Our Children Are The Guarantors

Defending Zionism from its detractors. Anti-Zionism is a form of anti-Semitism. Let the other side apologize for a change.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Eifah Ve’Eifah toward Lands of Israel

Historical revisionism is one of the most serious problems that beset Western civilization in defending itself today. Prominent symptoms of this are Holocaust denial and 9/11 conspiracies, but these, outrageous though they are, are lesser examples of the dangers of historical revisionism, for they are still fringe theories in the West, or at least judged so in common opinion.

Far more dangerous is not the denial but the total disregard of historical backgrounds when it comes to what is facing us today. The Western Left smugly dismisses 7th-century history as an academic curiosity, although that history is precisely what drives Islamofascism today. The farthest back Leftist memory goes is the Crusades, as the beginning of the Muslims’ “legitimate grievances against the West”. But the Left usually sticks to the 20th century in its explanation of “the roots of Muslim rage”. To go back to the 7th century would force an admission that Islam is an imperialistic force of aggression, which would undermine the entire Leftist narrative of Islam as an anti-colonial resistance movement fighting for freedom, equality and cannabis.

The Israeli Left suffers from the same problem of historical revisionism: the inability to see beyond 1967 (the Six-Day War). According to the Israeli Left’s narrative, everything was swell until Israel took the West Bank, Gaza Strip and the Golan Heights and got carried away into Messianism and started settling Jews in those lands.

Nowhere is this more demonstrated than in the writings of B. Michael, an extreme-Leftist Israeli columnist on whom you can depend to deliver the anti-Israel point of view. In one of his columns back in the late 1990’s (whose title eludes my memory, but I remember the theme and the exact following expression), he wrote that the “occupation” (kibbush, of the lands taken in 1967) and our settling there had turned us (Israeli Jews) from “clean-handed pioneers” (chalutzim nekiyei kappayim—this is the one expression I remember exactly) into a group of “thieves, robbers and wrongdoers”. The final suggestion, of course, is to vacate the areas of all Jewish settlers (called Entjudung in Germany some time ago) and leave the areas for the Palestinians to form a state in (and the Golan Heights to Syria, its rightful owners), and then the region would become a Disneyland.

“Clean-handed pioneers”, wrote B. Michael. Supposedly, before 1967 we were saints in the eyes of all the world, even the Arab world. That’s why they forced us to go to war in 1967 in the first place. We were so clean-handed in the eyes of the Arabs that they graciously accepted the UN plan of sharing the land between Jews and Arabs with bullets and the invasion of armies. We were so pure in their eyes that they massacred our settlers in 1936–9 and earlier in 1929, 1921 and 1920.

I know that, when pressed about such facts, “everything was swell until 1967” revisionists would reply by conceding the point that Arab hostility predates 1967 (often with the obligatory “…BUT they felt their land was being stolen!”), but saying that in the court of general world opinion we were sympathized with until 1967. And that our borders from 1949 to 1967 were and still are the internationally recognized borders. Both points are true, but founding Israel’s policy on them is a sure way to bringing the end of the entire Zionist project (G-d forbid).

Picture: map showing the borders of the state of Israel
A map of Israel by the CIA, from Wikipedia. The brighter area is the internationally recognized extent of the state of Israel.

The sympathy with Israel in the years 1949–67 had its temporary reasons: the memory of the Holocaust was still fresh (in contradistinction to today, when people can demonstrate their alliance with an organization dedicated to a second Holocaust (G-d forbid) without fear of even social sanctions); world opinion had not yet inverted the roles of David and Goliath in the Middle East; socialists sympathized with Israel because of its being founded on socialist ideals (the kibbutzim as the best-known example of this, and the reign of the left wing in Israel until 1977); the Muslims had not yet perfected the art of appealing to Western hearts and minds, while the elites of Israel were still confident in Zionism; and the West itself had yet to be flooded by the flower children, their infatuation with all things not Western and their idea that every conflict in the world could be kumbaya’d out of existence.

So by the 1970’s, it was more the outside world that had changed than Israel; the “stealing of the Palestinian homeland” in 1967 was but a pretext, the final piece in the puzzle of postmodernism, post-Zionism, hippie exoticism and indigenism and Saidian anti-Occidentalism. Give back the “Palestinians” all their lands and Israel’s image still won’t change, for these world factors will cause world opinion to condemn and vilify Israel when it inevitably has to defend itself when those who have been given land for peace use it as a base for further liberation of “all Palestine, from the river to the sea”.

Picture: sign from an anti-Israel demonstration saying, "All Israel is Occupied Territory"
At least they’re honest. Picture from Age of Hooper.

For the Muslims since 1920 at the latest to this day, and for their useful idiots at the [still only] Far Left, there is no difference between Tel-Aviv and Ma’aleh Adumim: both are occupied territories, stolen from the Palestinians, and the Jewish inhabitants of both are settlers, the evacuation of whom would be an act of righting an historical wrong. So much for world opinion.

For Israeli Leftists less extreme than B. Michael, living in Ma’aleh Adumim may not be an outright crime but it is still considered less sensible than living in Tel-Aviv. They say settling in the West Bank is religiously-motivated, therefore breaking ranks with the original, secular Zionism of Herzl (zt"l). They say all but the extremists of the world consider Tel-Aviv a legitimate area while nearly all the world considers Ma’aleh Adumim occupied territory belonging to another people. The Israeli Leftists, then, rest their choice of a place to live upon the verdict of world opinion—fickle, finicky world opinion, which can change any moment and raise the bar of its satisfaction higher and higher.

And now I come to the crucial point: though I am a religious Zionist, I submit that the Israeli Left’s use of a double standard (Hebrew eifah ve’eifah, “[one] measure and [another] measure”, from Deuteronomy 25:14) toward different geographical locations in Israel is a betrayal not just of religious Zionism, but of secular Zionism as well—a betrayal of all Zionism.

“Ancient history” time again: remember the earliest systematic writing of modern, secular Zionism? It was Leon Pinsker’s (zt"l) Autoemancipation. In it, Pinsker stated the abnormality of the Jews’ life at the mercies of the Gentiles, and the necessity of emancipating themselves by having a state of their own. And Herzl, whether from the anti-Semitism of the mayor of Vienna (Karl Lueger) or from the Dreyfus Affair, concluded the same: the nation of Israel’s subservience to world opinion, and the Jews’ constant begging for recognition of legitimacy for any of their actions, was a sickness that had to be cured by the return of the Jews to a state of their own. This is secular Zionism—no religious argument here at all, not yet even a mention of the historical land on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean as that which the Jews should return to.

The present state of the Israeli Left is worse than that of Jewish Diaspora life: a state of Jews being out of the Diaspora, but the Diaspora still being inside the Jews. If the Israeli Left said settlements on the West Bank were hard on its own conscience, then that would still be somehow acceptable; but when the Left says settlements on the West Bank are illegitimate because world opinion says they’re illegitimate, that is as if Zionism had never happened. It’s a kick in the faces of Pinsker, of Herzl and of all the Zionist settlers to this day. For Zionists to seek first a charter for their legitimacy is one thing (Herzl himself visited the Ottoman sultan for that purpose), but for them to predicate Jewish inhabitation of the Land of Israel upon world opinion is quite another.

Therefore the only argument the Israeli Left has against living in the West Bank that does not betray Zionism is the safety argument: Tel-Aviv is safer than Ma’aleh Adumim. It sounds a reasonable argument, and at least it is not ideologically self-defeating like the legitimacy argument, but it fails for the following reason: our history from 1947 to this day shows that every part of the state of Israel is a potential target (Tel-Aviv was the target of Saddam’s Scud missiles in 1991; the north of Israel is the heaviest target currently, but Israeli towns near the Gaza Strip are inflicted with Kassam rocket fire every day), so that an Israeli Jew’s statement that he lives in Tel-Aviv because Ma’aleh Adumim is unsafe can soon transmogrify into a European Jew’s statement that he lives in Europe because Israel is unsafe. A lot of Jews have indeed undergone that process.

But judging from the photos taken by the citizen journalists (see Moonbat Media for a veritable dung mine of them), there will soon be nowhere safe, nowhere for Jews to escape. There will be a union of secular and religious Zionism: Jews in Israel defending themselves with their army, and crying to HaShem Yitbarakh to save them from the conventionally unstoppable, to give them strength, and to finally, finally after more than three millennia, bless them with peace, with true peace.

All you who believe, pray that Ahmadinejad (shr"y) meet the same fate as Haman. Amen.

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