Friday, April 29, 2005

Eldad Dares Mazuz Over Civil Disobedience Call

Arutz Sheva - Israel National News: "MK Aryeh Eldad says that if the Att'y-Gen. is willing to indict him for calling for civil disobedience against the expulsion, then he is willing to remove his parliamentary immunity and stand trial. "

Thursday, April 28, 2005

The American Thinker: On Putin's Visit to Israel

The American Thinker: "Taken collectively, Putin's domestic and foreign policy actions paint a conflicting story. On one hand, he has described the collapse of the repressive Soviet Union as the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century. On the other hand, he has stated that Russia wants to facilitate the Middle East peace process.
Which Putin should we believe -- the Soviet-era sympathizer or the professed peacemaker?"

Monday, April 25, 2005

Column: Sharon on NBC -- "Civil War Threat"

My landlord and neighbor was from the Ukraine. He was about 93 years old when he passed away a couple of years ago. He had been in Safed for 50 years more or less when we met, having arrived around the time of Israel’s independence. He had married twice and had two children who inherited the property. They still live in the Galilee but not in Safed – his daughter was just here for a visit.

Yekutiel was always eager to tell me stories about life in the Ukraine and his time in Siberia and his experiences in Israel. I learned a lot from him. I learned from him things that no one else could teach me. He told me about the way his family was slaughtered in Brody by the Nazis and about how he as a young boy had been spared because he and his cousin had sensed the danger and had fled towards the Soviet line.

That move in itself was dangerous as the Soviets upon finding them would almost certainly execute them as spies – the fate of fleeing Jews caught by the Russians. Yekutiel and his cousin were fortunate though. Both had defied their parents and as youngsters had joined the Communist Party. That was not a simple thing for the young son of a religious Jew to do, but that’s what he had done and now it would save his life.

After being picked up by the Soviets they had the amazing good fortune of being spotted by an officer who recognized them from the Communist Youth Movement. Instead of being executed they were enlisted – the only members of their family to survive the War.

His time spent in Siberia was as a manager of a logging camp there. He told me not only of the winters but of the hot humid summers when the flies were worse than the snows. He told me of the special boots they wore in winter that were made out of the wool of sheep and that packed frozen and hard through use in the cold snow. He said they were so warm that you felt no cold at all in your feet.

He held a fond and distorted opinion of Stalin till the day he died. He accredited him solely for the defeat of the Nazis and gave no credit to America or England. I attributed his perspective at least in part to the fact that the Red Army had saved his life but once, when his political and religious views crossed the demarcation lines we had established to keep us civil and neighborly, I countered with a remark that cut him sharply to the bone -- telling him that he would probably do better to drop his admiration for the butcher Stalin before facing the heavenly court. He was shocked and insulted and said there surely was no such thing. To which I responded that he was free to think whatever he wished.

It was the sharpness of my tongue on only a few occasions that made our relationship enjoyable and instructive for a few years. I helped him at times when his health was poor until he got fulltime help before deteriorating finally into his final illness.

To a friend of mine in Jerusalem, Yekutiel was known only as the barometer. We called him that because he reflected more accurately the attitudes and direction of the political left in Israel than anyone I ever met here. It’s as if his soul was connected to leftist news media in a way that distilled everything and delivered it pure and from the heart. He was a model citizen in his political thought – Israel’s most politically correct man in Safed – graduate of the Red Army, organizer of a Kibbutz in his youth which was meant to be transplanted in Israel, and long time activist in and member of Israel’s Labor Party.

But why am I writing about him?

The reason is that Ariel Sharon got on NBC and warned of a threat of Civil War. That warning was meant to demonize the victims of his tyranny in the most irreparable way and most likely will serve as justification for all that Sharon has planned for those that would resist his tyranny in any way.

But still, why did I write all this about Yekutiel?

It is because Yekutiel was talking about the inevitability of this Civil War almost three years ago – when somehow he had spoken about how the settlers would soon pose this dire threat to the nation. I saw his remark as the worst type of baiting but knew then that the barometer had picked up on something that could not be dismissed – far as it still was from the news and national consciousness. I had filed it away as an old Soviet “sharaska” or sinister plot of deceit that he had seen in the old country and saw coming to be used again here in Israel to make the dissenters to any future "territorial compromise" look like the worst enemies of the state.

Today, reading about Sharon on NBC, I was reminded of what the barometer had said back then.

On a much different note, I wish everyone great joy and happiness on the upcoming Passover Holiday. Chag Samayach.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Column: Dark Cloud

Yesterday was Rosh Chodesh Nisan; the day the tabernacle was erected in the desert, one of the four Jewish new years, and the birthday of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov.

I went to the gravesite of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai in Meron and spent a few hours there. Spring has really arrived and we have probably now seen the last of the cold and rain and the day in Meron was almost festive but not quite. There is something heavy in the air and it rests like a dark cloud in the sky these days.

As over 100 mortars were falling in Gush Katif – something I was to hear about only later – I was sitting with friends in the evening, back in Safed, at a barbeque to celebrate Rabbi Nachman’s birthday and the new month and the birthday of the son of a friend. Again, it was festive and yet not festive. It is hard to celebrate – there is something heavy in the air.

Not knowing that Gush Katif was being barraged and that Sharon and the IDF was doing absolutely nothing about it and that over thirty Jews had been arrested in Jerusalem for wanting to pray on the Temple Mount and that others were claiming to have been beaten by the police for nothing – a story confirmed by a Magen David Adom worker and carried by Arutz 7, we still had trouble succeeding to be unaware of what was going on down south. It’s just become something that permeates the air -- something heavy hanging over the whole country.

I observed as the conversation at the barbeque turned to classic religious understandings of Zionism. One friend is a follower of Rabbi Kook, another and yet another see the approach of the Satmar Rebbe as more instructive in understanding the times we live in and the challenges they present. The common thread is that there is a desire to understand what Hashem is doing – how he is acting in the world to bring the redemption of the Jewish People and seeing who is playing what roles in the acting out of history. Even more fundamentally, there is a desire to renew faith in the face of adversity.

But what is this great adversity and what is this heavy cloud and why did I bring a long list of threats from the Talmud in Sanhedrin last week about the end of days? What is all this doom and gloom? Why do celebrations turn to discussions about the very nature and intrinsic value of Zionism?

I had a thought yesterday morning, preceding the experiences of the day mentioned above, about the significance of Sharon’s expulsion plan in historical and religious context which may help explain my mood and the perception I had of others and their moods and conversations.

The thought was that since the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem by the Romans and the exile of 2,000 years, there has been no greater expulsion of Jews from part of the Land of Israel than what we are standing in front of today. Additionally and importantly, the communities of Gush Katif are religious communities which have been targeted by government that while it dispels all loyalty to Zionist principles, it holds tenaciously it seems to at least the one thing that unifies the Zionists of old and their post-Zionist heirs – a disdain for Torah and an eagerness it seems to punish those that love it and live by it.

It is the awareness, vague as it might yet still be, that more than just Gush Katif is at stake and more than just Gush Katif is under attack that hangs a heavy cloud over the whole country. If this horrible plan goes forward it will be a low point in Jewish history, spirituality and brotherhood that will eclipse anything we have seen in the Land of Israel for 2,000 years. I find it horrifying and threatening and I am only now beginning to feel the judgment of it gathering like a dark cloud above.

And so, everything seems strange and out of kilter. Celebrations don’t quite get off the ground. Holy days and holy places are missing the glow they should have. Conversations gravitate towards discussions of threats, ill will, and evil design and we wait.

We wait in spiritual limbo as a country that was hijacked politically by one man is led in a direction that none of us have chosen – knowing and now seeing clear signs of the fact that the full force of the government is poised to pounce brutally on those who will take to the streets to protest as mortars still rain down.

It’s a dark cloud that these mortars are falling from and it hangs over all of us.

FrontPage :: Kill a Jew, Get His House by David Bedein

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Sharon Demonizes His Victims on NBC

Arutz Sheva - Israel National News: "The Yesha Council of Jewish Communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza issued a statement proposing once again that Sharon 'prevent the civil war of which he is warning, and bring the disengagement issue to a public referendum. Sharon is tearing the nation apart and causing a split in the nation - and then he runs to impress the Americans with stories of a civil war.'"

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Column: Warnings and More

Last week I asked a lot of questions and gave no answers. I guess that’s ok. The point is that a lot of questions need to be asked. As I write, I ask myself what it is that I must convey to you, most importantly at this time.

Last week I also talked about the dire warnings of the Rabbis in the Talmud and specifically in Sanhedrin about the end of days. “Let it come but I don’t want to see it…” is from Sanhedrin 98b – one that I mentioned last week.

To follow up on my promise to bring more relevant quotes from Sanhedrin I bring you the following warnings from the Rabbis about the end of days if the Jewish People fail to return to Hashem and keep the Torah:

"In the generation in which the Son of David will come, there will be a
diminishing of scholars, and those who remain will see agony and sorrow,
and great troubles and harsh decrees will be renewed; before the first
passes, the next shall come" (Sandhedrin, 97a).
"If you see a generation with troubles that come upon it as a river, wait
for him (the Messiah)..." (ibid 98a)
"In the footsteps of the Messiah, brazenness will spread and value will be
debased; the vine will give its fruit in plenty and wine will still be dear
and none will admonish; the house of gathering of scholars will become
harlotry; the Galilee will be destroyed and the people of the borders will
wander from town to town and none will have mercy on them; the wisdom of
the scribes will be despised and pious men scorned and the truth will be
absent and the face of the generation will be as that of the dog; the young
will shame the elderly and the great will have to stand before the small;
the son will deal obscenely with his father and the daughter shall rise
against her mother and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and
the members of his household will be a man's enemies... And upon whom can
we rely? Only on our Father in Heaven..."

"The Son of David shall not come until the informers shall multiply...until
the kingdom shall all become deniers (of Torah)... until they despair of
being redeemed" (Ibid 97a).

"The Son of David will not come until the (evil) kingdom shall conquer
Israel for nine months" (Ibid 98b). Which led Ulla and Rabba to say: "Let
him come and let me not see it". (Ibid)

I often tell people that the Jews in America are more similar to the Sephardim in Israel than the Ashkenazim in their beliefs and approach to Judaism. The Jews in America and the Sephardim in Israel share the experience of drifting slowly away from Judaism because of social and economic reasons and pressures. This contrasts with many Ashkenazim in Israel who left religion out of ideology – rejecting Torah and actually seeing it as the cause of all our troubles – the thing that made us different and separate and drew the hatred of the nations.

Those Ashkenazim have always held the reins of power in Israel and they always spoke to American Jews – whose money and support they needed – as if they were good yidden, Jews that shared basic Jewish values and beliefs.

The truth is quite different. Hertzl dreamed of and Israel in the style of the assimilated Jews of Vienna and Ben Gurion implemented policies that he hoped would fulfill the promise of that dream – bringing economic and social hardship onto the religious community in Israel.

The criticisms that have always been leveled at the religious by the secular – they don’t work, they don’t serve in the army, they were not the leaders of the pioneer movement – were met by the religious Zionists as a challenge and those religious Zionists became the pioneers of Judea, Samaria, and Aza, the best and most dedicated soldiers in the army, and productive members of the economy in every field of endeavor.

For that attempt to be the best citizens they could be they are rewarded now with the expulsion plan – after putting Sharon in power based on the opposite platform. To say that hate is driving all of this still – hate for the Torah and hate for the Rabbis – and those that follow the ancient path of Judaism, is something that I hate to say, but I touch upon the subject to raise yet one more question:

Which side of history and the unfolding of events are American Jews really and naturally on and which side should American Jews be taking in the struggle? There is much at stake and the believing Jews of Israel are again under fire and not just in Gush Katif and the Northern Shomron. Israel’s Jews of faith have few friends and American Jews who drifted away slowly and not because of Marxist ideology are really closer to the believing Jews of Israel than to those that hold the reins and seek the expulsion and destruction of the communities of good Jews of faith.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

FrontPage :: Ariel Sharon's Folly by Daniel Pipes

FrontPage :: Ariel Sharon's Folly by Daniel Pipes: "Sharon betrayed the voters who supported him, wounding Israeli democracy. He divided Israeli society in ways that may poison the body politic for decades hence. He aborted his own successful policies vis-a-vis the Palestinians. He delivered Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim rejectionists their greatest boost ever. And he failed his American ally by delivering a major victory to the forces of terrorism."

Aryeh Stav: The Planned Ethnic Cleansing and Some of Its Consequences

An Introductory Comment

When Rabin and Arafat shook hands on the White House lawn on September 13, 1993, thereby granting the Oslo Accords a final seal of approval, Nativ published an expanded issue in mournful colors. The issue was devoted to an analysis of Rabin’s course of action and its anticipated ramifications for the Jewish state. In retrospect, the prognostications, from that period, tragically, were almost entirely realized. The projected end result of the present ethnic cleansing program from the Sharon school is easier to predict than that of its predecessor. That is because we are familiar with all of the components of the national tragedy, which befell Israel (referred to as “The Rabin Legacy”), and Sharon is deepening the rift in each and every area. At the same time, this article will most likely be greeted with disbelief and claims that it contains significant exaggerations etc. However it is appropriate to mention that had someone stood 15 years ago and claimed that Rabin would grant legitimacy to Arafat and the terrorist organizations or asserted just three years ago that Sharon would carry out a campaign of ethnic cleansing against his own people, he would have been considered out of his mind, or more mildly as one making a mountain out of a molehill and promoting unwarranted panic. To our credit, we can determine unequivocally: We said all that and we were right.

First we must assert, firmly and unambiguously, that in employing the term “disengagement” Sharon and his government are following in the footsteps of the tyrannical regimes, which conceal their intentions in an Orwellian “Newspeak”. “Disengagement” is nothing other that “ethnic cleansing”, and it should not be called anything else. The definition of “ethnic cleansing” ­ a term coined by Drazen Pewtrovic, an expert in international law at the University of Sarajevo after the civil war in Yugoslavia, states: “Ethnic cleansing means the eviction by force of citizens belonging to one ethnic group from their land and homes and the transfer of the cleansed territory to another ethnic group.” Pewtrovic’s definition was the criterion employed by the International Court in The Hague when they placed Slobodan Milosevic on trial and characterized his actions as “a crime against humanity whose perpetrators are criminals”1

Thus the definition of ethnic cleansing, in its entirety, applies to the action, which Sharon and his government are plotting. The fact that the deportees will be granted remuneration is secondary in this respect and will be dealt with below.

There is one substantive difference between Sharon’s intentions and the actions of Milosevic and others like him: Milosevic evicted a hostile population with which he had a hundreds-of-years long blood feud and he transferred the cleansed territory to his countrymen; Sharon is evicting his own countrymen and transferring the territory to murderers of his people, erstwhile allies of Hitler and his present-day successors, who openly and publicly declare that their objective is the destruction of the Jewish state. This phenomenon, anchored in Jewish pathology, unparalleled in the history of nations, is the essence of the Chosen People School of fascism. Mussolini, Stalin and Milosevic and the like massacred the enemies of their country and worked to enlarge, strengthen and extend it. The Jewish fascist ­ and it makes no difference whether he emerged from the Hashomer Hazair school or from the Sycamore Farm mafia, acts as if possessed to liquidate his country by means of glorification of the enemy.

Towards the Destruction of Settlement in Judea, Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the Golan
It goes without saying that the destruction of the settlement in Gush Katif and northern Samaria is a preliminary stage leading towards the destruction of the settlement in Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights and the transfer of Jerusalem to the Arab enemy. This course of action, which will leave the State of Israel a bleeding stump, will necessarily lead to a withdrawal from the 1949 armistice lines to the partition borders. This process, in the midst of which we find ourselves today, was determined in the Camp David Agreements, in the most severe historical failure in the brief history of the State of Israel. In the Six-Day War, Israel routed its enemies in a defensive war more moral than any other in the modern age. Not only was it Israel’s right to keep the entire Sinai Desert, it was its obligation, based on the principle of natural justice anchored in international law: “Ex injuria jus non oritur”, according to which the aggressor must be punished! Every proper country conducts itself in that manner. Based on that principle, at the end of the two World Wars Germany lost many territories, among them those which it ruled for hundreds of years, like East
Prussia, Pomerania and Silesia. The Jewish state acted accordingly in the War of Independence after defeating the enemy, which deigned to conquer it and annexed many territories, which doubled its size relative to the partition borders.

Fifteen million Germans were evicted from their land and their homes and dispatched to the German interior. However, in contrast to the actions taken by Germany’s enemies, victorious Israel did not deport the Israeli Arabs ­ the spearhead of the Arab enemy’s attempt to destroy the nascent state. This was a historic blunder whose steep price is being paid by
the Jewish state today, with an Arab fifth column coalescing within it.

Thus, relinquishing Sinai to Egypt was a blatant violation of the principle of justice at the foundation of international law, and an act of rewarding the aggressor. Destruction of the settlement in Sinai, unprecedented in the history of Zionism, by none other than Ariel Sharon, along with the recognition of the “legitimate rights of the Palestinian people”,2 were the first nail in the coffin of Zionism, hammered in by Menahem Begin with much fanfare and revelry.

Thus, one ought not to be misled by pipe-dreams of the type spread by Sharon’s emissary of iniquity, Dov Weisglass, see the interview with him.3 There is no more contemptible lie than the claim that by means of evacuating parts of Judea, Samaria and Gaza, Israel will strengthen the settlement in Judea and Samaria. The polar opposite is true: Implementation
of the “Road Map” and the establishment of a “Palestinian state” are designed to bring an end to the Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria. This is the first stage in the Arab plot to bring about the destruction of Israel, and these actions of the Israeli Prime Minister support their plot.

If the reader were to claim that what is written here is exaggerated and outrageous, here is a direct quote, definitive evidence straight from the horse’s mouth. This is what Sharon said during his sane period: “Any relinquishing of territory, even partial, is a surefire formula for national suicide”.4

The Fourth Geneva Conference and the Settlement in Judea, Samaria, the Golan Heights, the Jordan Valley and Jerusalem Ethnic cleansing of Jews from Judea, Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights, 270,000 people, 80,000 households, a comprehensive industrial and agricultural configuration, will engender an economic crisis, which the state will be unable to bear. The cost of the present transfer is estimated at 1.3 billion dollars. Destruction of the settlement in the remaining sections of Judea and Samaria, the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights (on the basis of the precedent of the reparations per family in Gaza) will approach a sum equivalent to half of the gross national product of Israel and beyond ­ and that is only the civilian component. Replacing the loss of deterrent military capability will double the total.5 As this country, indeed no country could survive economically when losing its gross national product; the remaining alternative is to evict the settlers from their homes without compensation. As it is difficult to imagine that the IDF or the police will dirty their hands by participating in that crime,6 the task will be assigned to the
“Quartet Army” units. That is the essence of the Arab demand to deploy a European army in the “territories”, in order to ensure the orderly establishment of the “Palestinian state”. The assignment of this army, in coordination with comprehensive Arab terrorism and Israeli indifference7 (until then the Israeli Government will malign the settlement, like the provocation, at Sharon’s command, of the eviction of the residents of Shalhevet...), will be to evict the settlers from their homes at gunpoint. The action will receive the blessing of the international community through characterization of the settlers as “war criminals” based on the Fourth Geneva Convention,8 which states: “The occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies”.

To date, Israel claimed that the Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply to it as:

• The territories are not “occupied” in the sense referred to in the Convention, as Israel fought a defensive war and its right to those territories stems from the right of the attacked, which defeated the aggressor;

• Israel did not occupy the land of a sovereign country, but rather regions overtaken by Jordan in the ‘48 war;

• The Land of Israel in its entirety including both sides of the Jordan River was promised to Israel a commitment ratified by the League of Nations in the British Mandate.

All three of those assertions will henceforth be refuted by the Sharon Government, as deportation by force of a civilian population ­ is tantamount to an admission that the settlement of those territories was undertaken in violation of the Convention, and in far-reaching speculation on the part of the undersigned should reread the statement by Javier Solana, representative of the European Union for foreign policy and security, who explicitly declared that “Although the European Union congratulates the Israeli Government decision to evict the settlers from Gaza and Northern Samaria, it must be clear that the Community sees this as merely a first step towards the evacuation of all of the settlements from the occupied territories”.9

Application of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which establishes that the settlers are war criminals who were settled by an aggressor/occupier in an occupied country, to the settlement in Judea and Samaria, the Jordan Valley, the Golan Heights and Jerusalem, has been on the European Parliament’s agenda for years. To date no resolution has been adopted on the matter, due to the resolute opposition voiced by Israel and its few European Union friends. Although the first stage ­ labeling products manufactured in Judea, Samaria and the Golan, so that they may be expunged from the list of exports to the European Union, was adopted with the blessing of Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, the Europeans require
a more dramatic and firm precedent, and that is the entire essence of the present deportation. By deporting them, Sharon is inscribing the mark of Cain on their foreheads and granting legitimacy to those seeking to apply the Fourth Geneva Convention to Israel.

The Military Failure

One of the more severe phenomena taking place in our country since Sharon’s transformation is in the area of Egypt. Egypt, “the most dangerous of Israel’s enemies” in the words of the then Deputy Chief of General Staff Matan Vilnai, is openly preparing for war with Israel, in three areas:

• The Egyptian arms race and its military expenditures far beyond any security needs;

• De-legitimatization of the Jewish state in every possible international forum, from the UN and its institutions to the European Union;

• Dehumanization of the Jew by means of anti-Semitic tools inherited by the Egyptians from the Nazis.

Thus, for example, the anti-Israel pogrom at the conference in Durban. South Africa was prepared two weeks in advance by the Arab League in Cairo. That which Israel refers to as “Palestinian terrorism” is actually a low-intensity war, which Egypt is conducting against Israel. This explains the steady supply of arms and ammunition delivered, for convenience
sake, through subterranean tunnels and referred to by Israel as “smuggling”. The regular meetings between the heads of Egyptian intelligence and Arafat and the heads of the terrorist organizations are for no other purpose than to coordinate the military actions against Israel. It is worth remembering that the act of recalling the Egyptian ambassador is the first stage prior to the severing of diplomatic relations and declaring war.

Beginning with his first day in office, Sharon has been knowingly and systematically been concealing the truth about Egypt from the public. His declarations on the matter to the foreign press are designed to grant legitimacy to every Egyptian act of destruction. This reached its peak in the directive to congratulate Mubarak personally and the Egyptian
Government for their role in the wake of the bombing of the hotel in Taba and the murder of Israeli citizens. The present course of action of withdrawal from Gaza and relinquishing the territory to Egyptian military administration, i.e.: deployment of an Egyptian military force on Israel’s border, is a strategic failure, which can be accurately described as nothing less than “apparent treason”. From now on, even before the establishment of an independent Arab country in the Land of Israel ­ and all the more so after the establishment of the “Palestinian state” ­ any Israeli attempt to stage a retaliatory action in response to an act of terrorism will be deemed an act of war on the part of Israel and will therefore lead to the deployment of the Egyptian Army in Sinai. Already today, the withdrawal from the
Gaza Strip and Northern Samaria will place the power plants in Hadera (14 km) and Ashqelon (8 km), which provide most of the state’s electricity needs, into the range of Qasam and Katyusha rockets.

The Road Map

It is important to remember that the program known as the “road map”, which was designed to establish a “Palestinian state” and restore Israel to the June 4, 1967 borders, was never an American attempt to impose upon Israel a course of action which is, for all intents and purposes, the beginning of the end of the Jewish state and the destruction of the third Temple. More than the (American) calf wanted to nurse, the (Israeli) cow wanted to feed. It was Sharon who undermined the American president and not the opposite. It was Sharon who provided the plan with the seal of approval of the Prime Minister of Israel and swore to implement it. This forum is insufficient to convey the astonishment evoked by the document among friends of Israel in both houses of Congress in Washington. However, in a proper country it is reasonable to assume that the Prime Minister is acting in the best interests of his people, not contrary to those interests. Thus the large, vigorous pro-Israel lobby, ranging from AIPAC and a majority of the members of Congress in both houses to the tens of millions strong Christian community, was completely paralyzed by the government of the Jewish state.

A rank and file member of Congress is willing to confront his president but he certainly will not be more Zionist than an Israeli Prime Minister. It was Yizhak Shamir who absorbed the SCUD missiles during the Gulf War with no response and was hauled as a criminal before the Madrid Conference; it was Rabin in 1995 and Netanyahu in 1997 who torpedoed the transfer of the American embassy to Jerusalem; now it is the turn of the greatest liquidator of all.

The International Aspect

Israel’s status, difficult and problematic since its inception, has dipped to unprecedented depths since the insanity known as the “Oslo Accords”. In their wake, Israel became a doormat trampled by every pariah. The French ambassador to England allowed himself to publicly characterize it as “that shitty little country”; a discussion takes place in the
press raising doubts regarding Israel’s very right to exist and the American struggle against “fundamentalist Islam” is being paid for (as usual) in Israeli currency. Now, the Israeli Prime Minister, who until recently was maligned with every derogatory epithet possible in the western press, against whom in the most literal sense a blood libel was
conducted and whom the International Court in The Hague was implored to place him on trial for wars against humanity ­ he is the man who himself granting legitimacy to the disparagement of his own country and he is cooperating with the most despicable of Israel’s enemies. Suddenly he is informing us that Israel is an occupying country, that terrorism is
rewarded with an Arab country in the heart of western Israel and that an ethnic cleansing should be carried out against his people.

This frantic abandonment of all of Israel’s most fundamental principles, this admission of the failure of Zionism and of national bankruptcy, will cause the flame of anti-Semitism to burn as it never has before. Return to the June 4, 1967 borders will immediately lead to international pressure to implement UN Resolution 194 regarding the return of refugees to their homes, as Sharon has undermined the moral basis for Israel’s opposition. Concomitantly, Arab pressure accompanied at first by the European Union and later by the State Department in Washington in order to “ameliorate the historic injustice caused the Palestinian people by the Israeli occupation during the 1948 naqba (tragedy)”, as Arafat
noted before the UN Secretary-General in their September 1999 meeting.


To the question “why”, it is apparently only possible to respond using pathological tools inherent to the Jewish soul, and that too is uncertain as Jewish pathology is also an unusual phenomenon in the entirety of the Chosen People’s mental afflictions. It is customary to posit that in times of distress the public chooses the one among them who is head and shoulders above the rest ­ see the cases of Churchill, De-Gaulle and Roosevelt. Why the Jewish people choose specifically its destroyers and demolishers to lead them towards a national holocaust ­ that is a riddle with no solution as is unprecedented in the history of nations. However, Sharon’s case is unusual even relative to the frauds and opportunists, which the Jewish people have chosen to rule over them. The reference is to the aspect of corruption from the “Sycamore Farm mafia” school.

Shimon Peres, to his credit, documented his spiritual transformation from a sane Zionist to the Baron Munchausen of the “New Middle East” in a book bearing that title. Peres’ philosophy, moonstruck and pathetic though it may be, is nevertheless a systematic code in which he communicates his spiritual world to the public. The Israeli Left, which gains
its spiritual strength from self-hatred, historical blindness and adherence to every hater of Israel, also has a systematic code that it presents to the public; see the Beilin syndrome and the Geneva Program. Compared to Sharon, though, Beilin and Peres can expect a place among the 36 righteous men. Sharon changed his stripes overnight with no explanation. The few statements of blather, which he released to a few journalists (interviews on the eve of the Jewish New Year or his speech at the Herzliya Conference), are not even an insult to the intelligence as Sharon never responds to the questions asked anyway. Thus, by means of elimination, there is only one plausible explanation, which MK Zvi Hendel pithily characterized: “The depth of the evacuation equals the depth of the investigation”. Below is the account, which Hendel, who was then Deputy Education Minister, claims to have received from one of the participants.

“The Depth of the Evacuation Equals the Depth of the Investigation”

In late 2003, distressing information reached Dov Weisglas, esq., Sharon’s attorney and chief of staff: The contents of the revised indictment against Dudi Appel in the Greek Island matter. The revised indictment stated that Gilad Sharon had received an astronomical salary for relatively marginal consultancy services in the mega-deal in which the contractor sought to purchase the Greek Island of Petrocolus for the purpose of building one of the largest vacation sites in the world there. In paying that salary to Gilad Sharon, Appel apparently sought to obtain assistance from the Prime Minister himself in consummating the deal.

Weisglas was distraught. He understood perfectly the connotation of “bribery” ­ the legal term for the deal described above. He shared his concerns with the “farm forum”, the Prime Minister’s support group, which would regularly meet on the farm: His sons, Omri and Gilad, Weisglas, public relations consultant Eyal Arad and others.

Weisglas was determined: “If the indictment includes the section about bribery, we are in a lot of trouble. We must take a drastic step to stop this course of action”. The question was what is that “significant step”, which would be able to stop the indictment snowball. “Look, Arik”, Weisglas said, “You have no choice. There are many precedents in the world when a leader of a nation undertakes a significant national enterprise, investigations against him are closed. That is your chance”.

For a moment, a proposal was raised to go to war, however that was immediately rejected. It was clear that the Left would not forgive Sharon, with his problematic past in that area, for going to war. “We need a political initiative”, Weisglas said.

Then Eyal Arad said: “Arik, go for a total evacuation of the Gaza Strip. The Right will support you on that issue because they have already become accustomed to the idea. Everyone hates Gaza and no one will oppose an action of that sort. It will extract you from the legal muddle. It is the easiest step to market to the public. Come on, go for it”.

Sharon disagreed. “Have you gone mad?” he asked those present, “The settlement there is a strategic asset. I truly believe that. It was but a few months ago that I explained that to Mizna”.

The discussion ended with no decision. Time passed, the apparent bribery story gained momentum in the media. The “farm forum” sought a different step, which would be dramatic enough to dissuade the Attorney General from pursuing his plan to indict, but found none. Three weeks later, the “farm forum” reconvened. This time it was the turn of Gilad, Sharon’s
“right-wing” son who was considered to be the smart one in the family, to be the primary speaker. “Father”, he said to him, “We have no choice. Nothing else can save us. We must go for an evacuation of the Gaza Strip”.

This time, the father agreed with his son. Shortly thereafter, on February 2, 2004, Sharon announced his “disengagement plan”. It goes without saying that his action was successful. From that date on, the Greek Island matter disappeared from the public agenda and Sharon became a media darling and a cultural hero of the extreme Left.


As there is no other plausible explanation for the phenomenon of a man who in one fell swoop tramples everything in which he believed, which is, not coincidentally, the essence of Zionism ­ there is no avoiding the conclusion that Sharon sold out the Land of Israel for personal gain. Quisling and Petain would be blushing in shame.


1 Drazen Pewtrovic, European Journal of International Law, Sarajevo University Law School, 1994.

2 This is the English version (Legitimate Rights of the Palestinian People) signed by Menahem Begin at Camp David. The Hebrew version “Israeli Arabs”, which is not legally binding, was conceived to mislead the Israeli public. As this is the first case in which Israel signed a document recognizing the “Palestinian People”, Begin’s portrait should
hand next to Arafat’s as the father of the Palestinian state.

3 Ari Shavit, Haaretz, October 6, 2004.

4 Ariel Sharon, The Jerusalem Post, April 4, 1991.

5 Yoash Tsiddon-Chatto, “At What Price the Golan Heights?”, ACPR Policy Paper No. 5.

6 Difficult but not impossible. It is worth remembering that 9 of the 11 gulag commanders under Stalin were Jews and that moral corruption and self-hatred are intrinsic to the soul of the Jewish radical. Thus, “Peace Now” quickly issued a statement that Sharon need not be concerned about refusal to serve when the day arrives and to that purpose
introduced a campaign entitled: “For Every Soldier Who Refuses, I Volunteer”. See the Peace Now website.

7 The cooperation of the Israeli Government with Arab terrorism can be diagnosed these days. In light of the daily mortar bombardment of the Gush Katif settlements ­ the IDF response ranges from total inaction to sporadic retaliation with tank shells. The clear message was internalized by the other side. The shelling of Sderot ceased and it is now totally focused on the Gush Katif settlements.

8 Geneva Convention, Article 49.

9 Javier Solana in an interview with Der Spiegel, October 19, 2004.

Arieh Stav is the editor of Nativ. The reader can find a more comprehensive analysis of the Jewish pathology in his book The Israeli Death Wish, Modan Publishers, 1998 (Hebrew).

Friday, April 01, 2005

Column: What Now?

So what happens in Israel now that the budget vote is secure and the referendum has been voted down? I am reminded of what the Rabbis said in the Talmud; “Let the redemption come but I don’t want to see it.”

The Talmud Sanhedrin is full of dire warnings about the days preceding the redemption if the Jewish People do not return to Hashem and keep the Torah. Those passages are concentrated around pages 97 and 98 in the tractate.

Of course, to go into this subject and to bring down quotes that evoke trepidation and fear, it is necessary to answer a few preliminary questions.

The first question is about the presumption about the time we are in. Are these days really the days preceding the redemption as I presume in the first paragraph?

One might ask even more fundamentally, what is the redemption of the Jewish People and will it ever happen or is it merely a fantasy?

A further question involves the nature of the Talmud and the Rabbis quoted there. Is what they said 2,000 years ago of any relevance to us today? Why should we be concerned about warnings made so long ago?

That many books have been written addressing these questions is a fact that I won’t allow deter me in trying to make some sense of perhaps these most important questions and issues in an effort to lay a foundation for quoting the Talmud. I make the effort for the sake of those that haven’t heard these questions and for the sake of those who suffer the misunderstanding of their own people with regard to them daily and sometimes harshly. Now, with the threat of Jews of faith being expelled from their homes by other Jews clearly at the doorstep, there is a necessity for non-believing Jews of good will to look at and see and learn and try to understand what makes the believing Jew tick. It is the responsibility, with this grievous decree at the threshold of implementation, for every Jew of good will to think very seriously about where he as an individual and a Jew stands on the questions I raised and many others.

The very nature of the Jewish People and the Jewish State hinge on these issues and questions and the very fate of the Jewish People may rest on the question of whether these questions are asked.

Is there a G-d? Does he really exist? Are the Jews who believe in Him and in the promise of the Land of Israel to them by the Almighty good Jews and good people or are they dangerous fanatics? Is holding onto the Land of Israel by the Jewish People a fulfillment of Devine command and will or is it the flash point for global destruction?

The time has come to think deeply about these issues and to ask these questions. Ask your Rabbi and if he or she doesn’t have good answers to your hardest questions then go ask another Rabbi. Go to a yeshiva if you have to and ask your hardest questions and do it fast, because sitting on the sidelines and doing nothing is not good enough when Jews are about to be expelled from there homes in Israel by a tyrant that has lied to the electorate about his platform and is poised to destroy the communities of those very people who put him in power – people who like those who voted with them for Sharon are the majority in this country regardless of the nonsense that leftists and their pollsters might have you believe.

It is simply not good enough to take a comfortable position at this time. It is a time for questions – and as my space runs out here, I realize that I have answered none of them and have strayed wildly from my subject. Perhaps it is best. Perhaps it is better to ask a few of the so many questions that must be asked by American Jews who still have a voice and influence both in America and in Israel – a voice that is being denied the Jews of Israel by a tyrant and a hostile world press.

Maybe next week I will return to the warnings in tractate Sanhedrin. I hope that by then at least some of you will be touched by my words and make an effort to understand a little better Jews that are different from you – how they think, what they feel, and why they want so desperately to hold onto the Land of Israel.