Wednesday, July 12, 2006
I am Ashamed to be an Israeli (timely reprint)
1. Ever since Ehud Barak ordered the IDF to abandon its positions in
southern Lebanon in cowardly retreat, the Israeli Left has been patting
itself on the back, insisting that this unilateral withdrawal had not only
"worked" but could serve as a role model for the Gaza Strip and West
abandonment of Gush Katif was largely based on it. It "worked" in the
sense that the Lebanese border was "relatively" tranquil after the
capitulation, with periodic shellings and murders, but with a death toll
below what it had been while the IDF was still on the ground inside
Lebanon. It was relatively quiet NOT because of the cowardice but because
Syria was being cowed by an enraged US warring against the Islamofascist
enemy that had attacked the US on 9-11. Iran was also lying low, the
better part of valor, not knowing where the US troops would stop. That
kept the Hezbollah reined in for a while.
Exactly six years have passed since that capitulation. For six years
I have argued that the Left's attitude towards that "success" and the
celebration of it by the Israeli media illustrates the "September 10th
syndrome." On September 10th, 2001, there were no doubt oodles of public
fugures in the US ready to swear that there was no chance terrorists could
strike the US, and that the US was secure, terror defeated.
Like in Mark Twain's famous quip, they were just a little premature.
True, Syria had kept the Lebanese border relatively quiet for a while.
After all, Syria suddenly found itself with NATO forces on its northern
and eastern borders, and Western regimes to its south. But control of the
Hezbollah passed to Iran, and Syria was itself forced to cut many of its
outward signs of control in Lebanon.
But the belief that the Lebanese border problem had been "solved" by
Israeli cowardice was nothing more than another case of the September 10th
syndrome. In reality, the border was not calm. Shelling and
cross-border incursions by the terrorists took place all the time, and the
Hezbollah was wandering the Gaza Strip freely and helping teh Hamas build
Today, the Hezbollah has thousands of rockets along the border it
can fire at any time, turning Haifa and Hadera into rubble. The head
terrorist of the Hezbollah promised to do so on TV this evening. I
suppose one benefit of that would be to make the countless far-leftists in
Haifa experience what those in Sderot undergo and perhaps make them a
little less snide and seditious.
Today's murders and kidnappings of Israeli soldiers are a direct
result of Ehud Barak's cowardly abandonment of Israeli positions in
southern Lebanon. But, even more so, they are the direct result of
arguably the stupidest state decision Israel ever made, the decision two
and a half years ago to release hundreds of terrorists and murderers in
excahneg for a single common criminal and bodies of three murdered
soldiers, while never avenging the murders of those three soldiers (one
of them a Bedouin by the way).
At the time of that "prisoner exchange" outrage and boondoggle, I
published the following article in many venues. I reprint it here:
I AM ASHAMED TO BE AN ISRAELI
By Dr. Steven Plaut
I have spent most of the past 12 years being ashamed to be an Israeli.
Israeli governments made me ashamed, and they did so by debasing,
disgracing and humiliating me as a Jew and as an Israeli.
I have been ashamed for 12 years at being an Israeli because this was the
period in which the governments of Israel abandoned the struggle for
Jewish national survival. They stopped trying to defend me and all other
Jews. They lectured me that it was my fault that the Arab fascists were
attacking Jews, and that it was within my power to stop the carnage if
only I would agree to demean myself sufficiently, to grovel before the
terrorists of the Middle East, and to appease the anti-Semites. I could
achieve peace if I would agree to place my neck in an Arab noose, but if I
refuse to do so then I would be the impediment to peace and my obstinacy
would be to blame for all further carnage.
For 12 years, my government pursued a policy of defending me and my family
by abandoning all attempts to defend us. My government decided to pursue
peace by pretending that war did not exist. After two millennia of
anti-Semitism, my government decided that anti-Semitism does not REALLY
exist, and that when people randomly murder Jewish children it is because
they have some legitimate grievances, because they have suffered, and
because Jews have shown them insufficient sensitivity.
My government implemented policies based on the presumption that the
making of concessions to blood-thirsty terrorists would be rewarded with
moderation and goodwill, that importing armed Nazis into the suburbs of
Tel Aviv and Jerusalem would cause them to seek peace. My government
followed policies based on the notion that the Jews were evil,
insensitive, and selfish. My government decided that if Jews would only
"share" their land and resources with those who rule the entire territory
from the Atlantic Ocean to Central Asia, that is, with those who refuse to
agree to any "sharing" that allows a Jewish state to exist anywhere in the
Middle East, then there would be peace.
My government decided that rewarding terrorists for violence would end
violence, and then told me that there was simply no alternative to
coddling terrorists and Islamofascists.
My government pursued peace by pretending that war did not exist. My
government sought peace through arming and bankrolling terrorists. My
government decided that anti-Semitism can only be overcome by redressing
the "underlying grievances" that it reflects. My government fought
terrorism by not fighting it, and by trying to appease it. My government
insisted that I must coddle anti-Semites and terrorists, and must pander
to their agenda and desires, for there is no other choice.
My government over the past 12 years preached to me that it was my own
pride and my parochial patriotism that was the obstacle to peace. It told
me I must seek peace through self-debasement and self-humiliation. My
government told me that if I would show willingness to compromise, then so
would the Arabs.
My government has been wrong about everything, but refuses to admit it has
been wrong about anything.
My government decided that Palestinians are a "nation" and that chunks of
my Jewish lands were in fact "Palestinian lands". My government decided
that Arabs may freely live any place they wish anywhere in the land of
Israel, but I may not live freely where I might choose if it happens to be
across the "Green Line". My government instituted discrimination against
me and against other Jews in the name of "affirmative action", quotas and
preferences for Arabs and directed against me.
My government fought for my survival through cowardice and endless
"restraint", turning my other cheek against my will, pursuing endless
"goodwill gestures", which only enflamed the violence. It did so despite
the fact that I and my fellow Israeli citizens voted repeatedly to revoke
the "Oslo approach" and voted in favor of pursuing war against our
enemies, not appeasement. My government abandoned all of northern Israel
to the mercies of the Hizbollah rockets, now aimed at me in the thousands.
My government abandoned the Jewish towns near the Gaza Strip to rocket
barrages from the PLO.
I have spent the past 12 years cringing in shame. My government made me
feel that way. But I have NEVER felt as ashamed at being an Israeli as I
did this week, when my government decided to reward the Hizbollah for
murdering three of my fellow citizens in cold blood. My government also
abandoned Ron Arad, releasing his kidnapper, rewarding the terrorists who
kidnapped him, who "sold" him to Iran and possibly murdered him.
My government decided to release nearly 450 murderers with blood on their
hands in order to "buy" the release of the carcasses of three of my fellow
citizens who were murdered by the Hizbollah after they had been kidnapped
by it. My government had abandoned southern Lebanon to the Hizbollah and
assured me there would be complete tranquility thereafter. After the
farcical Israeli "withdrawal" ordered by my government, the Hizbollah has
fired almost daily into Israel, has sent in terrorists who murdered
Israeli civilians, and snatched the three soldiers (two Jews and one
Bedouin Arab) whose bodies were released this week, after murdering them
in cold blood.
Last week the Hizbollah murdered one more army officer working a
bulldozer; in response my government punished some empty Hizbollah
buildings. The prisoner "deal" was possible only because my government
refuses to execute the murdering savages, the terrorists. My government
thinks capital punishment is inhumane, and its absence has made possible
the murders of 1700 of my fellow countrymen. That is like twenty two
September 11ths, when measured proportional to population.
The Hizbollah also held as prisoner a man who had entered Lebanon for
criminal purposes, possibly a drug deal to pay off his gambling debts. I
opposed releasing any terrorists to get him released. I might have
considered agreeing to release a handful as payment to the Hizbollah to
keep him imprisoned there, if he is indeed a drug smuggler.
My government decided to respond to the murders of the three POWs by
rewarding their murderers, not by converting three Hizbollah towns into
large parking lots, not by bathing the Hizbollah leaders in napalm. My
government signalled to all my fellow citizens that it was unwilling to
avenge our deaths. My government let every Israeli soldier know that his
life would be worthless if captured by the enemy because my government
would always seek "deals" with those who murder POWs. My government made
it known that by grabbing some Israelis as hostages, anyone could obtain
any concession they want from my country. My government also let every
soldier know that, if captured in war, he would be abandoned to his fate
by my government. My government agreed to this "deal" with the Hizbollah,
a deal that spit on the family of missing Israeli airman Ron Arad. The man
who kidnapped and "sold" Arad has been released by my government as
payment for the release of the common criminal.
My government is trying to cover its shame by boasting that it "held out
tough" and refused to release the baby-murdering terrorist Samir Kuntar,
the man who murdered the members of the Haran family in Nahariya. My same
government boasts that it would have released this arch-murderer had the
Hizbollah so much as told Israel where Ron Arad (or his grave) is.
So much for "standing tough".
My government is a disgrace. My government practices cowardice and
pretends it is courage. My government displays indifference to the
Israelis who will now be murdered by those released terrorists and
murderers. My government had the gall to pretend it was acting out of
compassion and morality when it signed this capitulation, when it placed
that smirk on the face of the Hizbollah chief terrorist, boasting of his
victory. To drive home the point that the "deal" proves to the world that
the Jews are on the run, the terrorists blew up a bus in Jerusalem, the
same Jerusalem they pretend is holy to them, as part of celebrating the
stampede of Jewish flight. After all, the Hizbollah was being rewarded for
terror, so why should not the Palestinians follow their lead in obtaining
The bus atrocity in Jerusalem was carried out by the "Al Aqsa Martyrs
Brigades," a PLO terror group under the direct command and control of
My government pretended it was suddenly acting out of Jewish ethical
My government would not know a Jewish ethical value if it popped up in its
face. My government pretends there is a "Part B" to this capitulation, in
which information about Ron Arad will be released. I do not belive them. I
think my government is lying to window-dress this act of cowardice.
As I watch the victory smile on the mug of the Hizbollah Chief Terrorist,
my own government makes me cringe.
My government makes me ashamed of being an Israeli.
2. More Israelis, including Israeli "academics", promoting boycotts and