You probably heard about the 11-year old girl who was critically burned on Thursday when the car she was riding in was struck by a firebomb thrown by an Arab terrorist. And you certainly know about the attack on the Kehilat Bnei Torah synagogue in Jerusalem in which four worshipers and a policeman were brutally murdered. You probably know about the several incidents in which Arabs drove their vehicles into groups of Jews, including one in which a 3-month old baby and a tourist from Ecuador were murdered, and another in which the driver got out and ran back to his not-yet-dead victim and cut her throat.
If you follow these things, you may also know that Jews are afraid to go to the historic Mount of Olives Cemetery in Jerusalem because of continued violent attacks on buses, cars and people. You may also have heard about the daily rock-throwing attacks on the light rail in Jerusalem, against Jewish-driven cars on the roads in Judea and Samaria, the acid thrown on a Jewish family, etc. I could go on. And on.
The horror of the 1903 Kishinev pogrom was a turning point for many Jews, including Ze’ev Jabotinsky. Jew-hatred was finally seen to be implacable and a permanent feature of Diaspora life, and only a complete separation from the haters by the establishment of a Jewish state and the relocation of the Jewish people to it could be a permanent solution.
I think the firebomb incident was my own personal Kishinev experience. Now there is a Jewish state, but the problem of hatred-spawned violence against Jews has not ended, even here.
There is a simple reason for that: we allow it.
The Palestinian Arab leadership and its official media as well as their legions of social media propagandists incite murder every day. They pay the salaries of incarcerated murderers, treat released terrorists as heroes, and call for violent action against Jews, sometimes in remarkably ugly ways. We don’t stop them. We could, but we don’t.
We could stop the terror on the roads of Judea and Samaria. When an Arab village harbors terrorists, we could destroy it. But because we are afraid of being accused of ‘collective punishment’ by the less-than-objective UN, EU and Obama Administration, we don’t.
We don’t believe that Arab populations can be forced to move when they breed and support terrorism. We take seriously the idea of removing Jews from their homes — and do it, in Gush Katif and Amona — but expelling an Arab would be a violation of his human rights, another nakba. We talk about destroying the homes of terrorists, but rarely do it.
We don’t have a death penalty for terrorist murder. Instead, we keep the murderers in jail until their supporters kidnap a Jew, and then we ransom the Jew by releasing them, sometimes in a ratio of 1027 terrorists to one Jew. The terrorists go home to a victory parade and then go back to trying to kill Jews.
The Zionist imperative is to preserve the Jewish state in order to preserve the Jewish people. That is our highest priority — not to try to live up to the hypocritical and cynical double standards set by people in Brussels or Washington who would just as soon see the Jewish people gone anyway.
We need to change the way we are fighting the long war that we are in, because today we are losing. We are losing Judea and Samaria, we are losing eastern Jerusalem, and we are losing the Galilee and the Negev. Soon it will be impossible for a Jew to drive even in Kfar Saba without an armored vehicle. And after that?
The solution is not to talk to them about ‘peace’. They have given us their answer with their firebombs and meat cleavers, their cars and their knives, as well as their words. How many times do they have to show us their intentions before we get it?
Do we, civilized people, understand what it means to be in a struggle with barbarians? Do we understand that the choices are victory or the end of our state, death and dispersal? But we seem to care more about Arab rights than our own right to exist.
We are at a turning point. We need to choose between victory and destruction. There are no other alternatives.
Seeing the Arabs and Muslims battle to retake Israel through their proxies, the Palestinians, using the special exemptions provided them by the same culprits you named… the EU, UN, all of the 57 Islamic states and our shameful President… to lend validity to a baseless cause and to ascribe vile motives to Jews and Zionism, is to separate out the battle against Western civilization by Islamist forces from this particular neighborhood, where somehow the game must be played differently. Why peace would be assertable via discussions, treaties or goodwill gestures in Israel and nowhere else that Muslims come violently into contact with non-Muslims assails the most naïve credulity. It is a choice to submit to that fantasy, and the various provocations along the way that prove the wrongheadedness of these efforts and go unremarked and unpunished are most definitely because the Israeli people allow it. Tell me again the calculus that can tolerate this drip-drip-drip of terrorism that because, in the larger scheme, Israelis risk the alienation of other nations, especially its staunchest ally, the US, they cannot respond as they should. Is that the best excuse?
I feel very unconnected to Israel every time I see this dereliction of the duty of government to protect its citizenry, and from the feeling that Israel is a possible refuge for all Jews; every time these incidents occur followed by words, there is a betrayal of the sort that asked we be judged by our actions. My worry for American and Israeli soldiers who have to risk their lives against barbarians is spasmodic; when their is a Taliban assault in Afghanistan, or Hamas starts firing rockets again from Gaza, I am riveted to the news trying to be sure that there are no casualties, and when it subsides, in-between times, there is the feeling that there must be intrepid work being done if only we could be told about it. When an apparent random horrific act occurs here on a smaller scale, the Tsarnaev bombings, the Nidal Hassan shooting, a beheading in Oklahoma, police shootings in New York, SJP brown-shirt antics on campuses around the US, and on and on… there is even more of a sense of loss, the slight cut that is the negation of liberty and freedom from this sort of behavior that will be followed by more cuts.
As I said the day before yesterday, you have the lens now of an American getting used to another culture, and it is clear even from my perch here, where things are also going far wrong, that Israel has indeed allowed the metastasizing of a force that seeks its destruction. Starting with Oslo in Israel, but even before that in my opinion, and starting with Jimmy Carter in this country, but also probably before then, the pull toward societal destruction has had many guises. Just letting the worst happen bit by bit is the greater crime, as it allows the willing assassins outside the walls to do their work with ease, without the artifices or pretexts of a wooden horse or Nuremburg laws or UN resolutions, its rapid gestation a windfall for forces that have not the least doubt about the necessity of killing Americans and Jews.
What does it take for all to see this? In Israel? In the US?
In Saul Friedlander’s books about Germany during the rise of Nazism, I remember a story about a Jewish lawyer who kept going to court to try and overturn the anti-Jewish laws. He was so assimilated and so certain of the rightness of his cause that he could not understand right up until the end that the people he was jousting with in court wanted him dead, and only allowed him his appeals because it amused them.
By now, you would think that not only a special sense of survival would pretty much be emblazoned on every Jewish chromosome, but that an early-warning gene would have a franchise in Jewish DNA, next to the poetry gene where the ability to perceive irony would reside.