Three Editorials by Bernard J. Shapiro

REFLECTIONS OF A FRUSTRATED ZIONIST

1. The frenzied activity by heroic personalities like Ariel Sharon to design a "final" map of Israel will result in disaster. While their noble purpose is to preserve and protect Israel, the result will be neither. Whatever borders the Israeli Cabinet agrees upon will be taken by Arafat and the US State Department as a point of departure: an opening position subject to erosion, manipulation and pressure.

2. There is no up side to Sharon's current endeavor. Unless one is ready to stop Oslo, crush PA terrorism, eliminate PA armed forces, annex YESHA, stand up to the World, and restore Zionism and Jewish self-respect and institute widespread settlement in the GOOD sense of the term (like when it was Labor's policy in the early days of the Zionist movement), and adopt a Jewish constitution (as Eidelberg proposes) all will be lost. That is the short but brutal truth. All else is obfuscation.

3. As a student of politics and history, I am struct by the fact that no country on the face of the earth would behave as Israel is doing. The most primitive African, Asian, or Latin American nation would show more intelligence and political savvy than Israeli leaders. None of them would accept or continue an Oslo-like process in their own countries. The greatest accomplishment of Oslo has been to disabuse the world of the old anti-Semitic canard that "Jews are too cleaver."

4. I don't believe that Israel should rush to get approval from Clinton, Albright, Mubarak, Arafat, the Europeans, the UN or anyone. Any activity designed to win approval from others will be distorted by what THEY think is in THEIR best interests.

5. There has never been an Arab-Israeli Conflict. What has existed for the last 100 years has been an Arab war of extermination against the Jews of Israel. Conflicts stand a chance of resolution. The evil Islamic forces of extermination, like those of the Nazis, simply must be fought and defeated. There can be NO compromise, no "peace" when faced with evil. Evil is evil and must be destroyed.

6. Some Israelis are quick to tell me that my views are worthless since I don't presently live in Israel. It needs to be pointed out that among Israeli citizens, there are Arabs who support Arafat, a Palestinian State and pry for the destruction of Israel. There are leftist like Yossi Sarid and Yossi Beilin, whose strategic worldview can only be described as delusional. On the other hand, there are many Israelis with Zionist and patriotic views who understand Israel's precarious position in the same light as the Freeman Center. The same diversity of views ranging from hostility and delusion to Zionism and sanity can be found in America and other parts of the Diaspora.

The only conclusion one can reach is that intelligence and insight are NOT factors of geography. The attempt by leftist Israelis to silence the voices from abroad relates directly to their inability to counter adequately the very serious issues raised.

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THE SHORT CHANGE ARTIST AND OSLO

Or Why One Shouldn't Make Redeployment Maps

During my 23 years as owner of House of Books in Houston, I learned many valuable lessons. One in particular seems to have an application to the current situation in Israel. Let me explain: In 1978, the store was victimized by a short change artist. One of my clerks was at the register when a well dressed gentleman approached with a paperback book costing $2.95. He gave her a $20 bill and then began a back and forth exchange of money. In the end, the bookstore lost about $60.

I called the Houston police department and requested that an officer come to the store and brief my employees on how to prevent this crime from happening again. The officer came and told us a little story. It seems that Johnny Carson once asked a short change artist to come to his show and try to fool him while he was fully alert to what was going down. The criminal had no problem and his skill marveled the audience.

The Lesson: No matter how smart you are, a professional shortchange artist will win out. He is a pro. He does this day in and day out.

How To Stop The Short Change Artist: You simply MUST NOT PLAY HIS GAME. At the the first hint of the scam, my employees were told to close the register and call security. They were specifically told NOT to try to outsmart or "keep up" with the short change artist.

How does this apply to Israel and the redeployment? Very simple. Think of Yassir Arafat and the US State Department as short change artists. They set up a scam called "Oslo" and the "peace process." They exchange promises for territory. They keep the territory but never keep their promises. Like I said, it is a scam. Along comes the new Likud Prime Minister, Bibi Netanyahu, who believes that he is smart enough to control the GAME. Only he can't. No one can. He is up against pros who have been scamming nations for decades. The State Department has reneged on commitment after solemn commitment to the Jewish State. Still they continue, pledging friendship, while surgically inserting knives in our backs.

This high drama of maps, Sharon's or Mordechai's, is just another manifestation of the attempt to control the GAME. There is only one way to win for Israel: Don't play!

Bibi must announce to the world that the cash register of Eretz Yisrael is closed. The GAME is over. The scam is through.

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A Belated But Still Relevant Chanukah Message

CHANUKAH AND JEWISH HISTORY

Will We Be Maccabees Or Victims?

The year is 70 C.E. and a young Roman legionnaire stands on a hill overlooking Jerusalem. While he watches it burn, he says to his comrades in Latin, "Judea Capta Est" (Judea is conquered).Yet like the legendary phoenix, rising from the ashes of its own destruction, Israel burst onto the world's stage 2000 years later, with the cry of a lusty infant yearning to breathe free. Five Arab armies tried to destroy that new life before it could take hold. With blood and fire, including the sacrifice of one per cent of its population (6000 of its best young people), besieged Israel secured its independence.

Just nine short years earlier, European Jewry faced its most devastating experience, the Holocaust. In the areas under Nazi occupation, the Jewish death rate was 90%. Despite revolts in dozens of camps, and heroic resistance with the partisans of free Europe, the Jews were unorganized, unarmed and ultimately became victims. During both the Holocaust and Israel's War of Independence, the world and its leaders were indifferent, if not hostile, to the fate of the Jews.

Jews in their own land, with their G-d, have great power, much more than the sum of arms and men. During Chanukah we should recall the legacy of the Maccabees. Remember how two "Hellenized Jews," Jason and Menelaus tried to destroy Judaism and force assimilation on the Jewish population. For generations we have taught our children about the evil Antiochus and his attempt to suppress the Jews. In reality, there were traitors among our own people who led the way for Antiochus. Today in Israel, a similar situation has developed. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is foolishly following the path of Yitzhak Rabin and Foreign Minister Shimon Peres. He seem incapable of renouncing the disastrous Oslo Accords. Worse, he is going down the same path as the previous left-wing coalition, that was blatantly hostile to everything Jewish.

Netanyahu is willing to surrender the heartland of Eretz Yisrael, promised in perpetuity to Abraham and his descendants by G-d. The educational system in Israel still permits hatred of all things Jewish and especially religious

Jews. The media is blatantly hostile to Israeli and Jewish interests, championing the leftist goal of a Palestinian state.

Rabin and Peres, anxious to win favor with the Arabs, much like Jason and the Greeks, planned to give away Israel's strategic assets. Territory is not important if your new god is economics. While the new Likud government professes to value everything Jewish, including Holy Sites, it continues to turn them over to the Arabs. Hebron, home of our Patriarchs was dispensed with like so much speculative real estate in a deal with the devil.

The Arabs seek strength and comfort in a revived Islam. Nothing portrays the difference better between the Arabs and the Jews than how each views his religion. Young Arab men, promised paradise, cry "ali Akbar" (G-d is Great), then sacrifice their lives to kill Jews in one great jihad. Jewish soldiers flee their posts, uncertain about their open-fire instructions, demoralized by a government, which lies to them about the advent of peace.

Let us be Maccabees again. Let the IDF go into battle with the Maccabee cry, "All who are with G-d, follow me!" With the words: "Who is like unto Thee O G-d (the acronym of which spells out he word Maccabee in Hebrew) inscribed on their flags, the G-d inspired Jewish army swept the much larger enemy from the field in a great victory. It is this victory for which we celebrate Chanukah and not just the miracle of the oil burning eight days.

There is a simple but crucial lesson for us all in the above events. If we as Jews turn our backs on our religion and our G-d, we can expect disaster. Both the present and current governments of Israel have brought down the wrath of G-d on the Israeli people for turning its back on our heritage. Like Judah Maccabee, angered by the treason of Jason and Menelaus, and outraged by Antiochus, we must revolt against the evils of Oslo. The nationalist opposition in Israel must unite behind one Zionist banner. They must fill the streets and jails with protesters. City after city must be shut down. Despite the un-democratic persecution of Zo Artzeinu, it is perfectly legitimate to non-violently protest government policies. All normal life must end until the Zionist dream is assured for all time.


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