Personal thoughts on current events, cultural events, Israel, Judaism, Jewish/Israel innovations and life from a Jewish perspective - read into that what you may.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

"Refusal and Democracy in Israel"

Let's start with a joke...

The Interim Weinograd commision on the Second Lebanon war places blame on consecutive Israeli governments (starting with Ehud Barak's!) for allowing the Hizbullah to entrench themselves on the Northern border of Israel for 6 years without doing anything to prevent the ultimate war that took place (the second Lebanon war in 2006).

Isn't it funny that Israel once again is doing absolutely nothing to stop the arming and entrenchment of Hamas, Hizbullah and Al Qaeida in Gaza as they prepare for war against us? And still nobody mentions this reality that exists the same time that the final Weinograd report is being drawn up? Irony is so powerful!

Now for the meat of the issue...

To all Soldiers, Officers, their loved ones and friends

Whether it is days, weeks or months away, the Israeli government and the Israeli army will give the orders for Israeli soldiers to pull out of their positions in Judea and Samaria in order to continue the "peace process" (sic) and speed up the establishment of a 'Palestinian State.

Even the army officers know that this troop movement will bring suicide bombers throughout Israel, road killings in Judea and Samaria as well as the addition of kassams and other rockets being fired at Israeli cities from Judea and Samaria including Tel Aviv, Ramat Gan, Netanya and Jerusalem.

It makes no difference if the ones perpetuating these acts are from the Fatah, Hamas, Hizbullah, Al Queadia or any other enemy group. They all have the same goal – the destruction of the state of Israel.

Israel pulled out of Lebanon – we got one war behind us and one on the way thanks to that pullout.

Israel pulled out of Gaza (and gave it on a silver platter to Abu Mazen!) – thanks to that pullout we have continued fire on the south of the country, with a full coordinated attack together with Hizbullah, Syria, Iran and Al Qaeida waiting to happen.

We have Iran pulling the strings up North, we have Iran pulling the strings down South, do we really want Iran pulling the strings on our Eastern border as well?

Why would Israel now pull out of Judea and Samaria? As the saying goes…"fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me!!! But fool me three times????

Since it is inevitable that any Israeli troop pullout from Judea and Samaria will bring even more bloodshed to Jews and Israelis throughout Israel, it is safe to say that a troop pullout is an immoral act. No soldier should leave his position when he knows that it will cause fellow countrymen to be killed! This is immoral!!!

I expect that any soldier or officer who receives the order to abandon his post in Judea and Samaria to refuse and stay put!

It has been proven time and time again that the best defense for the State of Israel and the Israeli people is our presence in Judea and Samaria. (FYI - The army even requested to set up a base on the destroyed community of Chomesh last year to assist in defending Israel, yet the government refused because it would have been an admission of mistakenly expelling Jews from there homes for no reason)

People, any person, including soldiers, first and foremost have to obey their conscience. If a law or an order is given that is immoral, it is the duty of the individual or the soldier to not obey! If he then gets sent to jail for disobeying the order, then so be it. That is the price one pays for standing up for ones conscience.

That is democracy!

That is what is necessary today to save the Israeli army from itself and for saving the country. Following orders when they are immoral ruins a society and ruins the army!

The army today must be saved from the high commanding officers who are running it!

I have no trust in the upper echelon of the Israeli army:

- They have taken the word "enemy" out of the army lexicon.

- They drew up long term plans for the army that changed the role of the army from fighting enemies to dealing with Israeli civilians to "protect Israeli democracy"(taken from an internal army paper. The article is currently in Hebrew for anyone who is interested in receiving it.)

- The Northern border was quiet until 2006 because the army instituted a policy called "No targets", allowing the Hizbullah to set up rockets and road side bombs along the border without the Israeli army doing anything to stop them. Instead, the army ordered all patrolling troops and pillboxes to pull back from the border so they wouldn't be in shooting distance from the Hizbullah on the other side of the border - all to maintain an "aura" of quiet even though in the long run it would endanger Israel!

Although the army soldiers and young officers are willing to run into battle to defend Israel against her enemies, the army leadership is valueless - they have no will to win or the proper values to beat our enemies. Todays army has the following goal - to maintain a "low-flame conflict" so the peace process can continue - hence the continued kassam rockets on the south of the country for 7 years (7 straight years!!!) almost emptying out the Israeli city of Sderot, with the Israeli army doing almost nothing to stop the rockets!!!

Instead the army is constantly used (by the thousands(!!!) to stop Jews from settling hills and taking them from their homes (the families of Hebron are being removed tonight - and thousands of soldiers have been bused in from all across the county to help make sure it happens. Too bad the army doesn't use them instead to stop the kassam rockets from Gaza.

Only if the soldiers and officers would say NO to immoral orders will the upper echelon of the army understand that they have no soldiers to carry out their immoral orders.

Disobeying the immoral orders is the only way to fix the army, return it to its proper state of protecting the Israeli people and bring back the moral fabric to our army and society.

Following laws and orders because they were "decided" in a democratic manner relegates morality and the conscience of man to be impotent in our lives. The United States would still be a segregated society today had such an attitude been accepted.

For the morality of our soldiers and for the morality of Israeli society, tell the soldiers to say NO when asked to pull out of Judea and Samaria.

By the way, regarding the role of soldiers taking part in any "circle" to ensure Jews are removed from their homes, that is already obvious to all to be an immoral act – it only strengthens our enemies and causes more deaths at the hand of our enemies.

As for me refusing to take part in the Lebanon war (Yes, I was the soldier who refused to take part in the Second Lebanon war because I had no faith in the army leadership even then) it was already obvious that the war was a farce without any real leadership to make sure the army was being used to defend the Jewish people:

- what army sends in soldiers with orders NOT to shoot the enemy in a war zone because civilians might be killed? (e.g. soldiers were ordered to act as decoys to draw fire so that other soldiers can shoot the enemy precisely without harming civilians)

- What army sends soldiers into batle with old maps that are no longer relevant (that cause whole units to be confused and ambushed in enemy territory) yet sends in soldiers to expel fellow Jews from their homes with maps that have the family names written on each house?

- What army spends hundreds of thousands of dollar on catered food, swimming pools, nice blue baseball hats and blue vests for soldiers in order for soldiers to expel fellow Jews from their homes, but does not have enough money to have proper weaponry, protection or food to send in to battle for the troops to beat our enemy in a war that was predicted for ages (as a reserve soldier in the Northern command, my unit was told every year that a war would break out on the Northern border very soon, yet the army was not prepared?!)?

The answers are obvious to anyone willing to look at the harsh reality straight in the face and not ignore it - Today we have an army with leaders that have lost their values and morality.

We must do what is right to bring morality back to the army and back to Israeli society. It takes a robot to obey a command, however it takes a human being with a conscience to know when it is right to say NO in order to fix a very bad situation. That time is now.

That is democracy and don’t let the politicians or the Rabbis fool you otherwise. You know what you must do, now just do it. The price you will pay for it is your badge of honor, that is why you will be respected because you said NO knowing that you would pay a price for your action. I know, I paid that price too.

Oh, I forgot to mention. The second our enemies begin their coordinated war effort from the North, East and South fronts – we will all be there fighting to protect this our country and countrymen whether we get called up or not - this next war is for real, not the farce that Olmert started up North in response to Israeli soldiers being kidnapped for the upteenth time on the Northern border (yes, for all of you who forgot, Israel started the rocket attacks on Hizbullah and not the other way around. That is why I knew the war was a farce and would only end in a disgraceful ceasfire. It was a just war, but the political and army leadership were leading it in order to expel more Jews from their homes, not to protect Israeli civilians in Haifa or Kiriyat Shmona. This next war, however, will be the real deal that we will have to fight to win despite our leaders).

All of us who refuse the immoral orders of today do so because we want our army to be used to fight our enemies in order to defend ourselves and our homeland. We will be the first ones to run into battle when it happens.

Only by enough of us refusing the immoral orders today will we be able to cause a shockwave to cause change to the army leadership and values. Otherwise the situation will not change.

Our not showing up for immoral duty today will not weaken the army or our security situation (we have weak political leaders who do that today without our help).

Face the facts of history - every war in Israel was won despite the political and military leadership in Israel, not because of it.

It is the little soldiers who made it all happen and there is only one explanation for that. Someone up above runs the world, in general, and runs what happens to our people in this holy country, in particular. Miracle upon miracle took place that helped us defeat our enemies time after time. Only thanks to the one above did Israel come into existence and still exist today, not because of our “elected” politicians or army leadership, DESPITE THEM!

It is time that we all begin to recognize that fact as well.

Boker Tov Am Yisrael!

We live in amazing times and we are privileged to be alive today during these miraculous days. I thank G-d every day that I live in this country, even with all I write above.

Why? Because I get to be here in order to do something about it and make a difference in this special homeland of ours. I wouldn't trade that with anyone for the world. If only every committed Jew would be here to help make a difference in this holy land, it would make the uphill battle fought by the rest of us a little easier. We need every one of you.

Ultimately, the real struggle today is not between the Jews and the Arabs. The real struggle taking place today in Israel is an identity struggle between the Jewish Israelis who want Israel to be a Jewish country for the Jewish people based on Jewish values and the Israeli Jews who want to shed their Judaism and just be another country - France for the French, Italy for the Italians and Israel for the Israelis.

That is the major conflict today - the Arabs are just G-d's way of reminding us who we really are and why we are in this holy country. Once our identity struggle is over we will be able to easily defuse our struggle with the Arabs.

I pray to G-d that that day comes soon. We are a people with a mission - let's get together on the right path!

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