Israel Fatigue

[Israel is] a "sh***y little country.... Why should the world be in danger of World War III because of those people?" --Daniel Bernard, French ambassador to Britain, 1/10/2002
The attempt to delegitimize the state of Israel has found many willing ears. Not only is it a popular refrain in the Muslim world, but it has great support in the UN, in western Europe, and increasingly in the mainstream media in the U.S.  ("Israel is a Liability for U.S., Washington Post 12/8/2006.")

It's only natural of course, that the world is tiring of Israel.  After all, a favorite line of reasoning suggests that if not for the never-ending Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Islam would be at peace with the West.  Notwithstanding the patent absurdity of that argument, and human nature being what it is, it stands to reason that fearful westerners will opt to offer Israel up as a sacrificial lamb. Even our own Iraq Study Group report recommends sacrificing Israel at the appeasement altar.

The West's inability and unwillingness to decisively confront and defeat its Islamic enemies is leaving us in a permanent state of semi-war. That is an unnatural and unsustainable situation which leads to war-weariness and defeatism.  The West imposed this mode of conflict on Israel for most of its history.  Israel was instructed to fight, but never win.  No wonder so many Israelis emigrate to the US.  A permanent state of war where no victory or defeat is permitted is insanity on a national scale.

Now the world (and many domestic supporters) want to impose this Israel fatigue on the US.  We can fight, but we must not win under any circumstances.  To win would be to take sides, to establish right from wrong and good  from bad.  That, of course, is no longer permissible.

In an old Star Trek television episode, a supposedly "advanced" civilization found fighting so repugnant, in spite of continuing conflict with its neighbor, that it was agreed that both sides would voluntarily kill a certain number of their own each year rather than fight each other.  Any though of right and wrong was removed from the equation.  Fighting was "primitive" and "uncivilized".  Voluntary suicide was enlightened.  Of course, Kirk and his gang made quick work of that diseased culture. 

And yet, that is precisely the kind of society we have become-- repelled by the use of force and show of strength, unsure of right,  unable to recognize our exceptionalism, worried about criticism, and perversely willing to accept any and all points-of -view as morally equal.  In other words, we are becoming culturally bankrupt, leaving us vulnerable to as backward, as repressive, as superstitious, as anti-intellectual, and as primitive a culture as that of the Wahabi Islam political cult.

Much has been said and written about the meaning of the recent election defeat for George Bush, for his presidency, for the Republicans, and for the world.  But what has not been said is that Americans reject the Israeli model.  Neither supporter nor opponents of the President will submit to a permanent state of semi-war. Supporter want to win decisively, opponents want to lose decisively.  The government must give us one or the other, or it will lose at the ballot box. One wonders sometimes, if there is anything left that still unites Americans.  Our desire to be finished in Iraq is one such issue.  But it remains to be seen if the majority of Americans want to win or lose before we get out.
[Israel is] a "sh***y little country.... Why should the world be in danger of World War III because of those people?" --Daniel Bernard, French ambassador to Britain, 1/10/2002
The attempt to delegitimize the state of Israel has found many willing ears. Not only is it a popular refrain in the Muslim world, but it has great support in the UN, in western Europe, and increasingly in the mainstream media in the U.S.  ("Israel is a Liability for U.S., Washington Post 12/8/2006.")

It's only natural of course, that the world is tiring of Israel.  After all, a favorite line of reasoning suggests that if not for the never-ending Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Islam would be at peace with the West.  Notwithstanding the patent absurdity of that argument, and human nature being what it is, it stands to reason that fearful westerners will opt to offer Israel up as a sacrificial lamb. Even our own Iraq Study Group report recommends sacrificing Israel at the appeasement altar.

The West's inability and unwillingness to decisively confront and defeat its Islamic enemies is leaving us in a permanent state of semi-war. That is an unnatural and unsustainable situation which leads to war-weariness and defeatism.  The West imposed this mode of conflict on Israel for most of its history.  Israel was instructed to fight, but never win.  No wonder so many Israelis emigrate to the US.  A permanent state of war where no victory or defeat is permitted is insanity on a national scale.

Now the world (and many domestic supporters) want to impose this Israel fatigue on the US.  We can fight, but we must not win under any circumstances.  To win would be to take sides, to establish right from wrong and good  from bad.  That, of course, is no longer permissible.

In an old Star Trek television episode, a supposedly "advanced" civilization found fighting so repugnant, in spite of continuing conflict with its neighbor, that it was agreed that both sides would voluntarily kill a certain number of their own each year rather than fight each other.  Any though of right and wrong was removed from the equation.  Fighting was "primitive" and "uncivilized".  Voluntary suicide was enlightened.  Of course, Kirk and his gang made quick work of that diseased culture. 

And yet, that is precisely the kind of society we have become-- repelled by the use of force and show of strength, unsure of right,  unable to recognize our exceptionalism, worried about criticism, and perversely willing to accept any and all points-of -view as morally equal.  In other words, we are becoming culturally bankrupt, leaving us vulnerable to as backward, as repressive, as superstitious, as anti-intellectual, and as primitive a culture as that of the Wahabi Islam political cult.

Much has been said and written about the meaning of the recent election defeat for George Bush, for his presidency, for the Republicans, and for the world.  But what has not been said is that Americans reject the Israeli model.  Neither supporter nor opponents of the President will submit to a permanent state of semi-war. Supporter want to win decisively, opponents want to lose decisively.  The government must give us one or the other, or it will lose at the ballot box. One wonders sometimes, if there is anything left that still unites Americans.  Our desire to be finished in Iraq is one such issue.  But it remains to be seen if the majority of Americans want to win or lose before we get out.