No one wants peace in Israel more than I do. I am a firm believer that life trumps land. That’s why I had always supported almost any deal Israel would make with the Palestinians. As long as Israel’s security was assured and the Jewish people could have free and have unfettered access to all of its holy places, I was for it.
As much as I believe that the Jewish people have a right granted to us by God Himself to settle in all the land of Israel, I am equally sure that we are obligated to prevent loss of life and limb in doing so. Until the time of Moshiach’s arrival, we must compromise in these areas. So in theory land for peace is something I would still be in favor of.
Unfortunately this formula cannot work. There is no such thing as land for peace. Not in Israel. And not when we are dealing with an Islamic Fundamentalism determined to turn Israel into an Islamic state called Palestine – at any price.
Islamic Fundamentalism is in my view, the most serious threat to world peace in our day. One need not go far from the State of Israel to see it in action. Iraq is currently in the process of being overtaken by Fundamentalist Muslims with a goal of turning it into an Islamic Republic ruled by Sharia (Islamic) Law. They are succeeding too, having taken over one city after another as Iraqi soldiers cower at their advances and run the other way. These people are brutal. And they are guided by a religious fervor unrivaled by any of the other major faiths.
A similarly motivated Fundamentalist Muslim group, called Boko Haram has kidnapped 276 school girls in Nigeria. Their goal too is to create an Islamic state in Nigeria run by Sharia law.
The events of 9/11 was a similarly motivated attack. Fundamentalist Muslims attacked America because they perceived the United States hindering those goals by among other things supporting Israel.
And let’s not forget about the Islamic revolution in Iran that happened over 30 years ago… and Iran is still going strong under Sharia law.
There are so many instances of violence in the name of Islam, it would take a book to list them all. That said, I realize that most Muslims are not radical fundamentalists. They may or may not agree as Muslims that Sharia law would be the ideal way to govern a country. But even if they do believe in Sharia law they are not interested in the violence and carnage being done to achieve that. They would just as soon live in peace and prosperity in a live and let live world.
Unfortunately it really doesn’t matter what the common Muslim wants. Fanatic religious fervor trumps it all. Their ends justify their means. There is no compromise with religious doctrine. For them a doctrine that mandates mankind to be ruled by Sharia law means that all is fair in achieving that goal.
That’s why I am so completely opposed to any kind of peace deal in Israel right now. No matter how conciliatory moderate Palestinians leaders might be, it won’t matter in the end. Israel cannot afford to give up any of its security measures. It cannot allow any citizen to be vulnerable to attack.
Fundamentalist Muslims will do whatever it takes to take turn Israel into Palestine. There is no compromise. There is only tactics. Giving up land for peace no matter what kind of security apparatus is set up – will be undermined by these fanatics. They will try to do in Israel what they are successfully doing in Iraq.
About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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