Sunday, October 30, 2005

DreamClash: The Jewish vs. Post-Zionist Civil War

Israel today is embattled by the clash of two conflicting, almost mutually-exclusive dreams. The Jewish dream is that of Jews returning to their homeland, and living in a Jewish State. The Post-Zionist dream which brought us the “Oslo accords” is that of a "New Middle East", of where Israel exists as a neutral, universal citizen-state of all its inhabitants, devoid of any predominantly Jewish religious character.

Peres: "There is a radical minority within us -- it is forbidden to let them express their opinions/views over the airwaves and media. They are a grave danger to democracy."

Shimon Peres represents the secular, post-Zionist elite which does not want to hear old-fashioned and radical ideas of the Land of Israel belonging to the Jewish people. When he was asked after losing the 1996 election to Binyamin Netanyahu, "Who Won the Election?” he replied, "The Jews won, and the Israelis lost." This statement embodies the DreamClash.

Israel first chief rabbi, Rav Avraham HaCohen Kook z'tl spoke about the necessity of "milchemet achim" (civil war) under certain circumstances. Before you recoil with shock and horror at the very idea, the issue which Rav Kook was referring to at the time was about shmirat shabbat and the Jewish character of Israel in the 1930’s. I don't believe that Rav Kook meant for this to be a war which, G-d forbid involves the loss of life, but a serious, bloodless engagement to further the dream of a Jewish country in the boundaries of the Land of Israel. While the Geneva Convention dictates the rules of modern warfare, the parameters of a bloodless Jewish "civil war" are dictated by Jewish law.

It’s very poignant to discuss this issue during the current time frame, since the anniversary memorials of Rabin's death are about to echo throughout Israel. The Altelena is a very depressing preliminary example of the DreamClash. The Altelena, an Irgun weapons-boat under the command of Menachem Begin, was fired upon by IDF forces under Rabin's command. Begin ordered Irgun troops to refuse to return fire under any circumstances, and 16 Jewish Irgun fighters were killed in the episode. Begin understood that in a Jewish civil war, there are very clear lines of what is permitted and what is not. Rabin didn't understand, and told Ben-Gurion in 1967 that he would have carried out the attack on the Altelena, even with 20/20 hindsight. He even was quoted as saying "We screwed them [Ifighterster's] on the boat, and we screwed them when they were in the water [swimming to shore]." This apathy continued onwards throughout his leadership during the Oslo accords, when he constantly berated Jewish settlers as “crybabies” after terrorist attacks were directed at Jewish targets, and he was proud to be “Prime Minister of 98% of the country.”

Paragraphs like you the one you just read is exactly what Shimon Peres wants to be forbidden from reaching any media outlet, for it is "a danger to democracy."

At this point, it is important to insert a mandatory disclaimer to prevent (maybe) an overly hysterical backlash from the Israeli police and Criminal Prosecution Office. This article is not advocating or condoning political assassinations.

Unfortunately, what was so clear to Rav Kook and to Menachem Begin about DreamClash is lost on Israel's secular Post-Zionist leadership.

The question is what is really behind the Post-Zionist dream. Is its driving force one of despair and hopelessness that normalization will never be reached in the Middle East, as long as Israel exists as a “Jewish” state? Perhaps it’s loathing for organized religion dates back to the Marxist roots of secular Zionism. Why is a Universal State of no-religion so important to the Post-Zionist dream? Could it not be simpler to be a citizen of any other neutral Western country of the world? Finally, why is there never any soul searching from the Post-Zionist world? It is a dream that is absolute. In 1995 after one of the horrific terrorist attacks, I asked a leftwing friend, “How many buses need to blow up before you admit that the Oslo process was a mistake?” His answer to me was, “there aren’t enough buses on the planet for that to happen.”

The more I hear stories of the Gaza refugee’s treatment by SELA (government’s resettlement, the more its difficult to believe that it’s anything less than intentional cruelty. No real effort was made at all to transplant “communities”, rather appear to deal with each individual family. The government has ignored the communal aspect of the refugee problem it created, and instead of the slightest bit of human empathy, the refugees face unbelievable problems of zero planning for community cohesion, employment, and lack of social services. It is not beyond the realm of fantasy to imagine the government’s behavior within the framework of a larger, more sinister intent.

The Jewish dream of returning to Zion is very different; it contains the basis that the country of the Jews, should be a state first and foremost for the Jewish people. It is not shameful to want a national homeland for the Jewish people, nor racist to grant preferable building rights to Jews. Jewish prayer rights on the Temple Mount are not an issue to be ignored and banned by the Supreme Court. Once it’s clear that Israel is a Jewish State, then it’s logical that preferential treatment be given to its citizens before others.

Is there a possible end-game resolution to DreamClash that won’t rip Israel apart? I believe that although the majority of Israel would prefer a Jewish State over the Post-Zionist alternative, the Post-Zionist adoption of fuzzy rules of battle will result in additional “disengagements”, more cultural and ideological battles, and more denial of civil rights, freedom of speech and prayer.

For 2000 years, Jews have turned towards Israel and Jerusalem in prayer, with the faith that Jews would return and rebuild a Jewish country. During the same 2000 years, Jews also continued their belief in a Messianic arrival.

This probably scares the Post-Zionists more than anything.


YMedad said...

Your quote by Rabin about "screwing" the Altalena people has no real source. Eddi Gazit doesn't give a source. On the other hand, in Dov Goldstein's "Pinkas Sherut", Rabin's ghosted autobiography, there's a quote on p. 538 (I can check it), where he writes that the Irgunists on shore were shouting "Begin's on board" and, he adds, the Palmahniks believed them and opened up with a fierce round of fire with everything they had, a result of all the years of hate. That's a better quote with a source.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

YMedad: I believe a source for the quote is also in Uri Milstein's book "Tik Rabin" attributed to him when he was ambassador to the US.

JoeSettler said...

You missed Peres's other strange comment today.

He denounced IDF operations that are attempting to stop Islamic Jihad activities in Northern Samaria.

Apparently even the concept of defending Israel is now old-fashioned and radical.

Cosmic X said...

No doubt that there are forces among the secular Zionists that would like Israel to be what Rav Kahane called "a Hebrew speaking Portugal." There are even some that would like us to be an English/German/whatever speaking Portugal.

JoeSettler said...

Shades of Meir Kahane...

For reasons apparently due to
external pressure from someone, the hotel (David's Citadel) where Feiglin was to meet with potential backers broke their contract and refused to let him use their hall.

I remember when they used to do that to Kahane.

Feiglin must have someone worried.

Ze'ev said...

Jameel, great post.

This goes back to the very founding of the State - in the Declaration of Independance, with calls to be both a Jewish and deomcratic state with full equality for everyone...

It doesn't work, and we are going ot have to choose if we are to be a Jewish State of k'chol haGoyim...

Batya said...

The aim of the Zionists was to be a "nation like all others."

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