Palestinism and the Hurt/Help Principle

After Israel killed a military commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) organization in Gaza, PIJ responded with (as of 18:00 Wednesday afternoon), 400 rockets aimed at Israeli civilians. This skirmish in the hundred year war against Jewish sovereignty in Eretz Yisrael will certainly not be the last. If you are wondering why they do this, knowing that the IDF will strike back painfully, destroying infrastructure and killing their people, and knowing that there is zero chance that it will cause the Jews to abandon their homeland, there is an answer. It is an answer that explains much in the history of the conflict, as well as many otherwise inexplicable events.

The answer is to be found in one of the first principles of Palestinism and its corollaries.

But first, what is Palestinism? It is the belief that the Palestinian Arabs were unfairly victimized, dispossessed, colonized, raped, punished, expelled, murdered, degraded, castrated, etc. by the Zionist Jews who created the State of Israel, which continues to do all these things to them. Palestinism holds that this is the single greatest injustice in the world today, and only the replacement of the world’s only Jewish state by an Arab state can rectify it.

I can’t prove it, but I’m sure that although most Palestinists would demand that Israel be replaced by a Palestinian state, if Israel were to disappear, the Palestinian Cause itself would fade away. That is, it is not actually about obtaining justice for this particular group of Arabs as much as it is about getting rid of the Jewish state.

Since it is impossible to establish the truth of Palestinism by historical analysis (because it is not true), it must be accepted on faith. It is therefore more like a religion than a hypothesis.

So what is the principle of Palestinism that causes them to fight pointless battles? I like to state it this way: for Palestinists, it is always preferable to hurt Jews than to help Arabs. Ironically, Jews are more important to them than Palestinians, in a negative way of course.

There is no end to examples.  For example, economic resources in the hands of Hamas – even aid specifically intended to improve the conditions of life in Gaza – are always redirected toward offensive weapons to use against Israel. Instead of providing clean water, electricity, or waste treatment facilities, Hamas prefers to dig attack tunnels, manufacture rockets, and raise armies. Back in 2007, six people were killed when the bank of a lagoon full of human waste collapsed. But on the same day, Qassam rockets were fired at Israel.

Historically, the hurt/help principle explains why Palestinian Arab leaders did not accept any of the several offers of statehood they received, starting with the Peel Commission in 1937. It explains why the Arab states (more Palestinist than the Palestinians themselves) forced the 1948 refugees into camps and refused to allow any solution other than reentry into Israel, even for the great grandchildren of the original refugees. It explains why the PLO and the UN refused to allow refugees in Gaza to move into new neighborhoods built for them by Israel after 1967. It explains the persistence of UNRWA and the whole massive edifice of Palestinist institutions created by the UN. Of course, the ultimate expression of the principle is suicide terrorism, where the terrorist sacrifices him or herself in order to murder Jews.

One corollary is that any action or policy that hurts Jews is good, even if it will also hurt Arabs. So Palestinians cheered when Saddam’s scuds or Hezbollah’s rockets hit Israel, even though they could not be aimed precisely enough to kill only Jews.

Another corollary is that the more unhappy, angry, and unfree Palestinians are, the better it is, at least as long as the anger can be directed at the Jews and Israel.

As you have probably noticed, you don’t have to be a Palestinian or even an Arab to be a Palestinist. In fact, it’s better not to be, since then you don’t have to suffer the consequences yourself. You can call for a two-state or even one-state solution from your home in Berkeley or North Tel Aviv while enjoying the benefits of living in a free society, when – if you got your way – Palestinians would live under a corrupt, oppressive, dictatorship run by the PLO, Hamas, or some even worse regime. Ask the Arab citizens of Israel whether they prefer living as a minority in the Zionist entity that they constantly criticize for being “racist” or to join their relatives in the PA areas or Gaza Strip; the great majority are satisfied with their lives in Israel.

Nevertheless, Palestinism is the religion of the UN, the EU, the human rights establishment, most academics in the humanities and social sciences, Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders, and many of those who call themselves “progressives.”

Failure to understand the hurt/help principle has led to well-meaning attempts to end the conflict ending in massive debacles. The most egregious example is the Oslo accords, where there was an expectation that legitimization and massive amounts of aid would improve the economic condition of the Palestinians, and that they would then concentrate on building their own state instead of attacking ours. Of course, the opposite happened. To this day, there are proposals to end the simmering war with Gaza by improving the economy there, all of which ignore the fact that their economy is a disaster because they insist on keeping the war simmering (and sometimes, like today, boiling).

But it is a mistake that we keep making, over and over. Shimon Peres imagined a New Middle East, where economic cooperation overrode political conflict; but without ending Palestinism, economic improvements – if they are possible – simply translate into weapons for more conflict.

If the conflict will ever end – and it’s hard to be optimistic – Palestinism, with its phony history and promise of sweet revenge for the eternally aggrieved, will have to be discredited, and the mechanisms created to perpetuate it will have to be dismantled.

There is one bright spot: for the first time in decades, an American administration has taken steps to defund UNRWA, the UN machinery that nurtures Palestinism while stimulating the growth of the “refugee” population (its soldiers) geometrically. This structure, created by antisemitic European hypocrites and Israel’s Arab enemies, is astronomically expensive and only the participation of the US, the world’s largest economy, has made it possible.

It could be that Donald Trump’s greatest contribution to the survival of the State of Israel could be in killing UNRWA, something far more important in the long run than the location of the US Embassy.

Posted in Israel and Palestinian Arabs, Middle East politics, US-Israel Relations, War | Leave a comment

“Strangers,” in Israel and America

We had a guest from America in our shul this week who discussed the week’s portion, lech lecha. She focused on the question of the treatment of the ger, the person who is a non-Jew in Eretz Yisrael and (variously) a stranger, immigrant, foreign resident, convert, etc. Our speaker interpreted the word ger to mean “immigrant,” and noted that both Sarai (later, Hashem would change her name to Sarah) and Hagar were powerless immigrants. Sarai was exploited sexually by Pharaoh when she was in Egypt during a famine (well, at least he tried to exploit her), while Hagar and her son were expelled from the family in Canaan by a jealous Sarai.

The speaker correctly noted that in multiple places the Torah calls for Jews to treat gerim well. For example, Leviticus 19.33-34 says

33 And if a [ger] sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not do him wrong.

34 The [ger] that sojourneth with you shall be unto you as the home-born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were [gerim] in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.

She stopped short of explicitly drawing political conclusions, but it is clear that she was thinking of the controversy surrounding the treatment of undocumented immigrants in the contemporary USA, and perhaps also of non-Jews in today’s Israel. Indeed, liberal American Jews have often chosen to chastise Israel for her treatment of non-Jewish residents.

But the political consequences depend a great deal on how you understand the meaning of “ger.” And naturally it isn’t simple.

Linguistically, a ger is simply someone who lives or sojourns (that is, lives temporarily) in a place different from his homeland. Rabbinic authorities have historically discussed the ger toshav, a non-Jewish resident of Eretz Yisrael who obeys the Noachide Laws, and the ger tzedek, the convert to Judaism.

I am far from an expert in the Hebrew language or biblical exegesis, but there are some conclusions that can be drawn by simple logic.

For one thing, the ger that we are commanded to love as ourselves cannot be any non-Jew that happens to live in or travel through Eretz Yisrael. For example, King Shaul lost his kingdom because he took pity on King Agag of the Amalekites (and Agag’s animals and property). Whether you find the command to wipe out an entire people, men, women, children, and animals as repugnant or not, it’s clear that your local neighborhood Amalekites are not included among the gerim that you are commanded to treat well!

The rabbinical idea of ger toshav provides a way to resolve this. The Noachide Laws, which forbid idolatry, murder, theft, etc., constitute a simple bottom line for the degree of civilization required from a foreign people in order for them to live alongside the Jewish people in Eretz Yisrael – and to be treated as in Lev. 19.33-34.

From a secular Zionist point of view, a ger toshav might be a non-Jew who lives in the Jewish state, obeys its laws and doesn’t attempt to subvert it. The majority of Arab citizens of Israel fall into this category (although the members of the Knesset that represent them often do not). Clearly the Palestinian Authority, which pays terrorists to murder Jews, violates both the Noachide Laws and the temporal laws of the State of Israel. We are not required by the Torah to love the members of Fatah and Hamas.

Note that the Torah cannot mean that there is no difference between the ger toshav and the Jewish resident, because of the covenant that connects the Jewish people to Eretz Yisrael, and because there are obligations that the Jew has that the ger does not. I interpret the commandment as saying that Jews must treat gerim fairly in legal and business matters, and also that one must make an effort to understand them and put oneself in their place (because we were ourselves gerim…).

Again from a secular Zionist point of view, there is a difference between the Jew in Eretz Yisrael and the ger toshav, no matter how loyal the ger may be. This is expressed in the Nation-State Law, which explicates the concept of “Jewish” in “Jewish and Democratic State.” The Jewish people are the only ones that have national rights, including a right of return, to the state. On the other hand, non-Jewish citizens must have all the civil and political rights of Jewish ones.

Non-citizens, especially those who have entered the country illegally, like the almost 40,000 African migrants that crossed the Egyptian border into Israel in the early 2000s, or the several tens of thousands of tourists and foreign workers from all over who have overstayed their visas, are different. Beyond basic human rights guaranteed by international law, including the right to petition for asylum under certain conditions, they have no legal rights in Israel.

I think, however, that we must agree that we are obligated by Torah principles, to treat them well as long as they are here. Insofar as they obey the Noachide Laws (in secular terms, avoid criminal behavior), they can be considered gerim toshavim. This especially applies to foreign workers who were invited to live here for a limited period that they overstayed, and have had children who have grown up in Israel and may not be familiar with their parents’ home culture.

There is, however, a further consideration. It is vital for a Jewish state to maintain a healthy Jewish majority. Because she has an excellent economy and generous social benefits, Israel is very attractive to people living in countless dysfunctional countries throughout the world. Israel is a small country with a relatively small population, and cannot absorb a large number of non-Jewish immigrants without endangering that majority. She is compelled to prevent illegal immigration and to deport those who are not entitled to stay in order to protect herself as a Jewish state. The tension between protecting the majority and at the same time providing for the welfare of the individuals involved is real.

Turning to the US, the situation is different. The US is a state of its citizens, in which no ethnicity is different from any other in any respect, not only in terms of political and civil rights, but also in national rights. There is no need to maintain a national majority of any ethnicity in the US. It also has massive absorptive capacity, and the economic and demographic resiliency to deal with social problems far beyond that of Israel.

But the US still has the right to defined borders and to make and enforce laws about who may come in to the country. These are basic rights of a sovereign state, whether it is an ethnic nation-state like Israel or a state of its citizens like the US. The US has borders that are long and difficult to secure, and half the world would like to live there. There are tens of millions of undocumented residents there already, enough to effect the employment opportunities of legal residents. The problems are real, but they are not the same as Israel’s problems.

People tend to try to understand unfamiliar situations by making analogies to more familiar ones. One of the most egregious examples of bad analogies is the equation of the Palestinian Arabs to African-Americans, an analogy that is popular in progressive circles in America, and has even been made by such public personalities as Condoleezza Rice and Barack Obama. But even the most cursory examination of the history of both groups, their geographical situation, the religion and ideologies that characterize them, and countless other features, shows that there is almost no similarity between them – except perhaps that the Left wants to portray them both as “people of color oppressed by white Europeans.”

The question of immigration, too, is something that is very different in an American or Israeli context. Maybe the best approach is for Americans to work on fixing things there, while allowing Israelis to concentrate on solving their unique problems here.

Posted in American society, Israel and Palestinian Arabs, Israeli Arabs, Israeli Society, The Jewish people, Zionism | 2 Comments

Israel’s Excessive “Democracy”

Israel is a democracy. We keep hearing this. It is “the only democracy in the Middle East,” as many of us are fond of saying. Lately, it is beginning to seem as though we would be better off with a little less “democracy.”

One election wasn’t democratic enough, so we had another. Now we are headed for the disaster of a third one. But we are very democratic, so apparently we will keep having elections until the “democrats” (small ‘d’) who want to have a government without Benjamin Netanyahu finally get their way.

I am absolutely certain that if it weren’t for the endless investigations against the PM and the associated leaks to the media, we would have a normal government, with Bibi at its head. A government that would not be perfect, but what coalition is?

But we are democratic. Everyone gets to have their say. The police, who – it has just been disclosed – threatened to ruin the life of one of the key witnesses against Netanyahu if he didn’t agree to turn state’s witness and say what they told him to. The Attorney General, who when asked to investigate the continuous leaks to the media over a period of years concerning the allegations against Netanyahu, as well as the content of confidential police interviews, responded that there was no place (ain makom) to investigate the leakage and punish the leakers. And of course, 90% of the media, which express their opinion that Netanyahu is the illegitimate son of the devil every day – they too, have their democratic rights.

There is plenty to criticize about Netanyahu, especially the fact that he crushes anyone who might be competition for him in his party. His wife is volatile and possibly (although this could just be more slander) has too much influence over his political decisions. His son should keep his mouth shut, both in the presence of disloyal drivers and on Twitter. His security policy, in which Hamas is allowed unlimited liberty to destroy property in the south of the country, has been criticized by many. And Bibi’s been PM long enough.

But what has been done to him by his enemies (mostly his unelected ones) is outrageous. The police and prosecution went on fishing expedition after fishing expedition, and the media gleefully reported every one. “This time he’s going down,” they implied. But he didn’t – and he may not yet, if it turns out that the investigations are poisoned by police and prosecutorial misconduct.

Polls consistently show that more Israelis believe that Bibi should be Prime Minister than his main opponent, Benny Gantz (the most recent one, right before the election, came out 46% vs. 31% for Bibi), and even 25% of Arab citizens prefer him. His right-wing bloc has one more seat in the Knesset than the opposition, and if you don’t count the declaredly anti-Zionist Arab parties, 14 more. But this is a democracy, and most of the TV stations and newspapers don’t like him, nor does the Bar Association (which provides the PM with a list of acceptable candidates for Attorney General, and has a controlling influence on the selection of Supreme Court justices), nor does a majority of academics, artists, and media personalities. They all seem to have votes in addition to the ones they put in the ballot box.

They don’t like him, and this is a democracy, so we need to democratically pick someone else. And we’ll keep democratically trying until they we succeed.

Posted in Israeli Politics | Leave a comment

The Briar Patch, or Phasing Out Military Aid

See, you trust in the staff of this broken reed, on Egypt; where on if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it: so is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all that trust in him. – Isaiah 36:6

I see that several of the Democratic candidates for the US presidency have announced that if elected they would leverage military aid to Israel in order to force us to “fundamentally change” our relationship to the Gaza strip (Sanders), or stop our “problematic behavior” (Warren), or to avoid annexing any part of Judea/Samaria (Buttigieg). So let me respond:

Please, please, don’t throw us into that briar patch!

Like the briar patch for Br’er Rabbit, nothing would be better for us than a phase-out of US military aid. And if we made it easy for the new president, perhaps we could negotiate terms for the phase out that would be advantageous: in particular, a restoration of permission to spend some of it here instead of all of it in the US (a condition imposed by our “friend,” President Obama, who well understood that providing military aid was not doing us a favor).

Reactions to the signing of a 10-year $38 billion memorandum of understanding (MOU) for American military aid to Israel in 2016 were quick and predictable. The man Netanyahu called Israel’s “worst Prime Minister ever”, Ehud Barak, claimed that Netanyahu could have obtained another $7 billion a year if only he hadn’t opposed Obama’s Iran deal so strongly. Similar remarks came from the parliamentary opposition. Others thanked America for its commitment to Israel at a time that its own military budgets were being slashed. And still others cursed it for helping Israel with its alleged “genocide of the Palestinians” (who have tripled in number since 1970).

The truth is that Israel does not need and should phase out military aid from the US. It is bad for Israel and bad for the US.*

Israel doesn’t need it. The $3.8 billion per year that comes from the US is about a fifth of Israel’s 2018-2019 defense budget of $18.5 billion. This is a lot of money, but consider that the government’s overall budget is about $116 billion, and Israel’s gross domestic product today is close to $400 billion, almost double what it was 10 years ago.

In addition, the new agreement began the phasing out of Israel’s ability to spend any of the aid outside of the US. In the past, up to about a quarter of the aid could be spent in Israel. Does anyone doubt that many items can be procured here or elsewhere, at lower cost? The F-35 alone costs about $200 million per aircraft. Are there alternatives? We might be able to find out if we went shopping with our own money (possibly more F-15I’s would be a better choice).

Finally, increased investment in our military industries would improve our ability to sell our products to other countries, helping to offset the loss of US aid.

Aid gives the US administration too much leverage over Israeli policies and actions. US Democratic presidential candidates have demonstrated remarkable ignorance about the situation in our region, and a tendency to accept our enemies’ point of view, as demonstrated by their remarks at the recent J Street convention. Donald Trump has been supportive of Israel, but he will not be president forever, and a Democrat or even a different Republican could be quite the opposite.

Israel needs freedom of action to respond to threats. The aid comes with strings attached, such as rules that American weapons can’t be used in ways that violate human rights. During the Gaza War in 2014, Obama cut off the supply of Hellfire missiles and other items in response to (false) complaints that Israel had deliberately shelled a UN school. Israel is continually the target of similar accusations.

Aid distorts our military purchase decisions. If you can get your army boots – or fighter aircraft – “for free” then maybe you settle for something that doesn’t meet your needs quite as well as a product you have to pay for.  The decisions about what we can spend our aid dollars on are based in part on US policy objectives and, since the aid is in effect a direct subsidy to the US defense industry, on domestic American considerations – not on what’s best for Israel.

For example, it has been suggested that manned fighter aircraft will be much less important in future warfare than drones and surface-to-surface missiles; but we get “free” fighter planes from America and build our own drones and missiles, so we have lots and lots of manned fighter planes – maybe more than we need.

The F-35, with its high cost and all its troubles, stands out as problematic. Would Israel even have considered replacing its F-16 fleet with F-35’s if the first batch weren’t “free”?

Aid corrupts our military decision-makers. The word ‘corrupts’ is a strong word, but may not be out of place. If you are in charge of the IDF and a quarter of your budget comes from America, wouldn’t you take the US administration’s wishes into account when considering whether or not to take some particular action? Israel came close to bombing Iran in 2012. One of the reasons it did not do so was opposition from security officials, including Chiefs of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi and Benny Gantz (who are now Netanyahu’s political opponents). It is reasonable to assume that their Pentagon counterparts let them know that disobedience could have unpleasant consequences.

Aid cripples the development of our own military industries. This may be the most important consideration of all. Although the new MOU represented an increase from the previous $3.1 billion a year, it phased out over five years the ability to spend up to about a quarter of it for locally-produced goods. If we don’t produce our own weapons, our dependence on the US becomes even greater, and we lose the jobs and technical know-how that come from it. Buying our own would pump additional money into our economy, which helps offset the loss of American aid. Even the IDF’s boots, formerly made in Israel, are now ordered from the US.

Aid doesn’t necessarily guarantee a qualitative edge. One of the rationales for US military aid was that the US promised to maintain our “qualitative military edge” (QME) over our enemies, as a way of counteracting their numerical superiority. But the US has more and more been selling its best weapons to anyone who can pay for them. The way to maintain the QME, then, is for Israel to use her technological abilities to develop weapons and countermeasures for her own use that will not be available to her enemies.

Aid damages Israel’s standing as a sovereign state. A nation that is dependent on another for its defense is a satellite, not an ally. In order to maintain her national self-respect, Israel should pay for her own defense. In addition, Israel’s accepting aid provides ammunition for anti-Israel and anti-Jewish propaganda in America. Ask Ilhan Omar.

Phasing out aid is better for America. The US is burdened by a large and growing debt. The end of military aid to Israel can only help America meet her own civilian and military needs.

***

Naturally, there will be objections.

Israel can’t afford expensive systems like the F-35 without aid. First, it’s not true, and second, maybe we don’t need such expensive systems, or so many of them.

But the US makes the world’s best weapons. Perhaps. If so, we should buy them with our own money. I’m not suggesting we break relations with the US. And who is to say that our home-made products won’t fit our unique needs better?

But it takes time to build up our industries. True, which is why I want to phase out the aid over a period of years rather than cutting it off sharply.

But what about the close cooperation between Israeli and the US defense industries? I’m not suggesting that such cooperation couldn’t continue, but in a framework of mutually beneficial business deals when indicated, as partners rather than clients.

But AIPAC works so hard making it possible. Yes, and Israel should be grateful to AIPAC and to its friends in the US Congress that for decades have made it possible for Israel to survive in its dangerous neighborhood against great odds. But the situation has changed. What used to be a necessity became a luxury, and then changed into a dangerous overindulgence. It’s not like there aren’t other critical issues that AIPAC could focus on.

***

In recent years much has changed in the world and in the Middle East. Israel, which was a third-rate power that managed to win her wars against great odds, became a first-rate power that nevertheless seems to be stymied and incapable of decisively prevailing over much weaker opponents. Although there are several reasons for this, one of the main ones is the increasing influence and control over Israeli decision-making by the US.

I’m sorry to say that I believe the US is in serious economic, social, political and even security trouble today – truly a broken reed. I hope it will repair itself. But like Isaiah’s Egypt, it is not a staff to lean upon.

__________________
* This post is based on one I wrote in September 2016. Despite the respite from US pressure provided by the friendly President Trump, the problem of overdependence on the US hasn’t gone away, and will probably get worse after Trump leaves office.

Posted in American politics, US-Israel Relations | 1 Comment

Hey America: Israel is Losing It Too!

I know that I sound like a broken record. OK, none of you are old enough to know what that sounds like. How about a scratched CD, one that plays the same phrase over and over and over: Bibi, Gantz, Lieberman, Lapid: get your acts together. It is a matter of life and death.

I have sometimes sounded smug when I criticize the USA, my former home, for descending into madness. On the one hand you have the spitting and cursing leftist “resistance” to Trump, who find an angle to criticize everything that he does, accuse him of every imaginable crime, boo him at baseball games, and would certainly murder him if they could. On the other side are his partisans, to whom every action he takes, no matter how ill-considered, is portrayed as a stroke of genius. Normal mortals may not be able to see it, but there is a Plan.

That’s just the politics. Culturally, people are obsessed with race and gender in ways that defy reason, there is a strong current to throw away the idea of free speech, and – yes – they are beating up and shooting Jews there, too.

Israel, I used to suggest, is different. We aren’t crazy. We are a small country that makes the best of its opportunities, with competent leaders. We can’t afford an army like the US has, but ours is still the best in the region, because Jews are smart and know how to innovate. Aren’t we the “startup nation?” Haven’t we found a way to be both a Jewish state, a refuge for persecuted Jews the world over, while still maintaining halfway decent relations with the 20% of our population that are Arabs? Aren’t we, despite all the challenges, a democratic state?

Well, boker tov [good morning] Eliyahu as they like to say here to someone who finally understands the obvious. We are just as crazy as America. Our political and social fabric is tearing here just as badly as it is over there, and we seem to be just as clueless about how to mend it.

The behavior of Bibi, Gantz, Lieberman, and Lapid, whose almost unbelievable selfishness, egotism, and stubbornness has prevented the establishment of a government after two elections, and which threatens to produce a third (and probably equally inconclusive) one is deplorable – and intolerable. Israel is on the verge of war with Iran and its proxies, a multi-front, complicated war with an intelligent and creative enemy, one which will certainly exact a high price in blood from us. We are, it seems, unprepared, and it will take a supreme effort and expense to get prepared in time. And yet, the squabbling continues! How can they not understand this?

To the Left, it is all about Bibi’s alleged criminal activities and the Right’s “attack on democracy,” which means an attack on those unelected elements that lean Left and have so much influence, including foreign-funded lobbyists. But Bibi has been subjected to a campaign of fishing expeditions and illegal leaks to the media about them almost since he took office; something that played a large role in bringing about the current stalemate.

Today, Minister of Justice Amir Ohana referred to the “symbiosis” between the police investigators, the prosecution, and the media in connection with the leaks, which have never been investigated. Ohana is a Netanyahu appointee, but he’s quite right. Whether or not Bibi turns out to be a witch, he has been and continues to be the subject of a witch hunt (an interesting analysis of the charges against him is here).

On the other hand, Bibi has used more force to crush opposition to him in his party than he has to stop Hamas from setting wildfires in the area adjacent to our border. I can’t count all the ministerial portfolios that he is holding at once. Once perhaps the most competent Prime Minister in Israel’s history, his obsession with his legal problems and his inability to delegate responsibility seems to have neutralized him.

Yesterday’s big news was that a couple of Netanyahu’s aides allegedly paid a Bratslaver sound truck, one of those that drives around playing joyous music, stopping from time to time to allow the occupants to come out and dance in the street, to park in front of the house of Shlomo Filber, a State’s Witnesses in one of Bibi’s criminal cases. Instead of joyous music, they broadcast accusations that Filber was a liar. The police, investigating the incident, are alleged to have improperly taken the telephones of the perpetrators, and downloaded their content. The USA has nothing on us for craziness.

Social problems are multiplying. Young people still can’t afford apartments. The Haredi Rabbinut continues to embitter the lives of thousands of Israelis. The healthcare system is falling apart from a shortage of doctors, nurses, and money. Arab citizens of Israel elect politicians to the Knesset who oppose the existence of a Jewish state. Nothing is done to remove the infiltrators from South Tel Aviv. Nothing is done to prepare for the inevitable powerful earthquake. As happens in third world countries, money flows into the pockets of the elite, while public needs receive less and less attention.

I’d call for a military coup if the worthless opposition party weren’t already heavily laden with former Chiefs of Staff. Or a revolution, if I didn’t know that historically revolutions tend to end up with the most extreme, brutal factions in charge.

Really, all we need is a competent government, made up of people who put the needs of the state and its people first. Is that too much to ask?

Posted in Israeli Politics, Israeli Society | Leave a comment