I recently was challenged by an academic who claimed to be dumbfounded that I rejected as absurd his use of the term “Apartheid Wall” to refer to Israel’s security barrier fence.
He demanded to know why I objected to the term and what I thought was a more appropriate name for it.
I responded that the more appropriate and correct name would be the “Leftists are Idiots” fence. Indeed, I would urge everyone to adopt that name for it and insist that no other be used in polite company.
The security barrier should be dubbed the Leftists are Idiots fence because the very need for its construction was as a countermeasure to the countless acts of murder and other violence triggered by the imposition on Israel of the Left’s political agenda with regard to making “peace” with the Palestinians.
The building of the Leftists are Idiots Fence became necessary because of the recognition of the PLO by Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres and all the fruit of that poisonous tree which followed.
The series of agreements to allow the PLO to import its army of assassins and terrorists into the West Bank and Gaza produced so many massacres of Israelis that the only way to reduce the level of violence was with large fences and barriers that prevented Palestinians from getting close enough to Jews to murder them.
The Leftists are Idiots fence is only the latest byproduct of leftist theology.
The Left believes Israel can appease its way to peace by making endless concessions. The fact that every round of appeasements and concessions to date has produced an escalation of terror never persuades leftists that something is flawed in their political theology. Rather, they insist that their theology has failed only because Israel makes too few concessions.
The Israeli Left has been wrong about absolutely everything for at least 20 years, and it would be very difficult to uncover anything about which it was not wrong going back some 60 years.
The Israeli Left of the 1950s believed in Soviet-style economic central planning. It built and then preserved a command-and-control economic mechanism that resembled that of Soviet regimes in many ways. It was designed to place near totalitarian control of the economy in the hands of the ruling socialist Mapai party (which eventually evolved into the Labor alignment).
Israel was essentially a one-party state until 1977, and that single ruling party was Mapai.
Thanks to its command-and-control structure, Israel remained an impoverished, underdeveloped Third World country until well into the 1980s, complete with Third-World levels of corruption, primitive technology and insufferable tax rates. By the late 1980s the command-and-control regime had largely though not completely been dismantled – this thanks to a complex set of causes – and Israel morphed into a prosperous first-world country, to the chagrin of its socialists.
But the more harmful and longer lasting element of leftist ideology has been the belief that Israeli surrender to Arab demands, no matter how unreasonable, would lead to everlasting peace.
When Israel became independent in 1948-49, the new state went to great lengths to prevent the emigration of the Arab population of what became Israel. (Never mind that anti-Semites later invented a pseudo-history in which Israel carried out “ethnic cleansing.” The truth is, the War of Independence itself was an attempt by the Arabs to conduct a genocidal ethnic cleansing of Jews.)
The early Israeli governments of the 1950s and 1960s, all led by Mapai, allowed many tens of thousands of Arab “refugees” quietly to return to Israel. The Israeli government in 1967 went out of its way to stop the emigration of the Arab populations of the West Bank and Gaza Strip during and after the Six-Day War.
The Labor government of Yitzhak Rabin signed the Oslo Accords, converting Gaza and most of the West Bank into large terrorist bases and launching pads for mortars and rockets.
Since every single round of concession and appeasement by Israel has produced escalated Arab violence, the idea of a security fence was proposed – initially, it may surprise readers to learn, by the Left.
But Israel’s leftists quickly recovered from their momentary bout of common sense, and within weeks of the commencement of the fence’s construction they were busily denouncing the fence as Israel’s “Apartheid Wall.”
The irony, of course, is that no other country would have responded to the atrocities and murders coming from a hostile population located at the fringes of its cities by building such a wall. Every other country would have bombed the attackers into the Stone Age and then driven them out en masse.
Steven Plaut is a professor at the University of Haifa. His book “The Scout” is available at Amazon.com. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.