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Thursday, July 12, 2007

The real battle between right and left in Israel

This may be the most important article I have ever published on this blog and I am sorry to say that many of you who have never lived in Israel are likely not to understand it or to react in disbelief. I will tell you that this article drips with the truth.

Many of you may recall the uproar caused by former Knesset Speaker and current French 'businessman' Avram Burg last month in which he compared Israel to Nazi Germany. This article explains that Avram Burg is not atypical of the Israeli left and why it is important to understand who the Israeli left is and what it represents.

Hat Tip: Marilyn C.
But what many seem to be missing is that Burg's views are not renegade. They are representative of the Israeli left. Burg's reasoning is the same as those petitioning for more EU control of Israel's affairs and for evacuations from Biblical Jewish territories and holy sites. Burg comes from the school of people like Geneva Initiative leader Yossi Beilin, Labor Chairman Ehud Barak, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and their ideological godfather and mentor, Shimon Peres, who officially becomes Israeli president later this week.

So many around the world wrongly believe the conflict in Israel is about territory. They think the Israeli left mainly wants to cede land to the Palestinians while the right stands against land giveaways.

In actuality, the main Israeli political battle is between a left that wants Israel to be a secular, European-like state, and the religious right, which sees Israel as a Jewish country defined by national Zionism. It's a battle that will ultimately determine the future of Israel.

Growing up in a Jewish community in the United States, I was fortunate enough not to have experienced the kind of anti-Semitism that permeates places like France and, increasingly, the UK. But European anti-Semitism pales in comparison to its venomous counterparts in Israel. That's right, Israel.

It wasn't until I moved here to open WND's Jerusalem bureau in February 2005 that I fully understood what anti-Semitism is. The hatred many secular, leftist Israelis feel for the religious is so deep I cannot do it justice with words. The secular leftist media routinely demonize the religious. I've seen the way secular Jewish security forces brutally squash legal religious Jewish protests at the direction of leftist politicians. I've borne witness the past few years to the enactment of institutional anti-Semitic laws, such as deeming religious Jewish construction in strategic territory illegal while ignoring rampant illegal Arab building; or denying Jews the right to pray at or even visit Judaism's holiest site, the Temple Mount, during most hours of the day.

This great divide extends itself to the streets. Religious and secular cities are mostly separated. Just try talking to a secular leftist Jew in Tel Aviv about religion and God and watch his or her face wither in anger.

But many Israeli leftists politicians and activists are more enterprising than the average leftist Israeli. They disguise their hatred of Judaism with specific political policies. Just like Islamic terrorists who claim their attacks are aimed at ending America's military presence in the Middle East or our support for Israel when the jihadists' real goal is worldwide domination of Islam, leftist Israeli leaders state their aim is to create a Palestinian state when their true intention is the establishment of a secular Israeli country by stabbing at the lifeline of religious Zionism with evacuations of the West Bank – the biblical heartland and center of the religious Zionists movement – and with the division of religious Jerusalem and stationing of foreign troops on Israel's borders.

...

Some believe Burg could have become Israel's prime minister. What if he had achieved Israel's highest office before he let loose his real beliefs? Why isn't anyone asking whether Israel's current prime minister, who seeks to evacuate the Jewish West Bank and sections of Jerusalem, shares Burg's anti-Jewish views? What about Ehud Barak, who as prime minister in 2000 announced at Camp David he was ready to cede the Temple Mount and who offered PLO leader Yasser Arafat a state within rocket range of Israel's population centers? And what about all the Israeli leftist politicians who regularly petition for placing EU or U.N. troops in Gaza or the West Bank?

Sure, some Israeli leftist politicians, including Beilin and some from Olmert's party, condemned Burg, but I believe they did so because they were angry at him for exposing them.

The admitted anti-Jewish Burg once held some of the most prestigious leadership positions in world Jewry. Why isn't anyone questioning whether top leaders of Jewish organizations now share his beliefs?

Perhaps Burg's revelations about the left help explain why, as I reported, the leaders of the Jewish National Fund, which collects hundreds of millions of dollars in Jewish donor funds for the stated purpose of Jewish settlement, has been ceding Jewish-owned properties to Arabs in key sections of Jerusalem and other Israeli cities designated by the left for evacuation. The JNF, which proudly posts pictures of leftist leader Peres on its newspaper advertisements, has been allowing Arab squatters to live completely illegally on millions of dollars worth of Jewish-owned land purchased for Jewish settlement.

Perhaps Burg's admissions might also help explain why, as I reported, mainstream U.S. Jewish groups, including the leadership of United Jewish Communities, one of the most financially endowed Jewish organizations on the planet, neglected the plight of religious Jewish refugees evacuated from Gaza in 2005 who didn't receive most compensation promised to them by the Israeli government.

The uprooted national religious Gaza Jews still live in terrible conditions in refugee camps and suffer from low employment and a host of other problems. The UJC largely ignored the Gaza Jews while instead funding initiatives with Jewish money to aid Israeli Arabs. The esteemed Jewish organization finally started helping a bit after they were exposed and angry Jewish donors demanded action to help the Jews of Gaza.
Read it all. And weep.

7 Comments:

At 2:58 PM, Blogger M. Simon said...

I was reading this fine article on Jewish Genius and have come to the conclusion that the lefties are not smart enough to be Jews.

I say this from a secular Jewish point of view (Reform Judaism).

I'm kind of the odd man out in my congregation though. I support Zionism without reservation.

 
At 3:44 PM, Blogger Michael said...

Wow, what an article.
I might be, personally, secular, conservative/masorti observant, and only semi-religious inside, but on this one, I am firmly with the Religious Zionists.

What's the point in a Jewish State, if you lose the Judaism?

 
At 8:30 PM, Blogger NY Nana said...

Brilliant post, Carl.

Quite an edumacation. The enemy within remains a clear and present danger to Israel. That his father was Josef Burg zt"l? Thanks for the reminder.

We have not given tzedakah to the JNF for years. There are far more worthy places.

I have a feeling that your post will open a great many eyes in the Diaspora...those who look upon Olmerde and Peres, especially, as the biggest problems for Israel, besides lousy PR firms.

 
At 11:32 PM, Blogger JP said...

In a Medieval guild town, only member of the guild can own property or do business in the town. Everyone else has to either work for a guild member or do business by license of a guild member. What we have here, in brief, is a medieval guild town called the State of Israel. One third of Israel’s economy (competent estimates run as high as 40%) is controlled by 19 families. Five of those families control 2/3 of that. Then, by pyramiding holding companies (companies that control other companies that control yet more companies), everyone and everything works for them, directly or indirectly, including the government. They control the “public” companies and they buy control of them when they are “privatized.” They also have a monopoly on the real estate, so rents are high, meaning that you work for them even if you are “independent.” Isn’t socialism wonderful?

What a group of us found out more than ten years ago, when we were trying to facilitate business between Israelis and “Palestinians” was that nothing happened without the express consent of Arafat and that he did not consent to the establishment of any business with Israelis except by members of the guild; i.e., his friends. We found out more. Early on in the Oslo process, an Israeli merchant, named Ohana, went to Nablus to buy eggs and was murdered in the market in Nablus. Rabin’s reaction was that he had no business going there to buy cheap eggs (just in case you thought that’s what peace is about) but on the SAME DAY, Shimon Peres was in Amman negotiating a multi billion dollar trade deal for the Histadrut companies and the kibbutzim. More recently, on 11 July 2007, it was reported that Hamas would no longer allow importation of Israeli fruits and vegetables into the Gaza strip. That hurt the kibbutzim, which have done hundreds of millions of dollars of business with the Palestinian Authority in the last 14 years. The next day, PA manufacturers and kibbutz industries announced that they were in conference to find ways to increase trade between Israel and the PA (i.e., the Fatah controlled part).

In plain English, the goal is, “you enforce our guild’s monopoly on your market and we will enforce your guild’s monopoly on ours.” Daniel Doron has found that the Histadrut companies and the kibbutzim have had to be bailed out every decade. In the “peace” process, they have found a new way to permanently subsidize them. The 7,000 capitalist farmers (among those called “piggy capitalists,” in Shimon Peres’ words) of Gush Katif used to produce 65% or Israel’s export quality tomatoes. Eighty thousand heavily subsidized kibbutz farmers produce only about 15% and the rest are produced by Arabs. The only way the Histadrut companies and the kibbutzim can compete against small producers is to freeze them out of markets wherever possible. In the good old days, they could do it by denying employment in the Histadrut companies or contracts with them to anyone who sent their children to religious schools. (They are the ones who then complain of “religious coercion" because they can’t go to the beach by bus on Shabbat.) There is, of course, another way: destroy them. Is that the real reason for the exile from Gush Katif and the northern Shomron without compensation? Is that the reason that Peres and the Kadima government are hell-bent to destroy the Jewish settlements and the Jewish economy of Judea and Samaria? It would also destroy religious Zionism for at least a generation. Is that the reason? Or is that just a plus from their point of view. Isn’t peace grand?

There is something you can do about it. Join up with Hashkem (www.hashkem.org). It's the only game plan in town.

Jack Golbert

 
At 11:43 PM, Blogger Plum said...

Deuteronomy 1:21 KJV
Behold , the LORD thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it, as the LORD God of thy fathers hath said unto thee; fear not, neither be discouraged .

Psalm 37 KJV
Joshua one nine

Shalom. Dear brothers, I cannot possibly imagine or comprehend the complications in Jerusalem but from a simple perspective it is simple, to catch your shadow all you have to do is stand still and trust your whole heart and mind to the Lord God, allow Him to fight the political battles of this world, It's His fight and promise to His beloved children. In the Holy name of the Lord God. Shalam
In my prayers Andrew Hopgood.

 
At 11:43 PM, Blogger Plum said...

Deuteronomy 1:21 KJV
Behold , the LORD thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it, as the LORD God of thy fathers hath said unto thee; fear not, neither be discouraged .

Psalm 37 KJV
Joshua one nine

Shalom. Dear brothers, I cannot possibly imagine or comprehend the complications in Jerusalem but from a simple perspective it is simple, to catch your shadow all you have to do is stand still and trust your whole heart and mind to the Lord God, allow Him to fight the political battles of this world, It's His fight and promise to His beloved children. In the Holy name of the Lord God. Shalam
In my prayers Andrew Hopgood.

 
At 11:44 PM, Blogger Plum said...

Deuteronomy 1:21 KJV
Behold , the LORD thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it, as the LORD God of thy fathers hath said unto thee; fear not, neither be discouraged .

Psalm 37 KJV
Joshua one nine

Shalom. Dear brothers, I cannot possibly imagine or comprehend the complications in Jerusalem but from a simple perspective it is simple, to catch your shadow all you have to do is stand still and trust your whole heart and mind to the Lord God, allow Him to fight the political battles of this world, It's His fight and promise to His beloved children. In the Holy name of the Lord God. Shalam
In my prayers Andrew Hopgood.

 

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