Exclusive: The Problem With Israel

by BEN SHAPIRO February 16, 2009
Israel is a land of perennial hope. Israelis hope for peace. They hope that their children will never again have to serve in the army. They hope that their houses will not be struck by falling Katyusha rockets. They hope that their wives and daughters will not be slaughtered in Jerusalem restaurants by homicide bombers.
It is because hope springs eternal for Israelis that they continue to elect candidates who refuse to do what is necessary.
The media is playing the current Israeli election as a victory for the right wing in Israel. Benjamin Netanyahu, the center-right former Prime Minister and Likud leader, will likely end up forming a government. His partner will be Avigdor Lieberman of Israel Beitanu, a right wing party which seeks to require loyalty oaths from Israeli Arabs (a reasonable idea in light of the fact that Israeli Arabs consistently vote for parties which openly advocate the destruction of the State of Israel, while providing material support for Palestinian terrorist groups). Labor, the left wing party, which normally rivals Likud in size, fell to a mere 13 seats, finishing fourth in the elections. And Kadima, the centrist party created by Ariel Sharon, maintained its size while losing the Knesset leadership to the right wing bloc.
And yet Israel will, in all likelihood, engage in continuing negotiations with the same Palestinians who have demonstrated their decades-long wish to kill Jews. Israel will, in all likelihood, do nothing to stop the burgeoning threat in Iran. 
Why doesn’t Israel ever seem to change course, despite the fact that its current heading leads to the spilled blood of its citizens? 
Because hope – as we are learning in America – is sometimes foolish. Hope isn’t enough. Hope ignores reality in favor of ignorant dreaming.
Ask the average Israeli whether Israel should negotiate with Hamas, and you’re likely to get a firm reply in the negative. Ask the average Israeli whether Israel should negotiate with the Palestinians, however, and you’re likely to get a tepidly positive response.
Why? Because average Israelis are unwilling to acknowledge the cold, harsh reality that the Palestinian people themselves are active supporters of terrorism and murder. They refuse to recognize that Hamas is both a terrorist group and an elected body. They deliberately ignore the fact that the Palestinian Arabs have spent the last several decades being indoctrinated into radical anti-Semitism, and that their end goal is a vast Judenrein swath from the Arabian Sea to the Mediterranean.
“There must be someone on the other side who is reasonable,” the typical Israeli might say. “They can’t all be Jew haters. Most want to live in peace, the same as we do.”
Of course, this is nonsense. There are probably a few Palestinian Arabs who don’t hate Jews, and a few who are willing to live with a Jewish State. But they are in the vast minority, and if they mouth such sentiments, they risk ending up in a cell or worse. Negotiating with the current Palestinian leadership means crushing the few Palestinians who truly desire peace, but the Israelis (and Americans like Barack Obama) are more interested in “peace” now than true peace later. Or more accurately, a true peace that will never come in the absence of severe military action and population separation.
And so it will be as it has been. Israel will make concessions, no matter who is Prime Minister. America will champion its “accomplishments.” And the Palestinian bloodlust will continue. 
Ironically, false hope is extinguishing true hope in the Middle East. The only hope for peace in the Middle East is the death of false hope for both Palestinians and Israelis. Israeli hope for a non-existent peace partner must crumble. And Palestinian hope for a Jew-free Palestine must die.
FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Ben Shapiro is a graduate of UCLA and Harvard Law School. He is also the author of the recently published Project President: Bad Hair and Botox on the Road to the White House, as well as national bestsellers Porn Generation: How Social Liberalism Is Corrupting Our Future and Brainwashed: How Universities Indoctrinate America’s Youth. Feedback: editorialdirector@familysecuritymatters.org.

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