Monday, January 06, 2014
Peddlers of illusions
Dr. Haim Shine
The former head of the Mossad, Meir Dagan, has argued that it is feasible to relinquish the Jordan Valley, which in his opinion has no security value. In the same breath he also explains why the Palestinians cannot be trusted because they do not customarily honor agreements -- quite the contradiction.
Other former senior officials have preached to us over the years that we can give up the Golan Heights, that we can live with a nuclear Iran and that a unified Jerusalem is of no national importance.
Dagan, the man who for years succeeded with his own bare hands, under the command of Ariel Sharon, to obliterate the terrorist threat from the Gaza Strip, has grown weary. He belongs to a small group of generals and Mossad and Shin Bet chiefs, all retired, who have decided to sell the public an illusion of peace and have begun a fear campaign that warns against Israel becoming a binational state. They are only ignoring the two million additional Palestinians, who will settle in the new state they yearn to create.
Hassidic Jews tell the tale of a fox that beckoned a white dove to come down from the tree, to walk together hand in hand because the Messiah had arrived, and with him the long-awaited peace. Suddenly there was a loud bark and the fox scurried away. After a few minutes the fox returned and again asked the dove to come down to him. The dove asked him why he ran at the sound of the bark, and the fox answered that the barkers had not heard that the Messiah had come and that peace was upon the world. What can we do when our neighbors have not yet heard that peace is at the gate, and they continue to incite against Israel and its people.
It's easy to understand U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who is propagating the optimistic atmosphere of an imminent peace agreement. After all, he is a guest in the Middle East and will learn the hard and agonizing way of the manners of conduct in our region. I cannot understand senior Israeli officials, who stood at the forefront of the battle against terrorism and Arab armies, people who are supposed to know how to read the geo-political map, yet incessantly tell us that if we would only give up and retreat, our enemies would become our friends, side by side in peace and harmony.
Modern Zionism is an impressive movement, the most successful and just of the 20th century. A small group of dreamers and visionaries led to the redemption of a people in their homeland after an extended and tumultuous exile. The path toward redemption was arduous, painful and demanded immense sacrifice of life and spirit. Many of those first immigrants could not shoulder the weight, became tired and returned to their countries of origin. But the few who did persevere continued to dig, layer after layer, until they reached the pristine water that cultivates the root of our Jewish consciousness. Those who dreamed realized that dream, and those who grew tired -- remained with their loss.
The Jewish people throughout its existence have proven an extraordinary resoluteness. The Apostle Paul, Saint Augustine, the Prophet Muhammad, Martin Luther and many others believed it would be possible to convert the Jews, and each failed. After each failure they became protagonists of anti-Semitism. Jewish mothers, fathers and children, with their supreme heroism, were prepared to pay any price to continue living as Jews. Only after finally returning to our homeland did we find among us those who are impatient and have lost their self-confidence.
The strength of any leadership and its ability to fight for justice depend on the steadfastness of the public. Knowing many Israelis, I can say with confidence that the Israeli government can stand fast when insisting on our national rights and security. These former senior officials cannot be allowed to intimidate a smart, wise and strong people.