Those claiming the “occupation” of ’67 is immoral cannot argue that the “occupation” of ’48 is moral. The time has come to stop with the double standard and declare – the existence of the state of Israel is moral
(Translated from Hebrew)
On the eve of Yom Kippur, some professor whose name I have forgotten, was a guest on one of the Israeli radio afternoon programs. She spoke about the things for which we, as a society and a country, need to repent for. The first thing she brought up was the “occupation”, saying that we have been ruling over another nation for 50 years now and that we need to put an end to this immoral situation.
The distinguished interviewer (whose name my sclerosis has also made me forget) it seems was so impressed with the moral position of the professor that he did not ask the question that begs to be asked: “You must certainly be referring as well to our rule over “that other nation” who reside in Jaffa, Haifa, Acre, Nazareth, in the “Triangle”, in the Galilee and in the Negev because in all those places the same “other nation” exists and according to your approach does “the occupation,” which is now 70 years old, need to end in all of those places too?”
It seems that the interviewer did not want to challenge the speaker by presenting the question that demanded to be asked and left her words unquestioned. Perhaps he even identified with the position of his interviewee? It would be interesting to hear the professor’s answer to such a question that reveals the moral absurdity, or in fact the double standard, of the Israeli left which contends that the rule over the “Palestinians” from 1967 is immoral, but the rule over their brothers, who are no less “Palestinian” from 1948, is moral.
I am not talking about those on the left who call for the destruction of the State of Israel because according to their theory, the 1948 “occupation” is immoral. Those who talk exactly like Sheikh Raed Salah the Jihadist, Azmi Bishara the Arab nationalist, Basel Ghattas the cell phone salesman and Hanin Zoabi the sailor, but they at least stick to their position until the end. According to them, if you are a Zionist, meaning in favor of the existence of the State of Israel, it means that you are immoral. The State of Israel is an “occupation” even if it is the size of a square millimeter on the Tel Aviv beach. I completely disagree with their position, but will acknowledge that they are at least consistent.
My argument is with the “Zionist left,” the group whose very name is an oxymoron according to many. What is the difference between building for Jews in Jerusalem and building for Jews in Jaffa? One is moral and the other is not? Is it moral to settle in the Galilee in a region that has an Arab character and immoral to settle in Judea and Samaria in an area that is empty of anyone? Is it moral to treat the Arab residents of Judea and Samaria as a “demographic threat” and at the same time to ignore Arab citizens of Israel, those who live in the Galilee, the “Triangle” and the Negev? Is this not a double standard?
The conclusion is that there is no connection between morality and settlements in the land of Israel. If it is moral to settle around Andromeda’s Rock in Jaffa, then settling in Hebron is moral to same degree. Both are “Jewish settlements in Arab cities” in their words.
With your generous permission, I want to present from this honorable stage another reason for the morality of the State of Israel’s existence.
Israel is a state that was established by a nation that returned to their ancient land, who remained faithful to it for 2,000 years of exile and whose children were forced to fight a number of wars in order to protect the connection between their heads and shoulders. Do you remember the cries of “Edbach al-Yehood” (“slaughter the Jews” in Arabic) from 1948, before the “occupation” of 1967? The State of Israel is also meant to ensure that no gas chambers will be erected in the future for the Jewish nation and anyone who claims that the existence of Jewish state in the land of Israel is not moral, is essentially arguing that the Jews must return to the places from which they came to Israel. By doing so, they automatically place themselves on the side of the supporters of gas chambers in Europe and the slaughter knives of the Middle East.
To remind them, the Mufti of the “Palestinians” planned gas chambers for us in Israel, in addition to the assistance he offered to the Nazis in 1944 in order to ensure that Hungarian Jews would be transported to Auschwitz without problems.
Exercises in semantics will not help the left. The reality is stronger than any language exercise or philosophical manipulation. Whoever talks about the “occupation” of Gush Etzion and ignores the “occupation” of Jaffa is hypocritical, sanctimonious and a holder of double standard, divisive and selective.
Does my approach prevent peace with our neighbors? No. It is possible to reach an arrangement and the only way to do so is to be strong, threatening, dangerous and unbeatable. We are not in Switzerland, but in the Middle East. Stop confusing everyone with your hypocritical and double standard version of “morality”.
No one in our region is truly impressed by the sanctimonious left. Just the opposite. Those who are laughing at the naive Israeli left are our neighbors, the pretenders, who smile at the “useful idiots” among us. Those who embrace them and take selfies with them for Facebook while aiming for donors from abroad.
This is Sparta, not Athens. We need to get stronger, to arm ourselves, to train, to threaten and sometimes to fight in order to survive. Those who hurt our ability to defend ourselves are acting out of a selective and patently immoral position.
Dr. Mordechai Kedar is a lecturer in the Department of Arabic Studies at Bar Ilan University
(Original article here – http://mida.org.il/2017/10/11/%D7%94%D7%9E%D7%95%D7%A1%D7%A8-%D7%94%D7%9B%D7%A4%D7%95%D7%9C-%D7%A9%D7%9C-%D7%94%D7%A9%D7%9E%D7%90%D7%9C/)