The Foundation for Constitutional Democracy

11-Jan-2009

Preliminary Notes on the Forthcoming Election

Filed under: Oslo/Peace ProcessPoliticiansNational Election — eidelberg @ 5:53 am Edit This

It is widely agreed that the Olmert-Livni-Barak government decided to inflict a crushing blow on Hamas to restore Fatah-leader Mahmoud Abbas’ control over Gaza—a precondition for fulfilling the triumvirate’s commitment to a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria. This will obviously be the paramount issue in the February 10 election.

Although right-minded people will want Likud to win more seats than Kadima in that election, it is extremely important that the Likud not win too large a Knesset plurality. Such an outcome would enable the Likud’s questionable leader, Binyamin Netanyahu, to appoint too many Likud MKs to his cabinet, just as Ariel Sharon did after the 2003 elections. This was too many for Israel’s own good.

Right-minded people will therefore want to vote for National Union, which, unlike the Likud, is opposed to any further territorial withdrawal and is unequivocally opposed to a Palestinian state. This non-compromising attitude cannot be ascribed to Netanyahu, whose slogan “reciprocity” between Israel and the Palestinian Authority means yielding more Jewish land to the disciples of Muhammad. Netanyahu’s track record at the Wye Summit and on disengagement from Gaza does not inspire confidence.

To state the matter more simply, Israel will need in its next government a significant number of cabinet ministers who are to the right of Netanyahu and who can block any attempt on his part to betray the nationalist camp, as he has done in the past. (more…)

08-Jan-2009

Historical Proportionality

Filed under: EthicsMulticulturalism/Moral Relativism — eidelberg @ 7:28 am Edit This

How might normal Jews—repeat normal Jews—react to those who denounce Israel for using allegedly “disproportionate” force against Hamas?

It seems to me that normal Jews would not waste their saliva on such commentators, who have the stupidity-modulated audacity to preach to Jews about “proportionality,” hence, about justice.

I think the most superficial knowledge of the extent to which Jews have been persecuted, tortured, and decimated by one nation after another during the past 2,000 years should be sufficient to deter any sensible and honest person from preaching to Israel. Of course, I do not expect sensibility and honesty from cloddish hypocrites.

For the record, however, allow me to say that historical proportionality or justice is staring us in the face. Consider the condition of Europe today—Europe, the home of humanism, but also of Christianity, the religion of love. Europe, which tormented and slaughtered Jews down through the ages, is succumbing to Islam, which utterly rejects humanism and propagates a religion of unmitigated hatred. Might this not be rightly regarded as a divine manifestation of proportionality or justice?

07-Jan-2009

Hatred, Arab Style

Filed under: Islam & Arab — eidelberg @ 6:51 am Edit This

Israel is at war. Hence, it is of crucial importance for Israeli politicians and journalists to understand and relate appropriately to Israel’s enemy, especially what the enemy thinks of Jews. For this purpose, allow me to recall what happened some ten years ago when a Jewish reserve soldier, Shmuel Meiri, was lynched by Arabs in Ramallah. I do so because the photographs taken of the faces of his Arab assailants convey a hatred of visceral and demonic proportions. This hatred reminded me of what has been said of the feelings of Muslims Chechens toward Russians.

Writing on the subject in The New York Times (December 18, 1994), Steven Erlanger quotes the celebrated Russian author Leo Tolstoi.

Tolstoi writes of the Russian destruction of a Chechen village: “The emotion felt by every Chechen, old and young, was stronger than hatred. It was not hatred, it was a refusal to recognize these Russian dogs as men at all, and a feeling of such disgust [and] revulsion … that the urge to destroy them—like the urge to destroy rats, venomous spiders, or wolves—was an instinct as natural as self-preservation.” This aptly describes what Muslims feel toward Jews, as was evident in the faces of the Arabs who lynched Shmuel Meiri.

There is a streak of paganism in their boundless hatred. Let me describe how the late Syrian president Hafaz Assad celebrated the tenth anniversary of the Yom Kippur War. (more…)

This Land is Ours!

Edited transcript of the Eidelberg Report, January 5, 2009, Israel National Radio.

The defeat of Hamas, if realized, will not end Israel’s existential problem. If the Palestinian Authority regains control of Gaza, this will be followed by a major U.S.-led effort to establishe a Palestinian state encompassing Judea and Samaria, the heartland of the Jewish people. Not only President Bush and his successor Barak Obama, but also the Olmert-Livni-Barak government are committed to this end. As predicted in the Zohar (Exodus 7b), certain kinds of Jews are primed to betray the Land and people of Israel.

We waited nineteen centuries for this land, and this land waited for us. This land is ours, and again the nations want to rob us of this land! To rob us of this land, a fictitious people has been fabricated—an assortment of Arab clans and tribes that call themselves “Palestinians”—and so they are called by the nations. An ethnic and historical lie has become a murderous media truth.

These self-styled “Palestinians,” who have no language or culture of their own, have unwittingly named themselves after the extinct Philistines—pagans! And while they claim the Land of Israel as their own, these neo-pagans are oblivious of the fact that the name “Philistines” is derived from a Hebrew word that means and stamps them as “trespassers” or “invaders.” By their self-chosen name these Arabs give the lie to their claim to the Land of Israel!

These Arabs are further removed from peoplehood or nationhood than the Catholics of the United States. They are fragments of the Sunni Muslim majority that dominates the Middle East. They wear the veneer of monotheism that Muhammad borrowed from the Jews; but beneath the surface one sees not a love of life but a pathological love of death. That Arabs and Muslims use women and children as human shields and as human bombs means that Islam has never transcended its pagan origin. (more…)

06-Jan-2009

Einstein, Germany, and Israel’s Next-Door Enemies

Filed under: EthicsIslam & Arab — eidelberg @ 5:59 am Edit This

In a message honoring the heroes of the Warsaw ghetto, Albert Einstein declared:

The Germans as an entire people are responsible for the mass murders and must be punished as a people if there is justice in the world and if the consciousness of collective responsibility in the nations is not to perish from the earth entirely. Behind the Nazi party stands the German people, who elected Hitler after he had in his book [Mein Kampf] and in his speeches made his shameful [genocidal] intentions clear beyond the possibility of misunderstanding.

Does not the Hamas Covenant, which begins with the words, “Israel will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it,” make the genocidal intentions of Hamas also “clear beyond the possibility of misunderstanding”?

Is this not also true of the Fatah Constitution of the Palestinian Authority, which calls for “The complete liberation of Palestine and the economic, political, military and cultural elimination of Zionism”?

Did not the Palestinian Arabs repeatedly hear Yasser Arafat’s declarations of war against Israel but nonetheless elected him as their Fuhrer? (more…)

The Right Kind of Proportionality

Filed under: Multiculturalism/Moral RelativismMilitary Strategy — eidelberg @ 5:44 am Edit This

Just as the goal of the Hamas Covenant is the eradication of Israel, so—

The goal of the Israel Defense Forces should be the eradication of Hamas.

Anything less than this IDF goal is disproportionate.

Even-Handedness Equals Moral Equivalence

Filed under: The MediaMulticulturalism/Moral Relativism — eidelberg @ 5:27 am Edit This

No one should be deceived by the allegedly “even-handed” reporting of the war in Gaza by any media such as FOX News.

Even-handedness between Israel and Hamas is but a euphemism for moral equivalence, since it places a civilized country like Israel on the same level as Hamas, terrorist organization whose Charter unambiguously calls for Israel’s destruction.

John Bolton, former US ambassador to the United Nations, points out in his book Surrender is Not an Option, that “moral equivalency” permeates the State Department.

To be even more accurate, the policy of the State Department, hence of the United States government, toward Israel and its enemy, the Palestinian Authority, has ever been dominated by moral reversal. (more…)

The Hamas Covenant of Death

Filed under: Islam & ArabIranian Threat — eidelberg @ 5:21 am Edit This

“Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it …” Thus begins the Hamas Covenant of Death officially known as “The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement.” To grasp the true nature of the war that is being waged against the Jewish State of Israel, and not only by the Arabs in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, let us examine this Covenant of Death.

In discussing Islam’s war against the Jewish state, the Covenant refers to the Arabs of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza as but a single “squadron” of the “vast Islamic world.” “Our struggle against the Jews is very great,” and this struggle will go on “until the enemy is vanquished and Allah’s victory is realized.”

The Covenant also refers to the Islamic Resistance Movement as “one of the wings of [the] Moslem Brotherhood in Palestine.” It calls upon all Moslems to “raise the banner of Jihad in the face of the oppressors, so that they would rid the land and the people of their uncleanness, vileness and evils.” Contrary to the puerilities of the media, the Moslem Brotherhood is not a fanatical sect of Islam; it is Islam authentic and resurgent. (more…)

05-Jan-2009

Muslim Riots

Filed under: Islam & ArabUS & Global Policy — eidelberg @ 9:35 pm Edit This

From Samuel Huntington, Who Are We? (Simon & Schuster, 2004, p. 188):

“Muslims, particularly Arab Muslims, seem slow to assimilate compared to other post-1965 groups…. A study of Los Angeles Muslims found ambivalent attitudes toward America: “a significant number of Muslims, particularly immigrant Muslims, do not have close ties or loyalty to the United States.” When asked whether they had “closer ties or loyalty to Islamic countries (perhaps your country of birth) or the United States,” 45 percent of the immigrants said Islamic countries, 10 percent the United States, and 32 percent about the same. Among American-born Muslims, 19 percent chose Islamic countries, 38 percent the United States, and 32 percent about the same. Fifty-seven percent said that “if given the choice, [they] would leave the United States to live in an Islamic country.”

Now for a problem of national interest:

Suppose the United States attacked Iran to stop its development of nuclear weapons.

Alternatively, suppose Israel attacked Iran for the same reason—and it was believed, rightly or wrongly, that the United States had helped Israel.

Could the police or the National Guard quell Muslim riots in any of the major cities of the United States—riots instigated by imams?

A Backgrounder on Hamas: Islam and Monotheistic Paganism

Filed under: Islam & ArabJudaism — eidelberg @ 9:30 pm Edit This

Islam’s deep theological structure includes themes that render the notion of “three Abrahamic faiths” ultimately misleading in understanding Islam’s faith and practice—particularly if this trope is understood in the popular imagination as a matter of three equivalent legs propping up a single monotheistic stool.

George Weigel

Contrary to long established opinion, Islam’s deity, “Allah,” is not the God of the Bible—certainly not the God Jews refer to by the Ineffable Name HaShem and designated by the Tetragrammaton YHVH.

The Zohar (87a) states: “Thou shalt have no other gods upon My face,” meaning “Thou shalt even avoid conceiving Me in those aspects (faces) which form Ishmael’s religion [i.e., Islam].”

Islam actually contradicts the Biblical conception of man’s creation in the image of God. Thus, in 1985, Iran’s delegate to the United Nations, Said Raja’i-Khorassani, declared that “the very concept of human rights was ‘a Judeo-Christian invention’ and inadmissible in Islam.”

Although the Quran refers to Allah as the “compassionate,” his most conspicuous function in that highly polemical work is to consign unbelievers to hell. To be sure, the Quran contains many verses that preach peace and tolerance, but more typical are verses that sanction war against non-believers. (more…)

Praise the Lord, the God of Israel

Filed under: EthicsJudaism — eidelberg @ 9:04 pm Edit This

Praise the Lord, all people of honest faith, praise the God of Israel.

See how His Chosen People, “despite” mediocre leaders, attacks Evil—the evil incarnate in Hamas, the proxy of Shi’te Iran, the epicenter of Islamic paganism veneered in monotheism.

But take note of how the world denounces Israel. Is there better proof of the Chosen People?

Hear ye, oh people of honest faith, rise and cheer the People of Israel, while one gentile nation after another wallows in envious hatred of Jews while crawling to Arab and Muslim despots—merchants of hatred, of black gold and murder.

Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, who uses even fools and scoundrels to reveal the inexhaustible righteousness of His Chosen People.

Islam the Enemy

Filed under: Islam & Arab — eidelberg @ 8:45 pm Edit This

The Nature of the Enemy the West Does Not Want to See or Face

Muslims never forget; indeed, they are taught never to forget the assaults of their enemies even if such assaults occurred more than a thousand years ago.

Reza Aslan is a Muslim apologist. Much of his book No god but God (Random House 2006) is a shockingly disingenuous exercise in obscuring the savage and genocidal history of Islam.

Askan points out that the Ayatollah Khomeini “deliberately cast Iran’s horrific eight-year war with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq as revenge for the massacre of Husayn and his family at Karbala” at the end of the seventh century!!!

Without being judgmental, about Iran in its war with Iraq, he says, “In fact, the ten thousand Iranian children who were thrown into the front lines of the war as human mine sweepers wore ‘keys to Karbala around their necks and headbands emblazoned with the word Karbala to remind them that they were … walking in the footsteps of the martyrs.” (more…)

“Shock and Awe”—1945

Filed under: Military Strategy — eidelberg @ 4:32 am Edit This

In the Prologue of Victor David Hanson, The Soul of Battle (Free Press, 1999), we read:

“…on March 9, 1945, a 400-mile trail of 334 B-29s left their Marianas bases, 3,500 newly trained airmen crammed in among the napalm. The gigantic planes each carried ten tons of the newly invented jellied gasoline incendiaries.… Planes flew over [Tokyo] in small groups of three, a minute apart…. Five-hundred-pound incendiary clusters fell every 50 feet. Within thirty minutes, a 28-mile-per-hour ground wind sent the flames roaring out of control. Temperatures approached 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit…. [Air Force head General Curtis] LeMay wished to destroy completely the material and psychological capital of the Japanese people, on the brutal, theory that once civilians had tasted what their soldiers had done to others, only then might their murderous armies crack…. People would not show up to work to fabricate artillery shells that killed Americans when there was no work to show up to. Solders who kill, rape, and torture do so less confidently when their own families are at risk at home….

“Over 80,000 Japanese died outright; 400,918 were injured; 267,171 buildings were destroyed. One million Japanese were homeless…. Unfortunately for the Japanese, the March 9 raid was the beginning, not the end, of LeMay’s incendiary campaign. He sensed that his moment—a truly deadly man in charge of a huge democratic force free of government constraint—had at last arrived, as the imperial Japanese command was stunned and helpless…. (more…)

04-Jan-2009

Patton Updated

Filed under: Gaza IncursionMilitary Strategy — eidelberg @ 6:22 am Edit This

To Israel’s General Staff: Lessons From A Master of War

Israel’s General Staff would do well to emulate George S. Patton, the general most feared by Nazi Germany.

On the eve of battle, Patton would admonish his soldiers: “The object of war is not to die for your country. It is to make the other poor dumb bastard die for his.” This requires confronting and killing the enemy on the battlefield.

“Never let the enemy rest.” No cease fires or hudnas. Unconditional surrender should be Israel’s proclaimed war aim!

“We want the enemy to know that they are fighting the toughest fighting men in the world!” This precludes benevolence (which Arabs despise). Just as Hamas terrorists would show no mercy to you, so you should show no mercy to them. These terrorists must be killed even if this results in civilian casualties.

“Forget about army regulations … [which] are written by those who have never been in battle…Our only mission in combat is to win.” Hence general officers may sometimes have to disobey orders of the political echelon! (more…)

Destroy the Enemy to Obtain One Hundred Years of Peace

Filed under: Gaza IncursionMilitary Strategy — eidelberg @ 5:49 am Edit This

Part I — Epaminondas

“Those who wish to enjoy peace must be ready for war.”

Referring to the democratic reformer Epaminondas, the warrior-philosopher whose Theban army defeated Sparta (370-369), military historian Victor Davis Hanson offers insights that Israeli generals and citizens as well as universities should take most seriously. The excerpts below are taken from Hanson’s The Soul of Battle: From Ancient Times to the Present Day, How Three Great Liberators Vanquished Tyranny (1999):

“I think it is almost axiomatic that if a general of a great democratic march is not hated, is not sacked, tried, or relieved of command by his auditors after his tenure is over, or if he has not been killed [as was Epaminondas] or wounded at the van, he has not utilized the full potential of his men, has not accomplished his strategic goals—in short, he is too representative of the very culture that produced him, too democratic to lead a democratic army …”

“… we of the academic class are sometimes reluctant to equate mastery of military command with sheer intellectual brilliance. But to lead an army of thousands into enemy territory requires mental skills far beyond that of the professor, historian, or journalist—far beyond too the accounting and managerial skill of the deskbound and peacetime officer corps.”

“From Epaminondas’s philosophical training [he was a Pythagorean], the corpus of his adages and sayings that have survived, and his singular idea to take 70,000 men into Laconia and Messinia, it is clear that, like both [William Tecumseh] Sherman and [George S.] Patton, he had a first-class mind and was adept in public speaking and knowledge of human behavior. Perhaps with the exception of Pericles and Scipio, it is hard to find any military leader in some twelve centuries of Gaeco-Roman antiquity who had the natural intelligence, philosophical training, broad knowledge, and recognition of the critical tension between military morale and national ethics as Epaminondas the Theban. In his range of political and strategic thought, he towered over his Greek contemporaries … in precisely the way Sherman did over all the generals of the Civil War, precisely as Patton dwarfed his British and American superiors. (more…)

Only Dead Fish Go With the Stream

Filed under: US & Global PolicyIranian Threat — eidelberg @ 5:24 am Edit This

Comments submitted by Prof. Eidelberg, Dec 30, 2008 on article: Insight into Obama’s Middle East Policy? at DanielPipes.org .

Judging from Daniel Pipes’ lucid critique of the Bush administration’s failings in the Middle East, the Brookings/CFR study, Restoring the Balance: A Middle East Strategy for the Next President, seems to be following the same path with respect to Iran and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Its co-authors, Richard Haass and Martin Indyk seem wedded to the tried and ineffectual path of negotiating with despotic regimes. They ignore the global ambitions of Iranian President Ahmadinejad—basically a disciple of the Ayatollah Khomeini. They virtually ignore the geo-strategic dimensions of the Iranian threat. Iran is not only the epicenter of international terrorism. Of immediate concern is Iran’s development of nuclear weapons and its present ability to turn the spigot off the oil flowing through the Persian Gulf.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s incantation “death to America” is not merely a metaphor. Nor should the next president downplay Ahmadinejad’s vow to wipe Israel off the map—something Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority has already done in its maps of the Middle East. (more…)

Yaalon’s Plan

Filed under: Oslo/Peace ProcessPoliticians — eidelberg @ 4:37 am Edit This

A Brief Lesson in Political Logic

A question has arisen regarding my December 29 critique of the Yaalon Plan on Israel National Radio. That plan, recall, is based on General Yaalon’s policy paper “Israel and the Palestinians: A New Strategy.”

Yaalon opposes the Oslo Agreement because its architects favor withdrawal from Judea and Samaria before the Palestinians develop the economic, political, and judicial infrastructure required to make the Palestinian Authority a reliable negotiating peace partner with Israel. But this implies that Yaalon is not opposed in principle to a Palestinian state—to put it in negative terms.

It may therefore be logically assumed that anyone who understands and endorses the Yaalon plan is not opposed in principle to a Palestinian state.

In contrast, Moshe is opposed in principle to the establishment of a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria for religious reasons. (more…)

02-Jan-2009

Pipes on Bush et al.

Filed under: US & Global Policy — eidelberg @ 8:22 am Edit This

Daniel Pipes has written an excellent critique of the Bush administration, as well as of the liberal mindset of the Brookings Institute/Council of Foreign Relations (CFR) study, Restoring the Balance: A Middle East Strategy for the Next President. This study bodes ill for both America and Israel.

View article by Daniel Pipes.

Metternichean Principles of Statecraft

Filed under: Foreign PolicyIsrael’s Sovereignty — eidelberg @ 7:44 am Edit This

Prince Klemens Wenzel von Metternich (1773 – 1859) was a German-Austrian politician and statesman and was one of the most important diplomats of his era. Henry Kissinger wrote his doctoral dissertation on Metternich.

As Metternich saw, to expect the leaders of a dictatorship (such as the Fatah- or Hamas-led Palestinian Authority) to be moderate is like asking them to destroy the foundation of their existence. What follows are some Metternichean principles of statecraft extracted from his writings:

(1) Any plan conceived in moderate terms must fail when the circumstances are set in the extreme. In any situation where each of the possible lines of action involves difficulty, the strongest line is the best.

(2) Compromise is the easy refuge of irresolute or unprincipled men. Of course compromise is appropriate when dealing with temporary and partial interests. But a nation’s survival is not a matter of compromise. (more…)

Sun Tzu

Filed under: Foreign PolicyGaza Incursion — eidelberg @ 7:35 am Edit This

Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, written about 500 B.C.E., is the oldest military treatise in the world. Even now, after twenty-five centuries, the basic principles of that treatise remain a valuable guide for the conduct of war. Indeed, Sun Tzu may be of interest to the General Staff of the Israel Defense Forces, in view of the Arab Terrorist War that erupted in September 2000. Since then more than 1,600 Jews have been murdered and many thousands more have been wounded and maimed by Arab terrorists.

Referring to the IDF’s limited response to this Arab terrorism, former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said, “self-restraint is strength”! At first glance one might suspect that Mr. Sharon had been influence by Mother Theresa. It may well be, however, that he derived that dictum from Sun Tzu’s The Art of War—or rather, from a misreading of that treatise. Sun Tzu would have an army general exhibit, at first, “the coyness of a maiden”—to draw out the enemy—but thereafter he would have him emulate the fierceness of a lion.

Of course, when the forces of the enemy exceed your own or occupy superior ground, then self-restraint is prudence. But when this situation is reversed, self-restraint is weakness. In fact, Sun Tzu goes so far as to say, “If fighting is reasonably sure to result in victory, then you must fight, even though the ruler forbids it.

In referring to various ways in which a ruler can bring misfortune upon his army and his people, Sun Tzu cautions a ruler against “attempting to govern an army in the same way as he administers a kingdom.” (more…)

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