The Jerusalem Post’s columnists’ consuming hatred of President Obama has prompted several of them to make clear their vision of Israel’s future. That vision is so grim, so self-destructive for Israel, and so dangerous for America that it behooves Americans to find out the direction in which some of the most influential Israeli columnists have been successfully, and dramatically moving Israel’s policies. Mubarak’s fall from power has caused several JPost columnists to excoriate Obama, claiming that he acted like President Carter (who these columnists claim “lost” Iran). The fear of these columnists is that Mubarak’s successor might abrogate the 1978 Camp David Peace Accords, which produced the “cold peace” between Egypt and Israel that has endured for over 30 years and which the IDF considers to have been an enormous strategic benefit to Israel’s national security. The embarrassing problem for these JPost columnists is that it was President Carter who worked so successfully to broker the Peace Accords. It is inconvenient that one of the JPosts’ favorite demons is in fact the man who produced the Peace Accords. The JPost columnists that support the Peace Accords typically deal with the inconvenience by ignoring Carter’s role. also has columnists, however, who attack Carter – for bringing peace between Israel and Egypt! These columnists favor eternal war against Muslims. Indeed, they explicitly favor conquest through war. Israel should seize other nations’ oil (and beaches!). Ms. Honig complains:
Carter was the one who twisted Menachem Begin’s arms to cede the Sinai and contract the frigid peace with Egypt. Its durability was anyhow limited because Mubarak is old and ill. We struck a risky bargain with a here-today-gone-sometimes-tomorrow regime. All Egyptian undertakings might disintegrate into the desert sands, leaving us on the precipice of a strategic calamity.
Honig believes that Israel should have never given Egyptian land that Israel had conquered in the 1967 “Six Days” war back to Egypt. That, of course, would have prevented any peace treaty with Israel and Egypt and Israel would have had recurrent wars as Egypt sought to liberate the Sinai. Similarly, Mr. Eisenman explains why Israel should have declared that the Sinai was Israeli.
Then, of course, there were the oil and gas fields already being exploited by the Egyptians. These anyhow would have led to energy independence for a country as small as Israel. Then there were the incredible and so-necessary ‘breathing space’ and all recreational opportunities represented by the Red Sea and its coastal towns already under development like Nueiba, Sharm el-Sheikh, and Ophira – and all the present and future tourist sites and incomparable skin-diving locales associated with these. This, not to mention its total and absolute strategic benefit or the presence there of the fabled Mt. Sinai and their own Moses’ holy domain?
“Breathing space?” Israel should conquer and seize territory from its neighbors to provide greater room for Israelis to live? This, in a column that says Muslims are analogous to Hitler? The mind boggles. What a boon for anti-Israeli critics. If your country doesn’t have enough oil; take your neighbor’s oil fields. The idea that one should conquer and seize another nation’s land for “incomparable skin-diving” is novel. (Recall that Moshe (Moses) could not enter Israel – Mount Sinai was not in Israel.)
Eisenman claims there are two reasons why Israel, in violation of international law, can seize its neighbors’ lands that lie outside “biblical” Israel. First, the Sinai was “broad, virtually uninhabited … with all its resources and limitless potential.” Low population density, valuable resources, and proximity combine to produce the JPost columnists’ implicit slogan – “Su Casa es Mi Casa.” And your oil wells are my oil wells. Mostly though, your skin-diving sites are my skin-diving sites. Eisenman thinks skin-diving is worth mentioning in framing what he asserts is a compelling case for Israel embracing theft, breach of international law, and endless war as its strategy.
Second, Eisenman claims that Israel would have prospered and been internationally popular if it had it refused to make peace with Egypt and made the Sinai part of Israel.
[T]o coin another aphorism … ‘all the world loves a winner.’ No one likes or actually, in the end, cares about ‘a loser.’
By making peace, and giving up the Sinai, “Israel has in the last 35 years … sacrificed the awe, wonder, and admiration of much of the world.” Winners defeat opposing armies and keep what they conquer. No one will care about Israel’s neighbors as long as they lose their wars with Israel. Israel would be held in awe today if had refused to make peace and seized any land it conquered.
Eisenman, chastises young IDF troops for celebrating the end of hostilities against Egypt during the Yom Kippur war. He describes the IDF troops as “well meaning”, but “flower children.” In fact, they had seen the lethality of modern war (the Yom Kippur war was the first major use of advanced anti-tank missiles and saw a major increase in the effectiveness of anti-aircraft platforms). The IDF was beaten in several major battles and nearly lost the Golan. They IDF troops had superb reasons for celebrating the end of hostilities. I doubt that many of them were willing to die, or kill, so that Eisenman could pursue his passion for skin-diving. Eisenman concludes that only “fools” would celebrate the Peace Accords.
Eisenman and Honig also emphasize that it is impossible for Israel to make peace with its neighbors because they are Muslim nations. Eisenman warns that “treaties with non-Muslims are not binding and can be canceled at any moment….”
Honig warns that democracy in impossible in Muslim nations because “the Islamic sphere … is utterly devoid of democratic traditions and infrastructure.”
Eisenman’s claim that the world would love Israel as a “winner” and despise its Arab neighbors as “losers” if only Israel had seized the Sinai, declared it Israeli, and refused to enter into the Peace Accords exemplifies the self-delusion that has come to characterize one of Israel’s most influential newspapers. The columnists’ strategy of endless war and theft poses a grave danger to Israel, its neighbors, and the United States.