November/December '99

Take your Country Back (A politically incorrect letter to Israeli Jews)

Boris Shusteff
December 26, 1999

"Then they will be my people, and I will be their G-d, because they will return to me with all their heart." Jeremiah 24:7

Tomorrow morning, after you wake up, go to the mirror and look into it. Who do you see there? Ask yourself, who are you? Ask and try to find the answer. Only do not run away from the mirror, do not hurry into the shower, do not rush to have your breakfast, to send children to school, to jump into the car or to catch the bus to go to work. If you disappear in another busy day full of mundane tasks and chores you will miss it again.

Just look into your eyes and try to penetrate into your own soul and to find a Jew there. Try to see this eternal enigma of mankind. Try to understand that you belong to one of the most ancient people in the world, and that it is you, the Jew, who "brought monotheism to the world, the most powerful idea man has ever heard" (1). It is you, the Jew, that is a part of the "nation that was born destined to preserve its identity and survive through the ages till our days" (2). It is you, and your parents, and your grandparents and a hundred generations of your ancestors who "made a totally unprecedented return to their homeland after nearly two thousand years of exile" (1).

On Shabbat eve, on the fifth of Iyar, 5708 (May 14, 1948) you proudly announced in the Proclamation of Independence: "We hereby proclaim the establishment of the Jewish State in Palestine, to be called Medinatth Yisrael (The State of Israel)." In order to stress the Jewish essence of the country even more the Knesset unanimously passed "The Law of Return" on July 5, 1950, thus granting to every Jew in the world the right to immigrate to Israel. True, the Proclamation of Independence spoke also about "all inhabitants" of the country and about "all its citizens" but the only reason for Israel's resurrection was her affiliation with the Jewish people. Israel is the promise of G-d that came true: "I had scattered them. I will bring them back to their own country, to the land that I gave their ancestors" (Jeremiah 16:15). Israel came into existence only because it was supposed to be a Jewish state, i.e. a state where the existential interests of the Jews should be placed above the interests of other groups of people. As Yosef Tekoah, former Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations, said in New York on April 15, 1975, "Israel is the expression of the Jewish resolve to live by what is good and just for the Jewish people and not by what finds favor in the eyes of others" (2).

You must make Tekoah's statement the motto of your daily life and follow it, even if the whole world objects to your policies. You should cherish the primacy of the Jew in the Jewish state. For two millennia the Jews looked at Palestine as a place where they wanted to have a "Jewish state with sovereign rights, a real National Home and not a sham Jewish-Arab confederation" (3). As Richard Meinertzhagen, a gentile Zionist Englishman, wrote in his diary on October 25, 1934,

"The Jew knows perfectly well that the Mandate was given him to enable him to establish himself nationally in Palestine, not with the Arab, but over him. If the Zionists are really going to try to educate the Arab up to Jewish standard and welcome him as an equal brother, the Zionism is going to fail and trickle out into a hybrid state, unstable and worthless. If the Jew attempts to dilute pure Jew with Arab, he signs his death warrant" (3).

What can better prove Meinertzhagen's vision than a recent bill, submitted by MK Mohammed Baraka, the chair of the Hadash faction, that would ostensibly invalidate Israel's existence as the state of the Jewish people? Baraka's bill, titled "Basic Law on the Equality of the Arab Population," states in its second article, "The goal of this basic law is to : anchor: the principles of the State of Israel as a democratic and multicultural state" (4).

It is not surprising that the Arab wants to turn the Jewish state into a state of all its citizens. However, it is absolutely unacceptable that this Arab is serving as a member of the Israeli Parliament. There should be only one criterion for the members of the Knesset - their unquestionable loyalty to the Jewish state. There is only one Jewish state in the world, and it is only logical to defend its Jewish character

Let not anyone intimidate you by saying that you are promoting racism. It is not racism, it is simple self-preservation. Israel is the only state in the world whose neighbors have openly declared that their purpose is its destruction. It does not matter whether it is called a "struggle against occupation," or a "peace process," or a "cold peace," the Arab countries are in a state of war with the Jewish state, even though a majority of them do not share the borders with Israel.

The Jewish state is only in its infancy. What is the norm for a stable mature country is not appropriate for a country that has been fighting for its very existence for more than fifty years. During war, democracy is given lower priority than the goal of survival, and it makes sense to legislate this unique situation by introducing amendments to the existing election law, as proposed in the program of the Israeli party Yemin Israel. The proposed "oath of loyalty to the state of Israel as a Jewish state" for all Israeli citizens who wish to implement their legal right to elect or be elected is especially worthy of consideration. The program declares:

"A citizen who will pledge loyalty and then violate it, i.e. caught being engaged in activity aimed at undermining the Jewish essence of the state, will be deprived of the right to elect or be elected. Caught for the second time, he will be deprived of Israel's citizenship and will receive the temporary resident status. Caught for the third time, he will be deported, while the country that will agree to accept him will be paid a financial compensation".

There is nothing racist in the proposed amendment. The Jew, the Arab and any other Israeli citizen will all have exactly the same rights, and if they want to live in the Jewish state, they are welcomed there. However, if their loyalty is with somebody else, it is only fair to deport them. It is simply hypocritical in this situation to bemoan "curtailed democracy," demanding equal rights for unequal duties, since it is not a secret that the majority of Israeli Arabs does not serve in the Israeli army. If one says that it is unrealistic to expect loyalty to the Jewish State from the Arabs, one only proves that the Arabs do not belong there. By the same token, the Jews from Shalom Achshav and from other similar groups, which advocate the cessation of Jewish settlement in Golan, Judea, Samaria and Gaza, thus weakening the Jewish state, will lose their citizenship exactly as would any Arabs who do not want to be loyal to the Jewish state.

Then you will have both a Jewish state and a democratic state based on its Jewish essence. Israel's late President, Chaim Herzog stated: "When there is a contradiction between democracy and the existence of the Jewish state, it is clear that democracy is pushed aside in favor of the existence of the State" (5). If one follows this rule it becomes crystal clear what should be done to Sheikh Ra'ed Salah, the mayor of Umm al-Fahem, who on November 24 lead the Arabs in a violent antigovernment demonstration accompanied by calls of "Kill the Jews."

You must create such an atmosphere in Israel that no one will even think of attempting to undermine anything Jewish. The Jewish essence of the state should be prioritized and every event should be weighed against it. The question "Is it good for the Jewis state?" should be asked every time, and only if the answer is "Yes" the action should be carried out. Then there will not be arguments about whether the Israeli Arabs should participate in the referendum on the fate of the Golan Heights. Moreover, there would not be any necessity for the referendum itself, since the Jewish state cannot survive without Golan.

Therefore, take your country back. Make it a real Jewish state - the only place in the world where each and every Jew not only walks with head raised high, but does so exactly because he is proud to live in a Jewish state.

(1) "The chosen people? The art of moral irritation" by Rabbi Dr. Natan T. Lopes Cardozo, (http://www.rb.org.il)

(2) Yosef Tekoah, In the Face of the Nations: Israel's Struggle for Peace. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1976.

(3) Colonel Richard Meinertzhagen, Middle East Diary, London, The Cresset Press, 1959.

(4) Haaretz 11/28/99: http://www3.haaretz.co.il/eng/htmls/kat13_4.htm

(5) Aharon Dov Halperin : "The referendum reconsidered" Arutz Sheva Israel National Radio http://www.arutzsheva.org; Broadcast on Dec. 15, 1999

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