Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Bearing of Leadership: National and Religious Parties, Let Your Platforms Bloom

The newly revised National Union party in Israel is a breath of fresh air. Five parties joining into one is essential to not only serve to consolidate political power for the parties involved, but to offer true democratic choice to the voters of Israel. When there are dozens of parties running, having parties that stand for more than a single issue is a vital prerequisite for such to occur.

The reason why there have only been three parties that have actually led an Israeli government, despite the fact that hundreds of parties have been created over the past sixty years, is because only a handful bothered to make a political platform broader than one or two issues. Just as when voters look for leadership qualities in potential heads of state and those candidates who lack that charismatic aspect never seem to get into the real contest because they usually lose support long before the elections arrive, so too voters look for parties that seem competent enough to handle all the affairs of state, not just their pet issues. This is true for any party.

Because of the natural variety of opinion to be found in a mixture such as the new National Union party offers, they are bound to be more ready to represent a broader knowledge base and finer leadership qualities than other national parties have in the past. Consequently, they should garner more votes than any party on the right has in a long time; which is the opposite direction that the new Jewish Home party is currently going in. By giving extraordinary weight to former National Religious Party members, they are currently giving the appearance of a party that is trying to cling to a smaller base of political issues.

Likud did a similar thing by marginalizing right wing elements in the party, and only after that did they start to fall in the polls. But this sort of behavior does not simplify or purify the image of a party to the voter, rather it destroys the demeanor of leadership that a mainstream party must present if it is to become an upper echelon party in Israel's political future. If you are in a political party on the Israeli political right or true political center (Left wing Kadima, please sit down), then take my advice and let your political platforms bloom with diversity.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Finally Action in Gaza: Now Make it Final!

I wish to offer congratulations to the Kadima led government on overcoming the lethargy that restrained them and their now actively allowing the IDF to do its job and defend the citizens of the State of Israel. Action in Lebanon ended a long time ago and there is no reason to allow any failure there to make one hesitant to act in self defense if needed.

What goals do I seek from the assault on Hamas?
  1. Destruction of all rocket launcher infrastructure, including ports at sea, or concealed tunnels to Egypt, if that is where the new arms are coming in.
  2. Rescue Gilad Shalit.
  3. Regime change in Gaza.

Pro-Abbas people in Israel and the USA are constantly whining about how he is at risk of being overwhelmed by Hamas. Time to call their bluff and eliminate his opposition. Give him a chance to renounce terrorism without opposition. If even in an environment without fear he echoes Arafat's policies, then that would prove to the left that he is not a partner in peace. Something people to the right and center already know.

If Olmert, Barak and Livni do not completely remove Abbas' enemies, Hamas, from power in Gaza, then they are effectively admitting that:

  1. Abbas is not a true partner in peace,
  2. that they need to allow Abbas the Hamas scapegoat eternally to cover up Abbas' terrorist leanings (don't notice the kinder and gentler terrorist (at Jerusalem's northern suburbs) when you have the pro-Iranian terrorist in Gaza), and
  3. they have zero faith that Abbas will ever truly leave his terrorist ways behind him unless they hurry up and give up a lot more land than Likud ever would.
  4. there is almost no hope for Olmert, Barak and Livni ever coming to their senses.

Perhaps if my three test goals are achieved by the current leadership in Israel, then there would be indication of hope (in the long term) for Olmert and Livni. But in the immediate future, at least, no matter what happens in Gaza, I do not expect endorsing them for reelection as the top party in Israel any time soon. This matter should have been resolved many months, and many thousands of rockets, and much, much pain, cost and fear, ago. Under no circumstances should they be rewarded with a vote for Livni at this time at least, even if you disagree with me and support their beliefs. It is just rewarding bad leadership and thus not good public policy to give them any real political clout in the very next government.

May the God of Israel protect His people from all harm!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ending the Era of Weakness: Annex the West Bank and Gaza

A couple of days ago the man who is likely to be the next Prime Minister of the State of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu said:

"...the era of weakness of the Livni-Olmert government is over". "What the citizens of Israel have been witnessing in the last few months is an ongoing weakness, a willingness to give up everything in exchange for nothing..."

"The government releases 1000 terrorists without any return. It makes concessions in Jerusalem, it is willing to return to the 1967 lines - and the most incredible thing, it is willing to absorb thousands of Palestinian refugees into Israel. I plan to make it clear to President Sarkozy and to all our friends and foes across the globe: this policy is going to end."

"A Likud government led by me will restore security to the people of Israel, will restore pride and determination to our policies. We will stand decisively for a united Jerusalem and defensible borders in every diplomatic arena. We will not agree to have a single refugee from 1948 enter the sovereign state of Israel, not to Ashkelon, not to Jaffa, not to Acre, or any other place".

My reaction is fourfold. Two praises and two admonitions to Mr. Netanyahu.

First, good analysis by Bibi regarding the Olmert-Livni government.

Two, it is nice to hear he wishes to return Israel to a policy of strength against terror.

Three, the down side of Bibi's Theory of Reciprocity, is that once the other side does actually comply, the pendulum of concessions swings back towards you. Yes to Jerusalem, but what about Hebron and the other Holy places of the West Bank?

Four, he should not call Palestinian refugees in foreign lands by the title refugees as it could seem to some that he is referring to West Bank and Gaza Palestinian Arabs who are still technically refugees under International Law. It is OK to refer to West Bank and Gazan Palestinians as refugees, because it removes the false stigma of "Occupied Territories". Israel is not the occupying force, the Palestinians are residing on unofficially annexed Israeli land.

Well, Bibi can remove both of my criticisms at the same time by merely Annexing the West Bank and Gaza with a simultaneous enactment into Israeli law of the Everyone Wins Peace Plan as their mode of resolving the refugee problem. Now that there exists a safe way to take in refugees, they morally should, because now it is merciful, not weak, to do so, but only if in accordance to a non-suicidal naturalization plan such as found in the Everyone Wins plan. Such mercy towards Palestinian Arabs would also be just, so that no one should ever compare Olmert's sin of allowing terrorists to fire at civilians indiscriminately with the lofty goal of aiding refugees.

One more issue Mr. Netanyahu raised in his statement.

"The era of weakness is about to end, and it will me my friends and I in the Likud who put an end to it and restore security to the people of Israel", Netanyahu concluded.

Bibi has to realize that humility is good, even in politics. Mentioning God's help at this point would not hurt him with Israel's religious and traditional voters, and serve to indicate that he is not at risk to fall into Ariel Sharon's trap of arrogance. Sharon "made" the settlements and felt that entitled him to take them apart as well. But the truth is that everyone in life is just God's messenger on the path that they freely choose to follow. The path we choose. But the force of causation is to God alone.

A man of Truth and Strength requires Humility and Compassion as well, in order to be an ideal leader.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hybridized Political Thought on the Middle East Conflict

A Statement of Hybridized Political Thought on the Middle East Conflict

By Alan Friedlander

By the grace of God, I was blessed to write previously from a religious perspective on why there should be Israeli concern for Arabic civil rights in the West Bank and Gaza, even as land-for-peace is rejected as an option in a peace process. India is a country that knows all too well how the surrender of land to a single disgruntled ethnic group to form a country of their own does not guarantee a lasting peace. I wrote from a religious perspective on this eight months ago, not in an effort to force my religious viewpoint on anyone, Israeli or Arab, religious or secular, rather my call for the disentitlement of Arabs to absolute control of the territories that they currently occupy is due only because their claims are legally unequal to Israeli claims even according to non-sectarian international legal principles as well. It is this fact that international law and the Jewish faith have a common ground in realities on the ground in the Middle East Conflict that gives a cause for hope to find a greater consensus towards lasting peace in any peace process that will seriously consider both perspectives at the same time.

Did you ever wonder why Thomas Jefferson and the founding fathers of the USA decided to quote mainly from political philosopher John Locke when writing the Declaration of Independence? Benjamin Franklin personally knew several members of the French Enlightenment. So why did they skip the Philosophes of their day to quote a philosopher of the previous century? You see, in political thought, in ancient times, religion preceded secularism. During and following the Enlightenment, secularism preceded religion. But between those ages, in the early Modern Period, political philosophers such as Thomas Hobbes and John Locke openly considered both perspectives in unison, in what I consider a generally healthier dose of hybridized thought, which outclasses mainstream secularist myopia that burdens many political theorists today. Hobbes and Locke, if they lived today, would outclass today’s philosophers in their ability to evaluate modern issues that stand in the way of successful peace processes and thereby be more readily able to create a new philosophic direction to cure such woes. In the Enlightenment, religion was labeled (libeled?) as less rational. But, even assuming so, in the pursuit of finding a true peace methodology, "Rationalism" alone does not adequately address the causes and does not accurately predict future reactions of opposing religious belief systems and the disparate people who possess them.

Jews are bidden, by the Creator of All, to be a ‘light unto the nations’ (Isaiah 42.6 & 49.6); implicit in this is the need for Jews to not hate or discriminate against gentiles as a chosen policy. Only true enemies of creation (such as terrorists) deserve the dispensing of hatred as policy, as per: "Those who hate You, O Lord, I hate and with those who contend against You, I shall contend.” (Psalm 139.21).

Because the ways of peace requires dealing with peoples of other religions, it is not a lack of faith to seek secularly acceptable standards for international relations. Indeed, the way of the Torah is to avoid conflict by finding a compromise solution that does not compromise one’s faith. In other words, evaluate each potential peace solution in the guiding light of the Torah, even if every last minutia is not found in the Torah. Seeking hybridized political standards in diplomacy, therefore, is consistent with the Torah attitude towards political philosophy.

I am not suggesting placing any other philosophy on par with God’s Holy Word. I mean that those who refuse to listen to religion or those that refuse to listen to any ideas from those who are not religious are leaving themselves bereft of the full picture and also the very goal of the Torah’s path to peace itself. Simply put: by hearing all sides, a common ground can be found. John Locke and Thomas Hobbes knew at least that much.

True enemies of Israel, according to Western/Lockean Theory, would be those who try to extinguish Israeli Life, Liberty, or Property; Heaven forefend. Life corresponds to true peace, Liberty relates to the right to pursue religious freedoms such as for Jews to worship at their holy sites without danger, and Property is land and the buildings upon it and the potential prosperity that they can bring.

Assuming friendly Arabs respect the concept of everyone sharing evenhanded Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Property Rights, and of all Israelis being protected under IDF rule and Jews worshipping at their holy sites, then so too Israelis must be prepared to acknowledge that West Bank and Gaza Arabs are people too, and like Israeli settlers they should be allowed to keep their homes and have affordable and legitimately achievable access to good jobs and economic improvement. But I want even more than such basics for them. To fulfill the Lord's Will, it appears to me that we must go beyond our current achievements for their betterment, but of course, only once West Bank and Gaza Palestinians as a whole go beyond their current rabid levels of opposition to even the most fundamental Israeli and non-Islamic rights in the Holy Land.

On that fateful day, when the knowledge of the Lord and tolerance of others are ingrained into Palestinian society more deeply than the worship of terror is today, then these wonderful things can occur. Then we can ask ourselves whether we are doing enough to truly respect Arabic Palestinians. This process would be hastened by a program that weeds terrorists out of normative Palestinian society.

Achieving true regard for and from West Bank and Gaza Arabs, in such an enlightened age of post-terrorism, comes by advocating an end to their current segregation from normative Israeli Arabic society. Tearing down a fence may not be enough to bring economic and other forms of equality fast enough to make them feel a part of the State of Israel. Yes, that is important. Trust me on this. Imagine if you were one of them.

Once we agree to the same goal, i.e., to transition West Bank and Gaza Arabs from refuges to immigrants as soon as possible, and that everyone in the territories who rejects terrorism deserves to keep their home and not fear eviction, Jew and Arab alike, then the only real question is what step to take next to help integrate the Arab immigrants into Israeli society. The best vehicle to this, in my opinion would be to allow a natural enhancement to the current level of immigrant Palestinian Arab civil rights in Israel, and I suggest that this should be by giving them the right to vote in Israeli elections, just as their cousins over the Green Line enjoy today, but only in a way that is not demographically destructive to the State of Israel.

Further Reading (full URLs of the above hyperlinks)…


In honor of my mother, Sarah bas Yosef HaCohain, 13 years since her passing to the World of Truth

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Violence at Beit Hashalom: How the Olmert Administration is Inciting Radicalism

The ill advised forced evacuation at Beit Hashalom took place today. It did not have to. It could and should have been delayed until a less sensitive time, assuming that the people settled there needed to be moved for the sake of the greater good of the nation, which, of course, they did not.

It was all the clumsy provocation of Defense Minister and Labor Party leader Ehud Barak.

As the United Nations representative was placing all the blame on "Settler Extremists", Prime Minister Olmert was busy praising the real culprit, Ehud Barak.

Not only the rough handling of the situation caused this violent reaction, but it was done at the same time that Israel is being attacked by rockets from Gaza, and several weeks following an either dishonest or impotent declaration by Kadima Party leader and PM candidate Tzipi Livni that if the violence occurred they would react. In an act of lunacy, or evil, or stupidity and probably in a combination of all the above, Livni's effective reaction to Hamas terror as implemented by Ehud Barak, and cheered on by Olmert, was to punish Israeli settlers for the crimes of Hamas.

I am not stating that they chose this as policy, but such was the obvious inference of the emotional reaction that would ensue from a crackdown on law abiding settlers at the same time when seemingly limitless patience is shown to terrorists. According to Lockean Theory, it may be possible to claim that the settlers had a legal right to defend themselves against such a move, in such a time as was perpetrated by the Israeli government. A government must protect its people, not subject them to such cruelty.

Further, innocent Arabs whom this government wishes to give a country to, had to deal with vandalism. If this government does not help its own citizens, nor people who they do not consider citizens, then there is no one gaining any benefit from this government!

A government that does not defend its citizens, but rather allows the enemies of its people to wantonly attack without reprisal and then implements poorly timed policies against its own people, does not deserve to be in power. Must not remain in power.

Massive non-violent rallies and possibly labor strikes must take place until the elections are pushed forward sooner than the current February timetable.

No longer is the Kadima Party/Labor Party government merely a national security risk, but now it has become an internal security issue as well; freely chosen by Israel's current leadership. The time has come for Israel to freely choose better leadership. It would be a mistake to assume this is the last foolhardy trick that the current government has up its sleeves.

The reaction required in the face of these matters is that loyal Israelis should do whatever non violent acts that are required to force elections to be held immediately!

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Problem With Kadima: A Lesson in Pseudo Political Centrism

Israel National News reported last week Deputy Prime Minister, Retired Colonel and Kadima Party member Otniel Schneller's call for the fortification of the schools in Ashkelon to protect them from Gazan rockets. That call is symbolic of the mire that the Kadima Party has become stuck in. To act one needs conviction. To possess conviction, one needs a moral or ethical base. To achieve their targeted goals, Kadima party members had to leave their philosophies behind them and go full throttle towards "peace". They used "peace" as their objective standard. Yet as their current usage of the term "peace" is linked to the failed philosophy of Land-For-Peace, Kadima's objective standard is inherently flawed. This well meaning declaration by Schneller reveals the troubled core of Kadima's pseudo political centrist nature.

Without the popular, if not always wise, instincts of Ariel Sharon leading them, Kadima has become a party that speaks tough, but does little. The antithesis of effective leadership, Kadima's leaders like to walk loudly and carry a sponge stick. They lift their sponge sticks at the enemies of Israel and say, "Don't make me use this." Then two days later they say to Israel's enemies, "Sorry, I didn't mean to scare you. Let's discuss more one sided concessions to prove that we truly want peace."

Two weeks ago it was reported that Kadima's latest leader Tzipi Livni said that Israel will do something if the shelling continued. Livni said, "There is no such thing as a partial ceasefire... If the ceasefire violations continue, Israel will see no impediment to action." It was assumed that she meant to actually do something against that group of naughty and elusive 'partners in peace', Hamas, and not towards all those 'offensive' school buildings in Ashkelon. So far that assumption is looking like overly wishful thinking.

Last week PM Olmert made some noises about peace in our time (in an apparent attempt to justify Kadima inaction to the threat against Israeli citizens) immediately before he lost his last shred of political legitimacy as voices from parties on the left as well demanded his resignation following the Attorney General Mazuz declaration of intent to indict him. As there seems to be no real difference in his policies and Livni's stated intentions, I find no reason to rush to eject him and replace him with Livni. I support the concept of innocent until proven guilty, and a Livni Premiership would not offer Israel's National Security a significant enough enhancement to warrant an exception to this rule. The real guilt lies with the Kadima Party itself and unless elections are hastened, which I believe they should be, then I do not join in the chorus that Olmert leave office immediately over crimes that he has yet to be found guilty of in a court of law. Rather, Olmert should leave office immediately in conjunction with hastening the upcoming elections. Why wait for February? The Israeli elections should be held immediately so that a real peace process can begin. A party cannot lead if it has lost its way.

Kadima's position on national security just does not make any sense. But again, I am looking at this from a perspective of one who assumes that a government wishes to protect its own citizenry. Perhaps the suggestion to fortify schools is so that Ashkelon residents can at least have a few vicarious hours of respite from terror knowing that each day their kids are safe for a few hours, at least until it's time for the bus ride home each evening; God protect. Again this is only today's apparent meaning to the weak Kadima perception of National Security. Tomorrow perhaps some more radically imbecilic statement will issue forth from Kadima leadership like plastic pearls of wisdom on a hot stove top.

God knows, even if Kadima clearly does not.

One never really knows what to expect from Kadima; not because they are so perfectly moderate in their political beliefs so that no one to the right or left can fathom their brilliant wisdom, but the very opposite, because they are so weakly attached to any guiding philosophy whether right or left. This is a complete breakdown of the entire centrist mandate that their constituency originally voted for.

Kadima's weak leadership has allowed the practiced national security policies of Israel to become extremely left wing in character. The only way to even the balance scale of Israeli leadership is for politically moderate voters in Israel to shift their political support to the politically right parties in order to tip the scale back towards the middle and restore the proper political equilibrium to the Knesset. How far to the right this shift requires the Israeli voter to go depends on how far Kadima's inaction, and the potential actions of the enemies of Israel reacting to weak Kadima leadership, serve to pull Israeli security out of kilter between now and the elections. Therefore to enhance National Security and the hope of real peace, I recommend that Israel should hold elections immediately.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Saudi Peace Plan is Roadmap to Armageddon

Let’s look at the recent timeline of the news wires on the Saudi Arabian Peace Plan of 2002 which calls for Israel to pull back its settlements to the 1967 Green Line border demarcation, which Abba Eban had named the "Auschwitz lines".

  • In March 2007 JPost reported that, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said that Israel was willing to make "sweeping, painful and tough concessions" to encourage dialogue with its enemies.

Well, how about making the concession that land for peace peace-deals do not work and then immediately holding elections?

  • March 22, 2007 Jerusalem Post citing AP spoke of the USA wanting the Saudi peace plan amended to fit with the Roadmap to Peace.

The Roadmap already being a peace plan which fails to guarantee protection of Jewish rights to their holy sites.

  • March 29, 2007 Haaretz reported that Arab states unanimously approve Saudi peace initiative.

Saudi Arabia gave an ultimatum of Israeli acceptance or else no peace, indicating a rejection of the entire concept of negotiations toward peace. Thus this plan should be called the Saudi Ultimatum Plan, and rightly leave the hallowed word “peace” out of the whole sordid affair.

  • October 19, 2008 NY Daily News quoting AP Ehud Barak said that Israel was considering the Saudi peace plan

  • October 23, 2008 Shimon Peres praised the spirit of the Saudi Plan
  • November 12/13, 2008 BBC and JTA reported that Shimon Peres lauded and praised the Saudi plan The Saudi-led peace initiative is a "serious opening for real progress," Shimon Peres told a United Nations gathering.(JTA)
  • November 16, 2008 JPost: 'Obama to endorse Arab Peace Plan'

Clearly, from a close read of all his statements on the matter, Peres intends that Israel should try to edit the plan somewhat closer to the imperceptibly less offensive Roadmap to Peace. Yet the Saudi plan is build upon zero compromise by the Arab League. Where are Olmert, Livni, Barak and Peres trying to lead Israel? I do not care anymore about how noble their intentions may be. Look at the precipice before you, People!

The current Israeli government itself is leading President Elect Obama in this direction. This makes the statements by the current Israeli government insidious as it is an attempt to preempt the likely right leaning results of the impeding elections. A party placing its agenda before the best interests of the voters clearly loses it mandate. The Obama Administration should keep in mind that it is the current Resigned Prime Minister Olmert led government of Israel that is “changing its mind” and that change is non representative of the will of the people of the State of Israel.

It is vital that before Obama’s Middle East Policy is solidly in place that a more rational alternative is presented by key leaders in the Israeli government opposition. The time has come for the Israeli Right to decide firmly on an alternative peace plan that protects Jerusalem and run with it.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Compassionate Zionism

By the Grace of God, I have long preached political moderation. In my last post I reiterated my opposition to Kahanism as a practical guide to solving the conflict in the Middle East, yet validating the anger of pro-Kahane-ists as non-racist in genre. Still, one may wonder in the context of this discussion why and how I can support the Rabbi Elon Israeli Initiative Peace Plan which is based on what I have professed to believe to be a bed of an erroneous core of Kahanism.

I wish to clarify, as previously stated, that if Rabbi Elon’s plan is successful, I would support it to protect human life that much sooner. In recent times, every year, many people have lost their lives to the current conflict. The moment it truly ends, support for all other peace plans that could keep people second guessing a peace plan should be abandoned. Once there is true peace we must embrace it, and not look to further any individual or individual group’s agenda and or prestige. We must keep in mind that the stoking of coals too quickly after they die may only serve to reignite them.

Implicitly, I intended to say the following, and I will now state it explicitly: If Rabbi Elon’s plan succeeds in its current unedited state, then I am open to allow for the possibility that I am wrong, and would be willing to declare my peace plan suggestions as a mere theoretical discussion that no one should attempt to later try to replace Rabbi Elon’s plan with. But to my limited understanding, it seems to me that it would take a miracle or a catastrophic war to allow a reasonable likelihood of success for the Israeli Initiative in its current form, and in Judaism, depending on miracles is unwise and waiting for a war is detested.

If only one aspect of my Everyone Wins Peace Plan finds its way into an edited version of the Israeli Initiative, I suggest it would be that it should be made clear to the world that the State of Israel has compassion for its refugees, be they Israeli citizens, future Israeli citizens, or rejected applicants who are never to become naturalized citizens.

God’s Honor is the soul that I have attempted to imbue into the Everyone Wins Peace Plan, while at its heart is the dignity of those that He has created. To coin a phrase to describe the heart and soul of the Everyone Wins Peace Plan: Compassionate Zionism.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The Difference Between Racists and the Enraged

There are those who would wrongly brand anything remotely related to Kahane-ism as Jewish racism. Previously I wrote about my rejection of pure Kahanism as an option in the creation of a peace policy. Yet there exists a need to allow people the right to be wrong, and then discern between problem racists and sad situations. Those who go to extremes against people who are not truly extreme but only extremely angry, are themselves guilty of intolerance. Such is the opposite of the kind of consensus building needed during peace policy configuration.

Someone who survived the Holocaust can be excused if they have a grudge against Germans, even though that is not a policy for the rest of us to share. Someone who lost a relative to a terrorist bomb can be excused if they have a grudge against Arabs, though that is not the policy for Israel as a nation to pursue. Such racism is not based on arrogance, which could have no end, but trauma based misdirected anger, which could heal and be overcome in time.

Did you doubt that I would have the same standard toward Jews as I do towards Palestinians? To show those on the wrong path patience, despite their flaws, and give them a chance at redemption even in the face of a mistaken direction that they freely chose?

I believe terrorists are the scum of the Earth. Their breeding pool is from true racists and anti-Semites. But enraged people do not automatically become racists and then terrorists.

For those who have been wronged by groups of a given nation, a compartmental view is called for. I believe you must divide terrorists from normative Arabic society in your mind and Nazis from normative Germanic society as well. Whereas others viewing such traumatized people should not be so quick to accuse them for this hatred. Just as it is difficult for anyone to think straight when they are angry, imagine how hard it is to think straight if you were ALWAYS angry. Imagine if such a person perceived that their own government contributed towards the continued enemy reign of terror? Does that make someone a racist?

Anger is only right against real racists, not the sadly mistaken. They need pity, understanding, patience and advice from people who are less overcome by anger as to the correct path that they should take. It also would not hurt this healing process if their government would take their cries of anguish seriously rather than treat their concerns as fringe wrath and incitement.

Yet those who try to blame any pro-Kahane-ist without taking to heart their needs and concerns with at least an equal amount of respect as they would have for Palestinian “moderates” who reject passive resistance and call for violent intifada, such people, whether leftist or not, are extremists themselves, for they desire free speech only for those who fit within their own philosophic range of thought. They call for justice, only if it benefits those they have selected as normative, rather than using objective truth as their guide. Further, they thereby lose the wisdom that could have been gained by listening to right wingers. As the Talmud says, “Who is wise: whoever learns from anyone” (Avos 4.1)

Such belief by anti Kahane-ists is inherently illogical in its basis, and therefore their hatred of Kahane supporters is as wrong as Kahane-ism is itself. They are not evil incarnate, just as Kahane supporters are not. But they are likewise wrong, only from the other side of the equation. Both sides need to stop the blame game and end their intolerant anger because only by ENDing ANGER can one get rid of that which ENDANGERs the State; internal strife that interferes with peacemaking. As King David said, “Remove yourself from anger and abandon rage, do not strive only for your detriment.” (Psalms 37.8)

The difference between what is suitable for public policy and what represents itself as an individual's opinion is that in public policy we generally must seek a centrist answer with no extreme rhetoric to the right or left, in order to induce a deep-rooted procedure of toleration pursuant to evenhanded and upright diplomatic processes. That is the test that one must meet before attempting to address such broad political issues such as when starting a movement or in the creation of a peace process.

If I am right, do not credit me on this observation but God’s Holy Torah, as all this is implicit in the language of the Talmud. We find that Maimonides (in Deios) said of centrism, “The straight path is the middle road.”

Friday, September 19, 2008

Land for Peace is Fuel for Terror

Land-for-peace, peace plans which demand of the non aggressor state loss of land are the antithesis of the path to a true and lasting peace. Therefore any such peace process, including the Oslo Accords and the Roadmap to Peace only serve to strengthen the hold of terrorists within the Palestinian side. That means extremism within Palestinian leadership is encouraged by current Western Policy in the Middle-East. Some supporters of Palestinians have been afraid to face the truth, perhaps out of fear that putting Arabic rights at Israel’s mercy would risk loss of Arabic rights. Yet for those who know her, Israel’s mercy is its most potent character trait. The moment the gangster-like tactics of terror stop, the violence will end, and peace will come soon, it’s that simple.

Is not the goal of Western Foreign Policy to seek peace which will bring economic prosperity to all? But before you can bring actual peace, you must face the actual truth of things. This conflict is not Israel and the Palestinians with equal claims. Like the person who knows he is losing an argument, so he begins to shout his opinion louder rather than restating it more logically, because there is not enough logic to support it. So too is the people that resort to violence against a peaceful democracy rather than pacifistic civil disobedience. Is Israel’s human rights record truly comparable to China’s? Did Palestinians before the Intifada fear for their lives from the Israel’s military machine? No. The truth, for those who care to hear it is no. The truth is the Palestinian Arabic choice for terror proves that they know deep down that they have no equal claim to the land as does Israel.

The West Bank, by International Law, is Israel’s already (defacto annexation pending final status determination). If this is true, then the idea of avoiding any Israeli land for peace, peace process is not just right wing propaganda, but the basis for any real path to peace. Not just from the concept of being fair to Israel, but from the reality that today’s injustice brings tomorrow’s war. It does not matter which sides looses today’s negotiation. If there is objective International Law to back up a claim that is entirely ignored, there will likely be violence in the future unless a true peace process is implemented instead. A peace process such as the Everyone Wins peace plan, that endeavors to meet the needs of the bi-societal – specific, internal and delicate – healing processes before it tries to carve up territories and attempts to write out maps.

It is unjust to support terror. Land for Peace has become a symbol of a reward for Palestinian Terror, rather than what it should have been from the start, a required gift to a needy people. There should have been a grassroots movement by the Palestinian Arabs to express humble gratitude of a refugee nation over being given a new homeland by its benefactor, Israel. For if a Palestinian state is founded upon the ravenous bloodshed of terror then its future would be fleeting at best, logistically speaking. Morally speaking, support of terror makes the Palestinians’ the aggressor even if Israel has more power and also makes the Palestinian case wrong even before you review the facts. Legally speaking, once you do review the facts, however, it is clear that Israel has more legal rights to the land than the Palestinians under International Law. Allow me to illustrate:

The state is the primary actor in International Law. Individuals, when severed by International Legal Standards from statehood, are not complete entities to International Law, per say, as they are not in the hallowed designation of “State”, whereas individuals within a state are generally viewed as subservient to the greater needs of the greater state in which they reside, unless a universally accepted fundamental Jus Cogens law is clearly violated. Freedom of religious expression, for example, is not currently listed as a universal Jus Cogens law, even though it as I have argued it should be and it is very clearly a Human Right. (This explains why the U.N. is slow to react to Human Rights abuses throughout the world.) An example of this concept is found by refugees who are former members of a state that has completed the legal act of Succession or Cession (as is the case of Jordan in regards to the entire Arabic population of the West Bank, both Judea and Samaria). To keep this essay from getting too long, let’s cite the example of England who used this same premise to keep Northern Ireland as it’s own after its peace deal with the IRA; the full state comes first. But after terror is used by the conquered party, certainly then, no sane nation would assume that the attacked nation had even less rights because it was being terrorized. England certainly did not feel this way. Neither should Israel be made to forsake land for peace due to threat or fiction.

Further you can argue that Ireland was a full state itself before being conquered by England, whereas the Palestinians Arabs were not a full state, but members and former citizens of either Jordan (West Bank) or Egypt (Gaza Strip) before becoming refugees, nations that have abandoned their lands. Israel thus has even more right to the West Bank and Gaza than England has to Northern Ireland. Yet where is the international pressure for England to clear out of Ireland? Is something less than evenhanded afoot? Is it right wing to say emphatically, YES? Or it is simply correct to say so?

Yet political left and right are irrelevant to the issues at play here. Consider the source that tells you this. God blessed me with the Everyone Wins peace plan not only out of my desire to stop the bloodshed and protect Jewish religious rights to their land and Holy sites, but also from my desire to allow everyone, Jew and Arab alike to keep their homes, and out of a desire to enrich the civil rights of West Bank and Gaza Arabs. The only way to do all this is by facing the absolute truth of the matters at hand. That as of today Israel is the logistic, moral and legal owner of the entire Judea and Samaria.

True, it is unjust to support terror. So too, it is also unjust to support being heavy handed against the true land owner, Israel, in any final status negotiations. The restoration of moderation in attitudes toward Israel by those currently biased against her, is a must, just for a basic perception of the plain facts to occur.

The bottom line is, Israeli land-for-peace, peace deals are clearly fuel for terror and the world need only correctly identify the real aggressor in the conflict for true peace to come. For so long and with so much bloodshed the wrong way to peace has been pursued. The time has come to try it the right way.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Ezekiel's Jerusalem

We spoke of the brief lifespan of previous (land for peace) peace plans from a pragmatic, logic-based discussion in the context of International Law. Now we are going to discuss why they do not work from a religious perspective.

What if you knew what was going to happen before it happened? What if there was a prophecy that the current Roadmap to Peace would fail? What if Israel is absolutely destined to rule the land west of the Jordan River and you also believe that it is wrong to throw the thousands upon thousands of innocent men women and children amongst the Palestinians out of their homes and into the street; what would you do?

What if the only alternative to an apocalyptic war, was to find a way to keep Palestinian Arabs in the Holy Land, yet somehow also allow Israel to police the entire land west of the River Jordan. If you believed this were about to happen and you believe in fair play, then you would surely seek a peace plan that somehow allows the Palestinians to keep their homes in the post-prophecy-come-true Israel of tomorrow.

Most of the world’s population believes that there is a God, and in fact, a slight majority believes there is only one Deity, the God of Abraham. Yet most of them are probably not extremely conversant in the later prophets. If you look at the last chapter in the Book of Ezekiel, you will find that Jews are destined to rule the entire land in the vicinity of the immediate North and South of Ancient Jerusalem. The borders of Ezekiel’s Jerusalem based state of the future, in fact, encompass the entire West Bank, all of Judea and Samaria as well as the land within the Green Line.

There are three Peace Plans that are potentially consistent with Ezekiel’s prophecy. Rabbi Binyamin Elon’s Israeli Initiative, Rabbi Meir Kahane’s plan, and the Everyone Wins peace plan. Of the three of them, Everyone Wins is the most liberal, the most to the political center, and thus the most likely to win the broadest long term political support to last eternally. Of the three of them, Everyone Wins is the only one that allows for a Palestinian Arabic presence in the Holy Land, within the context of Ezekiel’s words. Effectively speaking, Everyone Wins seeks to allow a place for Palestinians within the utopian world of the Israel of tomorrow, unlike any other peace plan to its right or to its left. Every other peace plan to the right or left, are attempts at complete amputations of the Arabs from the Jews or the Jews from the Arabs. But Everyone Wins is a surgery, removing only the unhealthy parts (terrorists), so that the rest may live in serenity, together, forever.

People say that due to their fiery nature, religion and politics do not mix. Yet if the most controversial belief systems on Earth of religion and politics are not both addressed satisfactorily, in the context of claim and counter claim that oftentimes encompasses both belief systems, then how can any peace deal hope to find real success?

If you are a religious person, I am now going to ask a lot of you. I am asking you to have faith that God did not create man to live in a state of perpetual war, but that we should cast aside all prejudices and find eternal peace. The faith I speak of is in the conviction to act. A change of policy from that which we think is right, to that which God knows is best. That is true faith.

Have the faith to believe, and the courage to act.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The Unsubstantial Nature of Past Peace Plans

When Benjamin Netanyahu said (Arutz Sheva, April 22, 2008) that he was going to ignore any peace deal signed by Olmert upon what aspect of International Law was he basing this on? After all, if treaties signed by two nations are superior to even U.N. resolutions, as I stated in my previous post, then what is the legal justification for his statement? First of all, even if an outgoing leader signs a document, if it is unlikely to ever be ratified, it is not in the same classification of potency as a fully completed peace deal. Secondly, if the incoming leader can illustrate clearly that the most fundamental of International Laws was violated, Jus Cogens, then even a fully completed peace deal could become obsolete.

Whoa, what am I saying here?! Am I saying that all the peace deals in the past had the potential to become obsolete as soon as the next government that disagreed with it came into power? If so, then that would mean all these peace deals Israel has been running after was just for the sake of the POSSIBILITY of a few months of peace. Let’s consider this closely…

Let’s define peace between nations. The ideal form of peace would be one that does not just put an end to belligerence, but would also establish active friendship. An end to belligerence alone is a cold peace, essentially all but a cold war. Such a situation exists between Egypt and Israel. Active partnership exists between Israel and Jordan on several but not all matters. While not utterly perfect, the Israel-Jordan peace deal represents the current prototype of what is needed for a peace deal to be successful in the Middle East. We don’t know if the cold peace with Egypt is strong enough to keep Egypt out of a war between Israel and Syria, so we are caught in a perpetual wait and see mode to find out if there really is peace after all. What benefit does this bring to Israel? The only sure thing it did was to bring more oil to OPEC.

What is the physical difference between the peace deals? In the peace deal with Egypt, Israel had to withdraw from a large amount of territory, for a promise by Egypt to be nice from now on. While with Jordan, Israel withdrew from much less territory than Jordan relinquished (even though they could have gotten the peace deal done without giving up even a drop of land). This implies that when the non belligerent side (Israel) is tough during negotiations, they get true peace, and if they cede more territory than their former adversary, that is, if they show weakness, then they get cold peace at best. Such is the nature of the rough and tumble Middle-East.

Scientifically speaking, though, from a mere two cases alone we cannot base any conclusive statistical proof, except for the fact that the peace agreement between England and the IRA is almost a duplicate model of the Israeli-Jordanian pact. The non-belligerent side, in that case, England, stayed tough, did not give up land, and they got a complete dismantling of the IRA as well.

This would lead one to think that any peace deal that Syria would agree to in the near future would not likely have a chance at bringing true peace. Until Syria is prepared to forsake the Golan, no real movement towards peace should be expected on that front. Further still, this implies that the current Roadmap to Peace is at its heart, a failed attempt at peace, even in a theoretically perfectly ideal installation of the terms in the noblest of land-for-peace, peace plans.

So, yes, all land-for-peace, peace plans are high risk for minimal gain. There is no true expectation for peace by any the politicians involved except by the most left wing of dreamers. If so, then why do they do it? Perhaps due to a perceived lack of a viable alternative vision, but, I believe not due to intentional mischief. They cannot deal with the idea of eternal war, so they keep taking risks hoping to one day find a real solution for peace.

I would liken this to an electrician with a box of fuses, one of which he knows is good, so he keeps plugging in a different one into the socket hoping that this is the one that will restore power to the room, meanwhile everyone stands there in the dark.

These peace hungry politicians dredge forward and despite their near exhaustion and exasperation at the whole affair and continue onward with little trust in the very work they slave over year after year to achieve.

Certainly, if my suppositions are correct, all this seems like so very little motive to force thousands of people out of their homes over. It just does not seem worth it, settling for a less than optimum form of peace, when they should be seeking to use a peace plan that is the least likely to have long term causes to be regretted and repealed. They should not have to settle for so little.

Thank God, now that there exists a much more true path to peace, they no longer have to.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Israeli Settlements Are Legal Under International Law

When U.N. leaders call continued Israeli settlement unproductive and illegal, upon what are they basing this on? Under International Law Israel is the legal guardian of the land, they can literally do as they please; if so, then why all the whining that Israeli settlement activity is wrong?

In practice, they are placing political progress in the pursuit of the current peace process, ahead of fundamental International Law, i.e. increasing Israeli security, which settlement expansion, if nothing else, does precisely that.

But the theoretical basis of the assumption that Israeli settlements are a ‘bad’ thing rests on the concept that West Bank and Gaza Palestinian Arabs view it as bad. In other words, as Israeli settlement activity offends Palestinian society, it is “illegal” because it is unproductive towards the current peace process. The current peace process, however, is not a law; it is merely an initiative that the U.N. supports.

It is the height of arrogance to assume that just because the UN supports something it is to be considered the absolute law, and in fact, as that would remove free will from individual nations, the pursuit of a peace policy that endangers national rights, is illegal itself!

The right of nations to pursue their own agreements and treaties with their neighbors without threat of violence is the foundation of the entirety of International Law, and other than Jus Cogens / Primal Law, nothing is more potent than a treaty between nations in International Law. Therefore there is no basis in International Law for such an erroneous belief as to force feed a peace deal that is not in the best interests of the nation involved.

In other words, when U.N. leadership says that it is illegal for Israel to pursue settlement, they are really saying it is politically inconvenient, and if any of them truly believe that it is illegal then they are mistaken. International Law need not bow to global politics; actually it is the reverse that must occur so that law and order may properly function in the world.

We see why Israel goes to America for evenhanded mediation, not the U.N., as the U.N. not only does not take Israeli societal preferences as an equal and counterbalancing claim to Palestinian societal preferences, but the U.N. has been ignoring the very law it claims to represent, in regards to Israeli claims in the face of Palestinian Terror.

But aren’t settlements an encroachment on Palestinian land?

No, according to the U.N. itself even this has not been established yet.

According to U.N. resolutions, (which carry a third tier legal status of importance, below Jus Cogens and Treaties) Israel and the Palestinian Arabs have to determine the borders, and that means NO BODY ELSE can determine the borders. As shown by the fact that there have been no U.N. ratified objections targeted against Palestinian settlement expansion, this proves clearly that there is no real law against the concept of "settlement expansion", per say. Except if done by Israelis. Therefore we see that objective standards such as law have been thrown out the window whenever the topic of Israeli settlements are raised at the U.N.

As long as Israel has an evenhanded policy in settlement expansion, there is no reason to believe that anything truly wrong is being done by settlement expansion. And as expansion of settlements decreases security risks for Israel, settlement expansion should be considered enshrined and protected within the category of Jus Cogens itself. Therefore even if Israel, for example, were to halt all Palestinian expansion and continued only Israeli expansion, as a policy against terror, they would have a theoretical “right” to do so, however politically improbable it may actually be.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Foreign Policy Toward Russia

As I wrote less than two months ago, Russia has shown willingness in the past to play chicken with the safety of its people in foreign borders, having assumed that no one would risk Russian wrath, and having accepted that performing violence against anyone who dares threaten citizens of Russia is perfectly legitimate, even if poor judgment placed them in harm's way to begin with.

Unfortunately, Georgia did not read or take my warning to heart. I am hoping other countries in the West will not make the same mistake. The Russian action against Georgia should have woken everyone up. There is no need to even mention my warning save for the fact that all this was so predictable that even a simple fellow such as myself could figure it out.

I do not blame Russia alone for the events in Georgia. Either the Russians in North Ossetia should be moved to Russia or the territory should be transferred to Russia in peaceful negotiations. The timid or careless reaction by the EU to the decades long pressure build up between Russia and Georgia is the main reason this matter has come to bloodshed.

Diplomatic ideals must give way to the imperative of preventing live warfare. It is vital to make Russia tell its workers to leave Iranian reactor sites or else. The West may be on track for another cold war with Russia, but it is more than wise to make sure that nothing worse than a cold war transpires. Don't worry about the West being painted as a bully towards Russia. Just work to make sure everyone lives to read the history books that discuss these events of today.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Individualistic Moral Accountancy: The Ideological Foundation of Healing Societies

Supporters of Two State Solutions typically state that there will be no method to stop terrorist violence until there is the surrender of land in some sort of a treaty. Even though there has never been any capitulation to terror in history that was as effective to halt terror as police action is (such as building walls and fences or actual military usage).

What then is the theoretical philosophic foundation to this reasoning? The needs of individuals are subservient to the needs of society. Take away the societal frustration of no land for peace, and individual would-be terrorists will start breeding doves and loving their former enemies.

In the real world, however, it is the needs of individuals that direct the course of societal streams of satisfaction and dissatisfaction. Take away the feelings of lack of opportunity and personal sense of injustice and loss of freedom, and societal problems will seem far away to the individual. So to heal a society, one must first treat the molecular structure of the society, that is, individual families and then the very atoms themselves, the individuals within those families.

Thus we have it that the foundation of healing a society is the antithesis of Two State Solution advocacy.

Another logical argument toward this point would be to ask: historically, how did Palestinian society degrade from a peaceful group of refugees into the public worship of terrorism as a legitimate form of resistance. Individuals forsook morality and chose evil. History tells us it was not a societal decision to become terrorists in creed. It was the growth of distinct bunches of individuals, not in any single neighborhood or town, but multifarious seedlings of terror worship popping up here and there.

I blame the misappropriation of American and Israeli Tax dollars by the Palestinian Authority, in the administration of the broadcast of pro-terrorist, society perverting television programming, as the fuel to the fire that created the terrorist loving predicament that exists in Palestinian Arabic society today. But it was only a fuel that was ignited by countless tiny individual flames, due to a mass loss of self responsibility by countless individual Palestinian Arabs. It was not a thousand families grouping together to become one massive terrorist network, rather it was one thousand families with one thousand individual black sheep who veered off the path of those who seek to uphold truth and life. And it was the one thousand families whose failure to deliver sufficient consequences to the chaotic lovers of terror in their midst. And only then was it a societal breakdown by leaders who not only did not condemn the evil of individual terrorists, but both clergyman and politician actually encouraged individuals to die the “death of the brave.”

Thus we have it that the foundation of healing a society is INDIVIDUALISTIC MORAL ACCOUNTANCY.

Individualistic Moral Accountancy is also the antithesis of Two State Solution advocacy, which claims that an ill society must be nurtured in order for its families and individuals to desire to behave morally. Therefore we can say that Two State Solution advocates are pushing a fallacious belief and are attempting to label it as our only hope. The time for such small thought has passed. The actual best hope for peace is for lovers of peace everywhere to mobilize and to publicly forsake such erroneous thought from now on and for all time. Let them declare that the age of Individualistic Moral Accountancy has arrived.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Healing Societies: The Ideological Foundation of the Everyone Wins Peace Plan

To what can my support of the Rabbi Elon Israeli Initiative Peace Plan be compared to? Like two women who were told that the infant on the table before them is the long lost child of one of them, only it is not certain which one is the true mother. Surely if the baby were at risk of falling off the table, no matter which mother could reach the child before it were harmed, surely then both mothers would rejoice at the success of the other woman, for success means the infant’s safety.

In this parable, Rabbi Elon’s peace plan is the woman who is closer to the table. His plan is more developmentally mature in it current stage of progression than mine is at this point in time, hence, it demands even my support. So, egos or jealousy have no place in this matter. Of course, if Rabbi Elon’s plan could, in actuality, not just theoretically, bring lifesaving peace, then of course I would and do fully support it, and certainly at the expense of any possible accolades towards me or the plan that God inspired me to form, so that the Lord-God’s Reverence for Life could best be honored.

Stages of Peace Plan Development

  1. Conception
  2. Publicity
  3. Acceptance
  4. Implementation

On the above chart, Rabbi Elon’s plan is bordering on stage number 3; while mine is less developmentally mature at this point, currently somewhere between 1 and 2.

But what if in that above parable with the infant, the woman who was closer to the endangered infant had bags in her hands, so that she must either drop the bags or else the other woman must push past her and grab the child before it is too late. The Kahane-esque underpinnings of the Israel Initiative are its conceptual weakness, its baggage. If my belief is true, that the Everyone Wins peace plan is a more conceptually mature plan than the Israeli Initiative is, and therefore has a greater long term chance for success, then certainly my plan would then demand priority of support, even by Rabbi Binyamin Elon himself, to edit the Israeli Initiative according to the guidelines that God blessed me to write about.

Until now there were two mainstream ways of looking at prospective peace in the Holy Land.

1) Two States West of the Jordan River formula peace plans such as the current Roadmap to Peace and the repeatedly failed Oslo Accords assume that the West Bank and Gaza are completely different from the “Green Line” territories of Israel. These plans ignore the rights of Israeli settlers in the West Bank and Gaza. This ignores Biblical texts, thousands of years of history, current societal realities, and the settlement policies of the past 40 years.

2) The Rabbi Meir Kahane peace plan essentially assumes that all Arabs on the other side of the Green Line are squatters who have no rights to any of the land that they possess, in the spirit of the Bible’s treatment of those evil nations who dwelt in the Land of Canaan before the Hebrews came to possess the land. Still, rather than battle the Palestinians, Rabbi Kahane proposed paying the Palestinians to relocate. More out of a sense of magnanimity at the face of Palestinian discomfort than as a recognition of Palestinian rights to their land. This has been rejected by Israeli society from being considered a viable policy.

But the more that is invested into hopeless two state options, and the more blood that is shed, the more likely public opinion would return to this concept as an option. Though, I would suggest not waiting and instead embarking on a new course, so that the bloodshed on both sides may cease all the sooner. Also while less offensive to Primal International Laws of self defense than the Roadmap to Peace, Kahane's plan is still not as law abiding overall as the Everyone Wins peace plan. Now I do not mean to suggest that the United States entered into a foreign policy directly opposed to International Law. But the current Roadmap to Peace blueprint naively called for trusting leopards to change their spots, terrorists to reform into law abiding leaders. This created even from the onset that a probability would exist that the law would be ignored by the Palestinian Arab leadership that could not care less for objective International Norms that do not directly benefit them. Placing adherence to Jus Cogens/Fundamental International Law completely into the hands of terrorists is foolhardy. It is based upon the fallacious legal notion of placing lesser customary law in priority above higher primal law, for the sake of political expediency.

To be kind to those who earnestly labored for peace via the false peace plans, before now there were only Two State Solutions and Kahane based One State Solutions. Now, in Everyone Wins, a true third way exists.

The Everyone Wins peace plan assumes that the concern over the political demarcation known as the Green Line is the main problem. Why? Because, while the venue of the solution is political, that much is true, the cause of the problem is not political, but rather societal in nature. One society being understandably somewhat obsessed with demographic concerns and the other society overwhelmed by an undercurrent of terror. Therefore discussing political lines in the sand rather than methods of healing societal rifts is, in fact, a main reason that Kahane-esque peace plans do not escape my criticism of having begun in an adverse manner.

By attempting to sever this people or that from their homes, neighborhoods, and societal foundations, mass discontent is raised and true peace cannot gain a foothold. Everyone Wins views all the land as one, and all the people as one democratic entity. Only terrorists are considered a foreign body that must be excised because society itself cannot bear them. Therefore we can say that the solution to peace in the Holy Land has been so very elusive not because many good intentioned people did not seek a fair answer, but merely because they were asking the wrong question. The question of ‘how do you stop the conflict’ is well meaning but too general to guide one to a direct path to peace. The correct question is, ‘what method will heal Israeli and Palestinian Arabic societies the best?

By using antiquated theoretical models, upon which all Two State Solutions are based, good people have been running away from true peace. But the good news is, once we all start on the right path and in the right direction together, things are going to get very, very good, very soon. So may it be God’s will.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Upcoming War With Iran

In the past few days, several stories seemed to conflict on whether a war with Iran is imminent. Over the weekend (July 12) the Jerusalem Post reported that Iran said that: "Iran would "destroy" Israel as well as 32 US army bases in the region" if any nation attacked it." On Sunday (July 13) the UK Times reported that President Bush would support an Israeli attack on Iran if Israel proposes an effective plan that President Bush likes. Yesterday, (July 15) JTA reported that Israel Defense Minister "Barak will likely reschedule his U.S. visit for early August".

Now clearly Israel and the USA both feel that Iran with the current regime in charge is a seriously clear and present danger, worthy of a preemptive use of military force. And the preferred window for warfare in the Middle East is generally in the Spring and Fall. So unlike other predictions of an Israeli strike only after the American elections, and no later than the holiday of Chanukah (that is, sometime between mid-November and the last week in December of this year) to me it would seem more likely for an attack even sooner.

If so, then why would they (Israel and America) delay discussion of war plans until next month? Certainly it does not take a military machine such as Israel weeks to come up with a suitable plan of attack. Also, the USA could have sent Israel weaponry years ago, as soon as both countries came to the same impression of the Iranian threat. So it is unlikely that this delay is about arming Israel in preparation for their attack on Iran. Rather, the Israeli delay would seem more likely to be an effort to allow American forces in the Persian Gulf time to create new defenses and to strengthen existing bunkers so that they would suffer minimal casualties from an Iranian missile attack.

Assuming that all of this is, at the very least, plausible, this would then lead one to assume that the Bush Administration sees the upcoming war as a scenario such as this:

  1. Israel destroys a handful of Iranian nuclear research sites.
  2. Iran strikes US armed forces in Iraq and other places in the Persian Gulf.
  3. The USA is drawn into a war with Iran.

It would seem to me that this would be a politically astute move for an unpopular President. He would be "forced" to defend our troops from certain destruction if Iran would be allowed to fire missile after guided missile indiscriminately. But such a move would also be a more risky plan for American troops. If Israel is the one to strike Iran, then the Iranian Missile Silos would be more likely to survive and thus remain able to strike at our boys overseas. Most American soldiers in the Persian Gulf would be in harms way. But if America strikes Iran first, the Iranian Missile Silos would be destroyed first, and the vast majority of our boys (and girls) would be spared the risk of death.

It was reported yesterday (JTA) that America's "Former U.N. ambassador John Bolton said the United States should assist Israel in any strike on Iran's nuclear facilities. ‘We will be blamed for the strike anyway, and certainly feel whatever negative consequences result, so there is compelling logic to make it as successful as possible,’ wrote Bolton"

It may be the less popular move in today's political climate, but for our Commander In Chief, it would be the right move, the best move possible in the predicament that we find ourselves in.

Iran has essentially said that under any likely scenario, Iran will attack American forces in the Persian Gulf. That is an implicit declaration of war. American interests would be best served if we treated it as such.

We've lost too many of our troops already to take a policy of literally hiding our heads in the sand as our first line of defense and as a pseudo best option in the upcoming war with Iran.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

MK Rabbi Binyamin Elon is Now Aware of the Everyone Wins Peace Plan

It started a couple of weeks ago when I mentioned to Rabbi Pesach Lerner, Executive Vice President of the National Council of Young Israel that the next time Rabbi Elon comes to town he should please let me know. Rabbi Lerner asked why. I said that I wished to discuss and compare peace plans with him. Rabbi Lerner then volunteered to personally deliver a letter to Rabbi Elon for me. This past Sunday, 3rd day of the Hebrew month of Tamuz, I was asked by Rabbi Elon's Webmaster if they could publish my "interesting and helpful letter" on their website. A brief excerpt of the seven page missive can be found on their website at this link.

To me, it's not about accolades. If Rabbi Elon's peace plan can prevent future conflict, then we should rejoice that peace has arrived the moment it is accepted. But with the stakes so high, I took the pessimistic side and developed my variation of his peace plan to serve as a backup option for politicians like MK Elon to use rather than allow a return to extreme two state burdensome conceptions in the guise of peace plans from taking over the agenda as they have in the past.

"They tried to heal the breakage of the daughter of my people in a light mannered way, saying 'Peace, Peace', but there was no peace. ...We hoped for peace, but to no good avail; for a time of healing, but behold: TERROR!" (Jeremiah 8.11 & 15)

In fact, as it would save more lives if his plan is accepted right away, I hope and pray that he is successful. To my students and fans I ask that you please do not applaud for my honor more than you cheer for the cause of peace. It is enough for my efforts that God has already given me the immense satisfaction of having helped make a safety net of sorts to Rabbi Elon's great work. But if a more liberalized version of Rabbi Elon's plan is needed in order for a One State Solution to be a viable political option, then it is vital that a plan such as Everyone Wins be developed to perfection BEFORE it is needed. I welcome any fellow political scientists
or publishers who feel the same way to contact me. What can you do? Spread the word, so we can prepare the path for peace together!

"And say 'Prepare the path, prepare the path! Clear the road! Remove the stumbling block from the path of My people.'"
(Isaiah 57.14)

Monday, July 7, 2008

How to Deal with International Hostage Crises

I would have thought with former war hero Ehud Barak on board as Defense Minister, the Olmert Administration would have become a bit wiser when dealing with hostage crises. Unfortunately the recent "live murders for deceased hostages" idea must rank as one of the most foolish foreign policy ideas that I have ever heard. While the hallowed remains of fallen soldiers should always be sought out, the safety of the living must take top priority.

How should one deal with an international hostage drama? Never placate. Then should one command an immediate assault as soon as a hostage is taken? I suggest that the best first response is to not flinch. If it looks like you will rush to placate or to battle each time there is a hostage taken, then whenever the other side wants you to do something, it knows which button to press to get the desired results out of you. Rather there should be an understanding that there is likely to be a heavy price to pay in the near future for anyone who takes a hostage and does not repent before Israel acts to recover it's missing citizen(s). The first stage, when possible, should be a small task force assault to try to get the hostage out alive with as little collateral damage as possible. If the first stage fails, there must be an eventual military battle against the offending neighborhood, without primal concern for the safety of the hostage, because at this stage of the dilemma, national security must take priority over individual safety.

The terrorist kidnappers try to collectively hold the entire country hostage. This must never be allowed. If everyone knew that the entire neighborhood that the terrorists were hiding in would be at risk of being leveled, codependents to
terroristic kidnappings would be few and far between.

The families of Israel should not be made to regret that their children died for such a foolish government. Rather it is the enemies of Israel who must be made to rue the day that they ever thought about kidnapping her citizens if she is to be protected from the risk of such evil ever
reoccurring again. God protect us all.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Sarkozy Too Cozy With Division of Jerusalem

In the news today, France's leader spoke out in a healthy and tough stand against Iran, and just in case we would start to think him too wise beyond his years, in the interests of even-handedness he also made a foolish statement so he could remain on par with many other world leaders. Sarkozy said that:

"There can be no peace without recognising Jerusalem as the capital of two states and the guarantee of freedom of access to the holy places for all religions," (AFP)

First of all, this statement of Sarkozy shows ignorance of the strife between PA goals for Jerusalem, and Israeli goals for Jerusalem. The destruction of Joseph's tomb, and countless other offenses, prove that the PA is untrustworthy to share secular control over religious institutions. Only Israeli control can guarantee freedom of religion for non-Muslims. Sarkozy's first statement on Jerusalem, of shared political centers, contradicts his second statement on Jerusalem, that there should be freedom of religion in the holy city.

Secondly, the Sarkozy statement seems something of a paraphrase of a quote from Isaiah, but misses the intent of God's statement entirely...

"And the children of foreign lands who join themselves to the Lord to serve Him and to love the Name of the Lord, to become his servants unto Him... I will bring them to My holy mountain, and I will gladden them in My house of prayer... for my House will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples. The word of my Lord, God, Who gathers in the dispersed of Israel: I shall gather to him even more than those already gathered to him."
(Isaiah 56.6-8)

The prophecy implies both the facts of today and of recent history, that Israel must be in possession of "The House" and only then can it be a house of prayer for all.

Not only Jewish freedom of religion depends on it.

Friday, June 20, 2008

A Critique of the Elon Plan and a Summary of the Everyone Wins Peace Plan

The Rabbi Binyamin Elon peace plan, despite a few issues that bother me, is currently the best peace plan widely known in the world today, while the “Roadmap to Peace” is an assault on Jewish Human Rights in the form of freedom to practice Judaism in their own land. The Palestinian Authority has failed to show any indication that they intend to keep the International Laws of Succession and safeguard Jewish freedom of religious access to their religious landmarks and holy sites, as was proven, for example, with the desecration of the Tomb of Joseph and countless other examples. Further, and more urgent, every time the IDF surrenders more control, more people have died on both sides.

Even if the Roadmap is scrapped, there has to be a good alternative peace plan waiting in the wings, so that any other plans even worse than the Roadmap do not ever get a chance to gain strength. I feel the need for an alternate peace plan is vital to avoid further desecration of God’s Holy Name and needless bloodshed. If my plan is unacceptable for whatever reason, at least the Elon plan does not placate terrorists. Yet here are the main reasons that I was unsatisfied with the Elon plan and wrote up a whole new plan, by the grace of God...

Issue 1

Involving another country, effectively takes control of peace out of the hands of Israel and places it into the hands of that other country. Not only does the Elon plan depend on Jordan to change their policy and allow mass immigration, (which they may view with as much disdain as Israel views the Saudi plan) but it also depends on Jordan to keep the peace in their own country and should that fail, there is a danger of Israel being pressured to take back terrorists into their country, because to the UN, why would Israel’s sovereignty be more important than Jordan’s? True peace should bring more stability, not less, more order, not more potential for randomness and chaos. This is the first issue I have with the Elon plan.

Issue 2

In my variation of one state solutions such as the Elon peace plan, which I call the “Everyone Wins” plan, nobody loses their homes except for terrorists and those who support them. Now even if at the end of the day this means only a minority of Palestinian Arabs keep their homes, as it does not discriminate due to race, but moral choice, it is much more politically acceptable to the mainstream than any variant of a Rabbi Kahane plan. The Elon plan which seeks to toss every Palestinian Arab out of the West Bank and Gaza, has the negative appearance of a Kahane style plan. Not that Rabbi Kahane was a racist. Indeed, if everybody listened to him many lives would have been spared, more Arabs than Jews, even. Yet, the unfortunate reality is that any Kahane-esque plan causes a knee-jerk reaction in the left, and makes it morally difficult for the politically moderate to give their full support. We must deal with actualities in order to implement loftier ideals. We cannot ignore how the electorate feels. This is the second issue that I have with the Elon plan.

Issue 3

Is this how you treat your friends? Remember that Abraham prayed for even just ten people out of a whole city, if they are righteous. So how can anyone suggest tossing out so many potentially good people without giving them a chance to prove themselves innocent of terror?

Real Change

To do more than win over just a few politicians, but to actually change American Foreign Policy you need to offer a non-offensive (to American sensibilities) alternative to current foreign policy. The peace plan alternative must be as moderate and evenhanded as possible without ignoring the key needs of Israel, external and internal security, and religious freedom.

Everyone Wins

The "Everyone Wins" Peace Plan requires the tying of West Bank/Gaza Arabic naturalization rates to the immigration rates of foreign born Jews. Whereas previous one state solutions called for relocating masses of people, this plan calls for no segregation whatsoever. Nobody has to give up their homes (except for terrorists and those who support them), neither Jews nor Arabs. Palestinians slowly but surely become complete Israelis without overwhelming the Israeli economy and infrastructure.

The key to making this work is twofold. First: the categorization of the level of security risk of each naturalization applicant. The ones who are at zero risk are immediately placed in cue and await a corresponding number of immigrants to raise enough quota to allow them entry as naturalized Israelis. Second: setting a fair and an appropriate ratio. If current demographics in Israel are that 15% of Israelis are Arabs, then the ratio could be set at 15%. That is, for every 100 immigrants, 15 West Bank and Gaza Arabs who are not a threat are allowed in. So if in a given year there are 100,000 Jewish immigrants, 15,000 friendly Arabs would naturalize.

Once true peace exists, I would expect that Jewish immigration will likely increase by no less than 300% of current rates. Plus financial stability and growth will be at unheard of levels. The ability to power infrastructure growth and the greater Jewish immigration numbers will allow Israel to naturalize more Arabs faster and safer than currently possible. Thus the entire conflict will come to an end that much sooner, by the grace of God.