Published by the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies
THE MACCABEAN ONLINE
POLITICAL ANALYSIS AND COMMENTARY ON ISRAELI & JEWISH AFFAIRS
"For Zion's sake I will not hold My peace, And for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest"
VOLUME 8 B"H MARCH 2000 NUMBER 3
TABLE OF CONTENTS
DETERRENCE OR DHIMMIZATION Which Should Israel Choose?....Editorial.....Bernard J. Shapiro 2
LEBANON & SYRIA
PAYING WITH THE SAME COIN.... Boris Shusteff 3
LEADERSHIP EQUALS RESPONSIBILITY.... Ariel Sharon 6
ISRAEL'S MOMENT OF TRUTH ....Daniel Pipes 7
CLINTON OPENS U.S. COFFER$ IN BID FOR GOLAN PEACE .....URI DAN 13
DESTROYING PEACE (ISRAEL)..... Uri Dan 14
GUILT BY ASSOCIATION? .....Elyakim Ha'etzni 16
BARAK IS OUTMANEUVERED.....Ariel Sharon 17
BEILIN AND THE THREE DICTATORSHIPS......Elyakim Haetzni 19
MEDDLING IN ISRAEL'S AFFAIRS.... Editorial...THE NEW YORK POST 23
GET TOUGH IN LEBANON ....David Bar-Illan 24
"WHY PEACE ELUDES ISRAEL"....Prof. Paul Eidelberg 25
SHEPHERD'S TOWN, BARAK AND ISRAELI SURVIVAL....Elyakim Ha'etzni 27
GOLAN HEIGHTS FULL PAGE ADS .....Sponsored By The Ariel Center For Policy Research 28
NO SUCH THING AS A FREE LUNCH ....Ariel Sharon 30
UPROOTING OF SETTLEMENTS OVER OUR DEAD BODIES!!!....Women In Green 32
THE FATAL POSITION....AFSI 32
THE JEW ROOM .....Emanuel A. Winston 33
ISRAEL REMAINS DETERMINED NOT TO LEARN FROM ITS HUMILIATIONS..
.......Louis Rene Beres 36
Will the Right Hand Forget Its Skill?.....Eugene Narrett, PhD 38
THE LAND....Boris Shusteff 42
A NEW ZIONIST CONGRESS....Louis Rene Beres 44
THE MACCABEAN ONLINE * [ISSN 1087-9404]
Edited by Bernard J. Shapiro * Published Monthly by the
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(c) 2000 Bernard J. Shapiro
DETERRENCE OR DHIMMIZATION
Which Should Israel Choose?
By Bernard J. Shapiro
Back in 1965, in a small meeting room in Tel Aviv, former Defense Minister Moshe Dayan gave a pep talk to a group of RAFI (Rishimat Poalai Israel) volunteers, myself included. At that time, RAFI, a breakaway faction of the Mapai Party, included such notables as former Prime Minister David Ben Gurion and former Defense Minister Shimon Peres. Peres and Dayan had been considered the "hawks" of Mapai and it was no accident that in the 1965 election they supported a strong defense and security policy.
Dayan was always interesting to listen to, but this talk was something special and we paid attention to every word. "The essence of Israel's security in this region (Middle East) is deterrence," he said. "When we formed the State in 1948-9, we were very weak. The Arab States had planes, tanks, heavy artillery and many more soldiers than us. We had very little heavy military equipment. In the period 1949-55, we absorbed almost a million immigrants. Tent cities sprung up all over the country. We were totally disorganized. Had the Arabs mounted another major invasion, we could have lost. We devised a solution to this problem. It was deterrence. Think about being lost in a forest and surrounded by hostile animals. If you light a torch, boldly approach them showing no fear -- they will retreat. But, if you show fear -- they will attack and you are lost. We used this principle to save Israel during those early years. Every time we were attacked, we retaliated ten fold. We showed daring and penetrated deep within their borders to attack our targets. We were fearless, brave, and even a bit bloodthirsty. You know the result. The Arabs were afraid and never attacked. Deterrence worked. By 1956 when we invaded Sinai, the Israel Defense Force was not just strong, it was invincible."
The story above was not told just for nostalgia. The lesson is extremely important for the survival of Israel today. Unfortunately Israelis are daily witnessing the consequences of seven years of declining deterrence vis a vis its Arab population. In 1987, the intifada presented Israel with a new challenge. It was a new kind of war, but with the same aim of driving the Israelis out of their country. The Israelis fought the intifada with many handicaps, not the least of which were their own rules of conduct. Israeli soldiers failed to cope with attacks by teenage Arab boys. In the course of several years, the Arabs learned that the soldiers would not aggressively retaliate for their attacks. They became emboldened.
The Jews living in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza showed great fortitude, enduring thousands of attacks and still tripling their numbers. The serious security failure developed as Arabs became accustomed to attacking Jews and Israeli soldiers. By trying to remain humane in the face of massive attacks, Israel emboldened the Arabs to more and more attacks. Throwing concrete boulders, Molotov cocktails, and then using firearms at Israelis became the norm of behavior among the Arabs. The Israeli government allowed its citizens to be attacked solely because they were Jews. In no other country of the world would such a policy be tolerated. Just two weeks ago a reserve officer of the Israel Defense Forces made a wrong turn and ended up in the center of Ramallah, a Arab city. He was immediately attacked by a vicious mob of Arabs, murder in their eyes, who almost beat him to death. Deterrence had vanished.
While the Jews may not have been afraid like the man in the forest, the affect of multiple restrictions on the Israeli right of self defense had the same result. That result was to increase the bloodlust of the Arab population and to multiply the Jewish casualties.
In 1991, the Persian Gulf War, with its SCUD attacks on Israel, further undermined Israeli deterrence. Having to depend on United States Forces instead of her own had a deleterious effect on Israeli self-confidence. It is notable that the Arab population of Judea and Samaria danced on their on their roofs and cried, "Gas the Jews" as the SCUD's headed for Tel Aviv. The self-assurance of the Israelis also declined immensely as a result of their cowering in sealed rooms during the missile attacks.
After the war, Shimon Peres and his associates began to search for a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict that did not require deterrence. The answer, Peres thought, was to be found in the growing influence of the extreme left (Meretz Party) in Israeli's ruling Labor elite. For many years, the left in Israel and its supporters in America have promoted the doctrine of "Israeli guilt" for the continuing Arab-Israeli conflict. The leftists accepted the Arab propaganda version of Middle Eastern history and see their role as making amends for alleged "wrongs" committed against the Palestinian Arabs. When the Labor Party formed a coalition with Meretz, it was assumed that Meretz would be the junior partner. What we have witnessed is the virtual infusion of extreme left-wing philosophy into the body of Labor.
Peres took this "Israeli or Jewish guilt" and developed it into a "peace" policy based on rectifying "wrongs" committed against the Palestinian Arabs. The leftists saw the most serious "wrong" as being the occupation itself. Jewish rule over a minority of Arabs was considered so immoral, in and of itself, as to cause a destructive decline in Israeli democracy and public morality. The details of maintaining the occupation, like reserve duty in Gaza, were said to cause everything from violence in the home to reckless driving. Divorcing Israel from the territories was seen as a goal for Israel and not just a victory for the Arabs.
I describe the Peres "peace" policy as the "dhimmization of Israel." It was based on virtually giving the Arabs everything they wanted: a PLO state in most of the territories, control of land and water, return of refugees, and a shared status for Jerusalem. His belief was that by Israeli actions and concessions, he could terminate Arab hostility to Israel. Peres exhibited the fallacy of believing that anti-Semitism is caused by the "bad behavior" of Jews. He failed to understand that there are major forces of religion, history and psychology in the one billion strong Islamic world that can not be manipulated by anything that Israel does. Would the Holocaust have been prevented if the Jews of Europe had been "nicer" to the Nazis? By shrinking Israel to a size that was non-threatening to the Arabs, Peres hoped to achieve for Israel the status of a dhimmis-nation in the Islamic world. Dhimmis status, you will recall, is the inferior third-class status afforded Jews in Arab countries throughout the centuries.
Now Prime Minister Barak is giving the Golan Heights to Syria despite the full knowledge that this will weaken Israel and make it more vulnerable to attack. The concurrent loss of one third of Israel's water resources would further weaken Israel. What is hard for rational Jews and Israelis to understand is that weakening Israel is precisely the purpose of the 'peace proces.'
Israel, with its powerful military and independent citizens, had always been an affront to Moslems everywhere. Therefore, Jews should be made subservient, weak and dependent on the approval of their Moslem overlords. Peres understood that Israel in its present borders was too strong to be destroyed. He also understood that the Arabs were offended that they could not destroy Israel within its defensible borders. The Peres solution seems to involve making Israel weak, creating a PLO state, and generally groveling before Arab rulers. Such an emasculated dhimmis-like Israel, would now win the approval of the Islamic world. He would call it "peace." Some would call it appeasement. Some would cheer. Some would protest. Freeman Center members (and real Zionists) see the Peres/Barak/PLO/Syria plan as a nightmare and pray that Israel's leaders will come to their senses and return to a policy of deterrence, security and defense of Israeli interests.
PAYING WITH THE SAME COIN
By Boris Shusteff
Every time that Israel suffers another loss in Lebanon, the calls to leave the security zone become louder, the Israeli military might shrinks in the eyes of the citizens of the Jewish state, and the only solution they can contemplate is an immediate retreat. It appears that in doing so, we abstract from our own history, taking Israeli history out of the context of the whole history of the Jewish people.
We keep forgetting that the Israeli soldiers who have fallen in Lebanon are not the only Jews who fell because they were Jews. If we pick May, 1941 as the starting point of the extermination of European Jewry by Nazi Germany, during the five subsequent years of the Holocaust, every hour 137 Jews were killed by bullets, gas, hunger, tortures and other terrible means. Just think for a moment, every two hours we were losing more people than Israel has lost in Lebanon in 15 years. The Jewish state was created exactly for the purpose of preventing such terrible genocide against the Jewish people. The Jews regained their statehood in order to say "NO" to anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism, not only with their words but also with weapons in their hands.
During the War of Independence the young Jewish state lost 6,000 people, or 10% of its population. But for the Jews this was a reprieve, a fantastic reduction in the number of casualties comparing to the time of the Holocaust, when the same number of people would have been exterminated in less than 48 hours. From war to war Israel learned an invaluable lesson: the stronger she became, the smaller grew the number of fallen Jews.
How it is possible that now the Jewish state is so reluctant to use its military might? If it is permissible for America to unleash a war against Yugoslavia, which lies thousands of miles away from Washington, if it is permissible for Russia to bomb Chechnya, whose direct threat to Russia is very questionable, why should Israel try to escape under the protection of the word "peace" with her tail tucked between the legs?
It is Israel and not America or Russia who is threatened with extinction. Israel is the only country in the world that is surrounded by mortal enemies, who every day promise to destroy her. Therefore, not the desire to please America or any other nation, but the issue of survival must dominate and dictate any Israel's decision.
The Jews used to be pariahs in the absence of the Jewish state. It is taking a long time for Israel to understand that she will remain a pariah even as long as she is a Jewish state. Perhaps the only nice words that will be said about her will be in her eulogy, but she will not be able to hear them. The anti-Semitism of the Arabs will not subside as long as the Jewish state exists in their midst. The correct way to counter it is with military might. Israel should stop simply threatening to use her force and should start using it. Why should the Arabs believe Ehud Barak's words that "the army will retaliate strongly if guerrillas attack Israel after the pullout?" The barking dog never bites.
It is mind boggling that Barak, the "most decorated Israeli soldier," can still call for a withdrawal of Israeli soldiers from Lebanon when even David Levy understands that "withdrawal now, in effect, does not mean withdrawal. It means a rout, panic-stricken flight ... which will place us in the future .... in a very critical situation" (1). In lieu of the "panic-stricken flight" the editorial in "Wall Street Journal" suggested for Israel to try the "Turkish option," when "instead of offering 'land for peace,' Turkey offered war or peace, massing its formidable army at the Syrian border. Sure enough, Mr. Assad caved in" (2).
It appears that Barak, after taking off his military fatigues, has completely lost all military skills. His current policy in Lebanon is simply ruinous to the soldier's morale. It is not surprising that on February 27 several news agencies announced that "an Israeli soldier who said he was too scared to return to the Israeli-occupied sector of Lebanon has been jailed for 28 days in an unprecedented ruling by the military"(3).
Most puzzling of all is the fact that Barak must know better than anyone else of the harm that he is inflicting. The Israeli daily "Ha'aretz" wrote that, not long ago "Barak alluded to situations he faced as IDF chief of staff. 'When the time comes for the commander of a unit who has been taking cover behind some shelter to stand up, and head straight into fire, he and some of his soldiers are sure that some of them will get hit by bullets in the head and die.' Now, when such a unit commander hears on his transistor radio at his post [in Lebanon] that in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem debates are raging in which some people claim that he shouldn't be there at all, that there's no point to his serving there and that it's all futile, this causes a problem. Whoever turns a blind eye to this difficulty is ignoring reality" (4).
To say that Barak's actions contradict his own words would be a mere understatement. Today it is none other than he, the Israeli Defense Minister, who "turns the blind eye" and "ignores reality" and claims that Israeli soldiers "shouldn't be in Lebanon at all," repeating time and again that "no matter what, there will be a withdrawal from Lebanon by July 7."
In spite of this, the vast majority of Israeli soldiers are brave and dedicated men. At the funeral of Tzahi Yitach, who was the latest Israeli soldier killed in Lebanon, his 16-year-old sister, Etty, said that "her brother deeply loved the army and volunteered for combat duty" (5). Like Tzahi, the overwhelming majority of Israeli men who are serving in Lebanon are doing so voluntarily. They are prepared to face the hardships and dangers of service in the combat units. Even after recent Israeli fatalities "some 25 hesder yeshiva students in the Golan Heights have asked the IDF to allow them to replace their friends serving in southern Lebanon. The students wish to serve in the Rotem outpost, one of the most commonly-fired upon IDF points in the area" (6).
Instead of whining about losses among our forces in Lebanon, the Israeli media should emphasize the unprecedented heroism of the Israeli soldiers and make it common knowledge that the Israeli army is the only army in the world that has managed to find a way to fight successfully against guerrilla forces. While the casualty ratio between a regular army and guerrillas is usually 3 to1, the Israeli army has turned it around, making it 1 to 3, and this is in conditions where it has tried to limit to a minimum the number of casualties among the civil population of the enemy countries.
It is madness to put our soldiers in an extremely dangerous situation and then prevent them from attacking the enemies. What degree of love for the land and the country these youngsters must have, if, knowing that they will be "sitting ducks," they still volunteer to serve in Lebanon? We must grant their decision the highest respect and must not humiliate them with our pity. They willfully choose their road, and nobody has the right to insult them with paternalism.
Instead of developing in the Israeli soldiers an inferiority complex, the Israeli politicians should advocate the untying of the soldiers' hands and the removal of the blindfold from their eyes. Tzachi Itach's father, Col. Aryeh Itach - the founder of the Givati unit in which Tzachi served - said that IDF soldiers are "excellent fighters, but... they are sitting ducks for the Hizbullah, because the political decision-makers are not permitting the army to respond appropriately"(7).
It is useless for Israel to bomb Lebanon's infrastructure if the airplanes with Hizbullah's military supplies land at Damascus airport. The time is long overdue for Israel to bomb Damascus and not Beirut to prevent weapons from reaching the Hizbullah guerrillas. Barak should put his military uniform back on and listen to Thomas Freedman, the darling of the Israeli leftists, who wrote on February 22, "Ehud - You know the Syrians are behind the war in South Lebanon, so stop bombing Beirut's power stations. Hit the Syrians! Make Hafez pay in his own coin" (8). 02/28/00
1. The Associated Press news 02/21/00.
2. Wall Street Journal, 02/09/00.
3. Nando times internet news; http://www.nandotimec.com; 2/27/00
4. Amos Harel and Gideon Alon: Barak: IDF troops' low morale in South Lebanon 'a problem'; Haaretz 2/16/00;
5. Nando times internet news; http://www.nandotimec.com; 2/20/00.
6. Arutz 7 news, 02/28/00.
7. Arutz 7 news, 02/13/00.
8. Thomas Friedman: "Dear Ehud, Hafez and Yasir," IMRA (Independent Media Review & Analysis) 2/22/00.
Boris Shusteff is an engineer in upstate New York. He is also a research associate with the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies.
Reprinted from The Jerusalem Post of March 3, 2000
LEADERSHIP EQUALS RESPONSIBILITY
By Ariel Sharon
It is well known that a person may be brave in the battlefield, but a public coward. It seems that Prime Minister Ehud Barak lacks the courage to tell the nation openly that he has given up everything. He does not have the strength to tell his people: "I have accepted the Syrian demand to withdraw from the entire Golan Heights all the way to Lake Kinneret. And to persuade Assad to accept my concessions, I even threw in Hamat Gader as a bonus."
Barak has decided to hide behind previous prime ministers and blame them for his own shortcomings. It is a mixture of lack of leadership, lack of credibility and inexperience. I believe he would have acted differently were he experienced. Because someone who shirks responsibility cannot be the leader of a nation.
The prime minister accused former prime minister Yitzhak Shamir of supposedly agreeing to retreat from the whole Golan to the June 4 lines. Shamir denied this fervently. As opposed to Mr. Barak, he was telling the truth. Barak accused the late Yitzhak Rabin, who can no longer answer. He relied on the testimony of aides who were never privy to the negotiations, and who suddenly remembered Rabin's stance on the situation. Advisers that Rabin nurtured were suddenly recruited to slander his memory by distorting his intentions. This is a place where only the past changes. We must remember that secretary of state Warren Christopher clearly stated in a letter to Netanyahu in 1996 that there was no promise by Rabin to retreat to the June 4 lines.
Even former prime minister Shimon Peres denies it. Mr. Barak accuses former prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu of agreeing to the June 4 withdrawal. Netanyahu denied this. As the foreign minister in Netanyahu's government, I want to state: No map was given to the Syrians. Netanyahu did not intend to retreat from the cliffs to the shore of the lake. Netanyahu spoke of miles east of the international border. I personally stopped the negotiations when I heard about them, because even those demands from the Syrians seemed to me insufficient.
ALL of the former prime ministers whom Barak is referring to now - Shamir, Rabin, Peres and Netanyahu - did not act. They understood the great danger of retreating from the Golan Heights. The only one who is prepared to act and thereby endanger Israel is Barak.
"The window of opportunity" is about to close, Barak explains. Assad is on his last legs. (Is he still functioning as a leader?) This is a mistaken assumption. In the life of a nation there are no closed windows. One closes, another one opens. One only needs time and perseverance.To better understand the dangers toward which Mrs. Barak is leading us, you only need to remember what happened to the prime minister of France at Bir Zeit University when he dared call Hizbullah a terrorist organization.
You have to read the words of Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk Shara:"The return of all of Palestine is a long-term strategic goal which can not be achieved in one stage." "The confrontation with Israel will continue even in an era of peace." "Syria will not expel the rejectionist factions from its territory." "Syria will not impose any kind of normalization on its people. That is a red line."
All that along with incessant, vile incitement that has been going on for many years: Holocaust denial, Israel being called a Nazi regime, and more. This is the norm in Syria, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority. Meanwhile, Israel is expected to make irreversible concessions so that the Syrians can sit at the top of the mountain and we at the bottom.
I am in favor of negotiations; I am in favor of agreements. But the government must remember that the most important thing, especially in view of the atmosphere in the Middle East, is the dimension of time. Agreements should be based on solutions that are carried out over years. Even then, we should not leave the Golan.
They say: "Barak promised." So what. Barak promised to fight unemployment and did nothing. Barak promised to take care of the hospitals and did nothing. He promised to take care of education with no result. He promised to do something about socioeconomic gaps and they are only getting wider.
In the areas that count, Barak hasn't kept his promises. Why does Barak think he should keep the one promise that puts Israel in danger? Maybe this is the answer: Barak says Clinton wants to wrap it up by May. We all know why, but we must remember: Presidents come and go, but Israel must exist forever.
(c) 2000 The Jerusalem Post
Reprinted from Commentary Magazine of February, 2000
ISRAEL'S MOMENT OF TRUTH
By Daniel Pipes
It might appear that things have never been going better for Israel, or worse for those who wish it ill.
Consider: the Jewish state has signed peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan, and five agreements with the Palestinian Authority (PA), its "partner for peace." With Syria, high-level negotiations now under way appear so promising that both sides have publicly predicted they could be wrapped up within a few months. Other diplomatic ties are stronger than ever: Israel has a powerful regional ally in Turkey, enjoys growing links to such giants as India and China, and is generally shedding the near-pariah status that hobbled it in the recent past. The connection to the United States is warm, deep, personal, and reciprocal.
Should diplomacy fail for any reason, moreover, Israel can fall back on its military strength. As the only country in the Middle East participating in the much-bruited "revolution in military affairs"--essentially, the application of high-tech to armaments--it has built so great a lead in conventional arms, including planes and tanks, that several Arab states have basically conceded they cannot compete with it on that level. Instead, they have directed their attention higher (to weapons of mass destruction) and lower (to terrorism). But even in those arenas, Israel is far from helpless: it has a missile-defense system, the Arrow, in the works and, for retaliatory purposes, weapons of mass destruction of its own, as well as formidable anti-terrorist capabilities.
Security matters hardly exhaust the list of Israel's advantages. Economically, it enjoys today a per-capita income of $18,000, placing it a bit ahead of Spain and a bit behind Canada--in other words, in the big leagues. Better yet, it has shown a very impressive annual growth rate since 1990. Thanks to its "Silicon Wadi," Israel is a high-tech giant, with a computer and Internet sector larger in absolute terms than that of any other country in the world outside the United States. Demographically, the birth rate of 2.6 children per woman among Israeli Jews is one of the highest in the West, and the country also remains a magnet for immigration; with 5 million Jews, it is quickly gaining on the United States as the place with the largest Jewish population in the world.
Finally, there is the political scene. Unlike its neighbors and rivals, Israel benefits from a lively and robust civic culture in which everyone has his say, party lines are (notoriously) fluid, and no one defers to politicians. And yet, however colorful and argumentative the public forum, when it comes to key security issues the major parties find much common ground. In last year's elections, for example, the two candidates for the post of prime minister differed on the tone and pace but hardly at all on the substance of the peace process: yes, they concurred, the Palestinians should do more to live up to their promises, but no, their failings in this area were not reason enough to cut off negotiations.
By contrast, If Israelis appear to be faring well, Arabs--and Iran, too--seem to be faring less well. Arab countries are, in the words of a UN official, "particularly exceptional in being the highest spenders in the world on military purposes": they devote 8.8 percent of their GDP to the military, versus 2.4 percent for the world as a whole. Nevertheless, despite all this spending, Arab conventional forces are in decline. To be sure, a few states (like Egypt) have access to advanced American arms, but their lack of technical proficiency means that they are nearly always consumers of military hardware, paying for completed goods that others have to teach them how to operate.
Allies? The Soviet Union is gone, and no one has come close to replacing it. The Arab states darkly suspect the United States of engaging in conspiracies against them, and these suspicions--as, most recently, in the case of the EgyptAir crash off New York--impede closer relations with the world's only superpower. Arabs also lack an effective counterpunch to the pro-Israel lobby in Washington, and have failed to respond to the growing cooperation between Turkey and Israel in a way that would advance their own interests.
Outside Israel, the Middle East boasts--if that is the right word--the world's highest quotient of autocratic regimes, not to mention an inordinate number of rogue states, including Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, and Libya. A culture of deference and intimidation remains dominant everywhere; movements for democracy and human rights are feeble. Arab states are particularly vulnerable to Islamism, a totalitarian ideology in the tradition of fascism and Marxism-Leninism. While Islamists have suffered reverses in recent years, they are still the major opposition force in countries like Algeria, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, threatening the stability of government after government.
Nor are Arab economies doing well. The recent jump in oil prices, however welcome to producers, cannot obscure some dismal realities, principally a per-capita annual income among Arabic-speaking peoples that does not rise to one-tenth of Israel's. Yes, Kuwait weighs in (just like Israel) at $18,000; but in Yemen the annual per-capita income is $270; more to the point, Egypt, Jordan, and Syria all hover in the neighborhood of $1,000. A paltry one percent of world equity flowing to emerging markets these days ends up in Arabic-speaking countries. When it comes to high technology, the Middle East is a black hole, with few sales and even less innovation. As the historian R. Stephen Humphreys has noted, "with the partial exception of Turkey and of course Israel ... there is not one Middle Eastern manufactured item that can be sold competitively on world markets."
Demographically, the Arabs and Iran have too much of a good thing: a birth rate so high that schools cannot maintain standards, and economies cannot manufacture enough jobs. The demographer Onn Winckler has named population growth as the Middle East's "most critical socioeconomic problem."
Taken together, all these factors seem to suggest that Israel has at long last achieved a definitive edge over its historic enemies. Such, indeed, appears to be the view of Israeli leaders themselves. Thanks to Israel's position of strength, Prime Minister Ehud Barak now speaks confidently of an "end to wars" and of his country's being finally accepted as a permanent presence by its neighbors. These sentiments are widely echoed both in Israel and in Washington.
And yet--two trends suggest otherwise. The first has to do with Arab strengths, the second with Israeli weaknesses. In both cases, the phenomena I will be discussing are only partly material in nature, lying more in the realm of such elusive and intangible qualities as internal spirit and morale. But these are precisely the qualities that in the end can decide the fates of nations and peoples.
Some improvements in the Arab position, whether actual or imminent, have long been recognized: greater control over a huge portion of the world's oil and gas reserves, steady acquisition of weapons of mass destruction, movement toward economic modernization (notably in Egypt). Progress in any or all of these areas can seriously threaten Israel's qualitative edge and its security in the medium term--unless Arab enmity toward the Jewish state has dissipated in the interim. But just here is where the greatest reason for concern resides.
Historically, Arab "rejectionism"--that is, the refusal to accept the permanent existence of a sovereign Jewish state in its historic homeland --has been based on one or another local variant (pan-Arab, pan-Syrian, Palestinian, or the like) of nationalism, a European import into the Middle East. It has suffered from two disabilities: limited reach and factionalism. But as, recent years, the rejection of Israel has taken on a less secular and more Islamic complexion, it has gained a deeper resonance among ordinary Arabs, with Israel's existence now cast as an affront to God's will, and has also benefited operationally from a somewhat greater degree of unity (Islamists are surprisingly good at working together). The net effect has been not to moderate but, on the contrary, to solidify and to sharpen Arab antagonism to Israel--vocal rejectionist elements now include pious Muslims and Islamists, Arab nationalists, despots, and intellectuals--and to give fresh impetus to the age-old dream of destroying it.
The point cannot be made often or strongly enough that, in their great majority, Arabic speakers do continue to repudiate the idea of peace with Israel. Despite having lost six rounds of war, they seem nothing loath to try again. In one of the most recent in-depth surveys of Arab opinion, conducted by the political scientist Hilal Khashan of the American University of Beirut, sixteen hundred respondents, divided equally among Jordanians, Lebanese, Palestinians, and Syrians, stated by a ratio of 69 to 28 percent that they personally did not want peace with Israel. By 79 to 18 percent, they rejected the idea of doing business with Israelis even after a total peace. By 80 to 19 percent, they rejected learning about Israel. By 87 to 13 percent, they supported attacks by Islamic groups against Israel.
This is the view of Israel that dominates political debate in the Arab world and that is conveyed to the public in every arena from scholarly discourse to the popular media to nursery-school jingles. True, some Arabs think otherwise. The late King Hussein of Jordan spoke eloquently of the need to put aside the conflict with Israel and to get on with things; his son and successor appears to be of like mind. Some Arab army officers would undoubtedly prefer not to confront Israel's military forces any time soon. Kuwaitis and Lebanese Christians, sobered by occupation, now mostly wish to leave Israel alone. And there are business leaders who believe, as one Arab banker succinctly put it, that "the whole purpose of peace is business." But these elements, overall, represent but a minority of the Arab population, and have not shifted the underlying hostility.
An incident from the sports pages makes the point. Only a few months ago, Israeli athletes ventured on a first-ever official match to an Arab capital--the capital not of a front-line "confrontation state" but of the tiny and moderate Persian Gulf sheikhdom of Qatar. The experience turned out to be, as Agence France-Presse aptly characterized it, "a bruising ordeal." Forced to live in nearly complete isolation from other athletes, the Israeli champions had to enter and leave their hotel via a side door. Among the flags of the competing nations, Israel's alone was not raised in public. Huge crowds turned up to jeer at the Jewish athletes, and the media touted their presence as "an occasion to express the Arabs' rejection of all that is Israeli."
Twenty years of relations between Egypt and Israel since the treaty of 1979 testify bitterly to the same state of affairs. Formally there is peace, but Cairo permits, even sponsors, a vicious propaganda campaign against Israel that includes the crudest forms of anti-Semitism, and it is rapidly building up offensive military forces that could be deployed against the Jewish state. In effect, Egyptian authorities are telling their people, for all sorts of reasons we have to be in contact with Israelis and sign certain pieces of paper, but we still hate them, and you should, too. In Jordan, where the government does not play this double game, things are in some ways worse: the best efforts of two kings have failed to induce in the Jordanian populace a more peaceable and friendly outlook toward Israel.
Fueling the dream of Arab rejectionists is the immensely important fact that within Israel itself (that is, within the 1967 borders), the Jewish proportion of the population has fallen from a one-time high of 87 percent to 79 percent today, and is inexorably trailing downward. In 1998, of Israel's total population growth of 133,000, only 80,000 were Jews, with Arabs making up the bulk of the remainder. From such statistics, some demographers predict a non-Jewish majority by the middle of the 21st century.
But the Jewish nature of the "Jewish state" will shift in the Arabs' favor long before they reach majority status there. At present, were Israeli Arabs to be represented in the Knesset in proportion to their numbers, they would already hold 24 out of its 120 seats. Even with the seven seats they now occupy, as the analyst Eric Rozenman has noted, the Arab electorate and Arab Knesset members ... have helped override Jewish majorities on such vital matters as the creation of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's coalition in 1992 and approval of the Oslo and Oslo II accords in 1993 and 1995 respectively. All seven Israeli Arab members voted for both agreements; the former passed 61 to 50, with nine abstentions, the latter passed 61 to 59.
These trends will undoubtedly persist, Rozenman writes, especially as Israeli Arabs become "energized by a new Palestinian state next door (and perhaps also by an increasingly Palestinian Jordan)." By the time the numbers of Arabs approach or even exceed parity with the Jews, "the state might still be democratic, but the civic atmosphere, the public culture, would not likely be Jewish in the tacit, general sense it is today."
The growing power and enfranchisement of Muslims in the United States provide further grounds for Arab optimism. Not only is the American Muslim community approaching the Jewish community in absolute size, it is also making strides in education, economic well-being, and political savvy. If the old pro-Arab lobby was hampered by its dependence on oil money, retired American diplomats, and left-wing Christian Arabs, dynamic new organizations like the American Muslim Council and the Council on American-Islamic Relations are another matter altogether. Although foreign policy is hardly their only cause, "Palestine" remains the single most mobilizing issue for American Muslims, and the position articulated by Muslim organizations on this issue is almost uniformly extremist--against negotiations with Israel or almost any form of accommodation with it.
Not only are these extremist Muslim organizations intent on making themselves heard, but the Clinton administration, at least, has openly welcomed them at the highest levels. At a dinner she hosted to break the fast of Ramadan this past December, Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright told her guests: "I want to be sure that the legitimate concerns of Muslim Americans are taken into account when shaping the programs, activities, and reports of this Department." Seated before her was a Who's Who of American Muslim radicals.
Is it any wonder that many Arabs, knowing such facts, or hearing such heady words from the lips of the American Secretary of State, should become newly imbued with a sense of confidence about the future? And that sense can only be bolstered by what they see happening on the other side, within Israel itself.
Once renowned for its self-confidence, bravery, and purpose, Israel today is a changed society. Whatever the undoubted strength of its military machine, few in a position to know the heart and soul of the country try to hide the fact of a widespread demoralization, even within that military machine itself. As a retired colonel summed it up neatly, "the Israeli public is really tired of war."
Fatigue takes many forms in contemporary Israel. The pervasive feeling that they have fought long enough, and that the time has come to settle, leads many to express openly their annoyance with the need for military preparedness and the huge expense of maintaining a modern armed force. They weary of the constant loss of life, they want escape from the fear that terrorism imparts, they yearn to close down an atavistic tribal war--and peace treaties promise a quick way out. (As one Israeli put it to me, "My grandfather, father, myself, and my son have all fought the Arabs; I want to make sure my grandson does not also have to.") Among young people, draft evasion, hitherto all but unknown, has become a serious problem, and within the army itself, morale is hardly what it once was, as the IDF's decidedly unheroic record in Lebanon has revealed to all, including the Hizbullah enemy.
At the same time, Israel's soaring economy has given many citizens a taste for the good life that cannot be easily reconciled with the need for patience and fortitude--and, especially, sacrifice--in confronting a seemingly unchanging enemy. Middle-aged Israeli men are increasingly unwilling to go off and "play soldier" on reserve duty for several weeks a year when they could be at the office increasing their net worth or enjoying what that net worth makes possible. For those with an active social conscience, a number of long-deferred domestic problems--persistent poverty, a faulty educational system, worsening relations between secular and religious--seem much worthier of attention, and of state expenditure, than does grappling endlessly with Israel's opponents.
Finally, Israelis are tired of the moral opprobrium their country has long suffered--at the United Nations, in Western academic circles, and in editorial boardrooms. Indeed, in an extreme reaction to this ongoing moral ostracism, some of the country's foremost intellectuals have, as it were, defected: they have accommodated sizable chunks of the Arab side's version of the Arab-Israeli conflict, promulgating them as important new truths. Thus, to cite an especially influential expression of this line of thinking, the school of "new historians" in Israel argues that the Jewish state is guilty of an "original sin"--the alleged dispossession of Palestine's native inhabitants--and can therefore be considered to some extent illegitimate. Others, known as "post-Zionists," have characterized Jewish nationalism--Zionism--as, if not racist, then at best an outdated and parochial ideology, and one which should no longer form the basis of Israel's public life.
Such ideas, first incubated on the far Left and in the prestige universities, then spread to students, artists, and journalists, and are now the stuff of television documentaries and educational textbooks. As of the current Israeli school year, ninth graders no longer learn that Israel's war of independence in 1948-49 was a battle of the few against the many but, to the contrary, that the Jews enjoyed military superiority over the Arabs. They also learn that many Palestinians fled the country in those war years not to clear the way for invading Arab armies thought to be on their march to victory, but out of well-founded fears of Jewish brutality and terror.
In a front-page report on the introduction of these books into the schools, the New York Times rightly characterized them as marking a "quiet revolution." That revolution has by now reached the cosnsciousness of politicians, business leaders, and even military officers; its impact can hardly be exaggerated. Thanks to the inroads of post-Zionism, as Meyrav Wurmser has observed in the Middle East Quarterly, Israeli society "is now facing a crisis of identity and values that strikes at the basic components and elements of [its] identity: Judaism and nationalism." Without those two components, clearly, little remains of the Zionist project.
What are the implications, for politics and diplomacy, of Israeli fatigue, and of the intense self-absorption that is its corollary? What strikes one above all is how little attention Israelis are paying these days to their Arab neighbors. Sick of fighting, bent on building an Internet economy, they seem to have decided that Arabs feel the same way, and want the same things, they do. (In psychology, the term for this is projection.) According to a survey conducted by the Jaffee Center at Tel Aviv University, fully two-thirds of Israelis now agree with the following dubious assertions: that most Palestinians want peace; that signing agreements will end the Arab-Israeli conflict; and that if forced to choose between negotiations and increased military strength, Israel should opt for the former. Prime Minister Ehud Barak perfectly sums up this outlook in his repeated invocation of a peace that will "work for everyone," the unspoken assumption being that Arabs no less than Israelis seek to resolve their century-old conflict on harmonious terms.
Of course, at some level Israelis know full well about continued Arab rejectionism: the signs are too conspicuous for even the most ostrich-like to be truly ignorant. But they have clearly chosen to de-emphasize or even ignore the phenomenon. How else explain the absence of a single full-time Israeli journalist reporting from an Arab capital, or the fact that Hilal Khashan's meticulous survey of Arab opinion, with its thoroughly dismaying news, received no attention whatsoever in the Israeli press when it appeared last summer??? "These are only words. Let them talk," is how Shimon Peres, speaking for many of his countrymen, has airily dismissed the undeniable evidence of Arab feelings and attitudes.
Peres's disdainful remark encapsulates a delusional but widespread Israeli assumption: that peace in the Middle East is Israel's for the making, and that if Israelis want to end the long-drawn-out struggle, they can do so on their own. They can "solve" the Palestinian problem by acceding to the creation of a state in the West Bank and Gaza; they can eliminate anti-Zionism by helping to funnel money to the Arabs, who will use their new-found affluence to become good neighbors (and never to amass more powerful arsenals); or--in the post-Zionist scenario--they can win Arab hearts by dismantling the Jewish attributes of the Jewish state.
Whatever the preferred tactic, the underlying premise is the same: that the key decisions of war and peace in the Arab-Israeli conflict are made in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv rather than--what is in fact the case--in Cairo, Gaza, Amman, and Damascus. Under the spell of this fantasy, Israelis now seem prepared to execute what will amount to a unilateral transfer of hard-won territory--to Syria in the north, to the Palestinian Authority in the center of the country--in the hope that their troubles will thereby disappear. Indeed, they sometimes appear prepared to go to extreme lengths to induce their Arab interlocutors to accept the gifts they mean to confer on them.
Listening to the Israeli prime minister and the foreign minister of Syria as they inaugurated a new round of talks in December 1999, for example, one might have thought that Israel was the party that had instigated--and then lost--the Six-Day War of 1967, and was now desperately suing Damascus for terms. Barak spoke pleadingly of the need "to put behind us the horrors of war and to step forward toward peace," and of creating, "together with our Syrian partners, ... a different Middle East where nations are living side by side in peaceful relationship and in mutual respect and good-neighborliness." By contrast, the Syrian foreign minister blustered like a conqueror, insisting that Israel had "provoked" the 1967 clash and demanding the unconditional return of "all its occupied land. " The very fact that a prime minister had agreed to meet with a mere foreign minister, breaching a cardinal protocol of diplomacy, was signal enough; that the foreign minister of Syria lacks any decision-making power whatsoever further confirmed who in this encounter was the wooer, who the wooed.
When it comes to Lebanon, Israelis appear to have convinced themselves that the unilateral withdrawal of trops from their "security zone" in the south will cause their main Lebanese opponent, Hizbullah, to leave them alone, despite repeated and overt statements by Hizbullah leadership that it intends to continue fighting until it reaches Jerusalem and that it "will never recognize the existence of a state called Israel even if all the Arabs do so." More, Israelis seem persuaded that prospect of their withdrawal from Lebanon is one of the things that have the Syrians worried, quite as if the best way to scare your enemy were to threaten a retreat.
On the Palestinian track, the ostensibly more muscular party--Israel--has pointedly refrained from requiring that the ostensibly more vulnerable party fulfill the many obligations it has undertaken since 1993, with the result that the PA has neither turned over criminals and terrorists, nor ceased its unrelenting incitements to violence, nor restricted the size of its armed forces. The PA's logo brazenly shows a map of a future Palestine stretching from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea--a Palestine, that is, not alongside Israel but instead of it. To all this, the Israeli body politic appears to pay no heed.
The newspaper Ha'aretz reports that Israeli negotiators have already conceded in principle to the Palestinian Authority day-to-day control of parts of Jerusalem. At the very end of 1999, when Prime Minister Barak took the unprecedented step of releasing two Palestinian prisoners who had killed Israelis, his action was met, predictably, not with gratitude but with noisy demonstrations chanting aggressive slogans--"Barak, you coward. Our prisoners will not be humiliated"--and by the demand that Israel now let go all of the estimated 1,650 jailed Palestinians. No doubt, the demonstrators will eventually get their way. Israelis are on their own road to peace, and no "partners," however hostile, will deflect them from it.
Today's Israel, in sum, is hugely different from the Israel of old. For four decades and more, the country made steady progress vis-Ó-vis its enemies through the application of patience and will, backed when necessary by military courage and might. From a fledgling state in 1948 invaded by five Arab armies, it established itself as a powerful force, overcoming oil boycotts, terrorism, and the enmity of a superpower. But by the time of the Oslo accord of August 1993, the signs of exhaustion were becoming increasingly manifest; by now they are unmistakable.
As recently as the 1996 national elections, a lively debate took place in Israel over Palestinian non-compliance and over the wisdom of handing the Golan Heights back to Syria. By the time of the 1999 elections, with very little having changed on the ground, those issues had disappeared. Perhaps 10 to 15 percent of the population still adheres to the old Likud view that Israel should keep control of the territories until the Arabs have shown a true change of heart. Today, the debate is over timing and tone, not over substance. Symbolic of the new consensus is the fact that the Third Way, a party that was exclusively focused on retaining the Golan Heights under Israeli control and that took four Knesset seats in 1996, vaporized in 1999, winning not a single seat. Even former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the reputed arch-hardliner, signed two empty agreements with Arafat and, on the Syrian track, was ready to concede virtually everything Asad demanded. As Ehud Barak has correctly noted, "there are only microscopic differences between the things Netanyahu was willing to discuss and those discussed by [Shimon] Peres and [Yitzhak] Rabin."
Many who bemoan the weakness of current Israeli policy are tempted to place the onus on Washington. But (to put it symbolically) how can one become exercised over Hillary Clinton's advocacy of a Palestinian state when, only weeks earlier, Simon Peres had already specified a date for such a state's inception? Israelis are perfectly capable of choosing leaders prepared to resist American pressure, and they have done so in the past. The collapse of a meaningful opposition party in 1999--the son and political heir of Menachem Begin, who won two elections as prime minister in 1997 and 1981, had to withdraw from the race because his support was so trivial--rebuts the notion that weak politicians are doing the bidding of Washington; rather, they are doing the bidding of their electorate. No, it is inward to the Israeli spirit that one must look for the roots of the present disposition to ignore repeated Palestinian flouting of solemnly signed agreements, to turn the Golan Heights over to a still-fanged Syria, to withdraw unilaterally from Lebanon, and to acquiesce in huge American sales of military equipment to an unfriendly and potentially quite ominously threatening Egypt.
Israel today has money and weapons, the Arabs have will. Israelis want a resolution to conflict, Arabs want victory. Israel has high capabilities and low morale, the Arabs have low capabilities and high morale. Again and again, the record of world history shows, victory goes not to the side with greater firepower, but to the side with greater determination.
Among democracies, few precedents exist for the malaise now on display in Israel. Imperfect analogies include the atmosphere of pacifism and appeasement that pervaded significant sectors of opinion in England and France in the 1930's, the United States during the Vietnam period, and Western Europe in the early 1980's. But none of these situations quite matches Israel's in the extent of the debilitation. Even more critically, none of those countries lived with so narrow a margin of safety. The United States lost a long, bloody war in Vietnam, but the nation as a whole was hardly at risk. In Israel the stakes are far higher, the room for error correspondingly minute.
This is not to say that the Jewish state is in immediate danger; it continues to have a strong military and a relatively healthy body politic, and democracies have demonstrated the capacity to right their mistakes at five minutes to midnight. But one shudders to think of what calamity Israel must experience before its people wake up and assume, once again, the grim but inescapable task of facing the implacable enemies around them.
Daniel Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum and author of Conspiracy: How the Paranoid Style Flourishes, and Where It Comes From (Free Press).
Forwarded from the New York Post of February 23, 2000
CLINTON OPENS U.S. COFFER$ IN BID FOR GOLAN PEACE
By URI DAN
JERUSALEM -- President Clinton has secretly orchestrated a peace plan for Israel and Syria that gives Syria complete control of the Golan Heights, rights to the Sea of Galilee -- and $15 billion in economic aid. Although the deal has not been signed, sources told The Post Syrian President Hafez Assad and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak yesterday gave their consent to the groundbreaking accord.
"I believe we have enough here to achieve final peace," Barak said in a top-secret meeting, the minutes of which were obtained by The Post. Quipped one Cabinet member after the meeting: "Maybe President Clinton will get that Nobel Peace Prize he wants."
Clinton has been working feverishly to bring the two countries together after peace talks in Shepherdstown, W.Va., ground to a halt last month when the two countries refused to agree on how to divvy up the Golan Heights. Negotiations intensified in the past four weeks -- but had hit a snag again over violent clashes in Lebanon.
Hezbollah killed seven Israeli soldiers in a rash of attacks, and the Israelis retaliated by bombing Lebanon power stations. But tensions eased -- and the United States took advantage of the relatively peaceful lull, sources said.
Israel seized the Golan from Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War, and Syria has demanded every inch back -- plus a huge economic package. Israel said it was willing to hand over most of the territory, but wanted to keep control of the Sea of Galilee and the international border.
Under the new deal, Israel has agreed to hand over all of the heights, including the sea and its fishing rights.
Only two snags remain -- Syria is demanding an additional several billion dollars in arms from the United States beyond the $15 billion in aid. Barak objects to this. Barak also insists Syria should not be allowed to police the border. Instead, he asked Clinton to post U.S. peacekeeping troops there for at least 10 years.
In addition to the $15 billion for Syria, Clinton offered Israel an estimated $15 billion in arms and at least another $15 billion in economic aid so that it could relocate its citizens from the Golan Heights, sources said. The three leaders will not meet again until all the details have been hammered out -- but a final peace accord could be signed by May, the sources said.
FM Levy: What Lunatic Would Go For Such A Process?
(Stages in Syria)
From Dr. Aaron Lerner Date: 24 February, 2000
The following is IMRA's translation of part of Foreign Minister David Levy's 23 February speech at the Knesset. The Office of the Spokesman of the Foreign Minister provided IMRA the transcript.
"Therefore, Mr. Chairman, I was also extremely saddened to read the words of Syrian Foreign Minister Faruq Al-Shara regarding the principal of stages ( "restoring Palestine in its entirety is a long term strategic goal, that cannot be achieved in one stage" - Faruq Al-Shara to the annual convention of the Arab Writers Association in Syria on January 27 - IMRA).
I simply could not believe it.
I maintain that peace is reached via recognition that it serves both sides. It is not something that you do as a tactic. To make an end to war and continue in another struggle - media, economic, diplomatic: what lunatic would go for such a process?"
Dr. Aaron Lerner is the director of IMRA (Independent Media Review & Analysis) POB 982 Kfar Sava.
Reprinted from The Jerusalem Post of February 24, 2000
DESTROYING PEACE (ISRAEL)
By Uri Dan
The weakness portrayed by the Israeli government endangers the peace agreements signed with our neighbors and the cold, fragile peace already achieved. Certain actions taken by surrounding Arab nations against Israel point to this:
* During his Beirut visit, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak openly expressed his support for the Hizbullah's activities against Israel while at the same time condemning the retaliatory IAF bombing of Lebanese power stations; in doing so, he went contrary to the spirit of the Israeli- Egyptian peace agreement and perhaps even violated some of its important provisions.
* King Abdullah of Jordan postponed his planned visit to Israel as a protest against both Israel's actions in Lebanon and the crisis in the talks between Ehud Barak and Yasser Arafat.
* Arafat visited the Vatican, where he signed an agreement of grave importance with the Holy See; this creates the impression that the PLO has a status in Jerusalem and encourages placing the holy sites once again under international patronage. As usual, the Israeli government was "surprised."
* The campaign of incitement against Israel has reached new heights in Damascus and Cairo: a hate campaign that ceaselessly compares the Israelis to the Nazis, and Ehud Barak with Joerg Haider. In fact the real Haider in the Middle East, apart from Saddam Hussein, is Hafez Assad. This is the same Assad whom Barak was so quick to praise and flatter. A sadistic comedy is taking place: The harder Barak tries to present Assad and Damascus with the entire Golan Heights in return for a scrap of paper, the more the threats and anti-Israeli incitement increase on the part of the Arabs. This is a kind of orchestrated hate and incitement that we have not heard for many years. Even poor Lebanon is challenging and threatening Israel.
SOME Israelis are prepared to explain any Arab abomination against their country and to understand it. Itamar Rabinovich, professor and ex-ambassador to Washington, who prides himself as being an expert on Syria, was quoted this week in Yediot Aharonot as saying: "Comparison of Israel with the Nazis is an accepted form of slur against us in the Arab world. The Syrians do not like the large number of Jews in the Clinton administration and respond in a distorted manner. They feel hurt and choose to use the most offensive form of imagery."
The professor, who sounds like a neutral UN observer, reaches the conclusion: "In my opinion Israel must accept the situation as it is, and take into account that one cannot make the transition from a conflict to a peaceful, loving relationship overnight. There is a need for a period of transition."
Clearly, the Arab campaign of hate and incitement from Damascus to Cairo which compares Israel to the Nazis is intended to provide legitimization for destroying the Jewish state, using a combination of force and diplomatic moves. The professor, who is known to support giving the Golan Heights to Syria, says: "Israel must accept the situation as it is."
This response is similar to that of Jews who lived in Germany and Poland in the Thirties, most of whom, when Hitler and Goebbels screamed that they must be annihilated, said: "This will pass." This is more or less what Rabinovich is saying.The professor and those sharing his opinion among the politicians and ministers in Jerusalem do not wish to understand that an Arab hate campaign of this kind has a momentum of its own. The words of incitement are sure to be followed by acts of belligerency.
The greater the territorial concessions Barak makes to the Syrians and Palestinians "for the sake of peace," the more fragile the relations between Israel and the Egyptians, Jordanians, and Palestinians.. Jordanian King Abdullah and his ministers are being forced to adopt anti-Israeli positions in order to support their Arab brethren in Syria and Egypt. This is a dangerous turn of events.
Someone seems to have forgotten how Abdullah's father, King Hussein, was dragged into the aggression of Egypt and Syria before the 1967 Six Day War because of the momentary weakness radiated at that time by Levi Eshkol's government. However, the 1967 government now appears as ferocious as a lion compared to our current government, which is begging for a less-than-peace agreement with Syria, and which is undermining real peace, as far as it exists.
This is an extremely dangerous situation which should remind Israel of an iron rule: Peace between Israel and the Arabs which has already been achieved and which will be achieved in the future can only exist if Israel is capable of protecting it.
(c) Jerusalem Post 2000
GUILT BY ASSOCIATION?
by Elyakim Ha'etzni
Arutz Sheva Israel National Radio Broadcast on Jan. 31, 1999 / Sh'vat 24, 5759
When members of an IDF Nachal unit were taken captive by terrorists, the battalion commander, who had been serving in his post for a mere two weeks, was immediately removed. In another instance, when a soldier was killed in a training accident, his commander was let go. Yet another commander was given his walking papers when members of an IDF reconnaissance company died of dehydration. Not one of those military figures was permitted the kind of claim utilized this past week by Prime Minister Barak in response to the Comptroller's report on the Labor party's fictitious associations: "I didn't know... I was not involved. I wasn't updated."
In the army - Ehud Barak's home turf - senior commanders are generally expected to answer for what takes place under them. In the domestic political sphere, too, which Barak now calls his home, State Comptroller Goldberg rejected Barak's "I was not personally involved" speech last week, noting that such an approach does simply not suffice.
The question is asked: Where did Barak learn the norm of evading responsibility by blaming his aides and advisors?
WHAT'S IN A NAME?
Barak and company claim that they honestly relied on a legal opinion, according to which it was permissible to receive monies from associations for a Prime-Ministerial campaign. If so, why then did they choose the following names for their associations: "The Association for the Promotion of Cab Drivers," "The Negev Now," "Let Us Work With Dignity," "Education for the Future of Kiryat Bialik"? Why did they not channel this money - which they believed was perfectly legal to receive - to more open, legal bodies, such as the "Barak for Prime Minister" association?
Moreover, if their behavior was indeed ethical, why did Amiram Goldblum and Atty. Ehud Segev - the chairmen of "Citizens of the Right and Left" association - refuse to answer the Comptroller's questions? Their refusal resulted in a police investigation against them, at the behest of Atty.-Gen. Rubenstein. And why did "Dor Shalom" association chairman Doron Tamir, who also served as the conduit for the transfer of 620,700 shekels for the posting of One Israel party signs - tell the Comptroller that he felt he was used "as a marionette" of the Barak Prime-Ministerial campaign?
BARAK IN STATE OF DENIAL
"I wasn't involved in fundraising," Barak told Israelis minutes after the report was published. Mr. Barak better start thinking how he is going to explain away JTA correspondent Tom Tugend's March 25, 1999 report - written less than two months before the elections - which states that Barak delivered a fundraising speech before some 30 guests of billionaire Chaim Saban in the latter's Beverly Hills mansion. According to Tugend, "...although no accurate figure on the amount raised was available, those invited were given to understand that $10,000 would be the minimum donation expected. In addition, Saban pledged to match every dollar contributed."
I propose that State Comptroller Goldberg investigate another problem that surfaces from his report, namely, the decision-making process in both the police department and the State Attorney's office. Were complaints not lodged before these bodies - petitions that included all of the criminal components of the fictitious associations - months ago? How is it possible that the police and the State Prosecution threw such information into the trash bin, for reasons of "lack of evidence" or "lack of public interest?" Are we to believe that the rise of a party and its leader to power by way of illegal foreign donations is not an issue of public interest?
And as to the "lack of evidence", how do the police obtain evidence? Through investigation, of course! When the police caught wind of possible illegal actions taken by Binyamin Netanyahu and Jerusalem contractor Avner Amedi several months ago, they did not have all the evidence for an indictment. A police department with integrity functions like a dentist: When a patient arrives at the clinic, complaining of pains in one tooth, the dentist checks his entire mouth. In the case of Netanyahu, the police investigated a transport issue only to discover that Netanyahu may have been involved in another episode - that of keeping gifts he had received while serving as Prime Minister.
What body will now investigate for us the Police-State Prosecution neglect, until now, of the Barak associations scandal?
In the Netanyahu-Amedi affair, the police placed heavy pressure on contractor Amedi to agree to testify against Netanyahu in exchange for immunity from prosecution. Question: Will the police and Attorney General offer immunity to Herzog, Silberstein and others in exchange for their agreement to testify against Barak?
This past week, we have been hearing some of those in the Barak camp bemoaning the developments while simultaneously worrying what will be of the "Peace Process" and the Golan referendum if the Prime Minister is forced to waste his time on criminal investigations?
There was a time when hypocritical and self-proclaimed moralists hid behind excuses of "security" to cover up their illegal behavior. In today's Israel, the "security" excuse has been replaced by a different excuse - the "Peace Process."
* * * * * * *
Former Techiya MK Elyakim Haetzni is an attorney living in Kiryat Arba. He has a weekly spot on Arutz-7, and writes a column for Yediot Acharonot.
Reprinted from The Jerusalem Post of February 4, 2000
BARAK IS OUTMANEUVERED
By Ariel Sharon
While Prime Minister Ehud Barak's personal credibility is being put to the test, the credibility of Israel's overall deterrence on Lebanon and Syria, is eroding; intensified Hizbullah attacks in Lebanon are causing painful casualties for Israel and the southern Lebanese.
As I have warned in the past, the writing is on the wall. Today we continue to pay the price for Barak's insistence on linkage between negotiations with Syria and an Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon. The Syrian demand: withdrawal to the June 4, 1967 lines. By agreeing to conduct negotiations under the fire of Syrian-supported Hizbullah, the Barak government has turned Israel's soldiers and civilians into hostages of Syria as Damascus uses Hizbullah terror to gain more concessions from Barak. Of all the unilateral concessions already made, the tacit acceptance of withdrawal to the June 4 line is the most ominous: it's the fault line that runs from the northern border through the heart of Jerusalem.
The weakness in the negotiations with Syria is affecting the Palestinian track. Yasser Arafat is more hopeful than ever as the Barak team begins "marathon negotiations" with the Palestinians. When he signed the Sharm e-Sheikh agreement last year, he learned that Barak was ready to abandon the reciprocity written into the Wye Memorandum.
Consequently, Arafat learned that the Barak government does not insist on Palestinian compliance in the interim phase, and he moved up his demands in final status, including declaring a state over the entire area of Judea and Samaria with east Jerusalem as its capital. Furthermore, the Palestinians have revived their demands to implement, in stages, the UN partition resolution of 1947 (181) and the right of return (Resolution 104).
Now Arafat has new hopes on borders. He saw that Barak was ready to pay the price of leaving the Golan Heights in return for a White House meeting with Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk Shara. hen he saw that Israel did not rule out basing its final border with Syria on the line of June 4, 1967. Thirty years of Israeli diplomacy that sought to obtain defensible borders, on the basis of UN Security Council Resolution 242, were abandoned. Israel dropped its insistence on a complete end of Hizbullah attacks, and replaced it with a willingness to make concessions to the Syrians while the IDF and SLA were under fire in south Lebanon.
UNILATERAL concessions and weakness are contagious: Once Israeli policy with the Syrians is collapsing, then Arafat expects a similar collapse in Judea and Samaria, for if Israel no longer insists on defensible borders on the Golan, by what logic will it insist on secure borders elsewhere?
Rather than reducing the Palestinians' expectations during final status, Barak has pushed them to an all-time high, and he has set an impossible deadly deadline. It is therefore not surprising that Arafat is now increasing his demands on Jerusalem. He knows that the Clinton administration made a commitment to Israel in January 1997 that only Israel will decide and implement the further redeployments, but he expects that Clinton can be convinced to pressure Barak to accept the Palestinian demand for full control of Abu Dis and Azaria, at the edge of the city's municipal borders. The Palestinians never viewed Abu Dis as an alternative capital to Jerusalem; rather, it was one of the springboards to extend the PA's control to the Old City, which is the Palestinians' real goal.
Last week, Ma'ariv reported that the Foreign Ministry is asking its diplomats to stop using the word "normalization" in contacts with Arab states because they might be offended. If Israel unilaterally gives up on normalization, then what are we negotiating with Syria, another cease-fire?
The Syrians have made it clear, and the head of Israel's Mossad confirmed it: Syria views peace as another extended armistice agreement. Incitement and animosity in the Syrian press compare Israelis to the "new Nazis" and recycle the libel stories of Jews drinking Arab blood on Passover.
This is the response of the Syrians and the Palestinians to Israeli concessions: applying more pressure to get more concessions. Diplomacy is just the continuation of war by other means. So, in the final analysis, Barak's futile attempt to outsmart his negotiating partners leads to the opposite result: Barak is outmaneuvered.
We all want peace, and we can achieve it with our neighbors. But it requires a different approach: negotiating without deadlines and with patience from a position of strength. Stating clear "red lines" based on broad consensus: not leaving the Golan Heights, rejecting any attempt to divide Jerusalem; and maintaining vital security zones in Judea and Samaria in any permanent agreement.
The Arab side has no intention of making concessions when it knows Israel's negotiating position is so easy to erode. We can still substitute our vanishing "pink lines" (as a senior American official called them) with real red lines. But that means stopping the crawl to the June 4 fault line.
Ariel Sharon is leader of the Likud and the general who saved Israel during the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
BEILIN AND THE THREE DICTATORSHIPS
By Elyakim Haetzni
Twice this week I was seized, in addition to the usual feelings of rejection and alienation, by a physical feeling of fear. After visiting the Binyamin District, Yossi Beilin was interviewed on television and asked by Chaim Yavin on Israel Television's First Channel) if he wasn't scared that someone would murder him. Here, something remarkable occurred in Yossi Beilin's body language. Beilin, who generally acts the role of Peter Falk's Detective Colombo, the ostensibly innocent lamb, the old softie, moderate, courteous, easy-going and mollified, suddenly coiled up in a spring and a tiger leaped out of the lamb's skin. A fanatical gleam kindled in his eyes, unbridled and pitiless: the genuine Beilin. We are going to make peace, he says. He repeats it and then repeats it a third time. Nothing is going to stop us. The old Bolshevik appeared before my eyes, marching to the world of tomorrow over heaps of corpses. This is the familiarly sinister character, for whom the end justifies all the means. I saw the peace dictatorship sweeping away democracy to the side of the road as if it were but a tattered rag.
In the last hundred years, Israel has witnessed three dictatorships which have turned our democracy into a cripple. At first there was the dictatorship of the "Workers Movement Hegemony ". This dictatorship deprived adherents of the right of live-saving immigration certificates and jobs i.e., a crust of bread. It sent "Plugat HaPoel" toughs break their bones. It kidnapped and imprisoned Irgun and Lehi members in their "hunting season", betrayed them to the British and also murdered some. When the ruddy socialist cheeks slowly paled, a "Security" dictatorship supplanted it. In the name of security they allowed themselves to steal and experience the good life. They stayed in power and removed others from power. They trampled upon the principles of equality before the law and freedom of expression. The hegemony of "the" party yielded to a security aristocracy, but these were the same people and their descendants. After the Six Day War, when the allure of security began to evaporate, a third dictatorship arose, and the security dictatorship made way to the Dictatorship of Peace. The Socialist Bolshevik caterpillar which had metamorphosed into a Security pupa emerged as a black-winged butterfly -- a butterfly of false peace with all the crushing cruelty of its predecessors. In my view, the cruel gleam in Beilin's eyes reflected the murder of De Hahn, the bully boys, the blood libel of the Arlosoroff murder, the sanctified howitzer of the Altalena. I was frightened, because I beheld a country held captive by a fanatical fundamentalist dictatorial sect, the ayyatolahs of peace. I witnessed and I internalized the reality that nothing would deter them from their demented path and I wondered what resources did the forces of light and sanity dispose of to marshal against them.
2. Naboth's Vineyard in Ras El Amud
The second blow I received while driving. Someone must have noticed the sudden lurch of the vehicle. This occurred, when they announced on Channel 7 how Barak, Beilin and Ramon plan to reconstruct the abomination of Naboth the Jezreelite's vineyard in Maaleh Hazeitim a.k.a. Ras El Amud in Jerusalem. The plan was also reported in Yediodt Achronot and one could view it as the start of the expulsion, uprooting, transfer and ethnic cleansing of Jews from the Land of Israel. The evil this time will not descend upon us from the north, but from Jerusalem. Irving Moskowitz, of Miami, owned a plot of land in the Mount of Olives, situated precisely in the corridor between Abu Dis and the Temple Mount, which the Peace Dictatorship intends to be a Palestinian corridor into Jerusalem. Moskowitz paid good money for the plot. He obtained all the documents legally and after expending copious efforts. He invested huge amounts on planning and construction and imagined that he was basking in the rule of law in the capital of the sovereign and democratic state of Israel, a rule of law which guarantees the property, honor and liberty of everyman. He built 119 apartments, and within a few short months, they would be ready for occupancy. At the same site Moskowitz purchased a few existing houses, and a number of young Jewish families have already been living there for a number of years. A number of babies, mazel tov!, were born there during this period and the relations with the Arab neighbors are excellent. The relations are so good that the dictators, as is their custom, invited the Jerusalem police and the General Security Service to supply an opinion that would substantiate the canard that the entry of Jews, of living Jews, to Mt. Olives would endanger the security of the state and public order, (behold the pupa and the butterfly!). But the police refused to sign, after the failure of every effort made by Feisal Husseini and his Jewish cronies to foment riots at the site. On the contrary, the Arab neighbors are waiting for their forsaken neighborhood to flourish with the arrival of Jews. But there is a resident Ahitofel (or possibly David's other resident adviser, Hushai Ha-Archi) at the Justice Ministry.He is called Meni Mazuz and he provided that chilling piece of advice which almost involved me in a traffic accident: If there is no legal way to prevent a Jew from using his property, thus he proposed, let's steal the property from the person by the brute force of the law, and with one stroke of the legal sword we will simply expropriate Moskowitz's ownership over his property and houses! This law, "The Law of Purchase for Public Benefit" which serves law abiding countries for road construction and other public projects, is now to be employed to expropriate Jewish land for political purposes. The same Mazuz is not embarrassed to state his opinion brazenly "we should not hide behind considerations of planning and construction", but should explicitly reveal the official and genuine motive: "Moskowitz will not dictate the government's political agenda!"
But Ahab also had raison d'etat. Naboth's vineyard "is near my house", states the bible. Ahab was also prepared to com-pensate Nabot: If this is agreeable to you "I will give you its full price in money". And yet there is a difference: Ahab's Rule of Law did not allow him to expropriate the vineyard from Naboth, even for official purposes, namely its propinquity to the palace. Therefore Jezebel could only lay her hands on the plot by an indirect method. She had to spread a false accusation that Naboth had cursed -"deity and king" and execute him. In our Peace Dictatorship one doesn't require such detours. The Naboth- Moskowitz affair presages the expropriation of the property and the expulsion of 218,000 settlers in the Golan and Yesha. They too will pay--with their families, their honor, their property and liberty-- for the "political agenda" of the fanatical cult which clasps this country in an iron grip and holds it hostage toward advancing its mendacious dream, the peace of horrors.
3. The State Emigrates but Harel and Keinan Remain in the Land of Israel.
Caught in this steel vise, what remains, what is possible, what is permissible for persons trapped in the peace snare to do? Yehuda Harel -- a dove in Yesha, hawk in the Golan and Amos Keinan--a dove in both places have given their reply, which in principle goes to the very heart of the matter, but in reality is practically worthless. This is what they have to say: if the State of Israel intends to emigrate from the Land of Israel, we prefer to stay on the land even under Syrian rule (and with regards to the forthcoming 200,000 victims--under terrorist Palestinian rule.) Implied in this statement is an abandonment of hope in a state which has betrayed its historic mission to return the Jewish people to its historic homeland and is conversely expelling them from that land. It is a loss of hope in a state which has dissolved the fundamental contract which underpins all relations with her citizens and upon which their loyalty is predicated: mutual responsibility in preserving the life, property and human and civic rights of everyone. Once a state approaches a minority of its citizens and tells them via the country's president who, in his words, claims to represent only those who elected him, that it intends to sacrifice the minority for the sake of the majority, then that minority is permitted according to Harel and Keinan to sever its connection with such a mother who devours her children. They could, for example, have asked the Jews of the Galilee pan-handle: perhaps Assad would be prepared to take your land and your houses for the sake of this peace instead of the Golan settlements? Did the state at least propose this? If not, why should we be some sacrificial victim? Why shouldn't you be our sacrificial victim? The very possibility of staging such a dialogue demonstrates that the state has dissolved and expropriated the ties of mutual responsibility between the country's regions and the citizens which it rules -- a connection which defines it as a state. Against such a state, which in reality is a defunct state, Harel and Keinan have sued for divorce. But the Jewish State constitutes the realization of the dream of many generations, torrents of tears and blood have been shed on her behalf and therefore this statement is shocking, but it is also devoid of practical content. The state plans to operate its brutal coercive apparatus in order to drag away and uproot Harel from his home by force. It will not allow him the luxury of remaining in the Land of Israel on his own, especially since if he did stay, the Syrians would not permit him to remain there, at least not above ground. Since the state is aware of the murderous character of this partner for "peace", it must drag the Jews bodily away from there in order to save their lives, as Begin did in Sinai. This brings us back to square one: Harel, Keinan and the other uprooted, all those about to be evicted from their homes, what can they do save for emigrating to foreign lands? But this is an option that a Jew, loyal to his country and homeland, doesn't even want to hear of.
4. An Exchange of Letters with the Attorney-General
On 4.11.99, the Attorney-General Elyakim Rubinstein sent a letter to yours truly which stated inter alia:"In your statement broadcast on the radio on 13.10.99, you amongst other things, called for 'non-violent civil disobedience, for the moment on a limited basis but which would intensify as Barak's plans began to surface.' Pursuantly, it is purported that you explained (14.10.99) that one was dealing with 'non-violent disobedience to an anti-democratic measure.'
I would like to bring to your attention that we view calls of this nature which raise the possibility of disobedience to the laws of the state, with extreme gravity. We of course have no interest in limiting freedom of speech nonetheless, we must view with severity expressions which carry a potential for criminality... Therefore, it would be fitting if you would refrain in the future from expressions which exhort disobedience to the laws of the state or to the decrees of its constituted authorities."
On 12.12.99 this writer sent a reply, passages from which are quoted below. Perhaps they constitute an answer to the problem of what a minority, which is trampled by the majority via the administrative power of the state, can do in an upstanding western democracy -- "According to various publications, the prime minister intends to annex to Israel within the framework of "most of the settlers" who he intends to leave in place rather than uproot (or within the framework of the Beilin-Abu Mazen plan) a sleeve in Samaria stretching from Oranit to Ariel and perhaps till Tapuah Junction. A number of Arab villages are located within this area. If the prime minister would seek your opinion on whether it would be permissible to expel these Arabs and destroy their villages (or to introduce settlers into them) what would you have responded? Allow me to imagine that you would have totally negated such a possibility due to domestic legal constraints, such as the basic law: Protecting Human Dignity and Liberty, as well as on the basis of general principles protecting fundamental human rights... may I be bold to suggest that you treat the Jews, citizens of Israel, as creatures who are the bearers of no lesser rights than the Arabs of Yesha. It is even more apparent, that you would not advise the prime minister to expel Arab citizens of Israel from their residence within the framework of any peace agreement, neither from the territories which Israel would surrender nor from territories which Israel would annex. It is a fact that when Wadi Ara (the Eeron Valley) was annexed to Israel within the framework of the armistice agreement with Jordan, not a single person was expelled or evicted. Keep this in mind when you are queried about the fate of the Golan's Jews and their communities.
Please ask yourself as well, why the expulsion of Albanians from Kosovo was condemned throughout the world as "ethnic cleansing", to the extent that it justified a bloody military attack by western democracy? But the "blood" of Jews, for whom a Jewish government intends a similar fate is forfeit? In this respect, you have been allotted an historic task: to safeguard the Government of Israel from taking such a fatal step. I believe with all my heart that a government decision to uproot a Jewish community with its inhabitants is illegal, because of among other things, the basic law for Protecting Human Dignity and Liberty. Any one called upon to implement such a decision must visualize a black flag fluttering above it and he must not obey it. In contradistinction, a person calling for disobedience will not be flouting the law but will save the decision maker from committing an action that is not only barbaric, brutal, violent, hideous and anti-national, but also illegal. The doctrine of civil disobedience of course extends further than this and states that even if technically the decision or the order is legal, a decent person and a Jewish Israeli patriot must prefer the dictates of his conscience and refuse to obey it. In such an event, he must voluntarily assume every criminal sanction, as did model historical figures such as Socrates, Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau and Dr. Martin Luther King. These matters are quite familiar and I am certainly not revealing anything novel to you on the issue. As for myself, when I observe my people and country sliding and sinking on a descent to destruction, and the self-inflicted extraction of our heart in Yesha marks a point of no return on this route, what am I to do? On what shall I educate my children? One of my children, who is already a father of children told me bitterly that when confronted with an ethnic cleansing of Jews by Jews he can't live here anymore (and it is clear to me that hundreds of thousands will do likewise). I answered him with this question: Before you emigrate from the Land of Israel, do you at least intend to spend some time in jail? With this I silenced his arguments. This is how I educate my children. If you like, you can add this admission to the indictment against me. There is no need for an investigation.
I have the honor of directing your attention to an article which I published in the book "Disobedience and Democracy", (Shalem Publications, Jerusalem 5759, P. 183). - "Civil disobedience in the Speculum of the Crisis of Israeli Society". There I emphasized, that the preparedness of a person, who refuses to obey a criminal and evil law to accept punishment is an important and necessary component of "civil disobedience" in a democratic state. Via such preparedness the person who refuses obedience, pays his debt to democratic order and the rule of law. Therefore, if tragically matters should reach such a pass, that a Jewish ruler in the Land of Israel will uproot and expel Jews, as was perpetrated by Nebuchadnezzar, Titus and Hadrian, (the latter indeed exiled Jews "only" from Judea and Samaria to the Galilee), I am hereby informing you, that I will not obey and I will publicly call for disobedience, and I only hope that I will be persuasive enough to ensure that any opposition to such actions will be purely nonviolent. For this too is a virtue of "civil disobedience", in that it serves as a substitute for the use of force and could potentially prevent civil war. Have a look what occurred in Seattle concerning questions which are not life and death issues for the individual and the public. Consider how 4% of the citizens of the United States, (perhaps ten million Americans) would have responded, if the authorities had decided, via purely legal legislation to wreak upon them an "evacuation", "clustering into blocs", on behalf of some form of "peace" whatsoever. Wouldn't a bloody civil war have immediately erupted? There is no better way of summing up my arguments, than a "Hebrew University Research Paper: The Need to Inculcate the Obligation of Civil Disobedience in Students." I am appending a copy of this pronouncement to this letter. Let me cite here only the closing part of the pronouncement: 'In a democratic state which respects the opinion of a minority, and demands obedience to the decision of the majority, a minority which has found itself caught in difficult dilemmas twixt the obligation to obey the law and an obligation to the dictates of conscience, religion, ideology or a different national approach turns to extreme measures accompanied by violence. In contradistinction, if Israeli democracy would have studied the subject and taught it in a clear and openly declared fashion, then the individuals and groups that have found themselves in such a dilemma, would have known what could be done and how they could do it within the framework of non-violent civil disobedience.'
I regret the lengthiness but I saw the need to dwell in detail upon the matter amongst other reasons because of the statement in your letter 'we must view with severity expressions... that include a degeneration into twisting legality.' I believe on the contrary, that if you affix the seal of legality on transfer and ethnic cleansing of Jews in Israel, you would be one who is guilty of misrepresenting: the very sinews of democracy, the very basis for our return to Israel and our settling there, the raison d'etre of the state of Israel as such a state, as well as the laws of the State of Israel which defend human dignity and freedom. You also misconstrue the issue of non-violent disobedience, which constitutes today one of the pillars of western democracy. Therefore, in all due respect, I cannot accede to your overture to refrain in the future from calling for disobedience and I hope that the heavens will take mercy upon us and the poisoned chalice which could mandate disobedience will depart from our midst."
A few days ago, in one of the for a in Yesha, a member expressed himself: if we could but find 5,000 Jews prepared to go to jail in a struggle similar to the struggle of the blacks in the United States, the evil decree would be annulled, because only such a display of devotion--not only slogans, bumper stickers, opinion polls, demonstrations, and public relations -- will speak to the people. This will convincingly communicate to them that "the town is indeed on fire", when they will be called upon to decide their fate and the fate of their country in a referendum. As long as the expeller and the expellee stand at the crossroads, the one adjacent to the other's slogan and nothing more, there is no chance that the people will sense that we are dealing with real anguish, with a tangible national disaster and a rift that will never be healed. The concept "Messiruth Nefesh" in Jewish terms, connotes passive sufferings that a person assumes for the sake of a noble goal while relinquishing all violence to the side of the wicked, the persecutor, the suppressor. Only such devotion can save the land from sliding to perdition. Have we in the poet Bialik's term, become a "people like dry grass"?
Or do there still remain with us a few thousand who are willing to draw from their soul that same redeeming Mes-siruth Nefesh? The not too distant future will tell the story.
Elyakim Haetzni is an attorney and Jewish activist who lives in Kiryat Araba.
Editorial from THE NEW YORK POST of February 17, 2000
MEDDLING IN ISRAEL'S AFFAIRS
The Clinton administration -- which twice worked feverishly behind the scenes to help elect its favored candidate prime minister of Israel -- is now reportedly prepared to interfere directly in that nation's political process. According to a recent story in Yediot Aharonot, Israel's largest newspaper, top officials in the U.S. Embassy have begun meeting with leaders of Israel's Arab community in an attempt to spur a large voter turnout when a peace accord with Syria is put to a national referendum.
According to the article, U.S. diplomats are "concerned by public opinion polls that show that Israeli Arabs are not going to participate significantly in the national referendum." The same polls also show significant opposition among Israel's Jewish voters to any agreement that requires Israel to abandon the strategic Golan Heights.
Beginning with the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Israel's leaders have promised to submit any negotiated agreement with Syria to the nation's voters -- and have vowed to abide by the results of that vote.
It's understandable that Washington would want any such referendum to pass -- President Clinton, after all, hopes to cement an Israeli-Syrian agreement as his final foreign-policy triumph before leaving office next January. But to get directly involved in voter-turnout efforts -- complete, the paper reports, with financial support to local Arab groups -- in a foreign country is highly improper.
Disturbingly, officials at the embassy have not denied the newspaper story. The Clintonites twice crossed the line with their not-so-subtle efforts to defeat Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud party -- indeed, the election campaign of Israel's current prime minister, Ehud Barak, was headed by the president's political gurus, James Carville and Stanley Greenberg.
(And guess what? The Barak campaign is now under criminal investigation over allegations of illegal fund-raising from foreign sources.)
Any referendum about so momentous a decision as withdrawing from the Golan and making peace with Israel's most intractable foe should be debated and decided solely by Israelis -- without any heavy-handed interference from Bill Clinton's minions.
Copy Of Letter From MK Uzi Landau To President Clinton Protesting US Activities Inside Israel
The Honorable William Jefferson Clinton
President of the United States of America
The White House
February 14, 2000
Dear President Clinton,
I would like to draw your attention to a matter of grave concern that threatens to cast a shadow over the special relationship between Israel and the United States, which we all hold so dear.
The following headline appeared in Yediot Aharonot, Israel's most widely-read newspaper, on February 11: "U.S Embassy Tries to mobilize Arab support in the Referendum". According to the article, senior U.S. Embassy officials have of late conducted a series of meetings with Israeli Arab leaders. The express aim of these meetings, according to the report, is to pressure Arab leaders to produce a large turnout among their constituency in the event that a referendum is held regarding the future of the Golan Heights, as the Arab vote could prove decisive. In addition, the report states that the U.S. diplomats promised to arrange financial assistance to back information campaigns that will be undertaken by Israeli Arab groups for this purpose. In response, the U.S. Embassy spokesman did not deny this information.
If the information in the article is accurate, this would constitute an unprecedented an intolerable act of gross interference in Israel's internal affairs. I can not emphasize enough the severity of this act, which demonstrates blatant disregard for the most elementary norms of accepted international behavior between states and nations. For over fifty years, the U.S.-lsrael relationship has been based on intimate ties of friendship and mutual trust. There can be no greater blow to a friendship, be it between two people or two nations, than a breach of faith. I pray this is not the case.
Accordingly, I request that you immediately instruct the American Ambassador to Israel and the U.S. Consul-General in Jerusalem, as well as all American diplomats posted to Israel, to investigate this matter, and if it turns out to be true, to refrain forthwith from any and all such activity. I would also like to request that the Secretary of State reiterate publicly America's commitment to refrain from interfering in Israel's internal decision-making process.
The people of Israel may have to face troubling and fateful decisions in the months and years ahead. We have the right to expect that our closest friends and allies will allow us to make such decisions by ourselves.
Sincerely, Uzi Landau, Member of Knesset
Reprinted form The Jerusalem Post of February 9, 20000
GET TOUGH IN LEBANON
By David Bar-Illan
Sholom Ben-Ami, a dyed-in-the-wool dove,
said it best:
Hit 'the head and not the tail'
"I want to see a funeral on Israel television every day," Hafez Assad reportedly told his staff at the height of the war of attrition in Lebanon. It was not just an order to inflict casualties, but a statement on the war's purpose: to undermine Israel's morale and cripple its resolve.
Like all dictators, Assad realizes that there is nothing democratic societies abhor more and tolerate less than prolonged bloodletting on the battlefield, particularly during peace talks, when loss of life seems a futile and unnecessary sacrifice. In the 20th century, the reluctance of the democracies to act boldly and take risks cost them dearly. The most tragic instance was the Western allies' refusal to confront Hitler in 1936, when his small and ill-equipped army entered the Rhineland. Taking the small risk then would have prevented World War II.
Similarly, determined Israeli action against Egypt's moving anti-aircraft missile launchers to the banks of the Suez after the War of Attrition would have prevented Israel's initial setbacks in 1973, and possibly the Yom Kippur war itself. In both cases, inaction was supported not only by the international community but internal pressures exerted by a "peace camp," a phenomenon known only in democracies and born of war fatigue.
The Israeli peace camp has now recruited bereaved mothers, whose wrenching anguish is shared by the whole population, to the cause of inaction against Syria and unilateral withdrawal from Lebanon. But their emotional, heart-rending appeals, enhanced by television close-ups of mauled soldiers and prolonged screenings of wracking sobs at funerals, must not determine the nation's fate.
Neither the bereaved mothers nor the politicians who use them will assume responsibility for the killing of kindergarten children in the Galilee if a precipitous, mindless withdrawal brings the Hizbullah or other such groups to within meters of northern towns and villages. Once terrorists are able to shell and lob rockets from the international line, or infiltrate through the border fence, life in the Galilee will become intolerable. The casualties will not stop, and they will include civilians.
Nor is the solution a "withdrawal by agreement," for the simple reason that Syria does not keep agreements. This is an axiom. Assad has broken every agreement he has made with Turkey, the Arab regimes and the US. The only agreement he has partially kept is the cease-fire in the Golan, for the obvious reason that Israeli forces there can threaten Damascus.
IN fact, a Syrian "guarantee" to disarm and control Hizbullah, Amal and the Palestinian terrorists in south Lebanon would endanger Israel. To prevent terrorist attacks, Syria will demand that its armed forces be stationed on the Lebanon-Israel border, thus opening another front with Israel. And it will only further legitimize Syria's occupation of Lebanon, an offense against Lebanese sovereignty and the UN Charter which Israel and the West have tolerated for no good reason.
What, then, is the solution? Surprisingly, the most convincing answer has come from both opposition leader Ariel Sharon, reputed (not always justly) to be a hawk, and Internal Security Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami, a dyed-in-the-wool dove.
Sharon has said that Israel can afford to withdraw unilaterally, provided it can secure the safety of its SLA allies, if it makes a credible threat against Syria that any cross-border action by its proxies would trigger a major Israeli assault against Syrian and Lebanese targets. Ben-Ami, in effect admitting that the war in Lebanon is neither an independent Hizbullah operation nor an exclusively Iranian plot but a Syrian war against Israel, said on Monday that Israel must hit "the head not the tail."
The implication is clear. Instead of chasing after eminently replaceable Hizbullah chieftains, the targets must be Syrian interests. The bombing of Lebanon's electric grid on Monday night was a small sample of such action. Syria's dependence on Lebanon's economy makes the Lebanese infrastructure a Syrian target.
And what of the peace process? Restraint and sycophantic praise of Assad has only emboldened the Syrians and caused more casualties. Withdrawal from Lebanon as part of a deal which would include the relinquishment of the Golan will endanger the Galilee and, once the Syrians are rearmed with American weapons, precipitate war.
The alternative is a credible threat against Syrian interests, coupled with a demand for "secure borders," as stipulated in UN Resolution 242. It is a bold stance, the kind democracies are usually reluctant to take. But when dealing with ruthless dictatorships, it is the only way to avert war.
(c) Jerusalem Post 2000
"WHY PEACE ELUDES ISRAEL"
BY Prof. Paul Eidelberg
Has the desire for peace given Israel peace? Has it not resulted in Israel' s truncation, humiliation, and emasculation? Has not the desire for peace, uttered AD NAUSEUM by Israeli politicians, emboldened Israel's Arab-Islamic enemies and made them contemptuous of peace-seeking Jews?
Here one might ask: Did England's or France's desire for peace transform Germans or their leaders into doves? Germany, remember, was the home of humanism and rationalism, of philosophy and science. Are Moslems more humanistic than the nation that produced Kant, Schiller, Heine, Planck, and Einstein?
But let me address Israel's political and intellectual elites, those who believe that the policy of "land for peace" will pacify Israel's Arab-Islamic neighbors. "Why should you expect peace from Moslems who despise Israel as an outpost of Western civilization that threatens the religio-political power structure of the Islamic world?
"Why should you expect peace from Palestinian Arabs whose children are taught to hate Jews and exalt suicide bombers?" "Why should you expect peace from Arabs despots, be it Yasir Arafat or Hafez Assad, who terrorize and tyrannize over their own people? Stated more generally: Why should you expect peace from Arab regimes based on the primacy of force and fraud, as some 20 Arab dictatorships amply demonstrate?"
Now let me address Israeli politicians and intellectuals who, though skeptical about the land-for-peace policy, have the word "peace" ever on their lips. Suppose you declared: "I do not desire peace with Arab despots who luxuriate in splendor while their people are steeped in abject poverty."
Suppose you added: "I do not desire peace with Arab states whose rulers deprive their people of liberty and use them as cannon fodder to make war -- yes, and who thereby violate the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights." Are you manly enough to proclaim such a attitude? Then let me suggest some other honorable declarations one might make in a more manly and honest world.
"I do not want peace with tyrannies, that is, with regimes ruled by evil men. I do not want to dignify their regimes and thereby abet the designs of the wicked." "I do not seek peace with liars and murderers like Yasir Arafat and Hafez Assad lest I confuse, disarm, and foster cynicism among my countrymen. I prefer to arouse in such villains FEAR rather than allow them to lull us with professions of peace."
Do you think such statements will make Arab dictators more bellicose? Has ceaseless professions of peace, nay, has Israel's 1979 peace treaty with Egypt, made that dictatorship less militant? Then why is Egypt, a regime threatened by no one, engaged in an unprecedented military build-up? Why does Egypt's state-controlled media continue to spew anti-Israel and anti-Jewish venom?
I ask all those addicted to peace: "What makes you think that people in general are peace-lovers like yourselves? Why is violence the staple of Western entertainment? Why do Blacks murder Blacks almost every day in the capital of the USA?"
Closer to Israel: "Why did Moslem and Christian Arabs slaughter each other in Lebanon -- 100,000 in thirteen years? Leaving aside the killers and killing fields in Algeria, Bangladesh, Bosnia, Chechnya, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, why should Palestinian Arabs, who supported Saddam Hussein's rape of Kuwait, another Moslem country, live in abiding peace with Israel? If Moslems can't live in peace with each other, why should you expect them to live in abiding peace with Jews?"
All this is pathetically obvious, and it should be even more obvious to Israelis! Hence one can only wonder why Israel's political and intellectual elites can't see that Israel is no closer to genuine peace now than it was fifty-two years ago. Indeed, perceptive critics of Israel's land-for-peace policy are utterly dumbfounded by their inability to convince these elites that this policy is utterly suicidal. While some critics explain that policy in terms of American pressure, others emphasize the character faults of Israeli prime ministers, the demise of Zionist idealism, or the prevalence of an Israeli death wish. Let me offer another explanation of Israel's folly as wall as of the ineffectiveness of its critics.
It says in Exodus 15:3 that "God is the Master of war," but therefore also of peace. Since war and peace are in the hands of God, meaning the God of Israel, whether Israel will have peace or war depends on how this country relates itself to God. So long as Israel's government is estranged from God, hence from the way of life portrayed in the Torah, the people of Israel will not have peace.
BUT THIS IS WHY ISRAEL IS BESET BY THE BEST OF ENEMIES: ARABS WHO WILL NOT AND CANNOT BE PACIFIED BY THE POLICY OF "LAND FOR PEACE"! THE ALMIGHTY HAS GIVEN ISRAEL AN ENEMY THAT UNWITTINGLY COMPELS JEWS TO FACE THE ULTIMATE REASON WHY PEACE ELUDES THE SUPPOSED-TO-BE JEWISH STATE!
SHEPHERD'S TOWN, BARAK AND ISRAELI SURVIVAL
BY Elyakim Ha'etzni
(Translated from an article published in Yediot A'haronot at the beginning of January 2000)
American eavesdropping was already so brazen at Wye Plantation that Netanyahu had to talk with his hand covering his mouth in order to prevent lip-reading. In Shepherd's Town the Israeli Prime Minister is no longer allowed to bring in a cellular phone. At first Barak tried to hold the talks outside the United States, but even on this issue he succumbed to pressure. There was no give and take in Shepherd's Town. Israel at any rate, could not take anything and had to give away everything. What remained for discussion was how to adorn the ugly bride with various "gestures" ranging from handshakes (which did not materialize) to returning the bones of our precious dead. There was also a need to drag out the time in order to obscure the fact that the fix was already in.
Shepherd's Town is now behind us. After a spurious show of force in Lebanon, Barak, still under intense American pressure, made more concessions. He now pledges to retreat from the Golan to the June 4th lines, literally signing on the dotted line dictated by Syria. So sooner or later, the Shepherd's Town talks will be resumed, with Israel surrendering the Golan and surrendering in general. The devaluation of Israeli sovereignty began already on the eveof the Yom Kippur War when we turned the other cheek under American instructions, allowing the Arabs allowing to launch the first blow. Ever since, all Israeli governments, right and left, act as puppet governments.
The question is posed whether we can at all oppose American-Arab diktats, for if the Barak government falls -- what will actually change? Weren't Sharon and Netanyahu at Wye Plantation equally puppets? Nature provides the answer. Nature proves one can survive via weakness -- by shrinking oneself, changing colors, or even posing as an inanimate object. Thus, weak governments, governments which fall every few months or so are less exposed to extortion and pressure, precisely because they are weak. For a weak prime minister can tell the puppet masters: if you compel me to concede further, you won't have a prime minister and you will have to find yourself another puppet, and this puppet government will fall as well.
Do you want proof? Always, whenever they want to weaken us, they pay us the compliment that we are strong. "A strong people makes peace", reads the bumper sticker. "You are strong" the Americans told Netanyahu at Wye. You have a stable government. Netanyahu thought so as well, signed and lost his prime ministership. His mistake was that in reality he was not strong but a weakling who posed as a strong man.
This is not the case with the true victor Arafat. In every public appearance, the Israeli prime minister beams, radiates a macho pose and sparkles with wit. Arafat in contrast, plays it morose, weak, and pitiful. He has no money, he has no power, the eternal "nebisch". Only at the end of this performance, it is precisely Arafat who collects the entire pot. His strength is in his weakness. To Barak he managed to sell the slogan of the French collapse in Algeria -- "the peace of the brave" and our genius of the hour bought it hook line and sinker. But if this passes for courage, a person should prefer to be a coward. Such a coward would be fearful of surrounding the entire north of the country with Syrians from Rosh Hanikra toTzemach, fearful of a modern Syrian army equipped with modern American weaponry, fearful of de-militarization which can be annulled in a single word, as Nasser did it in the Sinai during l967. He would be fearful of being left without water, fearful of the threat posed by an irreversible split in the nation. Sometimes, a coward is preferable to a "brave" fool.
We had a strong army on Yom Kippur's eve with a concept of "strength" which consisted of an over-estimation of our power and an under-estimation of the enemy and his aggressive intentions. We also had a strong government. "The house is in good shape", announced Dayan, and the press displayed a bevy of heroic leaders. If they had fought and acted as prudent "weaklings" who could not permit themselves to be "brave" and take chances, neither for the sake of peace, nor in order to satisfy the United States, thousands of our sons would still be with us and Israel would not have sustained a defeat from which it has not recovered to this date.
The Peace messianism has restored "the strong and the brave" syndrome. We are ostensibly strong enough to donate lands from the body of our homeland to the Middle Eastern pillar of the pro-Arab American global policy, stretching from Pakistan to Kosovo, and from Bosnia to Chechenya. The dangerous image of "strength" and "bravery" which Barak radiates must be counteracted and we should convey to the United States signals of weakness. The United States is not our enemy. She is toying with our fate under the assumption that we are sufficiently "strong" to lose territory, water and strategic ascendancy and turn hundreds of thousands of our citizens into uprooted refugees, while still managing to maintain a stable government and furnish a buttress of support to the west in a region which the United States itself deems unstable.
On the contrary, this is the signal we should be sending: Israel is weak. It has no strength to make concessions in its homeland; she is not brave enough to take risks when her security is concerned and therefore too "brave" a government will fall. Hence America, for the sake of her own interests, would be advised to change her policy and consider us as well. If America refuses to recognize the justice of our case, she should at least make allowances for our weakness.
Elyakim Ha'etzni is an attorney, former Knesset member and Jewish activist from Kiryat Araba.
Golan Heights Full-Page Ads
Sponsored By The Ariel Center For Policy Research
Commentary by Yoram Ettinger <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Below you'll find the English translation of the 5th full-page Golan Ad, published by The Ariel Center For Policy Research in Ha'aretz daily. The 6th ad was published today (Tuesday, Feb. 29): "Are The 1967/1949 Lines Defensible?" The opening item in this week's ad is a quote from the 1998 book written by the late Motta Gur, a former dovish C-O-S and a senior member of the Labor Party: "Israel cannot defend itself against an eastern Arab offensive without the Golan Heights. Israel cannot defend the Golan Heights without the central mountain ridge, which is the current boundary...A military force which stares (from the bottom) upward toward its adversary, is not a military force..." The late Motta (who was a dovish member of Rabin's Cabinet), and the rest of the Ad, are consistent with the conduct of every single country in the world: No country would give up the high-ground! No country would exchange topographical edge for promises, top technology, early-warning systems and advanced military systems. In fact, no country trades its own territory for peace (unless defeated on the battle field)!!! Most importantly, it is the Eastern Golan (overlooking Damascus), rather than the Western Golan (overlooking the Lake of Galilee), which is IRREPLACEABLE for Israel's security!
The Golan Heights and the Facts
Are Technology and Sophisticated Weaponry an Adequate Substitute for the Golan?
Sophisticated Early-Warning Systems Have Their Limitations
The United States possesses, in the Persian Gulf, the most advanced early-warning systems in the world. Surveillance aircraft and ships, spy satellites, and land-based early-warning facilities operate there 24 hours a day. Still, the US was surprised by Iraq's invasion of Iran (1980) and Kuwait (1990), in spite of its impressive presence in the Gulf, but due to climatic (fog, clouds, rain, sandstorms), topographical, technical, and human limitations. Iraq's invasions led to over a million fatalities, the devastation of Kuwait, and scores of billions of dollars in other damages.
Sophisticated Warning Systems vs. a Topographical Edge In 1973, the IDF's early-warning facilities detected Egypt's and Syria's preparations for war. Yet the IDF failed in its interpretations of the threat assessment, as had happened before in the IDF and in the best military forces in the world. It was the strategic depth of Sinai and the mountain ridge on the eastern Golan (which overlooks Damascus and not the Kinneret!) that made up for this human and intelligence failure. Critical territorial features -- and not advanced technology -- enabled the fending off of the Arab tanks, the mobilization of Israel's reservists, and the snatching a victory out of the jaws of in the Yom Kippur War.
Sophisticated Technology and Weaponry Possess a Limited Effectiveness
The most sophisticated weaponry in the world was used by the U.S., Britain, and France against Iraq in 1991. Despite the fact that they were acting against an inferior adversary, they were unable to destroy Iraq's ballistic missile launchers. On June 12, 1999, Newsweek reported that China, Syria's ally, had developed a technology that can probably neutralize the U.S. air force, including the "Stealth" (F-117) and the plane of the future (F-22). The Chinese technology could jam US missile launchers and radar systems and paralyze Taiwan's defense.
AP reported on November 11, 1999 that China's ballistic technology is probably capable of neutralizing anti-ballistic defense systems developed by the U.S. The development of a Czech technology ("Tamara") enabled the downing in Yugoslavia of the, supposedly invulnerable, US "Stealth."
Sophisticated Technology and Weaponry Increase the Dependency on Foreign Suppliers
Advanced technology and sophisticated weaponry do not constitute an adequate substitute for critical territorial features. They constitute a temporary and tenuous support, which depends on factors that are uncontrollable by Israel. Syria can import superior technology from China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, France, and others. But Syria cannot import a topographical edge over the Golan Heights. The acquisition of sophisticated technology and weaponry increases dependency on foreign suppliers and on changing and unpredictable political, security, and economic realities in the U.S. and the world. For example, up to 1967 the U.S. refused to supply advanced weaponry to Israel. On the eve of the Six Day War, the U.S. warned Israel against initiating a preemptive war. In 1981 the U.S. delayed Israel's acquisition of critically needed weaponry as a sanction for the bombing of the nuclear reactor in Iraq. During the Gulf War (1991), the U.S. withheld vital intelligence information and certain military systems from Israel.
On the other hand, territorial features are permanent, fixed factors that are exclusively under Israel control, strengthening Israel's independence of action. A topographical edge compensates for temporary (and eventual) technological inferiority.
Technological Superiority - A Temporary Edge
In 1967, Israel achieved victory due to the element of surprise and the technological superiority of its air force. Yet, within six years the trounced military forces of Syria and Egypt were reconstructed In 1973 they almost defeated Israel with the help of surface-to-air and antitank missiles, whose effectiveness surprised Israel and the U.S.
The Hacker Phenomenon and the Limitations of Technology Microsoft and other technological giants were unable to stop the hacker attacks, which revealed the vulnerability of the most sophisticated commercial and military systems in the U.S., while causing billions of dollars in damages.
The book Unrestricted War, which was published in 1999 by the Chinese PLA, claims that the U.S. and its allies will be defeated on the technological battlefield with sophisticated "virus" attacks that will jam radar, missiles communications, banking, and logistic systems. The more sophisticated the technology, the more vulnerable it is to injection of false data and to military hackers.
The U.S., Too, Recognizes the Superiority of Territory Over Technology.
The U.S. is the technological superpower of the world. The US does not face an existential or territorial threat and it stretches over a continent. Still, the US has chosen to control some hundred overseas military bases and installations situated at vital geographical and topographical locations. Indeed, the U.S. does not depend on technology as an adequate substitute for a geographical or topographical edge.
*Early-warning facilities, advanced technology, sophisticated weaponry, and the human factor are fallible. Topographical advantages provide the security margin that enables one to make up for that fallibility.
*Defense, just like commercial, technology is an obsolescent product with a short shelf-life. The High-Tech of today will be the Low-Tech of tomorrow, but the High-Ground of today will be the High-Ground of tomorrow!
*Even the most sophisticated technology and weaponry can be jammed. But there is no way to jam Golan Height!
*There is no precedent for any country agreeing to exchange a topographical edge for sophisticated early-warning devices and technologies.
In the next full-page ad we will discuss: "The Centrality of Territory in the National Security Equation."
ACPR - Ariel Center for Policy Research, Arieh Stav, Director, POB 830, Shaarei Tikva 44810
Reprinted from The Jerusalem Post of February 21, 2000
NO SUCH THING AS A FREE LUNCH
By Ariel Sharon
As part of the efforts made by Prime Minister Ehud Barak's advisers to assure a referendum majority for an agreement with Syria, the idea of a defense treaty between Israel and the US was once again raised. If buying advanced military technology and Tomahawk missiles is not sufficient to convince the public that withdrawing from the Golan Heights is a good idea, a signed defense treaty with the US can be waved in its face. With such a treaty, the advisers say, it will be possible to leave the Golan Heights for the shore of Lake Kinneret without fear. This is another example of a deceitful marketing campaign.
As minister of defense, who in 1981 signed a memorandum of strategic understanding with the US, I have always supported the traditional position of all Israeli governments that a defense treaty with the US can be an important addition to defense strategy, but can under no circumstances replace defendable borders or assuring the IDF's ability to protect the country on its own. One must always remember that Israel is the only place in the world where Jews have, and will always have, the right and ability to defend themselves when attacked. We cannot allow ourselves to ask others, especially American soldiers, to do it for us.
This position led to the expansion and strengthening of strategic cooperation with the US without a formal defense treaty. Under the Likud government, this strategic cooperation was expanded in many areas. Defense treaties, like modern weapons technology, have not in themselves prevented wars or guaranteed security; in fact, they have in many cases caused escalation. During the Gulf War (1990-1991), it took the US over five months to establish a coalition and deploy the necessary forces to liberate Kuwait from Iraqi aggression and occupation. If Israel was ever to face a similar nightmare, it would not have even five days of grace: It would face total annihilation long before any US forces could even reach the scene.
A defense treaty will neither deter nor halt limited terrorist activities and minor infringements of the law.The US will not wish to be involved in such incidents, but will instead press Israel to show restraint. What would Israel do, for instance, if, while bound by a treaty with the US, the Syrians one night introduced small antitank forces into the demilitarized zone in the Golan, or if Hizbullah attacked a northern border community, or an IDF outpost? What if there is a Hizbullah attack within Israel, or against Jewish and Israeli targets in the Diaspora (as is already planned)?
Is Israel willing to defy the US if the superpower demands restraint, so that it can avoid direct confrontation with the Arab countries that are becoming its allies? Even more serious, from the moment that Israel fails to retaliate after the first infringement because of US influence, new rules will apply that will permit both the Syrians and the terrorist organizations to erode the Israeli deterrent and apply constant pressure for further concessions. Jerusalem, water, negotiations with the Palestinians, and other issues will all be pressed upon Israel even after signing an agreement.
The critical problem is that the smaller the infringements and attacks, the more difficult it will be for Israel to act on the scale and with the intensity required to restore the situation to its former state; Israel is thus liable to find itself in a process of uncontrolled escalation.
WE have seen this scenario recently following Hizbullah's attacks on IDF soldiers and outposts. The Barak government failed to react to this terrorism in the requisite manner, among other reasons because of US pressure, even before the signing of a formal treaty with the Americans.
A defense treaty would neutralize Israel's major element of deterrence. A treaty would restrict Israel's freedom of action at any time when there is a fear of American involvement in fighting. Any American force deployed here as part of such a defense treaty would become a target and would conflict with American interests. If such a force were to be used and casualties occurred, the American commitment to Israel would dissolve fade under the pressure of US media and public opinion.
Israel would cease to be a strategic asset and would become instead a burden, with Congress and public opinion pointing an accusing finger at us. A defense treaty in which Israel gives up strategic assets such as the Golan Heights and security areas in Judea and Samaria, which provide strategic depth and room to maneuver, would force a shrunken Israel to re-adopt (as in 1967) the doctrine of a preemptive strike - a doctrine the US has always opposed. So our position must be "yes" to increased strategic cooperation with the US, but "no" to a defense treaty that would relinquish Israel's power to defend itself.
It is important for the public to know this now, even if Barak's public relations people don't want to say it: There is no such thing as a free lunch. (c) Jerusalem Post 2000
Ariel Sharon is leader of the Likud and a former Defense Minister.
PRESS RELEASE -- WOMEN IN GREEN -- Jerusalem, February 20, 2000
UPROOTING OF SETTLEMENTS
OVER OUR DEAD BODIES!!!
This morning, on Galei Zahal radio (Army Radio), they announced the new settlement map that has been drawn by the Ministry of Defense. According to that map, in the final status, 21 settlements will be evacuated and another 16 are a question mark.
Following this announcement, the Women in Green declare:
--The plan to steal Eretz Yisrael from the hands of Am Yisrael will not succeed!
- We will bitterly fight against the uprooting of Jews from their homes in Eretz Yisrael!
- Uprooting Jews is a crime against the Jewish People and is a betrayal of our homeland!
- Obeying the order to uproot a settlement is obeying an illegal order!
-Am Yisrael will not betray its homeland!
-The uprooting of settlements - over our dead bodies!!
Ruth and Nadia Matar are co-presidents of WOMEN FOR
ISRAEL'S TOMORROW (Women in Green).
P.O.B. 7352, JERUSALEM 91072 Israel
Tel. 02-624-9887, Fax: 02-624-5380, www.womeningreen.org
AMERICANS FOR A SAFE
1623 Third Ave., Suite 205, New York, N.Y. 10128
Tel: 212-828-2424; Fax: 212-828-1717; email@example.com
Contact: Helen Freedman
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - FEB. 21, 2000
THE FATAL POSITION
Americans for a Safe Israel/AFSI views with alarm the present full retreat of the Israeli government. Herbert Zweibon, AFSI Chairman, states, "The Barak government has clearly abandoned its Jewish citizens by giving up huge portions of Judea and Samaria, clearly leading to the uprooting and 'transfer' of the 150,000 Jews now living in those communities."
Helen Freedman, AFSI's Executive Director, notes that, "According to the rough draft of the permanent status map of Judea and Samaria, only six settlement blocs in Yesha will remain under Israeli sovereignty. The plan details the future evacuation of 21 Yesha communities. Kiryat Arba/Hebron will be abandoned, as well as Netzarim, Kfar Darom, and Morag in Gaza's Gush Katif. Travelers to and from some blocs will have to pass through PA territory."
Zweibon goes on to deplore the "quiet division of Jerusalem." He asserts that, "The Jewish neighborhoods at the northern end of the city such as Beit Hanina and Shuafat will be surrounded by PA areas. Neve Yaakov and Pisgat Ze'ev, home to 80,000 Jews, are also threatened by their proximity to PA autonomous areas." Zweibon quotes Gabi Ganish, head of the Neve Yaakov neighborhood council who has been living there since the neighborhood was founded 27 years ago, "This is not a matter of politics, but a matter of our daily lives, and our private homes. Already today, when there is no formal PA in the Arab areas bordering our neighborhoods we are putting up fences, increasing the street lighting, and operating patrols with the Border Police and the Civil Guard... we worry about PA terrorists infiltrating our neighborhood and then getting away to the safe haven of the PA areas."
Helen Freedman condemns the Barak policy on Jerusalem. She says, "Barak's pattern of ignoring the Arab violations in the eastern part of Jerusalem, and permitting increased PA activity will subconsciously get Jewish Jerusalemites to accept the loss of east Jerusalem to the Arabs, as well as the outlying areas of the city." Freedman quotes a spokesman for the new movement to save Jerusalem, "Six years ago our sacred cow was Jerusalem -- and now even she is being slaughtered."
The AFSI chairman concludes, "We accuse the Barak government of creating policies that weaken the will of the people, destroying their ability to fight for their survival. AFSI offers its support to those prepared to fight."
RESPONSE TO HELPING PA ECONOMY
The PA decided to reserve the Erez Checkpoint for the passage of people and the new, streamlined Karmi checkpoint for the passage of goods. To help the PA economy, Israel will lower fees for trucks passing through Karmi. The PA will reduce tariffs on trucks carrying cement into Gaza. What did Arafat's economic advisor, Mahr el-Kurd, think of that? It is like "Nazi policies against the `Palestinian' population." "Israel wants to turn Gaza into a concentration camp similar to that of the 2nd WW."
The IDF commander of the Erez Checkpoint protested those "evil, stupid, and insensitive statements." (IMRA, 2/9 from Coordinator of Activities in the territories). The good commander might have noticed by now that the Arabs do not try to be sensitive. Their Islamic duty is to humiliate the Jews.
THE JEW ROOM
By Emanuel A. Winston
The CBS 60 MINUTES exposÚ by Lesley Stahl (1) about the C.I.A. profiling of American Jews is revealing in many ways. The surface story tells us that the C.I.A. is concerned about Israeli spying on the U.S. But, there is another layer which is reminiscent of a statement by General Alexander Haig shortly after Jonathan Pollard was arrested. Haig was asked by a reporter on TV if we spied on our allies, to which he replied: "I certainly hope so."
In the book entitled: "The Secret War Against the Jews: How Western Espionage Betrayed the Jewish People, 1920-1994" by John Loftus and Mark Aarons, Loftus tracks various operations by American intelligence against the Jewish State in deference to Arab interests.(2) John Loftus has impressive credentials as an author of four histories about Intelligence operations, a consultant for CBS 60 MINUTES and ABC - PRIME TIME, among others. Loftus was a prosecutor with the U.S. Justice Department Nazi hunting unit with unprecedented access to top secret C.I.A. and NATO archives.
Loftus explains that the once secret communications intelligence between Britain and America had been deliberately twisted by the agencies of both countries to allow British wire-tapping of American Jewish citizens using American electronic facilities. A reciprocal arrangement exists in Britain, providing both countries Secret Services with Plausible/Credible Deniability.
For the last fifty years virtually every Jewish citizen, organization and charity in the world has been the victim of electronic surveillance by Great Britain with the knowing and willing assistance of the U.S. Intelligence Services. Presumably, they spied without warrants and shared the information. Jews who supported a Jewish State in Palestine were under intense surveillance by the British and the F.B.I. Everything possible was done to stop the birth of Israel and to boycott arms shipments while the Arabs were well armed by the world's governments.
In one section, Loftus speaks about the "Jew Room" and the intercommunications between U.S. Intelligence agencies on the matter of American Jews and Israel. This adversarial attitude has been prevalent for some time, even long before the State of Israel was proclaimed in 1948.
Professor Christopher Simpson, in his well-researched books: "Blow-Back: America's Recruitment of Nazis & Its Effects on the Cold War" and "The Splendid Blond Beast: Money, Law & Genocide in the 20th Century" details American interaction between high-level interests and Nazi Germany before, during and after World War II. In "Blow-Back" he speaks of U.S. Intelligence recruiting Nazi war criminals in the Gestapo and scientists to bring them into America. In "The Splendid Blond Beast" he tracks the U.S. State Department and the Dulles brothers, John Foster, head of the State Department and Allen from the C.I.A., as they protected high-level German industrialists who were Nazi war criminals. (3)
The 60 MINUTES exposÚ merely scratched the surface of U.S. interests and heir adversarial role through Arabists and oil men who did not like or want the Jewish State to exist. American Intelligence Agencies were connected to Gamal Abdel Nasser and Anwar Sadat, respectively in their time, and Hosni Mubarak today. The relationship was not wholesome, given that, in trying to penetrate and enhance the American position vis a vis Arab oil, we assisted the Arabs in their war against the Jews.
Coincidentally, on the front page of the NEW YORK TIMES, Sunday 2/13/2000, there is an exposÚ of a C.I.A. operation with the usual cover-up by the State Department. In 1973 the C.I.A. conspired in the murders of two Americans while it, the C.I.A., was aiding the forces of Gen. Augusto Pinochet in the overthrow of Chile's President Salvador Allende. The C.I.A. sold weapons to Pinochet's militias and destabilized the Allende government - giving the Pinochet secret services lists of suspected leftists to be rounded up in the first days of a military takeover.(4)
That story parallels the C.I.A.'s adversarial role against Israel as the C.I.A. trains the PLO terrorists (now called policemen) while subverting Israel's resistance to dismemberment. What is happening now is not new, it's just that these black C.I.A. operations have begun to appear on the front page of the NEW YORK TIMES - not because the NYT is against the State Department or C.I.A. but because the story is too sensational and too big a scoop not to print.
Look for more such 'scoops' as the Freedom of Information Act and non-governmental whistle blowers, like Peter Kornbluth of the non profit National Security Archives promotes declassification. Look for some aggressive investigative journalists or attorneys to petition the Freedom of Information Act for release of Caspar Weinberger's secret memorandum accusing Jonathan Pollard of unknown crimes the day before Judge Aubrey Robinson sentenced Pollard to Life with no parole.
There is little doubt that there is, indeed, a Jew Room where information is collected about American Jews and Israel. According to Loftus, for many years it was housed at 218 Pennsylvania Avenue, although it has been movedto a suite of office in one of the new annexes. (5) I am sure that, if the Senate or House had an open inquiry, we would find that, in all of our Intelligence Agencies, each has a unit that spies on American Jews and directs their collected information to a collection center - the "Jew Room". Prior information indicates that this processing center is managed by the F.B.I. to include monthly briefings. This would likely be the responsibility of the F.B.I. as started under J. Edgar Hoover.
Here again, as in Vietnam, Korea, and other places, we have our Intelligence Agencies conducting their own private war out of view of any Congressional oversight committee. I wonder how the American people would react if they suddenly found out that our most trusted Intelligence Agencies were conducting their own private war against Israel and filtered out Jewish employees or professors who just might stumble across this terrible secret. Perhaps that is why U.S. Intelligence was withheld about the imminent surprise attack by Egypt and Syria during Yom Kippur 1973, until the very last minute when it was too late.
Was it an oversight when the U.S. withheld sending counter measure equipment for Israeli aircraft when they were being knocked out of the sky by Russian SAM missiles in Egypt during the 1973 War? Was it an accident that they finally arrived without their operating manuals and Israel had to call back her electronics experts globally to reverse engineer the black boxes to get them to work? Did Caspar Weinberger as Secretary of Defense provide Saudi Arabia with satellite photos of Israel's defenses over the years?
There is an ugly segment of our government that seems to work independently of our laws and controls. They seem to be tied into commercial interests, what President General Eisenhower called the military/industrial complex.
Who really runs the C.I.A.? The government of the people or the oil maggots and arms industry mafia?
In years past, we were informed of an arrangement between British and American Intelligence Agencies. Each would spy on the other's domestic targets and, if discovered, could offer credible deniability. The Jew room was a filter for Jewish names in all walks of life. Whether you were a scientist employed in producing secret weapons for the government, a professor at a university or a leader in the Jewish community, your name was likely in the files of the "Committee". When Jonathan Pollard was caught revealing information about Arab countries' armaments and plans (particularly Iraq's gas and chemical capability), this was the opportunity people like Caspar Weinberger were waiting for. Every Jew became suspect and was purged from the top levels of government service. It was an ugly period, which may still be ongoing. Why was such life and death information withheld from Israel by Weinberger and Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, Director of the NSA, National Security Agency? That big question was never answered.
I realize that asking Congress to hold substantive hearings is close to useless. Some Congressmen may be supported by campaign contributions from the very industries they would be called upon to investigate. The industries push the Intelligence Agencies to act on their behalf. When Hughes and Loral transferred missile technology to China followed by Clinton's retroactive waivers, the subject just disappeared. Like Iran-Contra, BCCI and dozens of other covert operations, the scandals just disappear.
The matter of the Jew Room and profiling U.S. Jews will also be buried. Because of it surfacing now, the Jewish leadership will be paralyzed with fear (so familiar to the ghetto-minded Jew).
In the coming months watch Syria, a most dangerous terrorist nation, become the darling of the Clinton Administration and the American Intelligence Agencies. Israel will spiral down on the U.S. chart of interest to the point where the Arabists at the State Department can move toward her dissolution. Are American Jews distrustful of Assad, Arafat, Saddam? You bet. Are the Arabists at State and in Intelligence running covert anti-Israel programs? You bet. Will they make every effort to keep this anti-Semitic, anti-Israel operation under wraps? You bet.
So, if profiling American Jews is the plan to keep them from 'seeing' covert adversarial operations targeting Israel, they will continue to operate their Jew Room. Maybe, just maybe we will get a President and an enlightened Congress who will terminate this ugly un-American process.
Some may think it strange that the Jewish minority who has contributed so massively to the well-being of America should be under suspicion by the same organizations who assisted Saddam Hussein to acquire catastrophic weapons.
While the Jews contributed Salk and Sabin's cures for polio, our accusers had enlisted Manuel Noriega and his drug mechanism. When Einstein and the Jewish physicists accelerated America's development of nuclear science, our accusers were cutting deals with Nazi industrialists and bankers who used Jewish slave labor for their armament industries.
When Israel was supplying America with captured Russian equipment to train in defensive maneuvers, our accusers were working with the Egyptians. While the Jews gave the world Einstein, Sabin, Salk, Horowitz, Rubenstein, Heifetz, . . . our accusers were tight with some of the most bloodthirsty dictators and war criminals this century has ever known.
Today the Clinton plan is to arm Syria with the most sophisticated high-tech American weapons as a bribe to sign a peace paper. Just as the U.S. did with Egypt - with the Jewish State to be truncated and then caught between two juggernauts. The eminent psychologist, Carl Jung described it best when he said the aggressor will blame his intended victim for planning their own destruction which then legitimizes their attack on the victim. So the Takers become the accusers and the Givers become the victim.
In closing, I do not believe that overall the C.I.A. or F.B.I. are inherently anti-Semitic. There are, however, dedicated pockets of people who do not represent American interests and who should be pensioned off. Let's ask the candidates running for the office of President if they would continue this assault on the civil rights of American Jews.
1. "60 MINUTES" by Leslie Stahl CBS Television
2. "The Secret War Against the Jews: How Western Espionage Betrayed the Jewish People: 1920-1994" by John Loftus & Mark Aarons St. Martin's Press NY 1996
3. "Blowback: America's Recruitment of Nazis & Its Effects on the Cold War" & "The Splendid Blond Beast: Money, Law & Genocide in the 20th Century" by Christopher Simpson Grove Press NY 1993
4. "U.S. Victims of Chile's Coup: The Uncensored File" by Diana Jean Schemo NEW YORK TIMES February 13, 2000
5. "Secret War Against the Jews" Ibid pg. 550 #50
Emanuel A. Winston is a Middle East Analyst & Commentator and research associate of the Freeman Center For Strategic Studies.
ISRAEL REMAINS DETERMINED NOT
TO LEARN FROM ITS HUMILIATIONS
By Louis Rene Beres
Writing of the Jews as a "people of solitaries," E.M. Cioran, the most dazzling French philosophical voice since Paul Valery, observed of the Jewish "nation" that this people, "...unsuited to the complacencies of despair, bypassing its age-old fatigue and the conclusions imposed by fate, lives in the delirium of expectation, determined not to learn a lesson from its humiliations...." With the leadership of Ehud Barak, Israel has given new meaning to such ironic determination. Rejecting Zionism and Judaism in a singular expression of "democracy," the people of Israel now demonstrate, with incomprehensibly suicidal delight, a willingness to fawn before their executioners.
Shall Israel survive under such leadership? Not very likely. Living comfortably on its knees, it has lost the right to do so. Who are Israel's intended executioners? Enemies who are irrevocably and doctrinally committed to destruction of the Third Temple Commonwealth, they have remarkably little hard work ahead of them. Israel, after all, has now shown a marked preference for Los Angeles over Jerusalem. Virtually all necessary preparations for Israel's destruction have already been carried out meticulously and enthusiastically - by Jews, by Israelis. Today, the IDF's main job seems to be this: How to best transfer Israel's strategic depth to sworn Arab foes.
In Muslim parlance, all war dictated by the shari'a is necessarily "holy." Yet, the Arabic word jihad, which has the literal meaning of "effort," "striving," or "struggle," ought not to be taken lightly. A basic commandment of Islam, jihad - still a favorite term of Israel's "partner" President Arafat - is an obligation imposed on all Muslims by God, and is unambiguously military in intent. Derived from the universality of Muslim revelation, jihad calls upon those who have accepted God's message and God's word to strive (jahada) relentlessly to convert, or, at a minimum, to subjugate those who have not been converted. Regarding the State of Israel, this obligation is not bounded by limits of time or space. Indeed, this obligation must continue until the whole world has accepted Islam or has submitted to the power of the Islamic state.
What is the prevailing Islamic worldview for the interim? It is that the world remains divided in two: the House of Islam (dar al-Islam) and the House of War (dar al-Harb). In the House of Islam, of course, Muslims rule and the law of Islam already prevails. In the House of War, which comprises the rest of the world, a constant struggle against the unbeliever is morally, legally and religiously obligatory. No authentic political compromises are possible! No conclusion to the struggle is acceptable short of a final and total military triumph. Significantly, the law books permit the state of war to be interrupted, when expedient, by an armistice or truce or treaty of limited duration. This state of belligerency can never be terminated by a peace that is not founded upon a final victory.
Could anything be clearer? Throughout the Islamic world, Barak's pleas for "peace" will be exploited eagerly by Israel's executioners. These executioners, including the Egyptians (who negotiated a markedly self-serving "interruption" in their 1979 treaty with Israel), can hardly believe their good fortune. Can the "Jews" (it is always the Jews in Arab/Islamic parlance, never the Israelis) really be as foolish and self-destructive as they appear?
For Islam, the unsubjugated unbeliever - in our present concerns, the Jew - is by definition the enemy. A part of the dar-al-Harb, the House of War, he is differentiated sharply from the dhimmi, the unbeliever who submits to Muslim rule. As for a presumably Jewish State, one that rules over Muslims and that "occupies" Muslim lands, it is nothing less than the very incarnation of unbelief, an intolerable source of contamination and a codified inversion of God's will. Such a state can be fit only for extermination. In today's Arab textbooks, Israel is routinely identified as "filth."
When Haj Amin al Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, spoke together with Hitler on Berlin Radio, in 1942, he cried out: "Kill the Jews - kill them with your hands, kill them with your teeth - this is well pleasing to Allah." Today, the infamous PLO call for annihilation of Israel STILL remains at certain official PA websites and publications, and the Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) STILL calls for the "realization of Allah's promise, no matter how long that should take. The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said: `The Day of Judgment will not come until Muslims fight the Jews, killing them.'"
Lest these sources appear musty and out-of-date, consider that on May 3, 1999, Yasir Arafat's official Palestine Authority (PA) radio station (Voice of Palestine) broadcast the following religious sermon (at Jerusalem's Al Aqsa mosque) instructing all Muslims that Israel is part of Palestine and that Israel's survival is "forbidden by religious law:
"The land of Muslim Palestine is a single unit which
cannot be divided. There is no difference between
Haifa and Nablus, between Lod and Ramallah, between
Jerusalem and Nazareth. The division of the land of
Palestine into cantons and the recognition of the
occupation is forbidden by religious law, since the
land of Palestine is sacred Wakf land for the benefit
of all Muslims, east and west. No one has the right
to divide it or give up any of it. The liberation of
Palestine is obligatory for all the Islamic nations
and not only for our Palestinian nation....All Israeli
politicians across their entire political spectrum,
regardless of their labels, they all have a single
Zionist view embodied in the occupation of the land
and the establishment of the Zionist entity at the
expense of the Muslim Palestinian land....Allah shall
free the captives and the prisoners, Allah shall
grant victory to our jihad warriors.
Barak's Israel - however much it lacks the "single Zionist view" alleged by its executioners - will be despised in the Middle East, as was Israel in Netanyahu's Middle East, and in Begin's Middle East, and in Ben Gurion's Middle East, because it is a presumed Jewish State. It will be no less despised, and no less an object of Islamic annihilation, once Barak has confirmed its disgracefully post-Zionist character and has given away its essential strategic depth, including - it now seems - the Golan. On the contrary, Israel's executioners - within and outside the Green Line - have found the so-called Jewish State's craven and cowardly search for "peace" at any price an additional cause for revulsion. Under Barak, Israel will continue to hope too much, to waste critical strength in vain concessions, to elicit still greater enmity by its capitulations and - above all - to learn nothing - absolutely nothing - from its humiliations. [10 February 2000]
LOUIS RENE BERES was educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971) and is the author of many books and articles dealing with nuclear strategy, nuclear war and international law. His work is well-known to Israeli political, academic, military and intelligence communities. Professor Beres's columns have appeared in all major Israeli newspapers and in THE NEW YORK TIMES.
Will the Right Hand Forget Its Skill?
By Eugene Narrett, PhD
The primary virtue of Judaism is kindness. "Demonstrate clearly Your kindness [God], You who saves with Your right hand," sang David of the essential merit of Abraham who "kept the way of Hashem, doing charity and justice" (1). The kindness or "right hand" of Hashem is shown in His faithfulness to redeem Israel from "the wicked who have plundered" and "the mortal enemies who surround [her]." Because the right hand of kindness loves mercy, life and peace it is not pacifism. Kindness must fight to sustain the good. "Your right hand sustained me [and] trained my hands for battle," sang David. You girded me with strength for battle" so that "I pursued my foes and overtook them and struck them down" (Psalm 18:35-40). This kindness is the quality of the Lord in His supreme aspect of Mercy denoted by the Name, Hashem who "subjugates nations" beneath the king of Israel so that "foreigners are withered and terrified," amen. Hashem "magnifies the victories of His king... He does kindness with David, His anointed and to his seed, forever" states the verse recited near the end of the grace after meals, right before praising His establishment of peace in the heavens and for His people (2). This verse makes clear that in His mercy, Hashem first gives strength to Israel so that He can establish peace for them, their efforts fulfilling His will for their rule in the Land (3). Because the Holy City is the center of God's sovereignty and moral order, Jews remember the horrors of their exile by vowing that Jerusalem will remain foremost in their hears, or the right hand may forget its skill (Psalm 137). Sometimes kindness requires both war and vengeance on the wicked.
This point is summed up in a familiar phrase, "kindness to the wicked is cruelty" because it enables them to continue to afflict the innocent and good. This is a lesson that many Jews, secular and religious, old and young continue to misconstrue to the sorrow and stress of themselves, their nation and the world. The media-amplified corruption of the path to and nature of "peace" aggravates the natural tendency of Jews to confound self-restraint with self-contempt and the pursuit of peace with pacifism, mistakes that lead to the peace of the grave and the triumph of the wicked. "His right hand is a right hand of kindness" because He smites the wicked and wants His people to do the same. This is in the merit and example of Abraham when he pursued the kidnappers of his nephew "and deployed against them by night, and smote them as far as Hobah, north of Damascus" (Genesis 14:13-16). The ethical teaching Israel brings as his truth to the world is that "the rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous, lest the righteous stretch forth their hands unto iniquity" (Psalm 125:3). The state of Israel and many Jews have forgotten this integration of kindness with justice. False to the truth of Israel, their deceits lead not to peace but to death. They confound friend with foe which invites their enemies to trample them, thus mocking God's Name and promise.
This problem manifests itself in small ways as well as great, from the theft of beehives to the false friendship of "Jordan" to the all-encompassing, all-deforming lies of the "peace process." On February 3, the Foreign Ministry "Center for International Cooperation" hosted a celebration of classes it conducted to teach Arabs about bee keeping (4). The Barak government was so proud of its misplaced charity it ignored a protest by Israeli beekeepers who have been seeking redress for 2500 beehives stolen by Arabs in 1999 at a cost of about 10 million shekels, not including lost labor. "They are simply looting us and somehow the nation accepts it," said beekeeper Levy Schneersohn of Kfar Chabad. "We know where our hives are, near Halhoul, but the army will not send soldiers to accompany me [to reclaim them]. It is a national humiliation. They are robbing us blind and we do nothing about it" (5). By allowing Arabs to rob and attack Jews in Israel, the government desecrates the Name, Hashem. Kindness to the wicked is cruelty.
The LORD blessed Israel with heavy rains and snow from January 26-8. Scores of cars were stranded in the Tunnels highway from Gush Etzion to Kiryat Arba. Israeli police instructed drivers to leave their cars and looked away while Arabs stoned Jews who digging out their vehicles and then vandalized the cars. "I could almost understand that they stole my radios, mirrors and ammunition," said one Israeli, pathetically, with condescending and meretricious broad-mindedness. "But why did they have to destroy doors and other parts of the car with absolutely no benefit to them?" This naivete about the enemy is not uprightness. At the Kiryat Arba medical Center a Jew lamented, "at the very same time we were caring for 50 Arabs who had gotten stuck on the roads, and providing them with food and warmth, their townspeople were throwing rocks at us and vandalizing cars" (6). It is very late in the day for Israelis not to understand the magnitude of Arab hatred of Jews. Ministering to those who consider you "the disease of the Third Millennium" and who make Mein Kampf a bestseller is not kindness it is self-contempt and a desecration of the Name (7).
It passes for common knowledge across the spectrum of Israeli politics that the 1994 treaty with Jordan is a success. "Normalization" with Jordan is the prize that helps justify continuing the "process." The nation remains blind and deaf to the lesson of the "Isle of Peace" in the Yarmuk River Israel surrendered to Jordan. Early in March 1997 King Hussein issued a public letter castigating Prime Minister Netanyahu for not surrendering land more quickly to the Palestinians. Inflamed by the letter, a few days later a Jordanian soldier shot and killed seven Jewish schoolgirls who were touring the island. Then Hussein toured Israel to "console" the bereaved families, and was exalted as a master of compassion. To confound evil and good in this manner is not kindness but its opposite. The "right hand of falsehood" brings not peace but "the evil sword" (Psalm 144:8-11).
In exchange for surrendering the Sinai Peninsula Israel also has a "peace treaty" with Egypt. The latter nation's view of "normalization" is publishing blood libels and warnings against "the threat of Jewish capitalism," as Henry Ford did. "Arab negotiators must be prepared to use all the cards available to them, including the anti-normalization ground swell" (8). In Jordan, professionals term normalization, "a conspiracy to force Jordanians to accept the existence of Israel" and fear being tarred with this deed. "I have never normalized relations with Israel," insisted the director of a Theatre Group expelled from the Jordanian Artists Association (9). Anti-normalization advocates publish a black list of those who work with Israelis in any capacity, even with Israeli Arabs (10). Jordan's Press Association issued a statement that "fighting normalization is a necessity," because "the fight against normalization prevents weak souls from falling into the [Zionist] trap." The "bylaws of all thirteen associations in Jordan forbid members from normalizing relations with Israel" (11). Jordanian journalists repudiate peace with Jews so utterly that they praise the overt Nazism of Syria. "Frankly," one wrote, "nothing has pleased me more than the Tishrin article" (see above). "This good work was only superseded by what Hezbollah did recently in rubbing the Zionist occupation's nose in the mud" (12). Until two years ago, the government of Israel allowed this "best friend in the Arab world" to control the Temple Mount. Then it heightened the disgrace by transferring control to the Palestinians. So, anyone who speaks of the state of "Jordan" as a friend of Israel speaks with lying lips that preclude peace and afflict the righteous (Psalm 34:14-23).
The Jewish soul is still suffering the trauma of the Great Revolt, and the response to that defeat has been even more crippling than the slaughter inflicted by the Romans. It is essential to God's sanctifying purposes for the world that one guard the tongue from speaking evil and the lips from deceit, but God forbid the soul of a Jew should "be dust" to anyone. Rather, for the sake of His right hand, let Israel "do valiantly, and He will trample our oppressors." "He drove the enemy away from before you and He said, "destroy!" (13).
This is the standard by which Jews must measure their response to all enemies of Jewish sovereignty in all Israel. The Pope plans to arrive in Israel for five days on March 25 and "a senior Vatican official" declares that no Israeli officials will accompany him to "East" Jerusalem. It further was announced that the Pope would limit his visits within "the Green line" to the Western Wall and Yad Vashem, that is, to sites that memorialize the exile, lamentation and murder of Jews. The Barak government limply regretted "that due to circumstances beyond control, the Pope will be unable to dedicate more of his time to study the resurrection and renewal of the Jewish people in the land of their forefathers" (14). Perhaps since he means to insult and deny Jewish renewal and life, the Catholic primate should be barred from the Land. If successive governments of Israel had themselves reclaimed and settled the land this point would be moot. Now the Church spits on one side of Israel's face, and Barak turns his cheek for another gob of gentile sputum.
An Arab who used to work for Israel commented on the results of the state's bowing to its enemies and betraying its friends and allies in Lebanon and Judah. "The GSS has abandoned its collaborators, thrown them to the dogs. We all believed Israel would stand by us," he said. But Israel only stands by those who repeat blood libels and plan to uproot the state. "Oslo is a sham," the Arab noted. "There will never be real peace with the PLO, look at what they did in Jordan and Lebanon. Wherever they go they destroy. Hamas is stronger than GSS and things are dangerous" in part because GSS is pre-occupied with spying on, inciting and persecuting nationalist Jews (15). In this it exemplifies the deranged sentiments of Jewish intellectuals who rail against removing Bedouin from Maon ("I can't even bear to see a dog treated this way") but finds the removal of Jews and demolition of Jewish homes reasonable "since other Jews are taking care of them" (16).
The failure of modern Israel shows how leftwing secularists resemble some of the orthodox against which they rail. Both have made a career of crippling Jewish self-respect and twisting the meaning and path to peace of the Torah of life. MK Eli Yishai of Shas agreed to support Barak's latest surrender of Land to the Palestinians when the government promised to restore EMT ambulance service to Yesha (17). This kind of "orthodoxy" accedes to surrendering Judah and Jewish lives to aliens so long as Magen David Adom can scrape up the bodies. Just as on the Tel Aviv to Jerusalem road in 1947-8, the doctors and nurses also can expect to be shot. The Holy One did not tell Israel to settle and possess their inheritance only if the Arabs didn't mind. He told us to settle the Land and "drive them out." Since the liberation of Jerusalem in June 1967 the Rabbis should have led with public prayer and song in redeeming the Temple Mount and all the city's ancient Jewish synagogues and neighborhoods.
Fortunately some non-religious Jews grasp the congruence of faith and sovereignty in Israel. One noted that the Temple Mount is "a site of Jewish prayer and a symbol of nationhood" and quoted the Gerer Rebbe: "when Zionism came, we left it to the secular, and when the repentance movement came, we left that also for the secular." Perhaps, commented the man, "the secular also will have to build the Beit HaMikdash." And he added, "the Zionists were a minority among the Jews, those who came to the Land were a minority among the Zionists and those who actually worked the Land were also a minority. I hope we will soon be leaders" in reclaiming the Temple Mount as a place of Jewish prayer (18). If as Rabbis Porush and Benjamin Elon hope, the rally for Jerusalem occurs soon, uniting all Jews in renewing the pledge of Psalm 137, Israel will merit His "right hand, arm and the light of [His] countenance," and He will "command the salvation of Jacob. Through Your Name we will gore our foes; by Your Name we will trample our opponents" (Psalm 44:4-6).
It is inevitable, "good and pleasant" that Jerusalem again become the sacred place and cause that brings Israel together, "for there the tribes ascended, the tribes of God" (Psalms 122, 133). The threatened surrender of the Golan to the Nazis in Damascus, the betrayal of the faithful in Judah and Benjamin and the dismemberment of the Holy City can prompt Jews to follow a man who will redeem their soul from a government of fraud and violence. "And their blood will be precious in his eyes... until people blossom forth from the city" (Psalm 72:14-16). This was David's prayer for Solomon, and it remains Israel's prayer for its promised dominion. "Let me hear Your kindness at dawn, and with Your kindness cut off my enemies... You, Hashem, Who trains my hands for battle, my fingers for war" (Psalms 143:8, 12, 144:1).
1. (Psalm 17:7), (Genesis 18:19). The title paraphrases Psalm 137:5, "If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its skill." This is the pledge of all exiles beginning with those who wept "by the rivers of Babylon," 137:1.
2. (Psalm 18:46-51) and Birkat HaMazon: HaTov uMeitiv, baMarom, HaRachaman.
3. Psalm 29:11.
4. Foreign Ministry Press Release, with note from IMRA, Feb. 02, 2000.
5. Arutz-7, Jan. 17, 2000.
6. Arutz-7, Jan. 30, 2000.
7. Kheir al Wadi, Al Tishrin, Damascus, Jan. 31, 2000. Al-Wadi called "Zionism worse than the Nazis" in its "massacring of the innocent," etc.
8. Mohammed Sid-Ahmed, Al Ahram Weekly, Sept. 2-8, 1999.
9. Dina Hamadan, Jordan Times, August 28, 1999.
10. Dina Hamadan, Jordan Times, Oct. 05, 1999.
11. Alia Shukri Hamzeh, Jordan Times, Nov. 18, 1999.
12. Editorial, Al-Dustur, Amman (in Arabic), Feb. 02, 2000, p.3. The editorial also supported the claims of Holocaust denier David Irving.
13. Amidah, epilogue, Psalm, Deuteronomy 33:27, 29.
14. Arutz-7, Dec. 19, 1999, Jan. 12, 2000.
15. Arutz-7, September 08, 1999, anonymous interview with Haggai Segal.
16. Arutz-7, February 03, 2000.
17. Arutz-7, Jan. 25, 2000. The Jew-hating "humanitarian" is Prof. Sammy Michael.
18. Arutz-7, July 21, 1999, Ahuvyah Tabenkin of the group, "With Causeless Love We Will Be Re-Built," interviewed by Ariel Kahane.
Eugene Narrett teaches at Boston University.
By Boris Shusteff
And the Lord thy God will bring thee into
the land which thy fathers possessed,
and thou shalt possess it. (Deuteronomy 30: 5).
Israel nowadays resembles a fish thrown out onto the seashore. The fish is flailing on the sand, desperately writhing from side to side. It is the same sand that it just recently touched with its fins swimming in the water. However, an important thing is missing - there is no water around it. Although there is plenty of air everywhere, and countless creatures happily live in this environment, for the fish the surroundings are extremely dangerous and if it can't return to the water, it dies.
By abandoning Judaism Israel has found herself in an environment where she can't survive. One may argue that Israel is a Jewish state and Judaism is in her nature, one may even say that there are religious parties in Israel and thus Judaism can't disappear, but these will be only words, since one of the main tenets of Judaism has been forsaken by Israel.
The Jews have forgotten why they were taken out of bondage. They have forgotten that they were told to "go in to possess the land which the Lord your God giveth you, and ye shall possess it, and dwell therein" (Deuteronomy 11:31). They started to squander the Land which as Moses said "the Lord your God causeth you to inherit" (Deuteronomy 12:10).
What level of degradation had reached the supposedly Jewish state if its prime minister goes to Egypt, the place from which the Jews "were brought forth with a mighty hand," and there says of the eternal inheritance of the Jewish people, "ten days from now we are going to convey another piece of territory to the Palestinians" (1)? A Jewish leader speaks of the land that God "didst swear unto our fathers, a land flowing with milk and honey" (Deuteronomy 26:15) as just "another piece of territory" ?
The root of our tragedy lies in our unwillingness to admit that the Arabs are defeating us because they are struggling for Land and we are fighting for peace, security, equality, coexistence and a dozen other beautiful words. The land is real, it is alive, it exists, it can be touched. One can smell the warmth of the freshly ploughed land. One can feel the moisture of the soil when one walks barefooted after the morning rain has just washed the face of the earth.
At the same time security, peace, coexistence are subjective and abstract concepts, words that belong, mainly, on a piece of paper. People can talk about them, discuss them, define them. They can have different opinions about them. For instance, the Arabs define terrorism as Israel's confiscation of land, while for the Jews terrorism means killed and maimed people.
Pragmatics struggle for land; idealists juggle with words. Alas, the idealist, when killed, nevertheless, needs the land in order to be buried. We cannot live without the land as well. We build houses on the land. We plant trees on the land. Man and the land are interconnected. It is not accidental that the word for land in Hebrew - "adamah" differs only by one letter from the word "adam" - man.
The Jews have brought to this world not only monotheism. They also gave to mankind the meaning of the word "homeland." They were the first to define it by establishing a state on the land they were told to possess by God. They taught that a nation must have defined boundaries and that it should not be expanded into an empire. The Torah reminds us about that. When the Jews were on their route to the promised land, they were told several times by God not even to think about anyone else's land. "Ye are to pass through the border of the children of Esau; contend not with them; for I will not give you of their land; because I have given mount Seir unto Esau for possession" (Deuteronomy 2:6). "Be not at enmity with Moab, for I will not give thee of his land for a possession; because I have given Ar unto the children of Lot for a possession" (Deuteronomy 2:9).
When they lost their homeland, they demonstrated an unsurpassed craving towards it. Eretz Yisrael was in their soul and their memory. Their love for the homeland did not allow other nations to forget even for a moment that the Jews were not only the people of the Book, but also the people of the Land.
For several thousand years nobody questioned the connection between the Jews and Eretz Yisrael, or Palestine, as it was called by the majority of the non-Jews. The Englishman Lord Alexander Lindsay wrote in 1838 that the barrenness and decay everywhere at that time in Palestine happened simply because of "the removal of the ancient inhabitants [the Jews]." He believed that it is the will of the Almighty that the "modern occupants should never be so numerous" as to prevent the return of the "rightful heirs" and that the once fertile land "only waits the return of her banished children to burst once more into universal luxuriance and be all she ever was in the days of Solomon" (2)
In 1844 a committee was convened in London for the purpose of forming a "British and Foreign Society for Promoting the Restoration of the Jewish Nation in Palestine." The Jews had nothing to do with this committee. It was a strictly non-Jewish enterprise based on the concept that "the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates" (Genesis 15:18).
The kingdoms of Judah and Israel, historically, never occupied anything like this area, and, perhaps, the Englishmen were generous because Palestine at that time belonged to the Turks. However, the common concept of Palestine with the boundaries from Dan to Beersheba and from the Mediterranean to Gilaed, to Moab east of the Jordan was indisputable. This was the land covenanted to Israel.
It was easy for the world community to assign to Britain the mandate for Palestine for the purpose of reestablishment of the Jewish National Home, since the boundaries of this Home were unquestionable. When today one disputes Israel's right to Eretz Yisrael, one should be reminded that the allocation of the land to the Jews happened concurrently with the establishment of "six independent Arab states that emerged to enjoy sovereignty over 1,250,000 square miles"(3). Just compare this vast area with the meager 8,000 square miles of the land offered to the Jewish state in 1947.
It is also worth mentioning that those who lament today the fate of the "homeless Palestinian Arabs" should first listen to the Palestinian Arabs themselves. They should read the resolution entitled "The Unity of Palestinians and Jordanian Masses" that passed in March 1971 at the Eighth Palestinian National Congress. It declared that "a national link and a territorial unity forged by history, culture and language tie Jordan with Palestine from the earliest period" (5). The resolution went on to describe the Palestinians and Jordanians as "one people" and it explained the previous emphasis on Palestinian distinctiveness as having been necessary for "a specific historical phase" (5). In today's "historical phase" the Palestinian Arabs are again transformed into "a distinctive people," but this cannot change the fact that they already have their sovereign country - Jordan, which is more than three times the size of Israel.
No country in the world ever asked for anyone's permission for its existence. All great democracies went through a phase of conquering and displacement of indigenous populations. The triumph of force lies at the foundation of all the countries in the world. Nobody has the right to demand from Israel that she abandon the land which she gained by defending herself. In the first place, it is immoral and unjust. The United Nations can't apply the request of "inadmissibility of acquiring the land through wars" to Israel without applying it first to other nations. It should start with America, Russia, France, England, or countless other countries who fought to establish their boundaries in the twentieth century, two millennia after the Jews came into possession of Eretz Yisrael.
Even in the easiest of all possible cases, where the real estate deed was already written by God's hand, mankind was unable to register it in the book of nations. The original area envisaged by the Balfour Declaration for the Jewish state constituted approximately 3% of the former Turkish provinces. It was whittled down to less than 0.8% through the establishment of Jordan. After the partition resolution it shrunk further to 0.5%. Moreover, the partition plan in essence was a profanation of the idea of the Jewish state. Israel was left "without Hebron where the Patriarchs are buried, without Shiloh where the Ark of the Covenant was housed, without Dothan where Joseph was sold, without Bethel were Jacob dreamed, without Jericho where Joshua triumphed, and without Bethlehem. What final awful silence would have met that remarkable Jewish state proposed by the best minds of the United Nations - a Jewish state without Jerusalem!" (4)
It was not the League of Nations and it was not the United Nations that "created" the Jewish state. It was God's will that forced the Arabs to reject the partition resolution, and to try to destroy Israel in several wars that only led to the expansion of the Jewish state. To their shame, the Jews themselves have not realized this remarkable connection between the most authentic deed to the Land, given to them by God, and Arab hostility. They do not see the direct relation between the Arab military attempts to capture the Jewish land and the present size of the Jewish state. Otherwise they would have long ago explained to mankind that the more the Arabs try to attack them, the closer Israel can grow in size to the ancient "kingdoms of Judah and Israel." And if the Arabs in their mad hatred towards the Jews will attempt to use unconventional weapons, then the world will live to witness the Jewish state on "the land from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates."
Dr. Thomas Clarke wrote in the middle of the nineteenth century about Palestine that "it would be safe only in the hands of a brave, independent, and spiritual people, deeply imbued with the sentiment of nationality... Such a people we have in Jews... Restore them their nationality and their country once more and there is no power on earth that could ever take it from them" (4). The time came to prove Dr. Clarke right. [02/02/00]
1. http://www.nandotimes.com. 1/30/00
2. Lindsay, Alexander, Lord, "Letters From Egypt, Edom and the Holy Land", London, 1838.
3. Marie Syrkin, "The Palestinian Refugees: Resettlement, Repatriation, or Restoration?" From the book "Israel, The Arabs, and The Middle East," Edited by Irving Howe and Carl Gershman, A Bantam Book, 1972.
4. Barbara W. Tuchman, "Bible and Sword", Ballantine Books, New York,1984.
5. Carl Gershman, "The Failure of the Fedayeen". From the book "Israel, The Arabs, and The Middle East," Edited by Irving Howe and Carl Gershman, A Bantam Book, 1972.
Boris Shusteff is an engineer in upstate New York. He is also a research associate with the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies.
A NEW ZIONIST CONGRESS
By Louis Rene Beres
"We are here to lay the foundation stone of the house which is to shelter the Jewish nation." These were the very first words uttered by Theodor Herzel, on August 29, 1897, at the First Zionist Congress in Basel. Herzel's "house" was completed, of course, on May 14, 1948, when Ben-Gurion's declaration made DER JUDENSTAAT a reality.
But further construction is needed; it is needed desperately. The house which was to shelter the Jewish Nation has become unspeakably fragile. Even more disturbing, in spite of Herzel's dream that a Jewish State would resolve the "Jewish Question," there is today no more dangerous place on Earth for Jews, as Jews, than the State of Israel.
This intolerable irony must not be minimized. Rather, it should be taken as the starting point for rebuilding the foundation of Herzel's house, from the ground up, before it is razed altogether. Now we require nothing less than a new Zionist Congress, one which will no longer need to create a Jewish State, but to preserve the existing Commonwealth. We require such a Congress to save the imperiled State of Israel.
In an illuminating JEWISH PRESS column of 25 February 2000, Professor Howard L. Adelson warned, in the face of repeated Israeli surrenders and degradations: "The Government of Israel must either stand firm, or another government fit for a determined defense of Jewish interests must replace it!" Yet, we must now accept the fact that Israel lacks the leadership to rescue it from self-annihilation, and that "another government fit for a determined defense of Jewish interests...." can never arise in the State of Israel. Sadly, oh how sadly, the lack of national will and collective self-respect is so sorely lacking in Israel that true and viable leadership will have to originate from "outside," from the diaspora. The current lack of vision and understanding is now so far-reaching within Israel's borders that not a single Israeli politician can be up to the monumental task of saving the beleaguered country.
This suggestion would appear to be immensely impractical, not to mention brazen and interventionary. But Herzel, who had been moved to the Zionist dream after witnessing the humiliations of Dreyfus, was joined by only 196 other delegates. In 1897, these Zionists, not ever imagining that one hundred years later a Jewish State would exist wherein tens of thousands of "Israelis" would be ashamed of Zionism, began a necessary process of ensuring Jewish survival. Today, in a grotesque and twisted inversion of their valiant efforts, and in desecration of the Six Million, Israel's leadership is smugly midwifing the birth of "Palestine." Carved out of the still-living body of Israel, it will be a birth in which surprised gravediggers shall wield the forceps.
Israel's leaders now seem to live outside of history, in parentheses. Buttressed by the insubstantial theorizing of academic and military" thinkers," their faith in a "peace of the brave" is the result of not wanting to know what is true. Refusing categorically to be resuscitated, the leaders of Israel are blinded by their foolish dreams and deafened to the now audible death agonies of the Jewish soul.
Israel can not be rescued by Israelis. Again and again since Rabin, since Peres, since Netanyahu, since Barak, Israel's citizens have demonstrated a persistent and perplexing incapacity to understand what is happening. The Arabs don't use a mysterious, sacerdotal language. Their declarations are open and unambiguous; they are brutally honest; their web sites are explicit. The official Palestine Authority (PA) maps of "Palestine" include ALL of Israel. For the Arabs, there aren't two states in the area, only one. That state is called Palestine. There is no Israel for Barak's "partners in peace," only "liberated Palestine" and "occupied Palestine."
Why must Israel's leaders always hide from the truth, from a truth so obvious and so undisguised that it would be apparent to a child? Why must these leaders doubt what their enemies believe, what these enemies repeat, so honestly, so straightforwardly, day after day after day: That ALL Jews are "filth," that ALL Jews are irremediably "vile," that the State of the Jews is a "cancer," is a "rot," so insidious, so abhorrent, that its "elimination" must be "inescapable and unavoidable?"
The suggestion, for a new Zionist Congress, will seem a monstrous affrontery to most Israelis, and even to a majority of American Jews. Israel, after all, is a sovereign state, a democracy even, with a properly elected government. How dare a non-Israeli make such a demeaning proposal? How dare a non-Israeli, an American - one who has not even shed one drop of blood for Zion - advance such an idea?
Here is my reply. This is not a question of international law. It is not about political independence in world politics. It is not about paying ones' dues. It IS a matter of national survival, not only in the traditional and narrow sense of the nation as state, but in the much broader and more meaningful sense of the entire Jewish Nation - of all Jews throughout the world, in the diaspora as well as within the eroding boundaries of Israel itself.
We in the diaspora owe all manner of support to the Jews of Israel, but, reciprocally, so too do the Jews of Israel owe us their best efforts at staying alive. Once they CHOOSE to lie down and invite catastrophic slaughter in war and terrorism, they have forfeited the normal prerogatives of sovereign authority. Once they announce their current reformulation of The Jewish Question - that is, how can we best appease our sworn enemies by insistently groveling before them? - it can no longer be business as usual.
Jews, is this self- annihilatory state the reason why so many thousands of young Israelis gave their lives and bodies in war, so that increasingly incapable political leaders might barter essential land and security for an illusionary "peace of the brave?" Is this Jewish State our memorial to the Six Million, a Jewish State that is not only unable to protect five million Jews, but that also consciously adopts policies that will ensure a permanent and final lack of protection? IS THIS STATE OF ISRAEL THE FINAL SOLUTION TO THE JEWISH QUESTION? [29 February 2000]
Louis Rene Beres was educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971) is Professor of International Law, Department of Political Science, Purdue University and publishes widely on Israeli security matters.
E MAIL: BERES@POLSCI.PURDUE.EDU