Beyond the Cusp

September 22, 2019

Avigdor Lieberman, the Deal Breaker

Filed under: Israel — qwertster @ 1:54 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

 

Introduction of Issues
As leader of the Yisrael Beitenu Party, Avigdor Lieberman has decided to use the leadership position to mount attacks upon the Haredi and religious Israelis. His complaint revolves around a set of complaints including that public transport be allowed to operate on the Sabbath; the recruitment law which requires every citizen, including all Haredi, serve in the IDF; and for all Yeshivot students and other Torah and religious oriented education students be required to attend regular general state education system which allows for their Torah and religious specific education on their own time. One can only but imagine what his next demand might be at some future critical points such as, well, cutting all public subsidizing of religious oriented schools which are not licensed as having certified general education systems and then Synagogues and on and on. Perhaps he would call for expanding on the court order demanding co-ed seating at a religious concert where the vast majority preferred separate seating and most others might feel some disappointment but worthwhile to hear the concert in Synagogues, the Western Wall and everywhere else where this practice of separation is currently enforced.

 

Avigdor Lieberman

Avigdor Lieberman

 

 

Dear Avigdor Lieberman

 

Avigdor Lieberman, you have been moving inexorably leftward to such an extent that these claims of being conservative is starting to ring hollow. We understand that you support the IDF and this is commendable. But your rubbing elbows with the Blue White Party, a group which has stated their support for the Two State Solution paradigm with surrendering lands to provide the Palestinian Arabs their own state up to the, as Gantz stated very early in the campaign, Separation Barrier. You entered into vote sharing with the Blue White Party which completes cementing your leftward drift reaching a point well past center. Your claims, just as those of the four generals and Yair Lapid, that you support the right-wing and the Israelis living in the Shomron appear as valid as the claims of the average apparatchik spreading disinformation. Your demands of Netanyahu for your support in the April elections was not made with any degree of honesty. You knew that those demands would force the Haredi Parties out of the coalition leaving Bibi with about the same situation we are facing once more, the only government available would be a unity government with Blue White which would break-up the Likud Party with many of the religious and honest conservatives fleeing to the other right wing parties which stand stronger on these issues. Your antics will eventually lead to Jewish Home, National Union–Tkuma and New Right gaining in strength where they will be able to control the discussions and sooner or later take over some future, sooner rather than later, coalition. These are your positions and the items upon which you have decided to take your stand. One of your main complaints is that the secular population and non-Jews not be forced to lead a religious life by the state. Allow us to discuss this point even if it is but the smallest part of your crusade.

 

Your demands go far beyond freeing those who would rather not be put out by religious laws and be free to desecrate the Sabbath with the blessings of the law and the State. Instead, you would instead force by the law to reside in a secular state which would force their allowing vehicle traffic on their streets on Shabbat and that Torah education be pushed into the region of an elective such as after school clubs except with a heavy study load. You have left no room, by your own admission, and refused to allow for any compromise or middle ground. Maybe there can be some middle ground such as allowing each city, township, community and neighborhood be permitted to decide such laws concerning Shabbat and whether they preferred to observe the Sabbath. Also, perhaps a certain amount of secular education could be considered to be met by any Yeshivot and other Torah or religious oriented education, in order to receiver accreditation or certification which could make them more attractive to those who desire a balanced education. The schools which fail to meet the standards would not be shuttered and those which choose to remain with their current education system be permitted to do so. People could decide for themselves which educational opportunity they wish for their children. All that is needed is for more free choice and as broad a selection be allowed to be presented to the public. There has to be some happy medium by which both communities, religious and secular, be allowed to choose for themselves. As far as the draft issue, a real sticking-point for the past few governments, could be set allowing for a percentage of the Yeshivot and other Torah or religious oriented education systems be permitted deferments. The enlistment from the Haredi and religious communities has been rising over the past decade and is predicted to continue as their communities have been slowly moving towards what you would call normalization. Your stance that it is unfair that the secular public is forced to obey religious laws and your solution is for the religious community to live under secular laws, which often makes their lives impossible as they would prefer to live them. You are simply demanding that everything be done under your preference and who cares about those who have different views and desires.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

Advertisements

September 19, 2019

Trump, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Israel

 

Mark Langfan wrote a very insightful article reflecting on what the lasting effects of President Trump’s firing of John Bolton and how this could lead to Trump not being reelected. Of course, the final repercussions from letting John Bolton go will play out in ways that none of us will likely get completely correct. As Mr. Langfan points out, with Bolton out of the administration, the voice for stronger actions even unto direct attacks on Iran has been silenced. This is not to infer that there are no other voices purporting for stronger reactions to Iranian belligerent actions. We had pointed out that there was an uneasy relationship between President Trump and his advisor John Bolton as Trump prefers to find economic solutions rather than resorting to using the military and Bolton was far more militaristic having no qualms about resorting to force. We had mentioned reports of heated arguments between the two men as their views were about as far apart and different as possible. But Mr. Langfan was correct in stating that John Bolton served a potentially precious purpose, he was the stick always in the ready countering the carrot dangling Trump making any implied Trump threats of using force more credible. Whether Mr. Langfan’s conclusion that the Iranian attack on the Saudi oil fields and that we can expect more Iranian perfidy and violent attacks on Saudi Arabia may or may not come to fruition depending on numerous factors which we will try and explore.

 

There are credible rumors that after the elections in Israel, and assuming that a government is formed led by incumbent Bibi Netanyahu, President Trump will propose a mutual defense pact between Israel and the United States. The problem is that should Prime Minister Netanyahu be able to form the next Israeli government, he would be predisposed towards accepting such an agreement. Anyone reading our last article would likely see some of the plethora of reasons for Israel to refuse such an offer. We understand that such a position would be difficult to defend by most standards, but here goes. We have one reason and only require this one reason. We have no problem forging agreements with supportive nations for the supply of military hardware, weapons, aircraft, armor, ammunition and other munitions and bombs but we would draw the line on allowing a single soldier from any other nation coming to fight alongside our IDF. The reason is relatively obvious to anyone who has felt the sting of Judeophobia (anti-Semitism). We hold a fear that should American young people come and fight to aid Israel should a war, or should we say when a war breaks out, when any of these young soldiers should be killed, it would be the quickest way of turning great numbers of current Israeli supporters into rabid Israel haters and possibly having them become Judeophobic. The idea of sacrificing good Christian young men and women in a war to save the Jewish State, which would be seen as Christians being sacrificed for the Jews, would turn many average Americans against Israel, against the Jewish State. This is true for the United States and would stand true for any nation sacrificing their young military men and women for Israel or in any other foreign war. Citizens of most nations fully understand using their military youth in a necessary conflict to protect their nation and people but such understanding wanes rapidly when those sacrifices are being made for other people and nations. Add in that in this case the nation would be the Jewish State and the waning would become an abatement leaving a mere trickle of support for aiding Israel. Israel must be prepared to defend herself by herself with as little reliance on outside forces, specifically troops, coming to their aid. Materials are one thing and people, especially young people who make up the fighting forces, facing possible death and some actually being killed in such a war would increase anti-Israel and Judeophobic reactions swaying the majority of the people to decry such activities. This is a situation which Israel would be advised to take every possible measure for self-dependence and never allow non-Israelis from ever fighting in an Israeli war and especially being injured, or worse killed. For this reason, amongst others, Bibi Netanyahu or any other Israeli Prime Minister should refuse to agree to any mutual defense agreement no matter which nation might be offering such.

 

Another reason not to enter such an agreement is even more obvious, Israel also needs to avoid ever being dragged into a conflict, especially one in the Middle East or Northern Africa, the Arab and Islamic world, through any treaty as the IDF is not as large an army as those of other nations around the world. According to Global Fire Power, the IDF ranks as the seventeenth most powerful military, a ranking largely due to the advanced weaponry, especially defensive weaponry such as the Iron Dome and other anti-missile systems and not their number of troops. This ranking rates Turkey, Egypt, Iran and Pakistan all ranked as more powerful militaries. When it comes to active duty personnel, Israel does not even rank in the top twenty-five coming in at around twenty-eighth in the world with numerous Arab and Islamic nations with far larger numbers of active duty personnel. Israel would become excessively vulnerable were she required to station numbers of her active duty troops outside the country. That is an easily observed part of the reality in which Israel lives.

 

Should Iran actually be emboldened by the departure of John Bolton, this would initially likely take the form, as Mr. Langfan predicted, of attacks on Saudi Arabian assets such as the recent attack with drones on their oil fields relatively close to Iran. Targets within Saudi Arabia have the advantage of allowing Iran to offer disclaimers of their involvement pressing other potential entities to be responsible. Some of these would include but not be limited to claiming the attacks were the work of the Houthis in Yemen, allied forces from Iraq where Iran can pretend they were acting independently as well as blaming non-state actors such as Hezballah, the IRGC, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other Iranian operative groups. Mr. Langfan left out other potential targets which Iran might attack via their proxies such as Egypt or Israel amongst others. Currently, there are some low-level altercation and skirmishes along both the northern and southern borders of Israel. These are utilizing Hezballah in the north supported by IRGC forces and Iranian provided rockets and missiles, Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the south out of Gaza using rockets and incendiary and high explosive balloons, kites and drones being used to turn much of southern Israel into a smoldering wasteland. There will also be the potential for increased terrorism anywhere around the world driven by Iran through their proxies some of which train and operate out of the tri-border region in South America. Iran might even decide to be so bold as to attack the United States indirectly through their international terror network. The only question is how far will Iran go in taking risks of having the United States retaliate. Even were the United States able to discover Iranian involvement in such attacks, their response would be measured and relatively proportional. This is one position which President Trump has mentioned, the concept that military actions need to be measured and proportional to the acts which precipitated such a response. This is a modern concept which has infected the developed world paralleling their belief that the natural state of the world is to be at peace in order to develop the economies and all interactions between nations would be related to trade. Apparently, they have a very warped view of history which is not realistic and may be a potential disaster waiting to happen. Should Iran start to wage a low-grade terror and indirect attack methodologies, the United States would eventually reach a point where such could no longer be ignored, especially as the media would be taunting President Trump for his inaction and timidity in the face of what they would call an obvious war. Further, should the United States be dragged into a war in the Middle East, the last thing Israel needs is to have a mutual defense treaty potentially dragging them into the conflict. But Israel also will have their potential difficulties with an emboldened Iran.

 

Hezballah Rocket Arsenal

 

Israel has Iranian proxies in Gaza with Hamas and Islamic Jihad and in Lebanon and southeastern Syria with Hezballah, the IRGC and even Iranian military forces. Of the two threats, Hezballah is probably the greater one with potentially over one-hundred-fifty-thousand rockets and missiles of various sizes and warheads including numerous which are capable of striking anywhere in Israel and even beyond (see table above). Further, both Hezballah and Islamic Jihad, which will drag Hamas along with them, have promised to provide the other a second front against Israel should hostilities break out. This would include coordinated attacks potentially coming from Lebanon, out of Gaza in the south and along the Golan Heights attacking from Syria as Iran has Israel within their or their proxies’ sights almost circling the tiny Jewish State. Then there is always the final threat Israel could likely face, and that is Iran itself. Iran has numerous rockets and missiles which can reach Israel launched from Iran or Iraq as shorter-range weapons could be launched from Iraq which is much closer to Israel not to mention Iran could launch from within Syria as they have done on several occasions in the recent past. Currently, Hezballah has things remaining at a low boil, but this could change without notice should Iran so choose. Israel would be pressed too close to her limit were Iran to actively enter into hostilities. The fear then would be whether Iran would be launching weapons of mass destruction such as nerve agents, biological agents or possibly nuclear warheads, the greatest of their potential threats whether they are atomic bombs of thermonuclear weapons with the difference being scale. Any Iranian attack on Israel which would be directly traceable to them would require Israel to respond well outside of President Trump’s concept of proportionality. This would be one time when that charge could be leveled against Israel and we would probably simply plead guilty and continue as we are talking the survival of the nation and nothing less.

 

In summation, Israel has sufficient troubles without signing onto a mutual defense pact with the United States. We are unsure that the United States would respond honoring such a treaty made while President Trump is in office after he leaves office and even more so should the Democrats take the White House. Further, President Trump may have emboldened Iran which may have been demonstrated by the recent attack on the Saudi oil fields. This could lead quickly to escalations throughout the Middle East and potentially the world of both terrorism and further potential wars. For those who did not yet read the article by Mark Langfan linked to at the top of the article, we can only advise giving it a perusal. And please allow us to end with one last new thought, Iranian leadership believes that they are the ones who are chosen to rule the world and spread their version of Shia Islam until they have converted the entire population of the planet while beheading those who refuse to convert. This includes bringing the world to the verge of extinction setting much of it in the flames of destruction, nuclear if necessary being broadly used, so as to force the arrival of their chosen messiah. Does this sound eerily familiar? This has been the driving force of the worst conflagrations in our history and this promises to make them all seem like small skirmishes by the time they are done.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

September 17, 2019

The Unbelievable is Upon the United States

Filed under: Israel — qwertster @ 12:53 AM
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

 

To the Jews of Europe, the United States was the glowing promise of financial opportunity, equality, religious freedom and personal safety. America was their future and many Jews gave up everything they knew, sold the vast majority of their belongings and did whatever else was required in order to reach this land which appeared to them to be their promised land. This is what the United States was in their minds, the promise of everything that Europe was not. America was largely a land which offered a lack of anti-Semitism. That was their vision for which they made their way across the Atlantic Ocean to seek out this land of promise. For close to a century the Jews lived with little fear of persecution as they had faced periodically in the Old Country. The American Jews believed they had found the land where their future would continue filled of acceptance and complete freedom from the threats of anti-Semitism within their communities and the regions in which they settled in larger numbers. These were largely the major cities where the Jews began by starting family businesses with some becoming bedrocks of economic viability. Jewish communities flourished and they envisioned this would continue on into the future without any end in sight. This view is one which many American Jews refuse to admit may be coming to an end. They simply ignore the rising anti-Semitism which has begun to rise beyond its normal home of the extreme right and left of the political spectrum and into the mainstream. This trending is represented by the graph covering anti-Semitic acts from 2008 through 2017 below.

 

Anti-Semitic Acts from 2008 through 2017

 

The rise of the ugly hatred of anti-Semitism has outstripped that of every and any other minority in the United States including the overly-hyped Islamophobia. We believe that the term anti-Semitism has been rejected to such an extent that despite its rapid rise, the political community has decided that some anti-Semitism needs to be understood as sometimes coming from a righteous indignation for which the Jews are largely to blame themselves. This has been the stance by the media whenever such acts are committed by other minorities and only hold those they can trace their imaginary line to President Trump’s actions and speeches. This has been made most evident by the refusal of the Democrat leadership in the House of Representatives to denounce the anti-Semitic antics of a number of their newly elected members. Still, these same Democrat leaders are amongst the first to jump and blame any anti-Semitic act committed by the “alt-right” to President Trump. This is an erroneous blaming of a man who observes Shabbat when visiting his daughter and her husband and his grandchildren, whose Palm Beach Mar-a-Lago Country Club was the first to allow minorities including Blacks and Jews to become members despite protests of the other clubs in the area, has recognized Israeli rightful possession of the Golan Heights and taken numerous other pro-Israel decisions and actions and has never uttered an anti-Semitic slur. These accusations are solely political as all forms and acts of anti-Semitism have become as the media attempts to blame every anti-Semitic act possible on the President while ignoring any which are not attributable to President Trump.

 

Anti-Semitic Acts by State for 2018

 

As reported here, even in the Jewish centers in and around New York City, anti-Semitism has become rampant. They recount the simple truth of acts committed over the last week in August as noted below.

In the last week of August alone we witnessed three vicious attacks on Jews.
On August 27th, 63-year old Abraham Gopin was brutally attacked with a paving stone while exercising in Lincoln Terrace Park in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. The suspect yelled an anti-Semitic slur before blindsiding his victim.
On August 29th, an assailant threw rocks at a Jewish man while the victim was in his truck.
On August 31st, an assailant hit a Jewish man with a belt outside a synagogue.

The acts of anti-Semitism committed in the Crown Heights neighborhood and other nearby Jewish communities have been attacked largely by other minorities in hit and flee type scenarios. These attacks have been attributed to the fact that the Orthodox Jews in these areas wear clothes making their religious affiliations obvious when the media mentions these at all. There has been no additional effort to end these attacks as compared to the excuses and dismissals of these acts as a minor nuisance. Yet, in the same area should a single member of the Islamic faith report that some passerby looked at them sideways, the decrying the horrific problem of Islamophobia must be taken seriously and actions taken to eradicate this menace. Anti-Semitism simply draws excuses and yawns taking minimal if any notice making every attempt to ignore or at least diminish such acts as of no real concern.

 

Many simply claim that anti-Semitism is an old problem which has been addressed and is not something which requires attention in this modern age. There are so many new forms of perceived hatred which require all of our attentions first before we worry about the boogieman of anti-Semitism as it is an old grievance which has already been eradicated except for a few outlier cases. This is only true if one ignores the majority of such instances which is easily done if the problem is blamed on those Jews who dress in a peculiar manner. Perhaps the time has come to bring forth a new terminology for anti-Semitism, a name which has apparently outlived its usefulness and has become an annoyance to be ignored. We are about to steal an idea which has circulated and we feel it need go mainstream. The concept is instead of anti-Semitism, we should bring attention to this scourge as “Judeophobia” and see if with this moniker hatred of Jews can be brought into the central focus it deserves. This is when Jews are largely being singled out for attack to such proportions that they outnumber all other forms of religious hatred combined as told by the graph below. What is more troubling is that the number of Judeophobic events since 2015 have risen with a troubling rate while other forms of religious centric crimes have remained level or decreased making the problem becoming far worse.

 

Religious Hate Crimes from 1992 through 2015

 

The thought that the United States would remain forever the perfect land was an attitude very prevalent since the later parts of the last century but are now beginning to fray at the edges. The problems which were considered next to impossible are coming true as the American society becomes more fractured. As had been the fear for Jews across much of the world, excepting America, are now coming to America. But this hatred of the Jews will soon spread to include Christians and who knows who else along the way. Will the United States remain a promised land for Jews? Should things continue as the present trends indicate, then the Jews welcome will soon be worn out and be faced with three choices, find a more hospitable place including their relocating to Israel, remain in their communities taking a fortress attitude which these communities become Jewish ghettos, or disbelieve it could happen here much as the German Jews had their disbelief that Germany, the leading nation in so many educational and cultural measures and the Nazis could never take over the country. It is becoming a believable proposition that the Jews time in the United States being accepted and seen as a group which added to the culture and other interests of the society to becoming the reason for blame for every downturn or catastrophe. With time they will be blamed universally for their own condition as violence and other acts of discrimination will become commonplace and acceptable in America. Soon behind such a series of events will be the persecution of Christians. These are the signs that the America many of us have known is rapidly self-destructing. Has the time come for America to fall as has every nation throughout history? That remains to be seen, but the signs are not promising. America will remain as a nation but it will not resemble anything we remember or have ever actually expected. It will be a sad series of events as America held such promise, and it always hurts the most when the things you had hung your hat upon no longer continue and begin to deconstruct. Perhaps the United States will recover from their current threat of decline, but that will be told over time. One thing we know from history is, as go a nation’s Jews, so goes that nation. This is a choice Americans will be required to make, either address and be rid of Judeophobia or face the promise of their coming decline.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

Next Page »

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.