Wednesday, August 30, 2006

A Revolution in Values

Protest in the Rose Garden
By Ari Shavit
What do we need to do these days? Not much. To prevent the renewal of war in Lebanon and to win the war should it begin anew. To avoid the outbreak of war with Syria and to win a war against it should one break out. To prevent Iran from developing its nuclear capability and to deter the country should it become a nuclear power. To build the Israel Defense Forces from the foundations up, as fast as possible. To rehabilitate the political system immediately. To come up with a leadership from thin air. To formulate, overnight, a national strategy. To carry out a regime change. To initiate a revolution in values. To reestablish the Israeli republic.
. . . . .

However, renewal of Israel's power cannot take place without ethics and without truth. Without modesty and without substance. Without restoring faith and a sense of responsibility. Therefore, the Prime Minister and Chief of Staff of Arrogance must both go. Not only because they have been wrong all the way. Not only because they have been wrong, have been deceptive and have cooked up a disaster. But because getting rid of both will distance us from the distorted values that both of them represent. Separation from both of them will detach us from the evil spirit that tricked us for years.

Dear Mr. Shavit;

Your conclusion, that the answer to Israel's long term survival is dependent upon a "revolution of values", is one that is long awaited. In truth the values have always been with us, and a majority of Israelis have remained true to them over the years.

The vast majority of Jews who live in our country came here because they wanted to live as Jews in a Jewish country. The vast majority of Jews still have some form of positive affinity to Jewish values and traditions, despite 60 years of systematic delegitimization by the Israeli establishment, government and private. The vast majority of Jews who live in Israel believe that democracy is the preferred form of government, even if they harbor suspicions that the current Israeli form of democracy is not working. Without a doubt every Jew in Israel wants to live in a society where law & order reign, but a law and order judicated by courts which reflect their values and enforced by agencies dedicated to protecting the citizens not the regime.

In truth Mr. Shavit, the values in question are the same values the tens of thousands of young adults who were crowded into Kefar Maimond believe they are fighting for. The "Orange Revolution" challenged the Israeli society to reform its political process to one where politicians are accountable to the electorate not the party hacks or money-men; where judges are chosen by the people by from some closed self-selecting elite; where police officers embody law and order, not that they are above the law.

True, the "Orange Public" believe that all the above should, where possible, draw its inspiration from the rich sources of Jewish tradition, but the core values are common to the vast majority of Israelis, religious or secular in their life style. They believe that the Jewish People have a reason for existing. They adhere to the idea that the nation of Israel has an intrinsic connection to the Land of Israel from Kiryat Shmoneh to Ashkelon, from Rosh Hanikra to Eilat. But I've met non-observant Jews from Haifa, Beersheva or Nahallal who agreed with all the above as well!

The events of the past year, and especially of recent weeks have opened the eyes, minds and hearts of many people too long closed to new ideas. People, like you, who see where the self-destructive short-sighted mimicking of other societies is leading us. Perhaps never before in the history of the renewed Jewish presence in the Land of Israel is there a greater likelihood that Jews of all walks of life, from all corners of this land are likely to join together to formulate a new convenant as a nation!

All that is needed now is the spark ... a call to action!

All that is needed is a vehicle ... one that transcends partisan politics!

Who amongst us is willing to rise to the challenge and initiate the revitalization of Jewish life in the Jewish state of Israel?

Are you?

Thanks for the heads-up from IRIS Blog

Saturday, August 26, 2006

We Won't Forgive Nor Forget

A photo essay with background music commemorating the destruction of twenty five communities of Gush Katif and The Northern Shamron last August by the post-Zionist forces of the government of the State of Israel.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A September 11th Memorial Initiative

9/11 Bloggers MemorialOn September 11, 2006, 2,996 volunteer bloggers will join together for a tribute to the victims of 9/11.

Each person will pay tribute to a single victim.
We will honor them by remembering their lives, and not by remembering their murderers.

For more information visit 2,996

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Israel Security Fence

It looks like I'm in the minority, but I personally do not mind living "beyond" the Security Fence. As uncomfortable as it might become, I sincerely believe that the fence is a very valuable tactical and strategic tool which will not only save Jewish lives (and indirectly the lives of others) but also contribute toward a significant decline in the non-Jewish population of Judea & Samaria. Let me explain:

Tactically: The Security Fence does make it more difficult to perpetrate the horrific suicide bombings that plagued Israel these past few years. It doesn't make it impossible, but in the same way that the electronic fence along our border with Jordan made it much easier to prevent infiltration of terrorists from that country, so too the Security Fence contributes to the ability to thwart attacks in Israel proper from the Palestinian Authority controlled areas.

Strategically: I buy into the premise that the Arab population which live on the West Bank of the Jordan River are here because of the economic opportunities the Jewish settlements created over the past hundred fifty years. Just read Mark Twain's description of his visit to "Palestine" in "Innocents Abroad" to understand what existed before Jewish settlement reclaimed this land. (See Joan Peter's "From Time Immemorial" for over whelming detailed support for this thesis.)

Depriving the residents of the Palestinian Authority the opportunity to work illegally in Israel, of the ability to smuggle contraband into Israel for sale and the opportunity to smuggle stolen goods from Israel to the PA for export to the Arab world ... in short, depriving them of the ability to leech off Israel's economy, will force them to create their own economy. Based upon the results the Palestinians have had from "inheriting" the hot houses of the Jews of Gush Katif, I'd say that without Israel there will be a gradual exodus of hungry people looking for a livelihood (and a 'life' away from the violent control of terror).

Without the "Security Fence" neither of these objectives are obtainable.

If saving Jewish lives and empowering future Jewish governments to minimize the Palestinian Authority's ability to leech an existence off the very entity they despise and aspire to destroy, means that I have to travel through a "Check Point" to enter the State of Israel - so be it. It is a minor price to pay.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Strength of Israel

In Safed, a poverty-stricken city in the best of times, one of the most impressive corps of young volunteers swooping down on the city came from an organization called "Lev Echad," One Heart. The organization formed last year to comfort the families from Gaza displaced by the unilateral withdrawal-and consisted mostly of the "orange," national religious anti-disengagement youth. Now, the organization mobilized more than one thousand young people of all political and religious stripes to deliver food, entertain children in bomb shelters, and care for the elderly, whose caretakers had fled the rockets. Watching two busloads of volunteers arrive in Safed with the high spirits of the cavalry coming to rescue their comrades, it was clear that Hamas and Hezbollah had stumbled into giving Israel a gift no Israeli politician was otherwise capable of delivering.
"Israel, United - Hezbollah's terror tactics have only strengthened Israeli resolve"
by By Gil Troy, National Review Online

It never ceases to amaze me ... "and out of the bitter came forth sweetness" (Judges 14:14)

gushkatif-girush-s.jpgThe spirit, the idealism of the youth. Having experienced Kefar Maimon last summer, and walked through the Negev heat to penetrate Gush Katif to attempt to forestall the eventual expulsion, having listened to my children describe their experirences as they volunteered before and after the tragedy ... the one thing that overwhelms me again and again is their spirit, their unflagging belief in the future of the Jewish People and our obligation as Jews to help one another. Every time "fate" (Divine Providence?) gives us a bitter pill to swallow, the innate strength of the Jewish people, its youth, rises to the occasion and demonstrates why despite the fatigue of our secular leadership, Israel's future is as bright and optimistic as ever.

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Orange Revolution : Accountability

Demanding accountability from incompetent political and military leaders who led us into defeat against an enemy we could and should have beaten is not opening a civil war. It is the proper response from a responsible public that understands our leaders are incapable of defending the country.
Our World: Emanuel Morano's Legacy,
by Caroline Glick, Jerusalem Post Aug. 22, 2006
That wonderful word has raised its head several times in the past ten days! The key to the "revolution" in Israeli political life that has a chance of saving this country from moral decay and returning it to a vibrant thriving democracry is "accountability". Only when the elected are accountable to the electorate will government reflect the values and aspirations of the people!

I'm not afraid of the "people". True they are not "religious", but in general, even after two generations of systematic allienation from their traditions and culture, they still have a firm rooting in the values and beliefs of their forefathers. It only requires a little watering, a little care-taking and gradually they will again thrive and grow strong.

The others, the elites (18 families control 75% of Israeli's national wealth!) are welcome to return to their roots, or if frustrated in their attempts to retain control to their little fiefdoms, are welcome to find homes elsewhere where their secular anti-Jewish values are the norm.

The important thing, the people are talking - demanding accountability, demanding a judical system that reflects their values, demanding police agencies dedicated to protecting the citizens and the rule of law and order rather than acting as "enforcers" of unpopular government policy who act above the rule of law, absolved of all misconduct before they even begin to act.

The "Orange Revolution" is coming.

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