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Israel At 56: Still Under The Oslo Delusion

By Steven Plaut Jewish Press April 28, 2004

This week Israelis observed Memorial Day and celebrated
Independence Day. I have
believed for years that the best way to commemorate these days is by turning
them into a battle
against the loss of perspective.

Memorial Day is the more troubling of the two days. The problem is that
Israelis have
lost their sense of Jewish perspective to such an extreme extent, and this
becomes glaringly
evident on Memorial Day. Israelis are incapable of viewing their problems and
that of the state
within the perspective of Jewish history, in large part because of the
efforts of the secularist
Israeli Left, which dominates civil discourse, the media, and academia and
seeks to detach the
state from Jewish history and deny any connection between “Israeli-ness” and
Judaism.

This is reflected in a defeatism that is blindingly apparent on Memorial Day,
whose
atmosphere resembles that of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Yom Hashoah, in
nearly all things:
the same siren, the same closing of cafes and restaurants, the same
conversion of the media into
official mourners. The timing is also suggestive — Memorial Day is a week
after Yom Hashoah.
If anything, Memorial Day is the more dramatic of the two days, as there are
two sirens sounded
on Memorial Day but only one on Yom Hashoah. And this is not because the loss
of soldiers is
more recent. The bulk of the soldiers killed in Israel`s wars, more than
half, died in the 1948-9
War of Independence, only three years after the Holocaust.

All sense of proportion has been lost. If you add up the numbers from all of
Israel`s wars,
roughly 21,000 soldiers and civilians have been killed. That’s similar to the
number of Jews
murdered every two days at Auschwitz at the height of its “efficiency.” In
other words, had
Auschwitz operated just two days longer than it actually did, the loss of
Jewish life during that
two-day period would have equaled all of Israel`s military and civilians
losses over more than
half a century. (The soldiers killed in Israel, of course, died in valor,
defending their people and
country.

Here we are, 56 years after the Holocaust, and Israel is still operating
under the Grand
Oslo Delusion, still trying to “negotiate” with the Palestinians instead of
achieving total military
victory over them. In modern Israel, the fact that one or two soldiers were
killed per week in
Lebanon was cause for a panic-stricken retreat out of Lebanon to Israel`s
“international border.

Two deaths a week of soldiers in Lebanon — deaths that could have been
prevented but
for the lack of courage among the country`s leadership — were thought to be
sufficient reason for
abandoning all rationality and determination, and for putting all of northern
Israel under threat of
massive bombardment. On the other front, Palestinians tossing rocks at
soldiers in the 1980`s was
sufficient reason for Israel to fall for the Oslo swindle of the 1990`s and
invite an Islamofascist
terrorist army to sit in the suburbs of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

Oslo Israel is post-survivalist Israel, defeatist Israel, exhausted Israel.
Oslo was based on a total loss of the ability to reason rationally, a loss of
historic proportions, a relinquishment of reality for a make-pretend imaginary
universe, and a complete loss in the Jewish determination to
survive as a nation.

First and foremost, it was a complete loss in Jewish self-respect and dignity
in Israel.
Here we had the spectacle of Israeli leaders meeting, back-slapping and
kissing the same Arab
fascists who murdered Jewish children and only yesterday denied there had
ever been a
Holocaust, but at the same time insisting that if there had been one, the
Jews deserved it.

The Israeli media continue to be the occupied territory of Israel`s extremist
Left; the
Independence Day issue of Haaretz a couple of years back featured a banner
op-ed by columnist
Akiva Eldar entitled “To the Glory of the States of Israel and Palestine.”
Eldar explained that
Israel will never be truly independent until Palestine has pushed Israel
behind its 1949 borders
and liberated East Jerusalem.

In Oslo Israel, defeatism became the greatest form of triumphalism, cowardice
became
the highest form of courage, and McCarthyism was the greatest expression of
democracy, at least
in the first few years after the Rabin assassination.

The Israeli military was as blinded by the loss of perspective as the rest of
the country.
The military leadership has been McClellenist since 1992, and was if anything
ahead of the rest
of the country in saying amen to the vision of Oslo and backing the suicidal
ambitions of Israel’s
surrender-at-all-costs Left. The military brass was even louder than the
media in demanding the
unilateral, unconditional surrender of Israel in Lebanon and the abandonment
of the Golan to
Syria.

Meanwhile, now it’s Ariel Sharon who’s trying to capitulate his way into
tranquility. Just
what does he think the PLO-Hamas terrorists will do in Gaza once Israel has
ethnically cleansed
it of Jews and abandoned it?

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