Arutz-7 Israel National Radio - - August 14, 2000 / Av 13, 5760

THE PEACE CAMP AND ITS
"WORLD OF TOMORROW"

By Atty. Elyakim Ha'etzni

IT'S HARD NOT TO BE AMAZED

After the collapse of the Camp David summit, it is hard not to be amazed at how the so-called "Peace Camp" continues to adhere to its fervent religious belief in the promise of peace with our Palestinian neighbors. All those of the "Peace Camp" who dismiss Israel's religious-Zionist public as being "messianic," or "not being in touch with reality," have apparently just been projecting their own shortcomings on others.

At Camp David, it became abundantly clear that the traditional mantra, "the Palestinian problem is the heart of the Arab-Israeli conflict," is, in fact, baseless.

Ehud Barak had to initiate new, unexpected diplomatic junkets to Egypt and Jordan, in order to plead with leaders there to agree to allow Arafat to relax his stance on Jerusalem. Even Arafat himself declared: "I'm not in charge."

EARLIER SIGNS

Evidence of the pan-Arab "claim" on Israel was evident in 1987; at a summit in Amman, Jordan, the late Syrian dictator Assad, said: "Palestine is mine, it is a part of Syria. There was never an independent state called Palestine." To this, Jordan's late King Hussein responded: "The appearance of a national Palestinian identity has developed to respond to Israeli claims that Palestine is Jewish. But the truth is - it is forbidden to depart from the national Arab framework." (Ma'ariv 30.11.87)

Zohir Muhsein, Chief of Operations of the PLO's Fatah wing told the Dutch newspaper Trouw in 1977: "We are careful to stress our Palestinian identity only for tactical purposes, in order to challenge Zionism. The establishment of an independent Palestinian state is simply a new tactic in the ongoing struggle against Israel."

(It is only the Jews, those chiefly threatened by the Palestinian entity, who are "more Palestinian than the Palestinians." It was Jordan that felt most threatened by Barak's plan to forfeit the Jordan Valley and to agree to establish Palestinian-controlled border crossings in the Valley!)

IMPORTING THE REFUGEE PROBLEM

The blindness of the "Peace Camp" can be perhaps best understood by Israel's decision to import from Tunisia Yasser Arafat - a move that just served to accentuate the refugee problem. What is the basis of the "Peace Camp's" belief that Arafat would disappoint - and even rebel - against those in whose name and on whose behalf he acted for almost 50 years?

In this regard, it is interesting to note the surprise of the kibbutzim of the secular, leftwing Shomer Hatza'ir movement. Its members simply fail to comprehend how entire gangs of Arabs - previous owners of the land on which the Jews' homes are situated - have suddenly appeared at their doorsteps demanding the "return of their land."

Only a Peace Camp "true believer" cannot see that the AK-47's provided by Israel to the PLO are now aimed back at us. The believer has not yet digested the existence of the (Palestinian) Tanzim force or the steady calls for "Jihad;" he overlooks the open declarations by the PLO that the peace strategy represents simply a brief hiatus between periods of violence, and that, for the Palestinians, it does not constitute an independent and absolute value.

What normal person can ignore what the Palestinians continue to write in their official press on the ultimate goal of destroying Israel, or what they continue to teach their children from pre-school on up? "He did not have to say that," piped Shimon Peres after reporters cited for him a terrifying quote uttered by Yasser Arafat. Peres, unfortunately, did not ask himself whether or not Arafat meant what he said.

COMMON GROUND

In a recent history corner on Army Radio, a noted professor stressed the elements of religion in Stalinism. If it were not so, he remarked, how could it be that an entire sector of the very intelligent people "believed in" Stalin blindly? It is important to note that many who held this belief were, in fact, Jews. The religious quality of Stalinism is perhaps best reflected by the following anecdote: Of two Jewish Communists executed at one point during the Stalin era, one cried out "Shma Yisrael", the other, a General Yakir, yelled, "Long live Stalin!"

It is also worthy to note a few striking similarities between the delusions inherent in Communist thought and the ideology of Israel's "Peace Camp." Both are supposedly intellectual and realistic in orientation, and both supposedly despise mysticism. But both also ironically share qualities of messianism and blind faith. Leaders of the kibbutzim and urban intellectuals, once champions of the Marxist cause in Israel, are, not surprisingly, now at the forefront of the Peace Camp.

There are also similarities between the axiomatic slogans, the mantras: In former days, man was told, "When you chop down trees, splinters fly!" in an effort to justify the Russian terror of the early twentieth century. Today we are told, in an effort to come to terms with the atrocities of Arafat, "Peace can only be made with enemies." Both systems of thought claim a monopoly on "the future." Opponents are "people of the past," "reactionaries." The name of a famous Bolshevik newspaper was "The New Era." Today, the Peace Camp dreams of a "New Middle East."

After the Camp David collapse, anyone who still dreams of normalization, of peace with the Palestinians, anyone who continues on the path of concessions and withdrawals with the goal of achieving the "end of the conflict," shares a quality with a believing Jew who awaits the "end of days." And yet, even an avowedly secular person would admit if the religious Jew's vision did not materialize, no damage would have emanated from this belief. Such cannot be said for the Peace Camp faithful, whose beliefs and resulting policies are no less than an suicidal gamble.

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Atty. Elyakim Ha'etzni is a resident of Kiryat Arba, is a columnist in Yediot Acharonot and a member of the Yesha Council. He was formerly a Knesset Member from the Techiyah party.



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