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Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I received the following essay by email from the author:


by Ari Bussel

At one point, someone will be reading this Collection of Postcards. That person would not have known us. In fact, we will be long dead. Many things would have happened in the world between then and now. It may be months, years, decades or even a century from present time. This Postcard is for that person.

Things with which we are very familiar today, thus consider obvious, will be complete unknowns as the dust of history covers over them. Some phrases may not be understood, and references may seem disconnected. This Postcard, although it may not be discovering anything “new” to our readers, is designed to provide an overview of the past 15 days, in which a seminal event in the collapse of Israel has taken place.

For the benefit of our future reader, let us re-cap these events. Our current-day readers are invited to join this short journey, possibly to find new angles shed on the chain of events with which you are very familiar. As each of our conclusions is presented, please use your most brilliant knife to dissect and verify them for yourself.

Two weeks ago today, a Turkish convoy of terror against Israel was approaching Gaza, intend on reaching the shores despite an Egyptian-Israeli naval blockade. The convoy, a Flotilla of Lies, was made of concerned human right activists who hate Israel and everything for which she stands and a group of mercenaries and known terrorists on the lead vessel, the Mavi Marmara.

Israel was determined to prevent the vessels from arriving Gaza. She was justified in both substance – preventing armaments reaching Gaza – and form – international law allows Israel to detain the convoy whose stated objective was to breach the blockade.

Despite numerous reports in which some members of the Convoy of Terror against Israel vouched to become martyrs, Israel boarded the first six vessels apparently expecting subdued protest. Some say that the United States forbade Israel to take necessary action, others blame Turkey for giving Israel false and misleading intelligence. Still others go further and claim an intelligence failure, although much was available from open sources.

Israel is a sovereign country with means at her disposal, such as intelligence gathering. Irrespective of where the finger may be pointed, it was Israel’s responsibility to ensure her people had the correct directive: Take over the ships at whatever cost. Prepare for the worse – be it explosives or radioactive materials on board, a mob whose intention is to murder and be killed or any other scenario – and hope for a better outcome.

Israeli soldiers and specifically her naval elite commandos know how to carry a mission decisively. However, the Israel Defense Forces can only go as far as the political establishment allows. Here, it seems, the political establishment had terribly erred in the directive and narrow leeway it provided, although it stood solidly behind the IDF once the extent of the failure became evident.

Like sheep to the slaughter the commandos were sent. As they embarked the Mavi Marmara from the helicopters, the terrorists who gathered below wearing gas masks lynched them, threw the wounded off the deck, took pictures of the bleeding soldiers for later propaganda purposes and attempted to tie the ropes from the helicopters to the vessel in an attempt to cause them to crash.

The enemy was well prepared with weapons and a determination to murder and win at all costs. Nine of its members died, and Israel is now being blamed for the deaths and for not expressing deep enough remorse for what happened. Seven Israeli soldiers were wounded, some critically. WHY? Could an overpowering force, better planning or a different approach have prevented this episode?

Israel has often been criticized for collateral damage. In Lebanon and in Gaza, as well as in Bethlehem, Muslim terrorists prefer to use children and civilians as human shields. They hide in places of worship and in bunkers directly below hospitals or schools. They use ambulances (supposedly neutral aid by the UN) and UN buildings as launching pads for rockets. Later Israel is blamed.

Simply put: if they do not grab children as shields, the chances of these children getting in harm’s way become nonexistent.

Likewise here, there was no intention of actually getting aid to Gaza. Aid flows in by hundreds of truckloads every single week. The group of humanitarians on board the Flotilla of Lies cares little about the Muslims hijacked by Hamas, Hizbollah and Fatah. Blinded by hatred, all they care is to harm Israel. This end justifies for them all means.

The attempt was to end the blockade, and the organizers have succeeded beyond their wildest expectations.

First, Egypt has opened the border to Gaza for essentially an indefinite, free flow of goods and people. New humanitarian missions to Gaza are welcomed via Egypt. In a few days time, it might be an Iranian aid delegation. Second, the President of the United States has put the full force of his office behind easing the blockade and finding other alternatives for lifting it altogether. Third, the International Community, now a bit relaxed after an immediate blitz of condemnation of Israel and breaking diplomatic ties with her, is urging an end of the blockade, possibly supported by an international oversight.

The International Community has previously managed to bring a temporary end to the Second War in Lebanon. Supposedly, UN peacekeeping forces oversee to this day cessation of flow of missiles and other advance armaments via Syria to Hizbollah in Lebanon. “Supposedly,” only on paper. In practice, Hizbollah is better armed today than in 2006. Israel is again at a point where she, and she alone, will protect her citizens. She must not count on anyone else or on empty promises from the International Community.

International outcry and promises are meaningless, other than causing further damage to the Jewish State. What will the international community do when thousands of rockets are launched again from Lebanon into Israel? Pass another UN resolution or just stand and clap as Israelis are targeted for being Jewish, for having the nerve to exist in the land of their forefathers?

More Failures

Imagine a group of several hundred self-declared “peace activists” and “humanitarians” apprehended after knowingly breaking the law and endangering the lives of many. After a short reception at an air-conditioned processing center, they are sent back to a heroes welcome oversees.

No consequences to one’s actions. No rule of law. On the contrary, this only strengthens the perpetrators’ success: now hundreds of emissaries spread around the world to continue the campaign of malice against the Jewish State.

How about the costs of the operation? Neither the vessel owners nor the passengers were held responsible. Even more egregious, Israel forwarded all the “humanitarian aid” (including expired medication) to Gaza on her own account.

As much as I would have wanted to write about Israel’s miraculous recovery and proper response, she did not go on the offensive, forgetting that the best defense is to attack. Instead, she capitulated.

Will anyone take Israel seriously now? The enemy is preparing future flotillas, knowing how successful this one was in bringing Israel to her knees.

Israel is embroiled in launching an investigation with international observers. If only she defined the goals of such a committee properly. It should go along the lines: Why has Israel not responded with greater force? Why did she endanger her soldiers’ lives? Why did she not preempt the attack, given the enemy’s intentions were known weeks in advance? What would be different with the next Flotilla?

Israel might have forgotten Judge Goldstone and his report. GUILTY! It matters not what Israel does, she will be found guilty time after time. Her soldiers and top political leaders will be barred from landing in the UK and other friendly countries for fear they will be arrested and charged.

Under such circumstances, the only beneficial purpose of an investigation is to get to the root cause of all the failures and have them corrected. In the military, one would go through a process of debriefing followed by implementation of the conclusions drawn. Israel needs to undergo the same process.

Israel uses gloves made of the finest silk. She continues to deliver hundreds of truckloads of humanitarian supply to Gaza. She is now re-writing what is permitted and disallowed to enter Gaza. Will she ever do anything differently?

The “siege” and “blockade” were designed to prevent the unrestricted flow of armaments and cement, metals and other materials necessary to build bunkers, rockets and explosives, while permitting food, medicine and other basic needs. But the flow has not diminished, most advanced weaponry are already in Gaza and even the price of cement has dropped drastically indicating supply is not restricted as in the past.

What should Israel do now that the free flow into Gaza has both intensified and become a cornerstone of Hamas’ success? Israel should conquer Gaza and make it into a demilitarized area. Any provocation must be responded to immediately with force. But Israel, we know, in unable to do so. She does not have the will.

With Hizbollah in the North and Hamas in the South East, will Israel be able to extract the price necessary to allow her to conduct a war in the other fronts, with a clear aim at winning? Today she is not ready. She is too weak from within. A day will come when she will be hurting so badly she will have no other choice. The only question is whether or not she will still have enough strength to take these last actions or will she be overcome beforehand.

It is Israel’s hesitation and lack of determination that worries me most. Israel is held, and holds herself, to higher standards than anyone else on this earth. A day of reckoning is before us when Israel will have to answer: Does she prefer to be just and slaughtered or remain alive with her enemies dead? For me, the path is clear, there are no two options, just one.

American Jewry

More worrisome to me are not the failures of Israel but the rude awakening in the United States. The Flotilla of Lies was much more than a convoy of terror against Israel. It brought to the surface the great distance between American Jewry and Israel.

What the Mavi Marmara has shown is that American Jewry has detached itself from the Jewish State. American Jewry as a whole has joined the world community, ignoring facts and reality, calling Israel to surrender to her enemies.

The Enemies, let us be clear, are the Palestinians who call for the destruction of the Jewish State. Why would anyone willfully submit is beyond me.

Peace Now and J Street, two Jewish-led, “Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace” organizations symbolize American Jewry’s detachment from reality. At every opportunity they stand against Israel, reminding Israel to give in to her enemies’ wishes. They promote a “two state solution,” a “peace with the Palestinians” and the right to criticize Israel. In effect, they delegitimize and dehumanize Israel and destabilize her position.

Surprisingly, they enjoy the support of some of the Israeli diplomatic staff in the USA, although the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has previously taken action to distance itself at least from J Street. Another mixed signal from Israel. The White House stands firm with its unwavering support of these “Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace” camps and the Palestinians right to their own country with Jerusalem its capital, while the Israeli diplomatic corps is smarter than its bosses in Jerusalem.

Israel manages to err every step of the way. She submits to the wishes of the American President, the World Community and her critics from without and within. When she stops worrying about image and embraces survival, possibly she will be more respected. Until such a day, there is little hope that Israel will prevail. She has become too accustomed to capitulation.


In the series “Postcards from Israel—Postcards from America,” Ari Bussel and Norma Zager invite readers to view and experience an Israel and her politics through their eyes, an Israel visitors rarely discover.

This point—and often—counter-point presentation is sprinkled with humor and sadness and attempts to tackle serious and relevant issues of the day. The series began in 2008, appears both in print in the USA and on numerous websites and is followed regularly by readership from around the world.

© “Postcards from Israel—Postcards from America,” June, 2010

Contact: aribussel@gmail.com


At 10:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, that was refreshingly depressing.


At 10:48 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Yup, Carl. Israel is no longer even fighting back. And the vise around the Jewish State grows ever tighter.

What could go wrong indeed


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