imperialist and a revivalist movement. To take the latter first:: if it despises "human freedom," that's because Islamists believe Western freedom, which it would call license, destroys family, community and man's proper relation with God and nature -- a criticism not&! nbsp;far removed from social conservatism. As an anti-imperialist movement, it arose after the great powers divided up the Middle East, despite their WWI promises of freedom. Then, like nationalism and communism, it sought to blame the underdevelopment of Arab and Muslim nations on Western influence.
It pursues suicide bombing and mass terror as tactics in an asymmetric war, in which Islamism faces a better-armed enemy. These tactics can work, having provoked the US to take necessary pre-emptive actions (of which some have proved counter-productive, as in Iraq), thus dividing it from important allies, and having thrust Israel into a state of siege. The task before us is how to unite the country and Israel with the West and mainstream traditional Islam as well as civilians the world over against a common threat.
FP: Thank you Mr. Leiken. To be sure, of course there are always some "deeper" reasons for hatred and the impulse to kill -- and your insights into Islamism in this context are instructive. But I stress irrationalism because it is crucial to emphasize that there isn't always some explainable "reason" why tyranny-worshippers perpetrate the crimes that they do. This is what the Left loves to do -- rationalize evil -- and in so doing, it weakens our battle against our enemy.
For instance, right after 9/11, a former academic colleague of mine said to me, in an agonizing tone full of personal pain: "Imagine how hurt those poor men [the hijackers] were by America to have been driven to that."
No. The hijackers blew themselves up alongside 3,000 innocent people because they sought to kill others and themselves for no particularly logical or explainable reason. Of course we can examine their rage over the supposed and delusional injustice they perceive in Palestine, or in Western women wearing bikinis on Arab territory somewhere, but the point here is that there are movements, like fascism and communism, that simply hate human life and existence and yearn to extinguish it. And Islamism, like fascism and communism, is one of those movements.
In recognizing that this modern ideology seeks to suffocate life, without and within, we won't waste our time trying to figure out what rewards our enemies want to stop killing. We'll just get down to the business of killing them before, like Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Khomeini, etc., they succeed in exterminating as many human beings as possible -- for its own sake.
Mr. Peters, go ahead. Share your wisdom with us.
Peters: I have no "wisdom" to offer. But I certainly have my views, formed by extensive travel, in uniform and in mufti, in the morbid ruins of the caliphate. First, although I use the term myself--one has no choice--I dislike calling the current conflict the "War On Terror." It's really the Islamic terrorists' war on us. I prefer "The Terror War." But the die is cast.
While I agree with much of what Mr. Leiken offered, I do not see al-Qaeda and its affiliates as anti-imperialist; on the contrary, I see them as Islamic imperialists--savage crusaders of their faith. They do not wish merely to repel interlopers, but to conquer. They do not wish simply to defeat the West, but to destroy it. And the caliphate they wish to restore--although they'll settle for apocalyptic destruction--once reached into southern Poland, into Ukraine, throughout Hungary and much of former Yugoslavia, throughout the Iberian Peninsula (and, briefly, as far north as the Loire), and it included Greece, Sicily and part of mainland southern Italy, and the Swahili Coast of Africa as far south as old Sofala in Mozambique--south of the Zambezi River. Their appetite for Allah's real estate on earth is second only to the hope of the inner circle to nudge their god toward an apocalypse (indeed, all monotheist religions have succumbed, at different times, to something equivalent to the Christian eschatology of the Book of Revelation).
In my view, the inner circle of terrorists about whom we must worry most consists of apocalyptic terrorists whose articulated goals are ephemeral and, at most, secondary. They are, above all, bent upon destruction, and their appetite for slaughter is and will remain insatiable. If Israel and the U.S. were destroyed, Europe would have to go, too (in fact, Europe is going to suffer far more in the coming decades than we are). Meanwhile, in Iraq and elsewhere, the terrorists are delighted to purge Islam of less-rigorous, less-doctrinally satisfactory Muslims by killing them. We are facing the psychotic progeny of a neurotic (at best) civilization.
Finally--for now--I was baffled a decade ago by the outrage over Samuel Huntington's concept of the "clash of civilizations." Clashing is what civilizations DO. It's their inherent mission. There is no example in history of adjacent civilizations cooperating constructively over an extended period. And we not only are experiencing a clash of civilizations, but a situation unprecedented in history: The crash of a major civilization, that of Middle Eastern Islam, before our eyes.
The struggle in which we Americans find ourselves today began in the seventh century A.D. (or C.E., if you prefer). As Islamic conquerors burst out of Arabia, a war began that has never ceased. Only Islam's weakness over the past few centuries has lulled us into a false sense of peace (the fighting never really stopped--we only pretended it did).
American carriers now cruise where once the Portuguese caravels sailed (although we're considerably better-behaved). Both sides remain crusaders of their kind. If we are able to find a means of consistent, productive cooperation between Islamic and Western civilization by the end of the 21st century, it will be a miraculous, unprecedented achievement.
Meanwhile, there's a war to fight.
FP: Mr. Laqueur?
Laqueur: I am also not happy with the term "War on Terror". War implies armies and navies and air forces and uniforms. And this of course is not the case at the present time. Nor do I think that the "war" against terror can be won, simply because it is one of the manifestations of human conflict in our time, perhaps the prevailing one in the years to come.
I find it difficult to envisage a world without conflict as far as one can look ahead. One can do a great deal to reduce the danger and the frequency of terrorism. Fanaticism, as historical experience shows, does not continue with equal intensity forever, in fact it is often a matter of a generation or two. But after relatively quiet periods it tends to reappear.
What can be done to reduce the dangers? Intelligence should be greatly improved, Western counter propaganda is virtually non-existent, political use should be made of the mistakes of the terrorists. But democracies will find it exceedingly difficult to act effectively for reasons which need not be elaborated in detail. This will change only following terrorist attacks in which weapons of mass destruction are used and it is probably unwise if governments are moving too far ahead of public opinion.
As for the ideology of radical Islamism, it is a mixture of a variety of motives, religious, nationalist etc,. but anti imperialism hardly figures. It is true that they may think of themselves as anti-imperialist, but I do not see any good reason to accept this self image. Iran and Turkey were never colonies and as for the Arabs they were indeed subjects of an empire throughout most of their history, but it was a Muslim empire.
FP: Mr. Laqueur, you never cease to amaze me. In four short paragraphs you say more than I have read in 300-page books on this subject.
Your words suggest that in the human condition there is a recurrent virus of fanaticism and hate that perpetually surfaces, always mutating into different forms. Human history has taught that this is, indeed, undeniable. So no, we are never going to "win" the war against evil, for it will always be with us in our human condition (in this phase of human history anyway), but we can, as you suggest, keep it at bay to our best ability.
Your comments regarding how we can best keep it at bay reveal the horror of our future. We live in a time when individuals such as al Zarqawi and bin Laden will eventually get their hands on WMDs. Only after they use these against our human populations will our democratic societies acquire the courage and will to defeat our current enemy effectively. But, thanks to the Michael Moores, Noam Chomskys, Teddy Kennedys and John Kerrys of this world -- we do not yet have that courage and will.
Mr. Pacepa, it's your turn.
Pacepa: Thanks Jamie. I believe that the most important thing in a war is to know your enemy. Today's terrorism is a 21st century variation of the old anti-Semitism, that weapon of the emotions wielded by so many tyrants over the centuries.
History always repeats itself, and if you can live two lives, you have an even greater chance of seeing that repetition with your own eyes. During the last six years of my other life, as a Romanian intelligence general, the main task of the Soviet bloc espionage community was to transform Yasser Arafat's war against Israel and its main supporter, the United States, into an armed doctrine of the whole Islamic world. America was our main enemy, and a billion adversaries could inflict far greater damage on it than could a mere one million. Islamic anti-Semitism ran deep. Our task was to convert its historical hatred of the Jews into a new hatred of the United States, by portraying this land of freedom as an "imperial Zionist country" financed by Jewish money and run by a rapacious "Council of the Elders of Zion," the Kremlin's epithet for the US Congress.
According to KGB theorists, the Islamic world was a petri dish in which we could nurture a virulent strain of America-hate. Islamic cultures had a taste for nationalism, jingoism and victimology. Their illiterate, oppressed mobs could be whipped up to a fever pitch. Terrorism and violence against America would flow naturally from their religious fervor. We had only to keep repeating, over and over, that the United States was a "Zionist country" bankrolled by rich Jews. Islam was obsessed with preventing the infidel's occupation of its territory, and it would be highly receptive to our dogma that American imperialism wanted to transform the rest of the world into a Jewish fiefdom.
Before I left Romania for good, in 1978, the Soviet bloc intelligence community flooded the Islamic world with Arabic translations of an old Russian, forged, anti-Semitic tract entitled Protocols of the Elders of Zion, along with "documentary" materials, also in Arabic, "proving" that the United States was a Zionist country governed by Jewish money, whose aim was to extend its domination over the rest of the world. We also infiltrated the Islamic world with thousands of Soviet bloc Islamic citizens recruited as intelligence agents and tasked to implant there a rabid, demented hatred for American Zionism. They were to portray everybody and everything in America as being subordinated to Jewish interests: the leaders, the government, the political parties, the most prominent personalities -- and even American history. Most of these agents were religious servants, engineers, medical doctors or teachers, and they had excellent credibility.
Although we now live in an age of technology, we still do not have an instrument that can scientifically measure the results of a sustained influence operation. Nevertheless, it is safe to presume that over the course of the further twenty-plus years -- until the Soviet Union buckled -- the combination between spreading hundreds of thousands of Protocols within the Islamic world and portraying the United States there as a criminal Zionist instrument should have left some trace. The hijacked airplane was launched into the world of contemporary terrorism by the KGB and its puppet Yasser Arafat, and it is significant that this became the weapon of choice for September 11, 2001.
The United States won the Cold War on the 9th of November in 1989, when the Berlin Wall collapsed and the downtrodden people kept hostage inside the Soviet bloc woke up to claim freedom as their own God-given right. We in the West succeeded, because we united the free world against evil, and because we ensured that our side was armed with overwhelming military potential.
We can conquer terrorism if we can make the people of the Islamic world realize that democracy, not anti-Semitism, will give them a better life. Re-civilizing Iraq will be crucial toward that.
FP: Thank you Mr. Pacepa. So democratizing Iraq is one of our most effective weapons in the terror war. . .
Mr. Leiken, back to you now.
Fell free to respond to the previous comments of the panel. But kindly include a comment on the strategies we must implement to fight this war. Mr. Pacepa affirms that civilizing Iraq is crucial. Mr. Laqueur makes three preliminary suggestions: (1) intelligence should be greatly improved, (2) Western counter-propaganda should at least begin to exist, (3) and political use should be made of the terrorists' mistakes. Kindly build on these themes.
Leiken: "Anti-imperialism" constitutes no badge of honor. Nazism, Arabism Fidelismo, Sandinismo all began life as anti-imperialist movements. Khomeni was anti-imperialist, likewise the Afghan jihad. Some anti-imperialist movements are positive (George Washington, Ghandi, Resistance in WW2), many are or become "evil." Some are or become imperialist as with fascism and Islamism.
Did David Horowitz yearn to "extinguish human life" when he was a communist and backed the terrorist Panthers? He like others of us in the "second thoughts" group cherished good intentions which paved the road Stalinism, Leninism, Maoism and anti-Americanism.
Czech dissident Milan Kundera in The Book of Laughter and Forgetting notes that those who cheered the Communist takeover were "the more dynamic, the more intelligent, the better half." A nuance of our world is that evil may spring from virtues like compassion or piety. Kundera also wrote that
"Totalitarianism is not only hell but the dream of paradise -- the age old dream where everyone would live in harmony, united by a single common will and faith... If totalitarianism did not exploit these archetypes, which are deep inside us all and rooted deep in all religions, it could never attract so many people."
In Paradise Lost Satan, the brightest angel, led an anti-imperialist rebellion against God's "empire," authority and sundry "abuses"(V: 771-802). Milton's fallen angels joined the "glorious enterprise" from a "sense of injured merit"(I: 89, 98). The Islamist terrorists believe they are striding through holy war to holiness. Merely evil, they would not win adherents, would tire without a "higher" vision.
This not to apologize for September 11 pace Chomsky, or seek exculpatory "root causes" for terrorism. That leads straight to the gas chambers, to sacrificing Israel to appease Arab "humiliation." No: we need knowledge to fight.
Not "war" but "terrorism" molests me about the phrase. We have been the object of war since Bin Laden declared it in 1996. The Clinton administration and the FBI saw counter-terrorism as police work. They segregated intelligence to "build cases." In Afghanistan we did employ uniformed armed forces and do so today in Fallujah.
But Cheney's "war on terrorism" has presumed a union of terrorists, as if terrorism itself was an ideology or politics. That led us to suppose a collaborative relationship between Saddam and al Qaeda which two independent panels, chaired by Republicans (the 9-11 Commission and the Senate Select Committee) denied; cf. my The Truth about the Saddam - al Qaeda Connection" www.inthenationalinterest.com. Individuals become terrorists via ideologies and politics. That is why we've had anarchist, fascist, Bolshevik, Christian, narco, Palestinian and even a few Zionist terrorists. We are not equally at "war" against all these.
As for strategy: first we must define our enemy: "Islamist terrorism" as the 9-11 report concluded and "not generic terrorism." Then define our allies: Israel, the West and all countries and individuals who oppose terrorism.
Democracy is not a panacea for several reasons:
* You needn't be a democracy to oppose terrorism -- e.g. Morocco, Jordan, China, Russia.
* In most Arab countries democracy will produce an Islamist state as it nearly did in Algeria.
* In the Islamist Middle East, absent a background of civil liberties and religious freedom, democracy is not in the cards. Religious freedom is what we should be championing in alliance with traditional quietists Muslims like Sistani. We should consider reviving USIA and giving it the mission of carrying out ideological war on behalf of religious toleration.
* But here prudence cautions that if there's a deficiency of religious freedom in countries like Saudi Arabia, before 9-11, there was an excess of it in, say, German surveillance of the Hamburg cell. On similiar grounds the FBI was barred from surveilling mosques.
* We cannot wait for years while the CIA trains agents with language mastery to gather significant intelligence within Islamist movements. That means liaison with foreign intelligence ("outsourcing"), starting with Israel but including Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, both of which have deep -- all too deep -- ties with Islamists.
At home we need an agency whose forte is counter-terrorism. I doubt that the FBI will morph in it. And we need smart borders (cf. http://www.nixoncenter.org/publications/monographs/Leiken_Bearers_of_Global_Jihad.pdf)
Attacks may or may not activate anti-terrorism -- e.g. the Madrid bombings. Thanks to 9-11 U.S. public opinion is far ahead of the politicians in anti-terrorist engagement, which is why the grass root reaction to the Report of the 9-11 Commission forced Congress to return. One object of public education should be to strengthen and not weaken the Patriot Act.
FP: Thank you Mr. Leiken. I just want to comment on how the human yearning for earthly paradise leads to earthly evil.
I don't think anyone here is saying that totalitarian movements don't exploit, or have within them, some potentially legitimate issues. Obviously that is why they are so attractive to so many people. But this attraction is directly connected to the believers' rejection of human life as it exists in our human condition.
You ask: "Did David Horowitz yearn to 'extinguish human life' when he was a communist and backed the terrorist Panthers?"
Well, the answer to that question is not a simple one.
Let me begin by saying that, first and foremost, the Panthers and al-Qaeda are not the same kind of terrorists. In his memoir, Radical Son, David Horowitz made it clear that he was unaware that the Panthers killed anyone. He was in denial, as so many radicals are.
On the other hand, Horowitz has cited Marx's quote from Faust in The Eighteenth Brumaire in which Mephistopheles says "Everything that exists deserves to perish" and he has referred to this as the essence of the totalitarian idea which all of you supported when you were on the Left.
In other words, there is a direct connection between the terrorist actions of utopia builders and the dreams that inspire them. As Horowitz has said elsewhere, the idea of socialism or social justice, the perfect world which is made possible by the death of the imperfect one, is an analogue of the 72 virgins which is the Islamists' reward for destroying the non-Islamic world and preparing the reign of God's law on earth.
Naturally Horowitz, like many other leftists, was not walking around consciously -- and with calculation - dreaming of mass slaughter, though they were all creating the framework which would justify such slaughter by hailing the kingdom of freedom as a real possibility -- if only all those who opposed it, or would not go along with it, could be cleared out of the way. When you reject human beings for what and who they are, guess what your plans for building earthly paradise will do to them?
In any case, I am not sure if David Horowitz is really the best example for this discussion because, in my study of his life and ideas, I don't really think he was ever a true leftist. In his early work, even as a leftist, there was always a voice calling within him to examine, with a morally critical eye, the consequences of his ideology's ideas. That is why he broke from the Panthers after they killed his friend, Betty Van Patter and revealed to him who they actually were. But the entire leftist community that cherished romantic ideas of earthly paradise ignored her death, or justified it, precisely because, in my view, in certain realms of their psyches, they yearned for it. The rejection of human life as it exists in our human condition is directly linked to the desire to extinguish it.
Once David Horowitz accepted the reality of human mortality and the flawed nature of human beings, he could no longer hold to any tenets of the leftist faith. And he lost the impulses to sacrifice human beings on the alhe altar of utopian ideals.
Laqueur: I speak and write with reluctance about counterterrorism for two reasons.
 I know a bit about terrorism but counterterrorism is not the same thing. I don't believe this differentiation is pedantic -- it reflects the situation in the real world. To speak with authority about counterterrorism one has to know a great deal not only about the other side but also about our own capacities.--something akin to Andy Marshall's office in the Pentagon. I am not in the loop, I do not know enough about our own capacities. I suspect they are deficient and I do not know how quickly they could be improved given the bureaucracies' hurdles and restraints.
 In the context of terrorism, I find it next to impossible to say something new about the subject. The issues involved are straightforward and relatively easy--yet there is considerable resistance accepting the basic insights concerning terrorism. The task ahead is really one of education and I am not a good teacher. Furthermore, experience teaches me that this reluctance which I mentioned will hardly be overcome by arguments however obvious and however often repeated. People learn from experience, especially bitter experience, not from speeches and articles -- however brilliant..
In the short term perspective, I am quite optimistic. The terrorists who are most dangerous have been hit by our countermeasures. Bin Laden and Zawahiri have threatened countless times that horrible things would happen within days, if not hours. But nothing on the scale of 9/11 did happen, either in the U.S. or anywhere else.
In the medium perspective, say the next 5-10 years, I am pessimistic because, as I said earlier on, the vigilance of the West will decline, especially if there will be no major attacks. At the same time, terrorists will continue their preparations--and we shall enter the age of megaterrorism. Four times out of five they will fail, but even if they will have only one success, this could be traumatic -- especially as far as panic is concerned.
As for the long term perspective--who knows? I see a chance that once a major disaster will have happened the great powers and most of the lesser powers will get together and decide to do something. But not before.
Pacepa: In my other life, I was responsible for supervising both Romania's share of the Soviet bloc effort to generate anti-American terrorism around the world, and Romania's own counter-terrorism operations at home. This gives me a different prospective.
Terrorism and counter-terrorism would seem to be as different as day and night, but they are in fact tightly interconnected. The best way to combat terrorism is to reverse the process of its creation, i.e., get rid of the terrorist leaders and educate their adherents. At one time Ceausescu's Romania was even more famous than the Spanish Inquisition for its domestic terror, indiscriminately killing off its faithful, its unfaithful, and its priests. But within days of Ceausescu's execution for genocide, his terrorism vanished as if it had never existed.
With Arafat's having recently been hors de combat, Palestinian terrorism has noticeably tapered off. Now we should remove Osama bin Laden & Co. and help their, and Arafat's, terrorists realize that there is more to life than blowing themselves up in the hope of being rewarded with 72 virgins. The Middle East has a storied history of remarkable civilizations, and its peoples should be receptive to thoughts of returning to their glorious past and building upon it. The faster we succeed in helping Iraq -- and others -- to re-civilize their societies, the sooner we will neutralize anti-American terrorism.
Peters: There is a great danger of over-intellectualizing all of this. Each participant has had stimulating and worthy things to say (although not necessarily correct). Whether or not we wish to believe we're at war with the terrorists, they certainly believe that they are at war with us. Warfare isn't just shooting at one another or hurling spears. Especially today, it's a "small c" catholic endeavor. Every action I take is an act of war against competitors in other culture. But as for the violent, organized side of the war with terror, well, the silliest thing I've heard over the past several years goes to the effect of, "Killing terrorists doesn't help...we can't kill our way out of this." Friends and neighbors, whether or not we can kill our way out of the terrorist problem, killing enough of the right people makes the problem considerably smaller.
Stand back. Look afresh. We are, indeed, experiencing one of humanity's intermittent waves of fanaticism, which are invariably associated with cultures and societies in crisis. But what the "experts" miss is that, in a bizarre fashion, President Bush is correct when he declares that we are not at war with Islam (although a significant portion of the Islamic world believes itself to be at war with us). The various terrorist groups affiliated with or aping al-Qaeda aren't really Islamic at their core. They're pre-Islamic. They're blood cults that practice human sacrifice. Mohammed would be horrified. This is just the sort of primitive desert religion against which he rebelled, spiritually and practically. The videotaped beheadings, complete with high priests, liturgy and sermons, hark back to the earliest Middle-Eastern civilizations, to the days of winged devils thirsty for blood. Human sacrifice to appease a vindictive god is deeply rooted in the human psyche--certainly, more deeply so than we wish to acknowledge. Every continent witnessed it. Looking at the wave of beheadings, bombings and assassinations for "Allah" in the Middle East, one might declare that "The Aztecs are back." And, of course, transplanted to new turf--the only difference being that the Aztecs had art, which Arab fanatics do not.
Seriously, I view 9/11, the ceremonial beheadings, the volunteers for self-immolation and the lust to kill the innocent (all forbidden by the Koran) as the resurgence of the most primitive human religious impulses. These are blood offerings--whether or not the terrorists are cognizant of the meaning of their actions (self-awareness is hardly the foremost human trait). The terrorists are not only blasphemers, but terrible enemies of Koranic Islam (as opposed to the various syncretic variants, some of which have a peculiar trend toward feigned or actual self-annihilation, from certain Sufi sects to Shi'a flagellants).
Yes, we should do what we can to facilitate the progress toward justice, the rule-of-law and, where feasible, democracy in the Middle East. But we also must be realistic and recognize that we can only play on the margins (though it's still necessary to play). We can force Arabs and their neighbors to do many things, but we cannot force them to succeed. I fear that we're see the explosive growth of a nihilistic, "apres nous, le deluge" culture among the young males of the Middle East. And if Arabs and other regional peoples do not choose to embrace the possibility of constructive change (which involves rather more of the Protestant work ethic than I've encountered anywhere in the region), all we can do is to limit their capability to do us harm.
I am, of course, a great believer in attempting to understand the cultures that spawn terrorism. After all, it's far easier to kill someone you understand. And as far as the hard-core "pre-Islamic" terrorists go, I see no alternative whatsoever to killing them for as many years, decades or generations as it takes. After all, it took the civilized world from 1866 to 1945 to get the Germans under control, and that was much tougher than hunting down and killing terrorists. Oh, in case anyone has forgotten: We had to kill quite a lot of Germans and the world has not missed them.
Therapeutic violence is greatly underrated. We're in an age of civilizational Darwinism. As every age is.
FP: Our final round has begun. Mr. Leiken go ahead. Feel free to respond to what has been said. And kindly include in your answer what you think of Bush's victory and whether or not it is a positive development for our terror war.
Leiken: The Bush doctrine states accurately that terrorism means pre-emption. Pre-emption demands intelligence. Intelligence requires surveillance. But that is difficult when the enemy is foreign and refrains from using means liable to interception. So intelligence also requires infiltration. Infiltration, if you are not Arabic or Muslim, means alliances with countries that are (e.g. Pakistan, Arabs, Africa, Central Asia), or who know how to (Israel, France) or can support in other ways (everyone else).
From a counter-terrorist perspective Bush's victory is good news and bad news. One plus is that he won't brook repealing the Patriot Act and can retain tough guys like Ashcroft was. But Bush does not seem very interested in unifying the rest of the country against terrorism, a step that New Gingrich in a November 9 op-ed in the Washington Post said would be facilitated by recognition of mistakes in Iraq.
Abroad, the positive side is Bush's resolute support of Israel's security. He won't sacrifice their safety to win over Europeans. The negative side is that we do need the Europeans if we're to build global counter-terrorist unity.
Iraq is now the central front against terrorism, but can we win? If we can, Bush is our man. If we can't (and the January elections may tell us), then we might have the wrong man.
The Bush administration has shown little strategic capacity -- to unite our friends against the main enemy and to divide our enemies. He's achieved the opposite. A mistake Bush-Cheney will not acknowledge is stubbornly insisting on a Saddam-Osama "connection" (see my recent article "The Truth about the Saddam - al Qaeda Connection," on InTheNationalInterest.com). On September 11th we learned we faced an existential threat in the radical Islamist movement. And we knew that the two things we had to avoid in confronting it were a land war in Asia and urban warfare. Now we have both.
Laqueur: This debate like most has been a bit chaotic. Not surprisingly because "terrorism" has many aspects and means different things and everyone talks about what is closest to his heart.--Iraq, jihad and so on. And we tend to forget that while these are the most urgent problems and dangers the terrorist problem is a much wider one. For the first time in history, very small groups of people have access to weapons of mass destruction. In other words terrorist attacks may come from all parts of the political spectrum, political, religious, social, from small groups of fanatics and madmen (or women) Terrorism will be the prevailing form of conflict. How to prevent this I do not know. Perhaps there is no answer. This debate has not even started.
FP: Ok, I guess we have to have another symposium then. Mr. Peters go ahead.
Peters: Bush's victory simply means that the majority of Americans know we are in a war and must fight. No matter how media sophisticates may parse voter motivations, Bush's re-election sent a message that we Americans have not wavered in our determination to defeat our most implacable, if not yet our most dangerous, enemies, the apocalyptic terrorists of the greater Middle East.
As I articulate these concluding lines, news has been coming in from the Second Battle of Fallujah--our reduction of a city that had, for a few months, become the new world capital of terror. The reports tell of hostage execution halls, of torture chambers and months of crusted blood on floors and courtyards where kidnap victims had been ceremoniously beheaded. So I return to my theme that these terrorists are not Muslims, despite their recitations from the Koran. They may think of themselves as Muslims, but they've strayed backward in time to primitive blood-cult behavior. Those gory "altars" in Fallujah are closer to the altars atop the Aztec temples than to anything sanctioned by Mohammed. We face a blood-cult of death whose hunger for victims is insatiable. We have to kill the "high priests" and as many of their followers as it requires to bring the world a semblance of peace and security. This isn't really a battle of ideas, but a contest of souls.
FP: Mr. Pacepa, last word goes to you.
Pacepa: My generation is still grateful to America's leaders of the World War II era who, instead of containing Hitler, destroyed his regime and rebuilt Western Europe -- and Japan -- with strong democracies. This American determination changed the face of the world and brought about an unprecedented period of peace. Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi stated during a 2003 visit to Washington: "Every time I see the U.S. flag, I don't see the flag only as representative of a country, but I see it as a symbol of democracy and of freedom."
Now America is also in a position to help the Islamic world normalize its society. In order to do that, we should get rid of the Hitlers of the Arab and Islamic world, and help their downtrodden slaves see the light of democracy -- Arafat's death can only move this process forward. Our recent elections overwhelmingly showed that Americans are ready. Let's forget "sensitive" wars -- like the one in Vietnam, where we lost over 50,000 soldiers and a good part of America's international prestige. Let's return to the traditions of Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman, who accepted nothing short of unconditional surrender from our enemies. Let's try to make Iraq into a kind of Germany of the Islamic world.
FP: Thank you Mr. Pacepa. Mihai Pacepa, Ralph Peters, Walter Laueur and Robert Leiken, it was an honor to be in your company. We'll see you again soon.
The Jerusalem Post, November 9, 2004
IDF UNVEILS ITS DIGITAL ARMY
OF THE FUTURE AT TELECOM 2004
By Arieh O'Sullivan
There are no dancing go-go girls, free beer, wine and cheese, or complimentary trinkets at the IDF pavilion of the Telecom Israel 2004 conference at the Tel Aviv Fair Grounds. Those are at the commercial booths.
What one will find is a rare glimpse into just how far the IDF has come in fielding advanced technology to combat troops. Mock-ups of IDF soldiers of the future with their wrist screens and personal computers linking them with the army's nascent network centric system conjures up science fiction.
The IDF unveiled a number of new gadgets and systems, including a mobile relay station called "Red Fox" that funnels a whopping 155 megabytes of video data a second to a mobile digital divisional command and control headquarters. Other revelations include upgraded PDMs that can download secure pictures from drones and personal wireless radios linking all soldiers in a unit.
This is the first exhibition put together by the IDF's new branch called C4I that consolidates the information flow in the IDF. Set up last year and known by its Hebrew name "Tikshuv," its mission is to make the IDF digitalized and create a synergy that will allow the army to reduce its ground force, says the branch's commander, Maj.-Gen. Udi Shani.
"This is very complicated, not just technologically, but also conceptually and operationally," Shani told The Jerusalem Post.
Technology is advancing at such a rate that even the generals admit that the army finds it difficult to even fathom its needs. Most of the efforts have been focused on combating Palestinian terrorism.
"For us lose in' on an aggressor is a matter of seconds, otherwise they escape," Shani said. "You can see we have input from intelligence and land and air forces together in a matter of seconds."
According to Shani, a rugged command and control system was first tested in battle during last month's Operation Days of Repentance in the Gaza Strip against Kassam rocket squads.
What this means is that by linking up all the sensors and data collectors helicopter pilots view the same digital map that soldiers on the ground are viewing and that are displayed at headquarters. These show information such as where troops are located and remove a lot of the ambiguity and estimation of the past.
"The operational doctrine of the IDF has changed. Today we speak of many things we never even mentioned a decade ago. Even if we did we never thought of it and didn't develop our systems," Shani said.
"Warfare used to be one of masses. Once we kept divisions and divisions. Today we are downsizing, and this is being compensated by technology," Shani said.
"Today you can bring down your enemy's computer network before it has even operated a single force. If I have taken over someone's command and control they can't operate. If I have blocked all of their frequencies, they won't be able to communicate," he said, describing just some of the technologies the IDF is working on.
Shani said that revealing IDF capabilities was good for creating deterrence.
"What we are revealing here is technology. We haven't unveiled everything, but... it is good for others to know what we have," Shani said.
"The capabilities are only at the beginning. It all seems fantastic here, but we are only just starting and there is a lot left to do," he said, adding that the IDF wants to project a sophisticated image at the Telecom 2004 convention.
Shani acknowledged that some 60 percent of the displays are operational and the rest still in the development stage. The projects are mostly part of the IDF ground forces' digitalization program that is expected to cost billions of shekels over the coming decade.
One of the operational products displayed to the public for the first time this week is an upgraded version of the Vered Harim (Mountain Rose) secure cellular network. It can receive slightly delayed downloads from UAVs and other sources directly to the forces on rugged hand-held computers supplied by Tadiran Communications. The army has already supplied hundreds of the devices to company commanders.
"What do I gain from having an aircraft take pictures and then relaying it back to the air force? Now if it can give [the data] to the fighter on the ground in real time the operational effectiveness increases immediately," said Shani.
"Imagine taking a UAV from one spot and attack weapon from someplace else, together with a video conference with people spread in various locations you'll have a network that is exploding," Shani said.
The IDF pavilion is open to the public until Thursday.
The Jerusalem Post - Nov. 16, 2004
DO AS I SAY, NOT AS I DO
by Evelyn Gordon
Why are Israeli soldiers forbidden to defend themselves the way French soldiers do?
For Israelis, last week felt rather like being in a funhouse: Familiar objects, viewed in international mirrors, were distorted beyond recognition.
The most glaring example was the worldwide amnesia over Yasser Arafat's 30-year career as a leading international terrorist. But the violence in the Ivory Coast also seemed like the funhouse reflection of an all-too-familiar scene.
On November 4, Ivory Coast's government ended an 18-month truce by launching air strikes at rebel forces. Two days later, government forces attacked the rebel stronghold of Bouake, killing nine French peacekeepers and wounding 22.
The government said the peacekeepers were unintended casualties of the attack on rebel forces, but France, rejecting this (plausible) contention, claimed that its soldiers were deliberately targeted. It therefore retaliated by destroying most of Ivory Coast's tiny air force - two planes and five helicopters - and seizing the country's major airports.
Thousands of furious Ivorians, wielding machetes, iron bars and clubs, promptly marched on Houphouet-Boigny Airport to try to retake it. Similar mobs besieged foreigners in several cities.
The French reacted to both developments with tear gas, concussion grenades, rockets and gunfire, both from ground troops ensconced in armored vehicles and from helicopter gunships.
The clashes continued all last week, with Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo doing little to restrain the rioters. By the end of the week, between 27 and 62 people had been killed (depending on whose figures you believe) and over 1,000 were wounded. Almost all the casualties were Ivorian.
Up to this point, the events bear an uncanny resemblance to those of September 2000 - when Palestinians broke a seven-year-old peace treaty by launching multiple attacks on Israeli soldiers and civilians throughout the territories.
The sole difference was that here Israelis were unquestionably the intended victims: One soldier was killed by a bomb; another was shot to death by armed Palestinians attacking Joseph's Tomb (which the Oslo Accords had assigned to Israeli control); a border policeman was shot and killed by his Palestinian comrades during a joint patrol; a civilian was shot to death while shopping in the West Bank.
At the same time, mobs consisting of thousands of rock-throwers, intermingled with occasional gunmen, marched on Israeli army positions throughout the territories. Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat made no attempt to restrain the violence.
And Israel responded exactly as France did. First, it bombed empty PA buildings, causing property damage but no casualties - the equivalent (though admittedly far stupider) of France's bombing of the Ivorian air force. Second, it employed live fire against armed mobs after riot control measures such as tear gas proved ineffective.
And, just as the Ivorians suffered far more casualties than the smaller but better-armed French forces, Palestinians suffered far more casualties than the smaller but better-armed Israeli forces.
THERE, HOWEVER, the similarity ends.
In response to last week's events, the UN Security Council, the European Union, the African Union and various national leaders all condemned the Ivorian government both for launching the violence and for failing to stop it.
The Security Council began discussing an arms embargo on Ivory Coast. No one (except Ivory Coast) accused France of using excessive force; the African Union even praised the French response as having "contributed to the restoration of peace and security."
The response to the "intifada" was the exact opposite.
Rather than condemning the PA for starting the violence, the international community - with the EU, and France in particular, in the forefront - termed the violence a legitimate response to then opposition leader Ariel Sharon's peaceful visit to Judaism's holiest site, the Temple Mount, and blamed Israel for shooting back.
The Security Council (with American acquiescence) passed a resolution "deploring" the "provocation" of Sharon's visit and condemning Israel's "excessive use of force against Palestinians;" the Palestinian violence was not even mentioned.
World leaders also convened two international summits in as many weeks to pressure Israel to offer concessions to the PA to stop the violence. And several European countries slapped a partial arms embargo on Israel while simultaneously increasing financial aid to the PA - undeterred by the PA's use of such funds to buy sophisticated weaponry such as the $15-million worth of materiel later discovered aboard the arms ship Karine A in January 2002.
The response to the Ivory Coast clashes was, of course, correct. The Ivorian government was clearly the aggressor and deserved to be treated as such.
Nor was the French reaction excessive: The only way a small force can defend itself against a much larger one, however poorly armed, is by using its superior weaponry to ensure that the mob never gets near it. Had the French withheld fire they would have been slaughtered by the Ivorians: At close quarters, clubs and iron bars are quite sufficient for that purpose.
Yet this was equally true of Israeli soldiers confronting numerically superior Palestinian mobs: Had they not used their weapons to keep the mobs at a distance, they would have been slaughtered. At close quarters (even discounting the mobs' rifle-bearing members), rocks are also quite sufficient for this purpose - as the families of several Israeli victims of rock-wielding Palestinians could testify.
And the Palestinians, like the Ivorians, were clearly the aggressors.
It is hard to find any rational explanation for the world's double standard in these two cases.
Why should unprovoked but unintentional violence against French soldiers be censured while unprovoked and clearly intentional violence against Israelis is justified? Why are Israeli soldiers forbidden to defend themselves the way French soldiers do?
The international community indignantly rejects suggestions that its attitude toward Israel is tainted by anti-Semitism. But in the face of the radically different treatment meted out to France and Israel under such similar circumstances, such denials sound less than convincing.
The writer is a veteran journalist and commentator.
WHO US? ANTI-SEMITES? US?
by Steven Plaut
We have nothing against Jews as such. We just hate Zionism and Zionists. We think Israel does not have a right to exist. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such. Heavens to Mergatroyd. Marx Forbid. We are humanists. Progressives. Peace lovers.
Anti-Semitism is the hatred of Jews. Anti-Zionism is opposition to Zionism and Israeli policies. The two have nothing to do with one another. Venus and Mars. Night and day. Trust us.
Sure, we think the only country on the earth that must be annihilated is Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
Sure, we think that the only children on earth whose being blown up is okay if it serves a good cause are Jewish children. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
Sure, we think that if Palestinians have legitimate grievances this entitles them to mass murder Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such. Naturally, we think that the only people on earth who should never be allowed to exercise the right of self-defense are the Jews. Jews should only resolve the aggression against them through capitulation, never through self-defense. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We only denounce racist apartheid in the one country in the Middle East that is not a racist apartheid country. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We refuse to acknowledge the Jews as a people, and think they are only a religion. We do not have an answer to how people who do not practice the Jewish religion can still be regarded as Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We think that all peoples have the right to self-determination, except Jews, and including even the make-pretend "Palestinian people". But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We hate it when people blame the victims, except of course when people blame the Jews for the jihads and terrorist campaigns against them. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We think the only country in the Middle East that is a fascist anti-democratic one is the one that has free elections. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We demand that the only country in the Middle East with free speech, free press or free courts be destroyed. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We oppose military aggression, except when it is directed at Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We really understand suicide bombers who murder bus loads of Jewish children and we insist that their demands be met in full. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We do not think that Jews have any human rights that need to be respected, and especially not the right to ride a bus without being murdered. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
There are Jewish, leftist anti-Zionists and we consider this proof that anti-Zionists could not possibly be anti-Semitic; not even the ones who cheer when Jews are mass murdered. These are the only Jews we think need be acknowledged or respected. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.. We think the only conflict on earth that must be solved through dismembering one of the parties to that conflict is the one involving Israel. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We do not think murder proves how righteous and just the cause of the murderer is, except when it comes to murderers of Jews. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We do not think the Jews are entitled to their own state and must submit to being a minority in a Rwanda-style bi-national state, although no other state on earth, including the 22 Arab countries, should be similarly expected to be deprived of its sovereignty. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We think that Israels having a Jewish majority and a star on its flag makes it a racist apartheid state. We do not think any other country having an ethnic-religious majority or having crosses or crescents or Allah Akbar on its flag is racist or needs dismemberment. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We condemn the mistreatment of women in the only country of the Middle East in which they are not mistreated. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We condemn the mistreatment of minorities in the only country in the Middle East in which minorities are not brutally suppressed and mass murdered. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We demand equal citizen rights, which is why the only country in the Middle East in need of extermination is the only one in which such rights exist. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
We have no trouble with the fact that there is no freedom of religion in any Arab countries. But we are mad as hell at Israel for violating religious freedom, and never mind that we are never quite sure where or when it does so. But that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.
So how can you possibly say we are anti-Semites? We are simply anti-Zionists. We seek peace and justice, thats all. And surely that does not mean we have anything against Jews as such.