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In Memoriam: The Time for Meaningful Action Has Come

August 4, 2014

The response to the murder of the three abducted Israeli teens, Eyal Yifrah, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Fraenkel, has been predictable in its call for restraint and moderation. Left-wing organizations like the Israeli political party Meretz, the New Israel Fund, and J Street, wedded to nebulous and self-serving concepts like "social justice," ramble on about calm, measure, reconciliation, and the larger interests of communal peace — as if avowedly vicious and homicidal entities like Hamas and its offshoots will feel humbled and ashamed of their murderous practices and will experience a benign change of heart.

In fact, they are busy celebrating what they regard as a revanchist victory — indeed, candies were handed out to mark the abduction and the ambulance ferrying the bodies of the slain teens was pelted with stones[3] and spray-painted by Palestinian villagers — and will not be deterred from carrying out further atrocities in the future if they are allowed to get away with them. Perhaps the principals of our conciliatory organizations would feel differently if their own children had been kidnapped, tortured, and killed. But one thing is certain: for all their "prayers for the suffering families" and "calls for peace," they are incapable of imagining what their own people endure and are barren of genuine feeling, while full of empathy and concern for their assailants, who wish only for their speedy death and the subsequent extinction of the Jewish state. There is only one word for such flaccid, self-righteous and ultimately self-immolating appeasers: idiots.

As for the Israeli leadership, it's a mixed bag. Outgoing president Shimon Peres is a grande fromage who over the years has grown gamy and rancid, with a soft European rind. Benjamin Netanyahu should be cut a little slack given the intense pressures, domestic and international, that he labors under — but he is not his father, who was cut in the mold of the pragmatic and unyielding patriot Ze'ev Jabotinsky.

With only a few exceptions, like Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon, Foreign Affairs Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon, the Israeli leadership comprises a motley crew best left to their often lucrative but generally undistinguished careers, prone to log-rolling and corruption, devoid of segulah (Hebrew for virtue or inner treasure), more preoccupied with their American holdings and European vacations than with the security of their beleaguered nation.

The theory, of course, that presumably governs their behavior is that diplomacy and treating with perennial enemies or political adversaries — e.g. acceding to American bullying, glad-handing Turkey, subsidizing the PA, victualing Gaza, engaging in outrageously disproportionate prisoner swaps, giving a hostile and often traitorous Israeli media and academy a free pass, etc. — is a way of ensuring the ultimate security of the country. On the contrary, Israeli citizens are rendered increasingly unsafe by the prosecution of such measures.

When it comes to Israel's Muslim belligerents, anyone with more than an ounce of common sense knows that working with murderers and ideological maniacs is counter-productive. As Caroline Glick has pointed out, exchanging one kidnapped soldier for over a thousand Muslim terrorists is the height of folly. "In every instance, these terrorist releases have led to the murder and abduction of other Israelis." The result is that Israeli policies "have placed targets [on] the backs of every citizen of Israel." How, then, should Israel have responded to Hamas, the abductors of Gilad Shalit? The terrorist organization should have been given three days to return its captive, or risk its total destruction, which Israel has the power to accomplish. There is, really, no other effective way of dealing with a musteline pack of jihadist predators and barbarians than to credibly threaten it with extinction. Gilad Shalit would have been back home in record time, and the three Israeli teens would not have been abducted and killed. The thousands of Israeli citizens murdered and maimed in the various intifadas would still be alive and hale.

The time for temporizing, fruitless negotiations, so-called realist politics, and tolerance of an active and toxic fifth column that diligently and indefatigably strives to undermine the safety of Israeli citizens and the security of the state, is demonstrably over.

The heinous events that have just occurred should be change accelerators in Israeli thinking to redeem the political and moral parvitude too many of its leaders have exhibited for so many years. If the IDF doesn't smash utterly the terrorist infestations that have wrought so much harm on the country and will continue to do so, then there is no forgiving, international opinion and diplomatic pressures notwithstanding. At the same time, every left-wing media outlet and treasonous university department in the country should be rigorously monitored and in some cases, if necessary, shut down. Much of the Shomron must be annexed. Now may be the time for the imposition of martial law in order to evade the insidious complicities of the Supreme Court. Without these determined initiatives, such events as we have just witnessed will inevitably keep happening — rocket attacks, abductions, killings, the disruption of ordinary life, the whole ball of filthy wax. For such a sensible if aggressive policy of vigorous, comprehensive, and meaningful retaliation, rather than tit-for-tat reprisals, is nothing less than a kind of mitzvah with social, ethical, and national implications.





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David Solway is a Canadian poet and essayist. He is the author of The Big Lie: On Terror, Antisemitism, and Identity, and is currently working on a sequel, Living in the Valley of Shmoon.