During the time of Chanukah, a holiday inspired by the resistance of a band of brothers to the tyranny of Aniochus IV of the Seleucid Empire, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is instead confronting the consequences of buckling under to Obama’s tyranny by imposing a building freeze on hundreds of thousands of Israelis living in Judea and Samaria.
As police, housing inspectors and Jewish area residents scuffle over attempts to stop construction on private houses that their owner are already paying mortgages on—the “settlement freeze” has emerged as yet another disastrous chapter in the long history of Israeli concessions meant to create peace, where there is no peace. Intended as yet another “confidence building gesture” to reassure the Palestinian Authority, which had already preemptively rejected it as well as any further negotiations, but in reality was more of an attempt to appease Obama by propping up his foreign policy credentials—the “settlement freeze” has wreaked economic havoc on the lives of everyone from newlyweds planning to move into their first home, families looking to add an addition to accommodate an addition to their family to larger housing projects for Israel’s growing population of immigrants from Russia and parts of the Middle East where Jews have traditionally been oppressed.
And so in the name of appeasing Obama and Palestinian Arab terrorists, Netanyahu’s actions have touched off tensions among Israelis and worsened the economic situation of many working class families. And all for nothing. The “confidence building gesture” did not build any confidence on the Palestinian Arab side, which is confident enough to bypass negotiations entirely in the hopes of bullying Israel into agreeing to yet more concessions before even bothering to sit down at the negotiating table. Neither did it appease the Obama Administration, which remains frustrated that it could not get Jews barred from living in East Jerusalem, which under Jordanian occupation had its Jewish population ethnically cleansed. Like every confidence building gesture that Israel has made in the past, this one has been both destructive and futile, forcing Israel to pay dearly with nothing to show for it.
Unfortunately from the very beginning, Israel’s leaders harbored a false dream of peace that has never been fulfilled. And that mirage of a friendly Middle East has tricked Prime Minister after Prime Minister into cutting deals that cut Israel’s throat. In 1947, Israel was prepared to accept a UN partition plan that would have left a fingernail of territory for native Israelis and refugees from the Holocaust to build a state on. But the Arab powers rejected the partition plan, and the resulting War of Independence enabled Israel to hold on to at least marginally defensible borders. Had Egypt’s Nasser and Jordan’s Hussein not chosen war with Israel in 1967, Israel would have remained within those same weak borders and with its capital city cut in half. But Nasser and Hussein chose war and so Israel reunited Jerusalem and liberated some of its villages in Gaza and Judea and Samaria that had fallen into enemy hands in 1948, such as Kfar Darom, villages that the international community would insist on calling “settlements” and “occupied territories”. And without those territories as buffer zones, it is likely that Israel would have been cut and half, and destroyed in the Yom Kippur War of 1973.
The enemy however learned from their mistakes. Israel turned over the Sinai to Egypt in exchange for a cold peace, in which Israelis travel to Egypt at the risk of their own lives and the Egyptian Army regularly conducts training exercises preparing for a war with Israel. Then in 1993 Israel signed a deal with archterrorist Yassir Arafat, turning over portions of Gaza, Judea and Samaria to him in exchange for peace. Instead the result was a terrorist state that sent through suicide bombers and rockets into Israel proper to murder entire families in their homes, in cafes and on buses. To shell schools and bomb shopping malls, to turn daily life into a constant state of war in which parents hand out cell phones to their children so they can call and check on them after a terrorist attack happens and know that they are still alive.
That is the life that the false dream of peace has brought to Israel. The illusion that a Muslim middle east will ever accept a non-Arab and non-Muslim state on terms of brotherhood and friendship, an act that would require every Muslim to turn his back on the Koran and every Arab Socialist to turn his back on his national pride. But that has not stopped Israel from chasing the false dream of peace, in part in the hope of peace, and in part because of unrelenting pressure by the governments of the United States and Europe who are chasing their own false dream of peace, believing that the Muslim crocodile can be appeased by dangling the tiny state of Israel above its gaping jaws.
And so the false dream of peace keeps on going with a life of its own. Like a lost traveler stumbling across the desert dunes, the peacemakers keep seeing a mirage of peace ahead of them, that vanishes the moment it seems to be within actual reach. And by chasing after the mirage of peace, Israel is destroying itself day by day. What in 1993 was an autonomous region has now turned into two hard core terrorist states inside Israel’s borders. What in 1993 was an occasional attack, has now become an all out war with rockets flying through the night sky. What in 1993 was an internal problem, now has the nations of the world talking about how to divide Israel. That is what 17 years of striving for the false hope of peace has brought Israel. And the nation cannot survive another 17 years of it. Not as anything more than another diaspora dream of a people that will one day live again in its own land.
Netanyahu’s surrender to Obama, has like every concession only further undermined Israel’s position, increased civil tensions and whetted the appetite of its enemies. Two thousand, one hundred and seventy six years ago, the story of Chanukah began when the brothers and sister of a single family in the town of Modiin, rather close to the towns considered settlements today, rose up to fight for the right to live as free men and women in their own land. Today, two generations after that reborn dream was achieved again, Israel’s governments are treating the land and the people like the contents of a bankrupt store at a fire sale. And that cannot go on.
While Peres and Obama whisper about a Two State Solution in Netanyahu’s ear, ordinary Israelis have suffered a bloody 17 year toll of murders, stabbings, bombings and shootings as a result of the Two State Solution, a solution that has created two terrorist states inside Israel, one run by Fatah and one run by Hamas. Considering that there is no legal or unified Palestinian Arab government, any talk of such a solution is a farce meant to appease Muslims at the cost of Israel. And for as long as Islamic oil and Islamic immigration continue to be potent forces before which the world bows—that will not change. Yet lost in a dream of peace, too many Israelis remain unwilling to recognize that tragic reality.
There can be no peace with Islam, only resistance or submission. Israel’s long bloody pursuit of the false hope of peace has only weakened its ability to resist. Europe’s Dhimmis have filled Israel with “peace” groups such as Peace Now or Rabbis for Human Rights whose mission is to undermine and destroy Israel. Who rabidly hate the idea of a Jewish state and want to see it gone by any means necessary. Meanwhile as Islamic immigration overruns Europe, its politicians take a club to Israel in the hopes of keeping the throat slittings from their door. Meanwhile successive US administrations remain wedded to the notion that a stable Middle East depends on Israel cutting a deal with the terrorists who plague it. All of these ideas are equally delusional, equally false and equally unchangeable. Too many foreign policy establishments have set them up as dogma and too many politicians are afraid of confronting Ahmed and Abdul torching cars on the streets of Paris or Oslo. There is nothing Israel can do to change that, but to take itself off the table.
There will be no solution to Iran’s drive for nuclear domination coming from Washington D.C. There will be no peaceful resolution to a conflict that began when Mohammed’s cohorts first began massacring Jews over a thousand years ago in Camp David or Annapolis or anywhere else. While Netanyahu has chosen to play political games, to give failed former Prime Minister and Defense Minister Barak free reign to impose a left wing crusade against Zionist and religious Jews, and to try and play both sides with no real endgame in mind—the candles of Chanukah are burning down, the wicks flicker and are gone. The light of that one flask of oil burned for eight days on faith. Without faith, it is nothing more than oil and cotton. Without faith and willpower, Israel is nothing more than Singapore in the middle of a war zone holding a fire sale for its land and its people. If Israel does not wake up from the false dream of peace, and take the Maccabees as its model, rather than Gandhi, it too will flicker out in the darkness and be gone.
Daniel Greenfield is a New York City writer and columnist. He is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and his articles appears at its Front Page Magazine site.
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