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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Vilifying Jews who oppose the 'peace process'

In the mind of Haaretz's MJ Rosenberg, writing for the leftist blog TPM Cafe, Yigal Amir acted for all opponents of Israel's national suicide when he shot Yitzchak Rabin twelve years ago, because all those who oppose the Oslo 'peace process' oppose peace. Indeed, his views are reminiscent of those of Yitzchak Rabin, who referred to all those who opposed the Oslo fiasco as "oyvei hashalom" (the enemies of peace).

If you think I'm exaggerating, I'm not:
The ugly thing to which I refer is not just the assassination itself. The killing of Rabin was the worst disaster in the history of the Jewish State. Its repercussions are felt every day. I believe that had Rabin lived, Oslo would have ended with an Israeli-Palestinian peace treaty and a resolution of the conflict. (By the last years of Oslo, there was virtually no terrorism in Israel thanks to IDF-PLO security cooperation.) [The last years of Oslo were 1996-99 when Binyamin Netanyahu was Prime Minister and - with the unfortunate exception of the Wye Agreement - refused to make concessions to the 'Palestinians' unless they fulfilled their obligations under their agreements. The 'cooperation' came in the Barak years and more than one 'Palestinian' turned on and murdered his Israeli counterpart when the Oslo War started in September 2000. CiJ] The assassin and his friends also believed that Rabin would achieve peace which is why they wanted him dead.

But even uglier than the assassination is the nauseating fact that Yigal Amir is today a hero to a portion of the Israeli public, especially the ideological settlers. He has been treated with kid gloves by the Israeli judicial and prison system, which not only allowed him to marry while in jail but also allowed him to father a child. This week the assassin’s son was circumcised in prison so that the proud father could attend.

This is crazy stuff. Can you imagine if Oswald had lived, and been found guilty, that Americans would tolerate for a minute the idea that he would either be allowed to father a child from prison or attend that child's christening?

Of course not. But then there was no public lionizing of Oswald, or Sirhan, or James Earl Ray. Yes, there were people who hated their victims and no doubt some wanted them dead, but those who celebrated the murder of Kennedys and King did so very very quietly.

Not so in Israel.
That's right "not so in Israel." If Samir al-Kuntar, who murdered a father in front of his four-year old daughter on a beach and then slammed the little girl's head against the rocks until she was dead, has been allowed to marry three times, why not Amir? If hundreds of Arab terrorists who have murdered hundreds of Israelis and maimed thousands more are regularly released from Israel's jails, why not Amir? With all due respect to Yitzchak Rabin (and I found his murder revolting), was his blood any redder than that of any of Israel's hundreds of terror victims?

In a sense, it is not surprising that occupation produces this kind of ugliness. By definition, occupation coarsens the occupier.

Furthermore, an occupation that started as the retention of lands won in a defensive war evolved, once the settlement movement began, into a fierce religious nationalist movement that is less about love of Israel than hating those perceived as Israel’s enemies, especially fellow Israelis and Jews.

No, it's not the 'occupation' that makes us 'coarse' in Rosenberg's eyes. It's watching our friends and neighbors be murdered by the 'Palestinians.' Nearly everyone I know - including me - knows someone who was a victim of 'Palestinian' terror in the last seven years. I'm tired of watching people drop like flies around me. I'm tired of being afraid every time I get on a city bus or go downtown or drive my car over the green line that I'm going to get shot or blown up or have stones thrown at my vehicle (which, contrary to the left's view of the world, can be every bit as deadly as being shot). I'm tired of wondering every time I hear three ambulance sirens whether there has been another terror attack. I'm tired of hearing the mournful music on the radio and waiting for the lists of names to hear whether there was anyone we knew this time.
These new nationalists, for the most part, have little use for the State of Israel and its leaders. Their attachment is to the Land of Israel, a place located in the Bible, in their hearts and in the West Bank settlements. They have as little use for Tel Aviv and Haifa as they do for Cairo and Damascus.
I have plenty of use for Tel Aviv and Haifa - Israel's two big leftist metropolises. They are part of the land of Israel. Rosenberg - like 'supermodel' Bar Refaeli - would be as happy to have the Zionist state be in Uganda. But yes, Hebron, Shchem (Nablus), Bethlehem and Jerusalem all have greater holiness than Tel Aviv or Haifa, because of events that occurred in them in biblical times.
These are the Israeli counterparts of the ballyhooed Islamo-Fascists--although the people so up-in-arms about Muslim lunatics tend not to see the similarities with their Jewish brethren, and vice versa. That is one of the remarkable things about extremists. They never recognize their mirror image in the people they hate most.
That's funny because I don't recall seeing any Jewish suicide bombers. I don't recall seeing religious Jews behave as fascists. I don't see any religious Jews telling their Muslim or Christian neighbors to convert or die.
One of the many things these fanatics have in common is that their biggest fear is Arab-Israeli reconciliation. That is nothing new. Following Yitzhak Rabin's assassination in 1995, the far right in Israel organized to defeat Prime Minister Shimon Peres in order to ensure that the Oslo process had died with Rabin. At the same time, Hamas terrorists began a campaign of suicide bombing to achieve the same goal. Hamas succeeded when Peres lost the election.
This is so wrong. First of all, if Peres had any political sense, he would have called a new election immediately after the assassination and won in a landslide. The polls put him at 70% and more the morning after. But he didn't. Then when the 'Palestinians' committed a series of suicide bombings in early 1996 Peres did nothing. Eventually, he called elections. And even then people thought Peres would win right up until a day or two before the elections. In fact, his own Labor party thought he won the night of the elections. Who can forget Uzi Baram thanking the Arabs for putting Peres over the top, and their horror the next morning when they discovered around 7:00 AM that Netanyahu had taken the lead because he was good for the Jews?
The bottom line is that the status quo is a disease that is destroying two societies. If you support Israel, you have no choice but to support what Olmert, Abbas and Rice are trying to do. The alternative is supporting continuation of the occupation and the death of the Zionist dream.
NO. The bottom line is that all Israelis want to live in peace and tranquility. Giving a 'Palestinian' state reichlet control of the high ground overlooking Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Ben Gurion Airport is suicidal. The 'Palestinians' have never fulfilled a single obligation they undertook in any agreement and have never once abandoned their desire to replace the Jewish state with a 'Palestinian' one from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

If Mr. Rosenberg would stop slandering his fellow Jews long enough to get his head out of the sand, he might even be able to face reality.

Update 10:52 PM

James Wimberley at The Reality Based Community comments on the availability of conjugal relations in prisons:

My Russian heroine Princess Maria Volkonskaya was allowed conjugal relations with her imprisoned husband in Siberia in the 1830s. (I think this was in the regular prison in Petropavlovsk not the mining camp in Chita where he started.)

According to Baroness Stern, speaking in a 2002 debate in the British House of Lords:

Private family visits - sometimes called conjugal visits—[...] are available to prisoners and their families in Sweden, Spain, Portugal, Russia, the Netherlands, Canada and some states of the United States.
On Canada, see more here. It's not apparently the practice in Italy - but that didn't stop one Camorra capo from fathering a child from his cell by artificial insemination. Most liberal is Mexico, or at least Mexico City, where conjugal visits are now arranged for gay couples.

Conjugal visits seem sound penal policy to me on practical grounds: they keep alive the family ties that are the prisoner's best chance of rehabilitation, reduce the general level of misery and tension inside, and presumably lower the risk of prison rape and STDs. You can make a human rights case on the right to marry. It's thinner for once than the utilitarian one, but does raise the question of principle: why not? Cons are delinquent citizens, not outcasts.

Wimberley - maybe inadvertently - has hit the nail on the head. For Rosenberg and his ilk, Amir didn't murder a man - he murdered peace. And for that, Amir deserves - in Rosenberg's mind - to be an outcast. If Israel had a death penalty for anything other than being a Nazi, Amir would no longer be with us. He would have been executed faster than Samir al-Kuntar or Marwan Barghouti.


At 2:50 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

What a disgusting article by MJ Rosenberg. The more I learn about Israeli politics, the worse I feel for the country. I know there are people who don't really appreciate their country enough, and actually drink the Palestinian Kool-Aid, but still, it is quite depressing. Is there any hope? How are so many Israeli's fooled by the piece by piece plan? All my Jewish friends in Israel are right-wing Likud leaning people, and they are quite young (16-25). So maybe there is some hope?

I cannot believe he used the word "occupation" ugh...

At 11:10 AM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


Yes, it was a disgusting article, but very typical of the left here. Perhaps I should run more opinion articles from Haaretz so you guys understand what we're up against. The leftists ALL use the word occupation (in Hebrew it's called kibbush).

In general, the young Jews here are more to the right than the general population and that is good news. Unfortunately, our needs are immediate. There's hope, but only if we get through this period. The long term looks much better. And the left knows it and that's why they're trying to strike now.

The other thing I wanted you to see was that the left doesn't treat Amir as if he assassinated Rabin but as if he murdered PEACE. That's why they continue to try to use the assassination to pound the right. Rosenberg's continuing delusion that if only Rabin had lived, we would have entered Nirvana hand in hand with Arafat is VERY typical of the left. You would be stunned by the kinds of interviews that get conducted on the radio here in late October and early November every year.

At 4:50 AM, Blogger bsidewinzagain said...

its funny how mj has hundreds of comments and you have 2. you spent all that time writing and no one reads it. you might as well stick to being an mj fan, and not blogging yourself.

At 4:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And what do you think of Obadiah Shoher's arguments against the peace process ( samsonblinded.org/blog/we-need-a-respite-from-peace.htm )?


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