Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Status Quo Vadis?

 

Just a few days ago, Prime Minister Netanyahu stood before the UN to give what has since been described as a scathing speech, denouncing the world’s silence when it come to Jewish suffering. It was the pause heard around the world, and Bibi did what Bibi does best, by providing powerful quotes and newsworthy sound bites. The essence of the speech was ensuring the safety of Israeli citizens and slamming the international community for their failure to understand Israel’s need to do just that. Netanyahu has uttered those very words many times, and he does so flawlessly with right and might, but that night reality echoed his sentiment in the eeriest manner.

While Bibi was speaking, Eitam and Na’ama Henkin were shot to death in front of four of their children as they were driving near their home in Samaria. A day later, Rabbi Nehemia Lavi and Aharon Banita Bennett were murdered and three other people injured while walking back from the Kotel through the old city, one of the victims a 2-year-old toddler who was shot in the leg. Twelve hours later, before the chaos had a chance to settle, an Israeli teenager was stabbed at a gas station in Jerusalem. In the past three days, four Israelis have been murdered, dozens of Israelis have been injured, 36 terror attacks have been perpetrated against Israel, and many more foiled.

The time for beautiful speeches has come to an end and must be replaced by era of action. Bibi was re-elected on security and strength, and both of these must be promises fulfilled before even more blood runs red on Israeli soil.

In his speech, Benjamin Netanyahu said that as soon as the Palestinians recognize the Jewish State, Israel will recognize Palestine in return. I wonder to myself for whose benefit we play these games of rhetoric? Is it for the benefit of the international community that we pretend we do not know that Fatah and Hamas have no interest in Israel beyond its ultimate destruction? If that is the case, I can inform you that we may as well save our breath for bigger battles. Since the first two murders, I have closely followed the international media as well as the statements from the PA, and their interpretations of last week’s events range from the ridiculous to the sublime with Israel as the one clear culprit and the victims of terror described as “settlers” or worse.

If our constant return to the one-seated table of negotiation is to please the US or the EU, I can also provide solace in saying that the Western world is still engaging in an impressive mix of cognitive dissonance and moral relativism, the US State Department and the EU both releasing statements calling for “restraint on both sides,” seemingly equating our side with the one wielding knifes, creating orphans and shooting toddlers in the leg.

What these statements, reactions and the world’s deafening silence in the face of Jewish suffering shows us is that not only is it time to walk away from the table, it’s time to break furniture and take back the keys to our house. In their statement, the US State Department wrote: We are concerned about mounting tensions in the West Bank and Jerusalem, including the Haram al Sharif/Temple Mount, and call on all sides to take affirmative steps to restore calm and avoid escalating the situation.” And for once, I happen to agree.

After Mahmoud Abba’s inciting speech at the UN on Wednesday, the killer of Rabbi Nehemia Lavi and Aharon Banita Bennett, wrote “every way to protect Al Aqsa’s sanctity is legal,” and the next day Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the United Nations, vowing to preserve the status quo on the Temple Mount and abide by the 1967 agreement. While I respect the Prime Minister’s adherence to contracts, he seems to be the only one showing good will in this matter. Osama bin Laden famously said that when people see a strong horse and a weak horse, they will naturally want to side with the strong horse. We have no time for weakness in this matter, nor any more Jewish lives to give, to appease an international community that not only fails to have our back but happily stabs us in it at their own convenience.

We have sought the way of peace and coexistence since the birth of our state. When our side has perpetrated acts of violence we have condemned, weeded out and decried these actions as the atrocities they are; whereas violence against us has been hailed and celebrated. We need to express and enact the same condemnation against them as we do against us. Actions need consequences, and those need to last until the violence becomes too costly to maintain, their leadership is replaced, and they work toward a path of peace for themselves, rather than have us do the hard work for both of us, the cost of which is carried by just one party.

I call upon Benjamin Netanyahu to act on the words he spoke at the General Assembly, that he will ensure the safety of his citizens in every necessary way, starting with taking control of the mount that is now being used as a flashpoint for the Third Intifada. What we want in life we earn, if we fail then privileges are lost. This applies to Jews in Israel and it should apply to Arabs as well. Words are cheap, but Jewish lives should not be, and the cost of terrorizing an entire society should be high enough for them to be forced dramatically to change the political architecture of theirs.

Bibi spoke so beautifully at the UN, telling all the world that Israel will stand alone if it has to, but after all of that rhetoric, the question remains: Will we conclude that we know enough to start fighting for our lives, or are we going to Rome to be crucified again?

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  1. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive

    Nothing succeeds like success. Nothing fails like failure. Godspeed.

    • #1
    • October 7, 2015, at 3:36 AM PDT
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  2. OkieSailor Member
    OkieSailor Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I read Netanyahu’s speech just now after reading your post. I can offer you no hope that the US will stand with Israel unless/until we elect a new President with the courage and character to do so. But many of our citizens are with you in this fight. I fervently wish I could offer more.

    • #2
    • October 7, 2015, at 3:46 AM PDT
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  3. BrentB67 Inactive

    This well written article is the latest and easily most fascinating I’ve read to date on this phenomena.

    • #3
    • October 7, 2015, at 3:50 AM PDT
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  4. I Walton Member

    The world continues to send money to the PA and pieces of it. How much is involved? Who sends it? What leverage on the flows do we have? How can young people have hope or meaning if the most they can do is elbow in line for begging bowls.

    • #4
    • October 7, 2015, at 5:18 AM PDT
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  5. Concretevol Thatcher

    Annika Hernroth-Rothstein: I wonder to myself for whose benefit we play these games of rhetoric? Is it for the benefit of the international community that we pretend we do not know that Fatah and Hamas have no interest in Israel beyond its ultimate destruction?

    Yes of course it is. I watched Netanyahu at the UN with the southerner’s appreciation of fighting for a lost cause. Why is he even there? No one is listening to him except to laugh at him. I would probably tell them all to go to hell and walk out. He is there to represent his country and go on record defending them I suppose. I hope, like you must, that the rhetorical games end when dealing with realities at home. Israel will be condemned by the “international community” no matter what so they need to take whatever steps are needed at this point.

    • #5
    • October 7, 2015, at 5:28 AM PDT
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  6. Spin Inactive
    Spin Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    So…you are saying it is time for common sense gun laws…?

    • #6
    • October 7, 2015, at 6:17 AM PDT
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  7. Zafar Member

    Annika Hernroth-Rothstein:What we want in life we earn, if we fail then privileges are lost. This applies to Jews in Israel and it should apply to Arabs as well. Words are cheap, but Jewish lives should not be, and the cost of terrorizing an entire society should be high enough for them to be forced dramatically to change the political architecture of theirs.

    Beautifully put, though I’d add that Arab lives (and rights) should not be cheap either.

    Israel’s central issue of being an accepted, normal State hinges on the Palestinians it displaced – how sane is it for Netanyahu to make a grand speech at the UN and then go home and build yet more settlements across the West Bank which makes resolution with those people even harder?

    • #7
    • October 7, 2015, at 6:19 AM PDT
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  8. Concretevol Thatcher

    Zafar: Beautifully put, though I’d add that Arab lives (and rights) should not be cheap either.

    Very true Zafar. First thing would be not to launch rockets from Arab neighborhoods using them as human shields. (I’m not insinuating you condone that by any means)

    • #8
    • October 7, 2015, at 6:22 AM PDT
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  9. BrentB67 Inactive

    Zafar:

    Annika Hernroth-Rothstein:What we want in life we earn, if we fail then privileges are lost. This applies to Jews in Israel and it should apply to Arabs as well. Words are cheap, but Jewish lives should not be, and the cost of terrorizing an entire society should be high enough for them to be forced dramatically to change the political architecture of theirs.

    Beautifully put, though I’d add that Arab lives (and rights) should not be cheap either.

    Then perhaps they should stop wrapping themselves and their children in explosives.

    • #9
    • October 7, 2015, at 6:29 AM PDT
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  10. Zafar Member

    Concretevol:

    Zafar: Beautifully put, though I’d add that Arab lives (and rights) should not be cheap either.

    Very true Zafar. First thing would be not to launch rockets from Arab neighborhoods using them as human shields. (I’m not insinuating you condone that by any means)

    Thank you Concretevol – as I happens I don’t.

    But I think it’s a slightly shady buck passing move (and I’m not saying that you’re doing this) to assign the blame for the deaths of Arab civilians killed by Israelis to the Palestinian organisations whose actions Israel was targeting. It’s like saying that Israeli settlers on the West Bank are responsible for the deaths of their children killed by Palestinians because the settlers took their children to live on stolen land over an occupied people. It confuses the issue, appallingly imho, and it makes no sense.

    • #10
    • October 7, 2015, at 6:41 AM PDT
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  11. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I hope Jews do indeed reclaim the Temple Mount, which is clearly not shared now. But that wouldn’t help with murder rates.

    Eventually, Israel will have to choose more harshly between Jews and Muslims. Israel can only remain a fortress for the world’s Jews if it identifies explicitly as a Jewish state. If that demography and mission are not consistently enforced, if Israel tries to be a faceless ideal like America, then eventually Jews will be politically sidelined by Israeli citizens who don’t share priorities like defending Jews and Jewish holy sites.

    • #11
    • October 7, 2015, at 7:14 AM PDT
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  12. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Annika,

    Rabbanit Chana Henkin has been to our synagogue many times. A tiny women of bubbling energy and good cheer, she created the organization in Israel call Nishmat. They support Torah learning for women.

    It is hard to imagine her at this moment. Her children have been stolen from her by evil people. An Israeli told me over Simchat Torah that Israel may finally employ the death penalty. I told him that I was praying that they would. These evil creatures have committed to murdering all those who their Jihadist hallucinations direct them to. They will not stop and thus the death penalty is completely in order.

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #12
    • October 7, 2015, at 7:33 AM PDT
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  13. Front Seat Cat Member

    To Zafar and others, can anyone please explain to me – I am not Jewish or Arab descent, so I am asking honestly to understand the following:

    1. In all historical records on earth, maps, archaeological finds, etc. outline what and where Israel was 4000 years ago. When the Jews were run out of the homeland, they lived with no country for 2000 years. In 1948, when the world came together and restored the boundaries of Israel back to the Jews, they began to return to their homeland. The property itself was inhabited by Arabs and they co-existed.

    2. The size of Israel in comparison to the entire Arab-inhabited Middle East is the size of Rhode Island, yet they were attacked from all sides by Arabs in 1967? Why?The Temple Mount was part of King Solomon’s Temple destroyed in 70 AD and sacred to the Jews. It pre-dates Muslim rule – yet a large Muslim shrine was built on top of it in 685, not beside or near it.

    My question is why the large Arab world cannot find a place for the Palestinian people to have a state and live in peace? There has never been a separate Palestinian people or state – were they not all Arabs before Arafat?

    Why after repeated attempts by multiple leaders to offer concessions to Palestinian leadership, have all been rejected? Would a separate state really make a difference, given the attitude towards Jewish people? I need a history lesson. Thanks.

    • #13
    • October 7, 2015, at 7:44 AM PDT
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  14. Marion Evans Inactive

    Difficult to envision a peaceful border between a modern liberal economy and a more traditional poorer one. Especially with two different religions, ethnicities etc. The best chance at peace is to first improve the Palestinian economy. Maybe. I am not sure.

    • #14
    • October 7, 2015, at 8:00 AM PDT
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  15. Concretevol Thatcher

    Zafar:

    Concretevol:

    Zafar: Beautifully put, though I’d add that Arab lives (and rights) should not be cheap either.

    Very true Zafar. First thing would be not to launch rockets from Arab neighborhoods using them as human shields. (I’m not insinuating you condone that by any means)

    Thank you Concretevol – as I happens I don’t.

    But I think it’s a slightly shady buck passing move (and I’m not saying that you’re doing this) to assign the blame for the deaths of Arab civilians killed by Israelis to the Palestinian organisations whose actions Israel was targeting. It’s like saying that Israeli settlers on the West Bank are responsible for the deaths of their children killed by Palestinians because the settlers took their children to live on stolen land over an occupied people. It confuses the issue, appallingly imho, and it makes no sense.

    I don’t think it is a stretch to assign some of the blame, if not most, to the people who use civilians as shields and then propagandize their deaths. If you don’t want a hospital/home/mosque attacked or bombed, don’t hide weapons or launch attacks from them. I’m not saying Israel is without blame in all instances but the Palestinians seem at the minimum disingenuous in their efforts to live alongside the Israelis. Don’t whine about poverty and sink your resources into rockets and tunnels. Those tunnels didn’t build themselves and they weren’t cheap.

    What am I missing here? (not a rhetorical question)

    • #15
    • October 7, 2015, at 8:02 AM PDT
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  16. iWe Coolidge
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    By the way, there are things Israel can – and SHOULD – do for its internal defense. And they are relevant for US citizens and Ricochetti as well:

    1: Allow all adult citizens who have no priors to carry a firearm. Open or concealed. Ideally, fingerprint-activated. No prior army service required.

    2: Arrange with a poor nation (Mongolia? Burma?) to take criminals along with a cash payment. $10k would probably do the trick, but most numbers are cheaper than holding people in Israeli prisons. Anyone commits an act that can kill (including throwing stones), and they get exported to a horrible place. If they are underage, export their parents, too.

    • #16
    • October 7, 2015, at 8:03 AM PDT
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  17. Barfly Member

    Arab and Jewish and Black and All Lives Matter, #! [Propitiatory ritual done, he sets aside the cup, dagger, and bell. Turning to sit, he takes up his now cooling coffee …]

    Actually, life has only the value we place on it. Israeli society and its state manifestly places a high value on life, both Arab and Jewish.

    Arab society, especially Palestinian society, evidently places a lower value on life. Their militias regularly attack soft targets to kill and maim all they can, from vipers’ nests festering behind nurses’ skirts and kids’ playgrounds.

    One can marshal balancing factors, I’m sure – things that Arab society invests that value in, that it doesn’t place on life. Nevertheless, it’s plain which society more highly values life.

    • #17
    • October 7, 2015, at 12:21 PM PDT
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  18. J. D. Fitzpatrick Member
    J. D. Fitzpatrick Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Barfly:Arab and Jewish and Black and All Lives Matter, #! [Propitiatory ritual done, he sets aside the cup, dagger, and bell. Turning to sit, he takes up his now cooling coffee …]

    Actually, life has only the value we place on it. Israeli society and its state manifestly places a high value on life, both Arab and Jewish.

    Arab society, especially Palestinian society, evidently places a lower value on life. Their militias regularly attack soft targets to kill and maim all they can, from vipers’ nests festering behind nurses’ skirts and kids’ playgrounds.

    One can marshal balancing factors, I’m sure – things that Arab society invests that value in, that it doesn’t place on life. Nevertheless, it’s plain which society more highly values life.

    Really well put.

    • #18
    • October 7, 2015, at 5:19 PM PDT
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  19. Zafar Member

    Front Seat Cat:To Zafar and others, can anyone please explain to me….

    As you might imagine, the accounts tend to be somewhat polarised. I’ll point you to some sources, but I’m sure that other people will point you to others which claim something quite different.

    The core of it, imho, from this website:

    Palestine

    Here are some other views of the issue, and how it plays out today.

    • #19
    • October 7, 2015, at 9:39 PM PDT
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  20. Zafar Member

    Barfly:Arab and Jewish and Black and All Lives Matter, #! [Propitiatory ritual done, he sets aside the cup, dagger, and bell. Turning to sit, he takes up his now cooling coffee …]

    Actually, life has only the value we place on it. Israeli society and its state manifestly places a high value on life, both Arab and Jewish.

    Arab society, especially Palestinian society, evidently places a lower value on life. Their militias regularly attack soft targets to kill and maim all they can, from vipers’ nests festering behind nurses’ skirts and kids’ playgrounds.

    How about Ricochet society?

    Because we mention one set of murders quite a bit, but we talk almost not at all about others. The statistics are awful – you could pull out horror stories all day from each side – but let’s not claim that we actually value all lives equally because going by our conversation that’s just not the case. Why pretend?

    • #20
    • October 7, 2015, at 9:54 PM PDT
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  21. J. D. Fitzpatrick Member
    J. D. Fitzpatrick Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Zafar:

    Because we mention one set of murders quite a bit, but we talk almost not at all about others. The statistics are awful – you could pull out horror stories all day from each side – but let’s not claim that we actually value all lives equally because going by our conversation that’s just not the case. Why pretend?

    Zafar, I appreciate these links. I’d like to keep the focus on Arab vs. Israeli society. The second link reports Netanyahu’s reaction to the attack by settlers:

    The Israeli prime minster, Binyamin Netanyahu, said: “I am shocked over this reprehensible and horrific act. This is an act of terrorism in every respect. The state of Israel takes a strong line against terrorism regardless of who the perpetrators are.”

    And here is the Arab state reaction to Samir Kuntar, who as a 16-year old brutally murdered as much of a Jewish family as he could get his hands on.

    Upon Kuntar’s arrival at Beirut Airport, along with four other freed Lebanese prisoners, he was officially received by the Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, Prime Minister Fuad Saniora, Speaker of the Parliament of Lebanon Nabih Berri, some Lebanese members of Parliament, and Muslim and Christian clerics.[35]

    Hezbollah arranged a public celebration in Dahieh (their stronghold in Beirut), where Hassan Nasrallah gave a welcoming speech to Kuntar.

    Merely two data points, I know, but these reactions do support Barfly’s claims about which culture values life.

     

    • #21
    • October 7, 2015, at 11:27 PM PDT
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  22. Zafar Member

    J. D. Fitzpatrick:

    Zafar, I appreciate these links. I’d like to keep the focus on Arab vs. Israeli society.

    To what end?

    Let’s say you’re right and Palestinian culture is awful and Israeli culture is much much nicer. Does that mean that the Palestinians weren’t made refugees by Israel? Does that mean that the Palestinians don’t have a moral right to their property? It seems like a misdirect.

    The second link reports Netanyahu’s reaction to the attack by settlers.

    Handsome is as handsome does : – )

    • #22
    • October 8, 2015, at 5:12 AM PDT
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  23. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    History, like politics, depends greatly on communities of trust. For example, I’m inclined to distrust MSNBC reports, while my liberal friends are inclined to distrust FOX News reports.

    That’s why these conversations are seldom productive, even among friends who respect each other. If we don’t begin from the basis of accepted data, we won’t reach the same conclusions.

    • #23
    • October 8, 2015, at 8:41 AM PDT
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  24. Front Seat Cat Member

    No one ever attempted to answer my questions – I honestly would like more information, because it doesn’t make sense. I was given a Bible in 1965 with my name on it at church – I was 9. I don’t remember much about Bible school when I was little, except Jesus was born in Bethlehem and there was Kool-aid or Tang and cookies after our lesson. But I pulled it off the shelf today – it has maps of the Middle East. It shows the outlines of Israel and Judah, there’s even a teeny manger in Bethlehem – it shows the temple, Jerusalem as the capital and surrounding Christian and Jewish sites – we learned about the history and culture and the maps were a significant teaching tool.

    Why. if the history is there, is there so much dispute about territory and can’t each culture live in peace within the law of a Democratic State of Israel? I know I am greatly oversimplifying a very serious situation, I mean no disrespect to either side. I don’t understand why after all this time since Israel was returned to the Jewish people, why people there of all faiths can’t abide by a Democratic solution under the laws established in 1948 by the world community? Even fast forward to all the concessions, i.e. land for peace, why the rejection if it is so important? I may need to just refer to Wikipedia!

    • #24
    • October 10, 2015, at 7:48 AM PDT
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  25. Aaron Miller Member
    Aaron Miller Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Front Seat Cat: I don’t understand why after all this time since Israel was returned to the Jewish people, why people there of all faiths can’t abide by a Democratic solution under the laws established in 1948 by the world community?

    Here is Denis Prager’s answer:

    • #25
    • October 13, 2015, at 5:35 PM PDT
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  26. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive

    Because this is not about land, but genocide.

    • #26
    • October 13, 2015, at 8:04 PM PDT
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  27. iWe Coolidge
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Front Seat Cat: I don’t understand why after all this time since Israel was returned to the Jewish people, why people there of all faiths can’t abide by a Democratic solution under the laws established in 1948 by the world community?

    Because muslims do not want to live and let live. Muslims will not tolerate a Jewish state on land that they perceive as theirs (because historically they once controlled it). FWIW, they have precisely the same logic for Spain!

    Jews and Christians coexist just fine in Israel.

    • #27
    • October 14, 2015, at 6:37 AM PDT
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