Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Get Ready for the Onslaught

Mike L.

Jonathan Tobin of Commentary has a piece up entitled Misunderstanding Israel’s Election.  He argues, rightly in my opinion, that with the Israeli right-wing making electoral gains we can expect serious blow-back from the world community, including progressive diaspora Jews.  He writes:
It will be portrayed as a rejection of peace and a blow to the chance of a two-state solution to the conflict. Sadly, it will almost certainly lead to editorials and op-eds calling for a reevaluation of the U.S.-Israel alliance and even for American Jews to question the ties between their community and the Jewish state. The narrative of a cruel Israel that is indifferent to the suffering of the Palestinians will be endlessly rehearsed and the vote will be used to justify the isolation of Israel and to garner support for the BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) movement.
This is undoubtedly the case.  Talking heads the world over will lament the decline of the two-state solution and will blame Israel for its demise, despite the fact that it was the world community itself, via the United Nations, that abrogated and concluded the Oslo Accords when they voted to recognize "Palestine" as a non-member state.   They will therefore blame Israel for the foreseeable results of their own behavior and the behavior of the Palestinian-Arabs.

But, just why did Israel move toward the political right-wing?
The change in the Israeli electorate from an evenly divided electorate between left and right is due entirely to the experience of the last 20 years, during which Israel has tried to make peace with the Palestinians. It is the Palestinians’ consistent rejection of peace and embrace of terror and violence that has changed the minds of so many Israelis and convinced them that even though they want a two-state solution, there is no partner for peace with whom they can make such a deal. Rather than damn Israelis for turning their backs on peace, the rest of the world, and especially Americans who think of themselves as friends of Israel, should be asking themselves what it is that Israelis know about their neighborhood that they have preferred to ignore.
One of the things that they preferred to ignore, and one of the reasons that Israel is moving rightward, was the hundreds of rockets fired out of Gaza making life in southern Israel a living hell throughout 2012.  Throughout all of last year the Gazans rained Kassams and Katyushas upon southern Israel and Israel's "friends" in the world community remained silent.  They simply did not care.  It was only when Hamas really ramped up the violence in November, forcing Israel to finally take action, that the world community stood up, but they did so only to condemn Jewish self-defense.  When Israel finally did what it needed to do, for the purpose of protecting its own citizenry, they screamed from the rooftops about Israeli aggression.

This is why Israel is moving toward the right.  It's hard to be a hippie peacenik when they're shooting at your kids, yet the international left will still condemn Israel for daring to protect itself and will blame that country for the fact that the Arabs have perpetually opposed two-states for two peoples.

If the two-state solution is dead, don't blame Israel, because Israel didn't kill it.  The Palestinian-Arabs killed it because it's not what they wanted to begin with and they were helped with that by an international left that accepted the racist Palestinian-Arab demand that Jews not be allowed to build housing for themselves in Judea and Samaria.  The settlement issue is a red herring designed by the Arabs to prevent a negotiated conclusion of hostilities and we helped them do it by accepting the premise.

If you are a progressive-left diaspora Jew who believes in a two-state solution and who opposes the settlements because you think that settlement construction is an impediment to peace you need to look into the mirror if you want to know why peace has not arrived.  By agreeing with the Arabs that Jews should not be allowed to live in, and thus build on, historically Jewish land you gave them all the excuse they needed to refuse negotiations.  You also gave Barack Obama all the excuse that he needed to agree with them.

Don't blame the Israelis.

Blame yourself.


  1. The continued construction of homes by the Philadelphia Irish in Bridgeport proves that we do not want peace with our Lithuanian neighbors on the West Bank of the Schuylkill.


    That's clearly a ridiculous statement, right? Tinged with obvious bigotry?

    Why pointing out same in other such similar statements is considered controversial in any way, I truly do not know...

    1. It's a combination of factors.

      One such factor is the fact that the Arab-Muslim world exhibits a level of race hate that makes the Nazis look like a bunch of pussies.

      Another factor is white, western guilt for imperialism and colonialism which causes them to defer to the Arab world and look the other way from Arab-Muslim racism against Jews and Christians and all non-Muslims.

      Still another factor is liberal Jewish naivete and hopes for peace under the Oslo Accords. I, too, was opposed to Jews building communities for themselves beyond the Green Line when I thought that a negotiated conclusion of hostilities was something that the Palestinian-Arabs wanted.

      The problem is that the Jewish diaspora community has yet to catch up with current reality. They still talk in a manner suggestive of the Oslo period under Clinton... but those days are done.

  2. This.

    Where once there was a consensus that Israel needed to try to trade land for peace with the Palestinians, after Oslo, the withdrawal from Gaza, and the rejection by both Yasir Arafat and his successor Mahmoud Abbas of Israeli offers of statehood that included a share of Jerusalem, only a mindless ideologue can pretend that the lack of peace is due to Israel’s failure to make concessions.

    But get back to that table and 'negotiate' some more! Back, back, back!

    Fool me once, shame on Israel. Fool me twice, shame on Israel. Fool me thrice, shame on Israel. Fool me four times, shame on Israel. Etc etc...

    I would prefer Israel soon declare its own final, defensible borders (including all of Jerusalem, because there are consequences to continued Palestinian rejectionism, and their launching of, and losing, multiple wars, conventional or otherwise) and withdraw to within same. If, after that point, attacks then come from the neighboring criminal terror state which will inevitably take hold in those territories, they should be dealt with just as any other country in the world would deal with acts of war upon itself by a foreign state entity.

    It's admittedly a shitty situation, but what else can you do? The Palestinian leadership, and a good portion of its population, does not want peace and does not want coexistence. If your 47-year old son still lives at home, refuses to work, spends most of his time inciting the neighborhood against his parents and occasionally even physically assaults his 80 year-old mother and sets the house on fire every few years, he needs to be kicked out of the house.

    Time to cut them off and let them fend for themselves.

    Israel ultimately can (and will) do whatever it feels best, and I'll support them in whatever that is. I do hope they change the locks soon, though.

  3. I put my vote in (for Bennett) a few hours back.

    I just want to reiterate a point I've made before, a point that's essential for understanding Israeli politics but American onlookers on both sides of the political map are unaware of, resulting in bafflement:

    Israeli Jews today are, generally speaking, right-wing on geopolitics and left-wing on social issues.

    This is important because if Yechimovitch (Labor Party) becomes Prime Minister, it won't mean Israeli Jews will have cast their votes for land concessions; Yechimovitch, being astute enough to run her platform on social issues alone, avoiding geopolitics entirely, will have won because Netanyahu's policies of unbridled capitalism are unpopular among both doves and hawks alike.

    Similarly, if Netanyahu loses a boatload of mandates (electoral points) to Bennett, it will have been because he has failed to address right-wing Israeli Jews' concerns about keeping the Jewish population centers in the post-1967 territories intact. Socially speaking, a lot of Bennett voters could agree with Yechimovitch if she confined her platform to those issues, social issues. Which she does, to her credit.

    We might say the choice between Yechimovitch and Bennett depends whether the voter considers social issues or geopolitics more important. The voter can hold both at the same time—as I once said, in Israeli politics there's no package deal where being a hawk means you have to be fiscally conservative, and the converse.

    The only thing I'm pretty sure about is Netanyahu's party is going to get clobbered. This is inevitable because of his policies antagonizing both socialists and hawks. Personally I'm not that afraid of a left-wing led coalition; it's often the case that left-wing governments in Israel have been far better to the Jewish post-1967 habitats than right-wing ones, as demonstrated by right-wing Prime Ministers from Begin through Sharon to Netanyahu. What both balance-scales of the political map are agreed on is that Netanyahu has failed to deliver and needs to go, or at least to have his power downsized.

    The preliminary poll will be up within an hour as of this writing.

  4. The soldiers' vote could give the center-right bloc a narrow majority.

    But no one in Israel thinks - apart from Livni - that peace with the Arabs is possible.

    And Yair Lapid is no great fan of the Arabs even if his social policies are on the left side of the spectrum.

    Netanyahu can get a national consensus for making no land concessions - as long he pays his parners' economic and social price for it.