Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Bret Stephens on Israel's robust willingness to defend itself - by Arnold Roth

Stephens then connects Israel and Europe: To be Jewish — at least visibly Jewish — in Europe is to live on borrowed time... There’s a limit to how many armed guards can be deployed indefinitely to protect synagogues or stop Holocaust memorials from being vandalized... There are many reasons to celebrate the date [of Israel's 70th anniversary a few days ago], many of them lofty: a renaissance for Jewish civilization; the creation of a feisty liberal democracy in a despotic neighborhood; the ecological rescue of a once-barren land; the end of 1,878 years of exile. But there’s a more basic reason. Jews cannot rely for their safety on the kindness of strangers...

Arnold/Frimet Roth..
This Ongoing War..
23 April '18..

In a punchy New York Times column published this past Friday ["Jewish Power at 70 Years"], Bret Stephens starts out talking about a hate crime - with an intriguing twist - in today's Germany. But then he heads off in the direction of the Middle East and the challenges posed to Israelis by the people on the far side of our borders.

Here's a first extract:

On Friday, Palestinians in Gaza returned for the fourth time to the border fence with Israel, in protests promoted by Hamas. The explicit purpose of Hamas leaders is to breach the fence and march on Jerusalem. Israel cannot possibly allow this — doing so would create a precedent that would encourage similar protests, and more death, along all of Israel’s borders — and has repeatedly used deadly force to counter it. The armchair corporals of Western punditry think this is excessive. It would be helpful if they could suggest alternative military tactics to an Israeli government dealing with an urgent crisis against an adversary sworn to its destruction. They don’t. It would also be helpful if they could explain how they can insist on Israel’s retreat to the 1967 borders and then scold Israel when it defends those borders. They can’t.

He's right. We're old enough to remember the coordinated Arab assaults on multiple Israeli borders seven years ago in conjunction with Naqba Day - May 14 and 15, 2011 and around the same time as the ill-fated and unfortunately-named Arab Spring.

A BBC report at the time ["Palestinian protests: Arab spring or foreign manipulation?", BBC, May 15, 2011] said the not-so-peaceful "protestors"

undoubtedly embodied the same kind of risk-taking, confrontational people-power ethos that has fired the revolts in many parts of the Arab world.

How did that risk-taking confrontation play out?

(Continue to Full Post)

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