October 22, 2009
"What many could not understand was how an army which even some
German generals considered the strongest in Europe could be defeated so
quickly and easily. So staggering were the losses – 90,000 dead, 200,000
wounded, more than one and a half million taken prisoner..." – This
is the story of France in 1939 (as told by Don & Petie Kladstrup in
"The most important arena where we need to act...is in the arena of
public opinion, which is crucial in the democratic world. We must
continue to debunk this lie that is spreading with the help of the
Goldstone report." -- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
On Tuesday, October 20, 2009, a Ministerial Committee on National
Security convened for the first time in Israel to discuss the
implications of the Goldstone Report recently adopted by the UN Human
Rights Council. A new unit will be established in the Ministry of
Justice in coordination with the Attorney General and the Public
Prosecutor to handle legal proceedings taking place overseas against the
State of Israel, or against its citizens, which require legal handling
and special coordination.
A Jewish person headed the Goldstone Report and the investigation
leading to its publication. The White House Chief of Staff is Jewish. He
orchestrates the President’s disengagement from Israel and the constant
attacks by the Nobel Laureate (Peace, 2009) on Israel to "freeze
settlements” and allow the creation of an enemy state from within, with
Jerusalem as its capital.
When it is time to hit Israel again, more forceful than before, what
better way than to use the Jews themselves to do the job? There is an
army of willing participants, many standing ready to volunteer to
badmouth Israel, subjugate the Jewish State to poison and administer
death. They are of our own, aided and abated by true enemies of the
Two young Israeli women, age 18, objecting to military service, are on a
speaking tour in the USA attacking Israel. The goal justifies the means,
and their homeland can be sacrificed along the way. So eager they are to
do the right thing, and yet so little did either one accomplished in her
lifetime. Military service is mandatory in Israel, making a youth into a
responsible young adult. The IDF is a melting pot, in which race,
educational background, affluence and other factors disappear and are
replaced by a common thread, yielding a proud Israeli citizen.
So what is wrong with the Goldstone Report or the UN decision? A vote
was taken, and Israel is now accused of committing war crimes. Add this
latest "substantiation of charges” by a dignified and reliable world
body to blood libels raging on for many months and the recipe is now
Israeli soldiers murdering children, the narrative created and filmed
for television near the Western Wall by Turkish Television. Israeli
soldiers harvesting organs from young Arab males for sale on the
international black market as reported on Swedish leading newspaper
(based on rumors and innuendos). These blood libels are a perfect tool
used by the enemy, inflaming an already agitated world concerned that
the root-cause of all things evil is Israel’s settlements and the
"occupation of Palestine."
Much like a defendant of frivolous litigation, Israel needs to invest
enormous resources to protect herself and her people, time and again,
although her success rate exhibits fast-diminishing returns. The reason
is not the fast-escalating intensity of the attacks, rather it is Israel
persuading herself she is doing just fine and thus either excusing the
enemy from within or doing little if anything to wage a true war against
the baseless accusations and accusers.
The poison drips slowly into the patient’s IV. The patient does not look
delirious, on the contrary, she advocates increasing the rate of flow.
It was not that long ago when prominent members of Israel’s own academia
accused her of being an Apartheid state. They called for a boycott on
Israel to be carried out by all thinking and responsible individuals,
corporations and governments. I wrote at that time to a doctor who
practices in Israel that one consequence of defending the "right” of an
"out-fringe” to do what some of his colleagues are doing is making it
The issue will come back to haunt him, I warned. It is not unlikely that
the doctor, a lieutenant colonel in the reserves, will soon be accused
himself of committing war crimes. God only knows this is further from
all possible truth.
The esteemed president of the university named after Israel’s first
Prime Minister David Ben Gurion sat here in Beverly Hills and
essentially dismissed the whole affair. Her concern was with the
continued flow of money from the Diaspora, and all means were
acceptable, despite being short-lived, shortsighted and lacking in
The day has arrived, requiring immediate corrective action, a new
approach, a vision. Israel has no one to blame but herself. The Jewish
Homeland is completely surrounded. Raging fires many stories high engulf
her from all sides. For fires of such intensity and magnitude, special
equipment is necessary, yet Israel has not fathomed the wisdom to
counteract these fires or even obtain the necessary equipment.
It was during Operation Cast Lead that then leader of the Opposition,
now Prime Minister Netanyahu, invited the foreign press to tour the
south. We went from 45-seconds-from-launch (the city of Ashdod) to
30-seconds-from-launch (the city of Ashkelon). As we arrived at each
city we were greeted by a bombardment of rockets launched by
peace-loving "Palestinians” living under the "siege of Gaza.”
Our buses were not protected and we were not immune, but it seems that
this field trip was to end well and we were soon to arrive back to the
safety of the center of Israel.
I remember the time in the bus and later at the hospital, As Netanyahu
and most other politicians came for photo-ops. Netanyahu answered very
eloquently, as always. He was no longer "leader of the Opposition.”
Israel was all one. Honorable, but given a one-on-one discussion later
in the bus with his top advisers, tired of yet another successful day,
the truth was revealed: Israel was doing well!
The same sentiment was shared not only by Netanyahu’s top advisers but
others as well including the Foreign Minister and head of the ruling
party, Livni. With the Foreign Ministry at her disposal (often used as
the party’s own PR firm), Livni failed to lead. The top echelon of the
Ministry in a makeshift bunker at the front-line in Sderot,
15-seconds-from-launch, was telling tales of wonder, how well the
country was doing, how magnificently they were faring internationally.
Given Israel’s deep failures in 2006 during the Second War in Lebanon,
Israel was indeed implementing basic improvements. Yet, the fact that
the IDF Spokesperson’s unit spoke in one voice, organized and
orchestrated, did not amount to "victory” or even to "success.”
The lack of dozens and hundreds of commentators from within the ranks of
the IDF simply reminded one that an army needs to run like an army and
military service is not made-for-TV. Starting to utilize social networks
was not a great discovery either, just arriving to the right point of
time on a timeline.
A minority sounded the alarm, claiming that Israel is failing in its
public diplomacy efforts. Those who thought differently then and still
believe Israel should not and cannot be held responsible should take a
few steps aside and spend a few minutes reading the Goldstone Report.
Dismissing it as well will not work this time around, the next stumbling
block is a few feet ahead. As it was said in a previous war: "Gentleman,
you are about to witness the most famous victory in history” (Hitler to
his generals, May 9, 1940).
Among the minority calling for a change of direction was an image of the
past, the "face of Israel” from the First Persian Gulf War. He knew from
experience the importance of public diplomacy, and the signs of failure
were evident all around. Unfortunately, he was busy running for the
parliament, and although elected, the powers to be are the same
Netanyahu top advisers who knew before we were doing well.
Once in power, the gang of advisers did not waste any time or other
resources for nine months to plan and get ready. Act? Execute? Why
bother when you have convinced yourself you are right and winning?
Twenty years ago Israel did not have a Home Command. The First Persian
Gulf War and Saddam Hussein taught Israel a lesson the hard way. In 2009
Israel still does not have the proper Diplomacy Front. Indeed, there are
numerous entities, from a huge bureaucratic Foreign Ministry to a new
"Hasbara” (public diplomacy and information) Ministry to the IDF to a
plethora of other NGOs and well-meaning individuals. The sum total of
this effort – a total and utter failure – can be summarized in the
Goldstone Report’s astounding success: Blame Israel for defending
Israel needs decisive action. Israel needs the courage to act, whatever
the consequences. Most importantly, Israel needs a vision, a new
direction and the strength to follow through. Lacking these, she may
find herself facing a new exile, one she cannot afford.