web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



Staying Alive: Israel In An Age Of ‘Martyrdom’

Louis Rene Beres

Louis Rene Beres

Share Button

Everyone who reads newspapers should know at least one thing. Threats to annihilate Israel have always been unremarkable. Almost never, it seems, have Israel’s existential enemies sought any reason for concealment.

Significantly, in this connection, if not for Israel’s “bomb in the basement” – its still-unacknowledged nuclear force – these openly genocidal threats could already have been actualized. Were it not for Israel’s “ambiguous” nuclear ace in the hole, such threats would likely have represented substantially more than verbal bluster or unheroic bravado.

This utterly critical point is not widely recognized or understood. Today, the common goal of all Israel’s Islamist enemies is still Jewish extermination. This grotesque goal remains unhidden. In perhaps the bitterest of ironies, therefore, our ancient nation that was ingathered and reborn to prevent another Holocaust has become the uncamouflaged focus of yet another Final Solution.

In essence, the goal of all Israel’s Islamist enemies, especially Iran and the Palestinian “state,” is to be left standing while Israel is made to disappear. For these determinedly lascivious enemies, there can be no coexistence with Israel. Ever.

The reason, as I have pointed out here before, is not a matter of pragmatic politics or convenience. It is, rather, a matter of irremediable core doctrine. It is because, religiously, their own survival requires Israel’s extinction.

In Washington, President Obama still does not understand. Repeatedly, ritualistically, almost on cue, Obama extols the alleged virtues of a very twisted and sinister cartography. In the fashion of his equally misguided predecessors (let us not forget the earlier errors of Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush), Obama ostentatiously favors a Road Map to Peace in the Middle East.

Viscerally, it is a pleasing metaphor. Like the misconceived and ill-fated Oslo Agreements that came before, this one-sided plan is ultimately premised on Israel’s coerced acceptance of land for nothing. At best, it is a dreadful cliché, a humiliating self-parody. Nothing more.

Notwithstanding Obama’s cheerful belief in progress, it would be a fatal mistake for Israel to believe that reason and justice govern the world; a grievous error for Israel to continue to project its own Western, rational, and humane sentiments upon the most relentless and barbarous jihadist foes. It would assuredly be a “life risk” for Israel to seek to endure by continuing to cling to numbingly false promises, and to manifestly false hopes.

Far better, among other security-maximizing steps, to enhance deterrence by ending nuclear ambiguity. Far better to bring the Israeli bomb out of the “basement.”

Barack Obama will not save Israel. Hillary Clinton will not save Israel. Benjamin Netanyahu will not save Israel.

Once Iran has decided to launch nuclear missiles at Israel – at the very least a plausible prospect in just a few years – Washington’s only real assistance would be to help Jerusalem bury the dead. For this, whole Israeli cities would first have to be transformed into cemeteries. Here, with grudging assistance from the “international community,” Israel would become the world’s largest and most enthusiastically stocked necropolis.

Whether in Gaza, the West Bank or Tehran, Israel’s jihadist enemies wish to kill Jews because every such homicide is felt to be a sacred obligation. For these enemies, killing Jews is an indisputably praiseworthy expression of religious sacrifice. Specifically, such killing is expected to confer immunity from personal death. What could be better?

The idea of death as a zero-sum commodity – “I kill you; I therefore remain alive forever” – has rarely been explained elsewhere. It is captured perfectly, however, in Ernest Becker’s graphic and meticulously primal paraphrase of Nobel Laureate Elias Canetti: “Each organism raises its head over a field of corpses, smiles into the sun, and declares life good.”

To stay alive, Israel must finally understand what psychologist Otto Rank had earlier revealed in his Will Therapy and Truth and Reality: “The death fear of the ego is lessened by the killing, the Sacrifice, of the other; through the death of the other one buys oneself free from the penalty of dying, of being killed.” This admittedly difficult insight is at the very heart of Islamist orientations to Israel. Indeed, it explains almost everything Israel needs to know about these unambiguously genocidal orientations.

Israel’s enemies, in order to remain standing, and to prevent Israel from standing up, seek to sacrifice the Jewish state on a (literally) bloodstained altar of war and terrorism. Sacrifice is now deeply central and elemental to what is evolving in the Middle East. The hoped-for destruction of Israel is integrally part of a system of religious worship, one directed toward an enhancement of life, and, simultaneously, to the authentically sublime conquest of personal death.

Share Button

About the Author: Louis René Beres, strategic and military affairs columnist for The Jewish Press, is professor of Political Science at Purdue University. Educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971), he lectures and publishes widely on international relations and international law and is the author of ten major books in the field. In Israel, Professor Beres was chair of Project Daniel.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

No Responses to “Staying Alive: Israel In An Age Of ‘Martyrdom’”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden
Pakistan Library Renamed to Honor bin Laden
Latest Indepth Stories
matza

If itis a mitzva to eat matza all Pesach, then why is there no berakha attached to it?

Masked Palestinian Authority Arabs hurl blocks at Israel Police during and after "worship" at Temple Mount mosque. (archive photo)

When we are united with unconditional love, no stone will be raised against us by our enemies.

Haredim riot after draft-dodger is arrested.

The reporter simply reports the news, but it is greater to be inspired to better the situation.

Bitton-041814

The Big Bang theory marked the scientific community’s first sense of the universe having a beginning.

Freeing convicted murderers returns the status of Jewish existence to something less than sanctified.

“The bigger they are the harder they fall” describes what God had in mind for Olmert.

We, soldiers of the IDF, who stand guard over the people and the land, fulfill the hopes of the millions of Jewish people across the generations who sought freedom.

How much is the human mind able to grasp of the Divine?

Jews have brought the baggage of the galut (exile) mentality to the modern state of Israel.

The Haggadah is an instruction manual on how to survive as strangers in strange lands.

It’s finally happened. New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan reported on her blog that “many readers…wrote to object to an [April 2] article…on the breakdown in peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians,” claiming “[they] found the headline misleading and the article itself lacking in context.” Ms. Sullivan provided one such letter, quoted the […]

Nor did it seem relevant that according to widely circulated media reports, Rev. Sharpton was caught on an FBI surveillance video discussing possible drug sales with an FBI agent.

Jewish soldiers in the Polish forces often encountered anti-Semitic prejudice.

When the state was established, gedolim went to Ben-Gurion and asked him not to draft women and, later, yeshiva bachrim.

More Articles from Louis Rene Beres
Louis Rene Beres

President Obama’s core argument on a Middle East peace process is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Louis Rene Beres

Once upon a time in America, every adult could recite at least some Spenglerian theory of decline.

President Obama’s core argument is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Specific strategic lessons from the Bar Kokhba rebellion.

Still facing an effectively unhindered nuclear threat from Iran, Israel will soon need to choose between two strategic options.

For states, as for individuals, fear and reality go together naturally.

So much of the struggle between Israel and the Arabs continues to concern space.

An undifferentiated or across-the-board commitment to nuclear ambiguity could prove harmful to Israel’s's overall security.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/louis-bene-beres/staying-alive-israel-in-an-age-of-martyrdom/2013/05/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: