This was written by Moshe Feiglin, leader of the Manhigut Yehudit- Jewish Leadership-faction of the Likud. His website is www.jewishisrael.org
Return the Tanks to Storage: By Moshe Feiglin
15 Sivan, 5767
June 1, 2007
This article is translated from the Makor Rishon newspaper.
"And Moses said, 'Why do you transgress the word of G-d, and it will not succeed? Do not go up because G-d is not in your midst, lest your enemies smite you." (Numbers 14: 41-42)
Empty militarism, Moses explains to the Israelites, will not work. If you do not have a G-d, you will lose.
A population imbued with deep faith used to separate us from the enemy on our southern border. For years, they were the target of thousands of missiles, rockets and terror attacks of all kinds. Neither Guydamek nor Olmert scurried to help them. They also didn't really ask for help. They did not leave and they did not protest. They simply clung tenaciously to the Land of Israel, shielding Sderot and Ashkelon, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem with their bodies. They were armed with a decisive weapon -- their sense of justice.
This sense of justice kept them steadfast in the face of the Arab enemy. But their downfall came from an unexpected direction. Their love for their Nation and their Land blinded them to the new reality. They did not understand -- and many of them still do not understand -- that their own brothers exchanged good for bad, foe for friend. They did not understand that for the leadership of the new Israelis, they -- the believing pioneers -- became the enemy to be eliminated. They could not accept that he who marks you as his enemy is necessarily your enemy. They did not defend themselves, lost their homes, livelihood and life's dream and scattered in every direction.
"Don't look them in the eyes," the psychologists prepped the Expulsion soldiers. A huge and estranged army buried itself in the sands of Gush Katif, exposing Israel's southern border. "This army is now going to lose every battle against an external enemy," I said when I returned from Gush Katif. And that is what happened. In a precise replay of the past, the "Disengagement" once again proved that retreats do not give Israel the justification for a painful response to attack. On the contrary: They strengthen the justification of the enemies' claims, motivate them to continue to strike us and deny Israel the moral possibility to re-conquer the lost territory. If you are not a settler, you do not belong here. And if you do not belong here, then get out. Don't stop at any imaginary border. Just leave!
Militant voices are now emanating from all shades of the political spectrum. "There is a military solution," the generals explain. "Kill them without mercy," says Chich at the rally. "There is no way to escape a broad ground offensive in Gaza" former Chief of Staff Ya'alon explains. When the Left demands war, the Right rushes to the front lines first. It is a type of conditioned reflex.
Didn't anybody learn anything from last summer's war in Lebanon?
If the purpose for our return to Gaza is not for the sake of settlement, it will necessarily be for the sake of losing, dieing and running away from its sands. There is no reason for a large scale military operation there if we subsequently return to the international border. And it is impossible to remain in the midst of Gaza without the moral backbone of settlement there. Will Olmert rebuild Gush Katif after our children die in a new military misadventure in Gaza? Will Netanyahu?
So everybody can relax, and put their "War Now" signs back into storage. In the words of Moses, "It will not succeed."
What, then, is my solution? For those who want to live in a normal state with borders that offer the illusion of peace or safety, I have no solution. But that does not bother me, because I have a different goal. I am not looking for a normal state. I am looking for a unique state -- a vital and flourishing Jewish State. I want to settle Jews on every centimeter of land that falls into our hands. I want to establish an exemplary Jewish society that will be a moral model for the entire world -- an authentic "light unto the nations." I believe in G-d and I want to restore Him to our national consciousness. I want to liberate the Temple Mount. I want to take the sense of justice away from the Hamas and Hizbollah and return it to Israel's army. Simply put, I do not want peace. I want to defeat our enemies, drive them from our Land and fulfill our Jewish destiny. Peace will surely follow.
And what are the residents of Sderot supposed to understand for now? They
should understand what the Gush Katif residents refused to accept: The danger is not from Gaza.