Published by The Freeman Center

The Maccabean Online

Political Analysis and Commentary
on Israeli and Jewish Affairs

"For Zion's sake I shall not hold my peace, And for Jerusalem's sake I shall not rest."


By David Basch
January 4, 2006

We all wish Ariel Sharon well. About that there is no disagreement. About what there is disagreement is his policy of creating a new Arab state on Israel\'s territory. It is the equivalent of creating a fox den within a hen house. So astoundingly stupid does such an idea seem, that it needed a rooster with charisma and unusual leadership quality to make the hens follow along with it. And this is what happened in Israel.

Just because you get such a leader with hypnotic powers over the people -- the Germans had such a leader in Hitler -- does not mean that this leader knows what he is doing.

Consider the realities against Sharon\'s policies. To begin with, the Arabs that would be benefited by this policy are dedicated to Israel\'s destruction, both in terms of national fervor and religious zeal. It happens to be against Islam for Muslim-Arabs to support peace with Israel, "a non Muslim interloper into their
region." So the new Arab state that Sharon\'s policy would establish would be irredentist in trying to get all of what is now Israel and it would be at war with Israel from the first moment of its existence.

Another factor to consider is that the Arabs are not just some powerless minority but constitute a mass numbering more than 200 million people. Israel\'s 5.5 million Jews constitute a speck as compared to this. The only way that Israel could survive against such a horde is to enjoy a strong hold on its land along with geographic conditions that make it ruinous for the enemy to attack and thereby discourages this. Sharon\'s policy of reducing geographic space for maneuver is not very helpful in this.

Not only does Israel need to have this robust physical integrity but it needs also to strengthen itself internally and spiritually through the dynamic of its Judaic culture that made Israel\'s existence possible in the first place. To renounce and gut the Judaic claim to its lands and the culture which undergirds it is self defeating. Yet this is what Sharon\'s policies are based on, not holding back and routing the Arab hordes that make war on Israel.

Look at it this way, if the values that Israel stands for are nothing more than liberalistic democracy, this life style can be attained by living in L.A., Florida, or New York. What need is there for an Israel in the first place to be located in a
dangerous area of the world? The point here is that the Birobidzhan that Sharon and the Leftists wish to transform Israel into will have no staying power and will cultivate a population whose highest ethos and aspiration is to emigrate to the U.S. fleshpots.

But how is it possible that super Sharon, the great general could be wrong about his policy of surrender to the Arab enemy? After all, doesn\'t he know what military strength is and what Israel needs to do to stand against the enemy since he has been such a great war hero? Sure, that was true in the past but that does not mean that when Sharon gets away from military battles he knows what is a proper strategic policy for Israel the nation. Consider an even greater general, Napoleon.

Whatever you can say about Sharon as a general and a leader, you can septuple for Napoleon. When Napoleon decided to mobilize 600,000 French troops in an invasion against Russia, who could have stood up to him in criticizing his policy? What fool could say he knew more than Napoleon? Yet his Russian policy turned out to be a disaster. He lost almost 600,000 French soldiers in that debacle. The only difference between Napoleon and Sharon is that, while even after Napoleon sacrificed hundreds of thousands of his soldiers, he did not jeopardize the existence of France, but Sharon\'s failure would lead not merely to the destruction of Israel\'s soldiers but to the destruction of the Israeli nation as well.

And so when someone tells me that General Sharon should be followed blindly the way the German people followed their Fuehrer and the French followed Napoleon, I will demure since even those supposedly great leaders were capable of making grave mistakes.

We already see that Sharon\'s surrender of Gaza at the cost of billions to the Israeli people has swiftly led to the creation of a dangerous Arab base in Southern Israel that offers a platform for Arab rocketry deep into Israel. Israeli cities that once considered themselves to be safely within Israel are now under
the shadow of Arab rockets. This does not auger well for Sharon\'s policies.

So where are the vaunted Jewish smarts that I had been raised to think was the fact? It is indeed uncomfortable when I find around me wildly enthusiastic supporters of "Sharon the mighty" who have no patience to consider in detail what is actually happening and what is the downside of what is going on in Israel.

Don\'t these hero worshipers know that at least half the generals lose their wars? A leader with that kind of odds for a nation is not much to cheer about.