web analytics
December 10, 2016 / 10 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘war’

Reflections On The Second Lebanon War

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

Ten years since the Second Lebanon War. For those of us who took part in it, that war remains always just in view. Like a suitcase filled with items of vivid memory, waiting quietly in the corner of a room.

It was an entirely inglorious and partially botched and inconclusive affair. A “great and grave missed opportunity” as the second report of the Winograd Committee termed it.

It has also been rapidly forgotten. This, it seems, is the way of the small wars that Israel fights these days. None of them passes into legend, as did the great conflicts of the state’s foundation. Today’s conflicts, after a short time, become largely the private property of those who participated in them.

That’s perhaps not a bad thing. Perhaps it is akin to the rapidity with which Israeli cities clear up and move on after terror attacks. Still, the long quiet that has followed the 2006 war on the northern border has helped to further obscure some of the lessons of that summer. It is worth therefore recalling, in unforgiving focus, some of what took place.

A cabinet led by individuals with minimal security experience (and a prime minister and president now serving jail terms), and an IDF led by its first chief of staff from the Air Force set out for war with the Iranian proxy Hizbullah organization in July 2006.

It is now evident that no coherent and achievable plan for the conduct of the war had been decided on at the rushed and overheated cabinet meeting that set it in motion.

This problematic, unprepared leadership was in turn commanding an army ill suited for the war it would need to fight.

There were two reasons for the IDF’s state of unreadiness.

The first was practical: The 2006 war came immediately after an intensive five-year period of counter-insurgency, in which the IDF was engaged against a large scale Palestinian uprising. The demands of the Second Intifada left little time for training for conventional war.

The challenges faced by troops at that time were considerable. But they were mainly of a police-like nature, not employing or testing the specialized skills of front line military units in battlefield conditions.

This army in 2006 found itself facing a well armed, mobile enemy, on terrain the Israeli side knew far less well than its foe.

The resulting difficulties were compounded by a second, conceptual issue. The 2006 war was not the fight the army was expecting. Chief of Staff Dan Halutz expected to spend his period at the IDF’s helm facing the key challenge of the Iranian nuclear program and focusing on ballistic missile defense. Future wars, it was assumed, would be fought using air power, with small numbers of trained specialists on the ground.

As a result, resources had in preceding years been diverted from training the large, reserve land army. It was assumed that this was a force unlikely to be used.

In 2006, some reserve armored formations, as a result, went into battle against Hizbullah having taken part in only one training exercise using tanks in the previous half decade. Full disclosure: I was a member of such a force.

These were the circumstances in which Israel went to war in 2006.

The war for the greater part of its duration consisted of limited ground operations by the IDF in an area adjoining the border, air operations up to Beirut, as well as a successfully maintained naval blockade; and on Hizbullah’s side, defense of areas under ground attack and a successful effort to maintain throughout a constant barrage of short-range rockets on northern Israel.

A cease-fire went into effect at 8 a.m. on August 14, following the passage of UN Resolution 1701. The end of the fighting found some IDF forces deployed at the Litani River, but with Israel far from control of the entire area between the river and the Israeli-Lebanese border.

* * * * *

Looking back, it is clear that hesitant Israeli political leadership and a lack of an overall plan for the war were the reasons for its inconclusive results. Had the IDF – even the poorly prepared force that entered the war of 2006 – been presented with clear orders at an early stage to move forward into Lebanon, according to one of the available plans for achieving this, a less ambiguous result could have been achieved. No such order was ever given.

Much public anger followed the war and its inconclusive results, as Hizbullah and its friends in the West sought to build a narrative of “divine victory” from the events.

From our perspective a decade later, however, much of the euphoria of Hizbullah and the despair on parts of the Israeli side seem exaggerated. The results of the war from an Israeli perspective in 2016 are mixed.

The border has indeed been quieter since 2006 than at any time since the late 1960s. This fact in itself says more about Hizbullah’s true assessment following the damage suffered in 2006 than any al-Akhbar editorial excitedly proclaiming divine victory.

And of course Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah himself told a Lebanese TV station shortly after the war that had the movement known in advance the scale of the IDF response, Hizbullah would have never have carried out the kidnappings that sparked the war.

At the same time, Resolution 1701, which was intended to keep the Shia Islamist movement north of the Litani has failed. Hizbullah has built an extensive new infrastructure south of the river since 2006, under the noses of UNIFIL and often with the collusion of the Lebanese Armed Forces. And Hizbullah has vastly increased its rocket and missile capacity.

In retrospect, 2006 was perhaps most significant in that it introduced a type of warfare and a type of force that has now proliferated across the region – namely, military entities that are neither regular armies nor guerrilla movements in the classic sense. Rather, they are potent combinations of the two.

These forces carry no state flag with them. Indeed, often they are stronger than the forces of the notional state on whose territory they operate. They possess neither air power nor much in the way of armored or artillery or naval capacities. Yet they operate not merely as guerrillas but rather as light infantry forces, holding ground and defending it, while making adept use of 21st century media to fight the propaganda battle.

Hizbullah was the prototype of such a force, and it remains among the strongest of them. But today the entire landscape between the Mediterranean Sea and the Iraq-Iran border proliferates with groups of this type. Jabhat al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham and Iraq’s Shia militias and even the Assad regime’s National Defence Force represent a variety of opposed causes and perspectives. But they are all hybrid forces, light infantries of varying quality, parallel entities to Hizbullah.

This highlights perhaps the most central point regarding the 2006 war. In its aftermath, as Hizbullah and Iran celebrated their “divine victory,” it appeared the prospect was for ongoing bloodletting between Israel and a regional alliance committed to its destruction, with Hizbullah as the primary military instrument on the ground.

Today, that landscape has changed beyond recognition. Hizbullah and its Iranian patron are engaged in a region-wide war against the Sunni Arabs. In Yemen, Iraq, and above all Syria, the movement and its patron are up to their necks in unending conflict. Hizbullah’s latest woes include fights between its members and Assad’s troops in the Aleppo area, and the loss of around 1,500 men in the morass of the Syrian war.

For as long as this war continues, it seems likely that no repeat of 2006 is on the horizon. And if and when the war ends, the damage suffered in 2006 is likely to give Hizbullah and its patron continued pause for thought.

What all this ultimately means is that we should be thankful for those who came before us. Lebanon 2006 shows that even at a low point in terms of training and planning, led by an unsuitable chief of staff, with an inexperienced and as it turns out largely corrupt political leadership at the helm, Israel’s armed forces were still of sufficient quality to be capable of delivering a blow to a powerful enemy instructive enough to ensure a period of subsequent silence, which lasts to this day.

Broader regional circumstances beyond the control of either Israelis or Lebanese Shias have certainly added to this effect. The main question, though – whether Israeli society and its armed forces have sufficiently internalized and acted on the lessons taught in the burning summer of 2006 – remains a subject of daily relevance to which a final answer cannot yet be given.

Dr. Jonathan Spyer

IDF Acquires New Long-Range Rocket From IMI

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

One usually associates the acquisition of the long-range rockets with Iran, Hezbollah or terrorists in Gaza.

But it turns out the IDF has just acquired an exquisitely accurate long-range rocket produced by Israeli defense firm Israel Military Industries (IMI)– the new long-range Taas EXTRA (Extended Range Artillery Rocket) missile.

The Taas, capable of hitting a target within a 10-meter accuracy radius even as far as 150 kilometers away, is part of Israel’s new arsenal being developed in preparation for a possible future conflict with Hezbollah in Lebanon.

The Taas EXTRA long-range rocket manufactured by IMI.

The missile is described by the firm as a “precise, cost-effective, tactical-range artillery rocket” that allows ground force commanders to “influence the battlefield” at a range of 20 to 150 kilometers.

Developed in the IMI factory in Givon, the new rocket is approximately four meters long, with a diameter of 30 centimeters, and capable of carrying a variety of warheads up to a weight of 120 kilograms.

It’s a highly accurate rocket with a proven effectiveness against a “wide range of high payoff targets across the tactical battlefield,” according to the company.

The Taas will enable Israel to attack and eliminate any number of targets in Lebanon, should that prove necessary. This will also reduce the cost and complications of aerial attacks against the Iranian-backed Hezbollah guerrilla group where they hide north of Israel’s borders.

Hana Levi Julian

The War for Halachic Judaism

Monday, June 27th, 2016

Disclaimer:

Disclaimer: I don’t like labels as it pertains to Torah identity. I don’t love the term ‘orthodox Jew’,  modern-orthodox, etc. Personally, I would prefer the term halachic Jew, but some of the most aggressive religious innovators insist that they are acting in an halachic manner. On the other hand, I have zero patience for those who nit-pick with ridiculous semantics. In this article I use the term ‘orthodox Jew,’ because sometimes terms become deep-rooted in a communal identity, and the desire to shake the root free is both wasteful, unnecessary, and sometimes counter-productive. I use the term when referring to religious rabbis who believe in the absolute Divine nature of Torah, and the mass revelation at Sinai.

A few other brief points. In no way do I believe that there are no great, righteous men of Torah today. G-d forbid! There are many, and I am fortunate to know more than a few myself, both in Israel and America. In this article I am speaking about what I perceive to be a dearth of prominent public voices, in response to radical innovations.

Finally, I want to clarify that my critique of torturous misreading of Halacha is referring to radical innovations that, in my opinion, contradict the traditional approach of Halacha. My critique has no commonality with those who mock the halachic system and Halacha in general. Quite the opposite. I am unequivocally committed 100% to the Divinity of Torah, and to the sacred words of chazal.

In any event, these are my general reflections of what I perceive to be a terrible problem. If nothing else, perhaps, this article will encourage people to address these issues.


Once upon a time, there were giants who walked amongst us-giants of Torah. Men with wisdom to combat the modern idols of secularization. Men who defended the integrity of the Jewish synagogue and the Jewish family from goyish modernization. Men who spoke with deep wisdom in defense of the deepest truths. Men who understood that modern definitions of feminism, woman’s rights, and similar minded ideologies spoke more of the faulty psychology of their respective advocates, than of any new-age modern revelation designed to liberate women from being women. Once upon a time, great men of Torah fought for yahadut.

Today, there are few if any prominent vocal voices. And so, whenever the new radical voices in the Torah community (who speak in the name of Torah) speak violence to the system, there is deafening silence. On issues that should transcend all labels and factions, and appeal to everyone concerned with protecting Halachah, one feels the void.

Ironically, some of the most blatant outrages occur in Israel, where unbridled Jewish messianic fervor renders many Jews vulnerable to aberrant belief systems. Consider the spectacle of orthodox rabbis giving a kosher seal to evangelicals and missionaries in Israel because of a distorted notion of achalta de’geula (a pivotal point in time auguring moshiach). Consider how one prominent Rabbi in the heartland of liberated Samaria opened up his community to evangelicals in order to benefit from their free labor. Today, these evangelicals have transitioned from living in tents to dwelling in cottages.

Consider that Tommy Waller, the leader of these evangelicals from the volunteer group “Hayovel”, once infamously admitted in a promotional video that such opportunities will give him a chance to missionize (video):

“As we’re working with these people, we’ll be able to share with them this…this Jesus that we know.” 


Further on in the video, a family member elaborated:

“Our family has begun a ministry called Hayovel. The vision of Hayovel is to develop a network of individual, families, and congregations who are ready to labor side by side with the people of Israel. To bless them, to stand with them, to share with them a passion for the soon coming jubilee in yeshua messiah. We extend the invitation to you, to join us.”


Interfaith-Dialogue

And what of the growing number of religious rabbis who swim in the dangerous waters of interfaith dialogue? Perhaps most outrageous of all is that easily the most prominent individual involved in this lunacy repeatedly treads upon his deceased Rabbi’s famous stringent halachic ruling which prohibited such actions. (See Rav Soloveitchik’s famous essay “Confrontation” and follow-up Addendum.)

On a more general level, how is orthodoxy supposed to cope with the following?

  • Rabbis with kipot and beards who reflect on a morality independent of Halacha? Rabbis whose readings of Torah verse and Talmud require a torturous misreading of the written and articulated meanings?
  • Rabbis whose usage and defense (if only for application regarding what they believe to be “antiquated” injunctions, and not every day Halacha) of this tactic remind me of the perverse attempts of “Jewish Renewal”.
  • Religious Rabbis whose interpretations of of Divine injunctions mirror the tactics of maskilim new and old. Rabbis who see metaphor in the biblical injunction to destroy Amalek and the 7 Nations of Canaan.
  • Rabbis who believe in a “new Halacha.” Rabbis who opine that Rambam and others spoke for their age alone.
  • Religious Rabbis who advocate for homosexual marriage.
  • Rabbis for Hillary Clinton and her leftist anti-Torah positions.
  • Rabbis who engage in biblical criticism.
  • Rabbis who wish to free Spinoza from his well-earned excommunication.
  • Rabbis for “open-orthodoxy” and the ordination of women.
  • Rabbis whose well-intended but misguided notions will surely lead the next generations on the path to a new reform movement.

I worry about the future of Judaism. Not for its ultimate survival, since our tradition is stronger than any threat we face. But the war will come at a cost. The cost of souls lost to heresies new and old. Once upon a time, giants of Torah fought for truth against the ‘reformation’ of Torah. Today the Torah community is as weak as ever. Not in terms of over-all Torah study. In that context, there is more Torah study today than ever before. But with the rise of social media, and the new movements pandering to all sorts of foolishness, Torah Jewry is intellectually susceptible. We lack sophisticated courageous Torah leadership to stand up for unpopular truth.  Even the RCA has shown an inability to reign in radical thought. How long did it take for them to take a stand against the growing clamor of the new “orthodox” to ordain woman?

The great men are gone. The classic men of past generations who fought critical battles for the preservation of Torah are gone. Today’s religious rabbis shirk their duty to protect their flocks. Worse yet, many lead their flocks astray.

Factionalism render’s certain camps relatively insulated from some of these heretical voices. For the time, at least. One attraction of these new voices which will appeal to the disaffected of every community, is that some of these new prophets raise valid points about institutionalized rabbinical abuses which represent a chillul Hashem. These real issues act a springboard to hoist radical ideas. The fact that a stopped clock tells accurate time twice a day does nothing to change its general status as a broken instrument.

Yet the willingness to admit abuse speaks of a candor which people find impressive. The answers are usually less impressive, and are usually more grounded in feelings than Jewish law. But one cannot ignore the real issues, and the attraction of those who address them. One must find better solutions reflecting Torah positions. “Orthodoxy” doesn’t need to change, despite the popular insistence that it must. Corruption is by definition contrary to Torah. If it is corrupt, then it cannot be orthodox despite the identification as such by the corrupt. We need to aggressively return to the truths of Torah.

Where are the giants who fought for halachic integrity? These great men are gone. Today we have silent men. Fearful men. People afraid to confront those who seek to ordain female rabbis in the name of orthodoxy, and those who would rather create a new Halacha to free chained women, rather than call for Jewish men to break open the heads of recalcitrant men. Today, we have Rabbis who in the name of compassion, will create leniency where none can be found, and in turn, will create mamzerim. The greatest and most sensitive poskim of the past, were sometimes hamstrung by halachic reality. They understood that non-halachic compassion will destroy the Jewish people.

In the name of political correctness, some may opine that the Rambam’s words were for his age alone, and that the Nesher could never have imagined a Jewish state in a modern age. My understanding of the Rambam is that he foresaw much more than his modern day detractors ever could. Unlike others, he wrote about biblical wars precisely because he understood that the process of redemption will occur, and war will be necessary.

In the name of religious tolerance, many distort the Meiri in a way that he could never have imagined, as a source for all sorts of prohibited activities. The Meiri never could have fathomed a prominent religious America rabbi in America entering a national church for Obama’s initial swearing in ceremony. No one puts a gun or a sword to a Rabbi’s head in America, and yet he entered a forbidden place of his own volition.

Political correctness has infiltrated orthodoxy making orthodoxy increasingly susceptible to liberal sensibilities. Now is a time for intellectual zealousness for Hashem. Men of Torah need to face the new heresies and radical innovations, and intellectually combat the religious proponents of these foreign notions.

An orthodox Judaism which fails to heed today’s call, will suffer in the coming years. The impact will affect even the most insulated communities. One day, the orthodox will awaken from their slumber and cry out for action. What will they do? They will create conferences to deal with the new “crises”. But by then, the bleeding will be copious.

Donny Fuchs

A Peace We Can Win – A War We Will Surely Lose

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

Once again the holy city of Jerusalem, the “City of Peace,” is gripped in controversy.   Although somewhat quiet over the past few months, painful conflict is again raging regarding the mixed gender prayer section, recently opened at the Kotel HaMa’aravi.

First championed by Natan Sharansky and now embraced by the Netanyahu government, this is an attempt to restore serenity and end the distressing conflict caused by the longstanding monthly prayer services of the so-called “Women of the Wall” (WOW). (Whom I have written about before). Under this initiative, in addition to the existing Ezrat Anashim (Men’s section) and Ezrat Nashim (Women’s section) that  are under the jurisdiction of the Rabbanut,  there is now an “Ezrat Yisrael” at the southern end  of the Kotel with no mechitza; where all are welcome to worship however they see fit, not bound by traditional norms.  The Reform and Conservative (R&C) and the “Orthodox” WOW (led by paid Reform radical Anat Hoffman) claim this as a victory in their long-standing battle for legitimacy by the State of Israel, which up until now regarded only Orthodox as the arbiters of Religious Judaism.

Kotel_proposal

This new section has been functioning for some time.  Until now there was a doorway before the main entrance leading to a long flight of stairs to the designated area.  It is completely separate and far away from the main Kotel plaza; one cannot see or hear anything of the goings-on from one area to the other.

Kotel-Azarat-Yisrael-e1377454808854

Unfortunately not satisfied with this arrangement, non-Orthodox advocates have lobbied hard for an area that is more equivalent to the main Kotel area.  After much discussion, the government on January 31 decided to invest 9 million dollars in providing enhancements to this area including a new entrance way will providing secured access to all three areas, i.e. two separated gender and one mixed gender path, attempting to create an impression of equal dignity to all three areas. Furthermore, the Rav of the Kotel, the Chief Rabbinate, and the Minister of Religion will have no jurisdiction over the new area; rather it will be governed by a council including Reform/Conservative representatives.

Reactions to this decision have come, fast and furious, in two basic flavors.

The reaction of almost all Orthodox spokesmen and writers has been fierce.   Many statements were issued characterizing this as a terrible development, a desecration of our Holiest of all places,  an affront to the myriads of Orthodox Jews who pour out their hearts there 365/24/7, and even to G-d Himself who desires that prayers be offered in a separate gender setting.  Furthermore, it is unacceptable in that the Kotel has, and always has had, the status of an Orthodox Beit Knesset, in which mixed prayer is forbidden.   Worst of all, it is, for the first time, a formal recognition of the legitimacy of the various non-Orthodox  forms of Judaism, and as such a dangerous slippery slope of a precedent towards forced concessions on many future matters.  In fact, the very week that the decision was announced, the Reform movement hailed this decision as a historic breakthrough from the heretofore total rejection of Reform Judaism.  This dovetailed with a Supreme Court decision released the same week ruling that mikvaot (Ritual Baths) built with State funds must allow Reform Rabbis to perform conversions using their facilities, further stoking fears of the continued movement towards full recognition of Reform Judaism, including  validation of their marriages, divorces, and conversions.   These matters, of course, go to the heart of the ultimate divisive “Who Is A Jew” question; one that could potentially divide the Jewish people irreparably.

The reaction in many non-Orthodox circles has, predictably, been the polar opposite.  Trumpeting the values of Equality, Pluralism, Religious Tolerance and abhorrence of Religious Coercion, these developments have been met with joy and renewed vigor to build upon this towards an ever more official status of the Non-Orthodox movements in Israel.

Virtually every Orthodox person I met in Israel, from Chareidi to Religious Zionist, is supportive of efforts to go to war, if necessary, on this issue.  Headlines and posters everywhere scream about the awful decree that has befallen us; the strongest language is being used to vilify the Reform, etc.

While apparently this puts me outside of mainstream Orthodox thinking, it would seem to me that not only is the approach of “going to war” against the R&C on this issue is doomed to fail, it will only further strengthen them. 

But first, I would like to make several observations:

  1. Up until quite recently, Reform and Conservative Judaism has had little traction in Israeli society.  This was not for a lack of trying, nor for a lack of money or effort on their part.  Hundreds of millions of Dollars, if not more, have been spent, endless lobbying with the Israeli government has been attempted, and an enormous political and legal campaign has pursued in this effort.  But at the end of the day, until quite recently, they have just not caught on with mainstream Israelis, as they did (in the past) in the Diaspora.

Chareidi spokesmen typically claim that the main reasons that R&C have been unsuccessful are (a) that the Orthodox have succeeded in stymieing their efforts through political pressure in various forms (mainly coalition agreements and demonstrations), and (b) that it is (or should be) self-evident to most Israelis that R&C are illegitimate, and thus even secular Israelis deep down want that the “Shul that they don’t go to” should be Orthodox.

Truth be told, however, these were far from the main reasons that R&C have been relatively unsuccessful in Israel. In my opinion, the main reason that that they have not been able to replicate in Israel what they have had (till now) in America is a simple one: they were seen by most Israelis as both unnecessary and irrelevant. Permit me to explain.

Over the years, R&C Rabbis, Academics and thinkers have provided a mountain of  scholarship t purportedly justifying their deviance from traditional norms.  They claim that it is this progressive and more enlightened interpretation of Judaism that led so many to leave Orthodoxy behind in years past, and that they are, in fact the authentic version of Judaism for the modern world.

The falsehood in this position is immediately apparent when speaking to and befriending non-Orthodox Jews.  It is decidedly not ideology or theology that moves 95% ─ or more ─ of R&C adherents join those congregations.  Rather, the reason they join is that R&C provide what they are looking for is a social and cultural way to officially be recognized as part of the Jewish community;  G-d, Torah, and Spirituality are not what they are seeking.

“Belonging” to a Congregation bestows official allegiance with the Jewish people and one’s roots.
For many Jews who are steeped in a mostly secular, non-Jewish environment, a need exists to officially identify Jewishly, motivated by factors such as nostalgia, tribal identity, history, social interaction and the desire to stand together in response to Anti-Semitism.  Certainly there are some who are seriously interested in Jewish worship and observance; but they are a small minority.  In particular, I have met very spiritual and sincere women, and their families, who desire a more active participation in the Services than Halacha provides for, and but for that issue would probably identify as Orthodox.  That notwithstanding, most R&C attend for the reasons noted above, and attend only on special occasions, such as a Bar/Bat Mitzvah and other life-cycle events.   It is reassuring to be told by one’s Rabbi that there is no reason to hang on to the superstitions and fundamentalism of one’s observant ancestors and whatever positive one does is to be celebrated, with no guilt needed for lack of observance of those mitzvot that are inconvenient.

Indeed, little Halachic observance, if anything, is demanded to be considered a fully committed R&C Jew; the choices are wide open. For those who want to select any observance they choose, or none at all, Reform’s doctrine of personal autonomy is perfect.  For those who like a somewhat more traditional format, with more Hebrew and familiar tunes, Conservative feels more comfortable.  (It has been often said that the theology most Conservative Jews are seeking, all their denials notwithstanding, is “Not Orthodox, but not so Reform”)  In short, R&C Judaism is primarily a way of identifying Jewishly without the burden of Halachic observance.

It is crucial to understand this in order to comprehend the very plain reason that R&C has never been much of an attraction for Israelis.  An Israeli does not need any external structure in order to feel Jewishly connected.  He/she lives in our ancient homeland, speaks Hebrew, the Jewish holidays are their legal holidays, they serve in the Jewish army defending the Jewish State, and are surrounded by Jewish culture (in some form) everywhere they go . . .  in short, their whole environment is Jewish.   Nothing further is needed for Jewish self-identification.

Those who do become interested in sincerely pursuing G-d, Torah, spirituality and ultimate meaning in life are drawn to the “real thing”; not a paltry version manufactured primarily for those basically uninterested in religion and spirituality.  For those occasions that secular Jews felt the need to interact with Tradition, Orthodoxy was fine, even quaint and nostalgic, as long as it was presented in a pleasant atmosphere.  R&C with its mixed pews, driving on Shabbat, diluted services and female Rabbis and Cantors, seemed strange and inauthentic; decidedly uninteresting and unnecessary for the average Israeli.

           2) Over the past two decades these attitudes have begun to change, due to many factors.   Here are three that I consider very important:

 a) Frustration with the Chief Rabbinate (CR). As a vestige of Turkish Law, all personal status matters in Israel are handled by the Religious Authority of one’s ethnic group.  For Christians it is the Church, for Moslems the Waqf, and for Jews it is the CR.  Thus even completely secular Israelis must go to the CR to effectuate a marriage or divorce.  This law has been a great blessing for ensuring, until now, that fundamental matters of personal status — whether or not a person is Halachically Jewish, properly married or divorced  — were in the hands of a responsible Halachic authority.

Unfortunately, all has not been well at the CR.  Too many stories of corruption and callous treatment by functionaries in their offices have emerged.  For secular Israelis who resent having to come to the Rabbinate in the first place, terribly negative feelings are created when they perceive themselves as having been mistreated.   A new, and awful, low occurred when the previous Chief Rabbi was indicted for corruption, and resigned in disgrace.
Among the Orthodox respect for the CR reached an all-time low as well.  Chareidim have never accepted the authority of the CR; many Religious Zionists are disgusted as well.   Furthermore, advocates of so-called “Open Orthodoxy”, such as Rabbi Avi Weiss, have done their utmost to repeatedly attack and disparage the CR in pursuit of their own unfortunate agenda, doing much harm to the respect, dignity, and authority that the CR needs to function effectively.
Bottom Line – A void has been created in which new alternatives that might have never gotten a hearing in the court of public opinion before, are now gaining strength.

b) The unhelpful reactions by the Chareidi leadership to the excesses of their extremists. For many years now, the WOW have insisted on poking their fingers in the craw of the overwhelmingly Orthodox worshippers at the Kotel.  Wearing Tallis and Tefillin, trying to read from a Seder Torah, singing loudly, occasionally accompanied by instruments, they engaged in behaviors that they knew would enrage the Traditional worshippers, and elicit strong reactions.

In my perfect world, those reactions would have consisted of well thought out responses that would have sought to solve the problem, while maximizing damage control. Responses that would have made every effort possible to warn young hot-heads to not engage directly with the WOW, and to let the police do their job.  It would have been best to encourage people to ignore them, drown out their demonstrations with louder positive davening and music in response to them, as in fact done by the brave Women for the Wall.  Instead, there were ugly fights, reports of chairs and dirty diapers with feces and other miserable objects being hurled at WOW.   All this succeeded in doing was inflaming the WOW and R&C activists, as well as additional proof that the Orthodox are unruly violent bigots in the eye of the secular public.

A good example, one of many, of a an unfortunate response happened this past week, when the Chareidi press was full of accusatory messages  and even calls for violent protests about the “terrible provocation” that occurred when R&C held a protest service in the upper Kotel plaza, going so far as to accuse PM Netanyahu as lacking a Jewish heart because he allowed this to happen due to being bribed by R&C money.  What they gloss over is that this protest was in response to the service that was led by Jerusalem Chief Rabbi Amar last week at the Southern Kotel area, which had been designated as an egalitarian prayer area, decrying “these evil people” who are defiling the holiness of the Kotel, attempting to alter the uneasy new status quo.

As should be fairly obvious, there was no way that R&C, or the government, would allow this to pass without a response.  Perhaps I am wrong, but I cannot imagine that there was anyone whose mind was changed positively by that demonstration; all that it accomplished was an escalation of the political, legal and interpersonal fight between the sides who will be even less likely to find a peaceful solution to this intractable problem.
The truth is that, away from the public spotlight, responsible Chareidi leaders had agreed to the Sharansky proposal, knowing that it was a good, respectful, and sensible way to ease the tensions brought about by WOW and those who fought them, and at a minimum, the lesser of two evils.   But as usual, the extremists will not let sanity prevail, and we have what we have.

c) The Rise of Spiritual seekers among the Secular — space does not permit a full development of this aspect, but it is important to note that a great change has been quietly happening in Israel for a long time now.  That change is that in many ways, the current generation of secular Israelis, for the most part, are not as rabidly anti-religious as their forebears a generation or two ago. There is more and more tolerance and respect, and even interest, in Torah and spirituality, and far less kneejerk opposition, even amongst those who formerly were allergic to any talk of religion.  Tens of Kibbutzim and Moshavim associated with Hashomer Hatzair, who used to hold Tisha B’Av parties and feature pork on their menus now have functioning Batei Knesset and people coming to learn Torah, and the “Lehach’is” excesses of are a thing of the past.  Ayelet HaShachar, a wonderful organization that I am involved with, along with others, have introduced Torah and yiddishkeit in scores of places around the country formerly devoid of any religious observance.

This good news, however, comes with a proviso.  People seeking connection to Torah provided that it comes without religious coercion, condescension, “holier-than-thou” criticism, and certainly ugly and offensive accusations and threats.  To the extent that Orthodoxy is seen as angry, threatening, restricting, and mocking, a golden opportunity is handed to R&C to present themselves as an enlightened, empowering, celebratory and welcoming alternative.  Many of those Israelis who have been attracted to R&C might easily have joined with the Orthodox, if only they had perceived Orthodoxy as a having a welcoming smile rather than angry condescension.  “Going to War” at the Kotel will IMHO lead to far more sympathy for R&C than for the Orthodox, and drive these precious people straight into their hands, rachmana litzlan.

It hurts me that the Orthodox are fighting a battle that they cannot win and surely will succeed only in snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
What then is the solution?   The Orthodox world will have to come to terms with the fact that, like it or not, the State of Israel is a pluralistic society, in which Jews (and non-Jews) who hold widely divergent beliefs and levels of traditional observance have to co-exist, for better or worse.   Although many on all sides would like to have us believe that THEY are the only ones who have a legitimate right to be in the land for reasons that need not be discussed here, the truth is that, Baruch Hashem, All Jews are at home in the land.  The words of Rav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld zt”l, a fierce defender of the Chareidim, when asked in 1920 by the British High Commissioner whether the Yerushalmi community wanted all these secular Jews to come and live in and inevitably change the religious nature of the Yishuv (attempting to justify the British policy of severely limiting Jewish immigration), ought to come to mind.  He unhesitatingly said, “The Land of Israel is our mother: a mother has room for all of her children”.   There must be respect from the Orthodox community that other Israelis have no less of a right to the land than they do, much as they deplore their attitude towards religion.

Furthermore, not everyone sees the Kotel as an Orthodox Beit Knesset.  Of course, that has been its primary function for a long time, and many poskim have stated that it has this status.  But it is not its only function.  It is a national shrine, a vestige of our History, a place to which Jews for millennia have directed their hopes and dreams, and a place where all Jews ought to feel welcome to pour out their hearts to G-d.   The Sharansky compromise, approved by the government, should have been seen as a great win for the Orthodox.  Under this plan, the Kotel as it has existed since 1967, is to be left alone.  Those who wish R&C or egalitarian, or other forms of worship, agreed to go to a completely different area, where they bother no one who does not wish to be disturbed, and can do what they choose subject to a pluralistic oversight commission.  One need only search superficially to see how disappointed the R&C and WOW were by this compromise, as they had been arguing for their right to take over at least part of the main Kotel area.  It hurts me that the Orthodox are fighting a battle that they cannot win and surely will succeed only in snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.  If the legal battle continues, there is no question that the same playbook by which progressives have won the battle for recognition of civil liberties, gay marriages, and so much else will be successfully used here, and there is no legal recourse that will withstand this onslaught.

If the Orthodox really want to win the “war” with R&C, it will not be done with violence, power struggles, and public insults.   It will be done by focusing on Ahavat Yisrael and making sure that Orthodox Jewry is seen as open, inviting and encouraging for Jews of all levels of faith and observance.  

It will be by presenting authentic Torah with as much love, ingenuity, and attractiveness as possible.  Any visitor to the Kotel will see what is already evident now; the Orthodox main plaza has hundreds of people davening 365/24/7, while the Southern wall is mostly empty most of the time, due to lack of interest on the part of R&C Jews in actually praying there, rather than making headlines.

It is time that we learn from mistakes in the past, and focus on how we can bring Jews together with messages of respect, acceptance and love, and prove that the Ways of the Torah are those of Pleasantness and Peace.

Rabbi Lenny Oppenheimer

Tunnel Digging Part of New War on Terror Law Passed by Knesset

Thursday, June 16th, 2016

The Knesset on Wednesday night, following a lengthy debate, passed in a second and third and final vote the War on Terror Law 5776-2016,by a 57 to 16 majority. The new law includes stricter punishment for terrorists and expands the state’s legal means of fighting them, including, for the first time, making digging a tunnel for terrorist purposes a criminal act.

The new law eliminates the emergency regulations which have been used since the establishment of the state. One of the new law’s provisions says that the punishment of a terrorist sentenced to life in prison may not be reconsidered during the first 15 years. It also punishes with 5 years’ imprisonment the direct incitement or encouragement for acts of terrorism. The new law does not require proof of any actual act of terrorism that resulted from the incitement.

The new law authorizes the defense minister to impose administrative forfeiture of the property of individuals suspected of security violations. It also empowers government to prevent an attorney representing two clients involved in the same investigation from meeting his clients. The law also imposes seven years’ imprisonment on a person threatening to carry out a violation that would be punishable by a life sentence.

The new law also revises the court procedures in terrorism cases, including interviewing a witness outside court, pre-trial testimony, statute of limitation on terrorist acts, detention of a security suspect, diversions from the rules of evidence, and concealed evidence.

Altogether, the new law cancels out two laws, two orders, and dozens of emergency Defense Regulations. It also modifies a long list of sub-items in as many as 14 existing laws.

Constitution Committee chairman MK Nissan Slomiansky (Habayit Hayehudi) who presented the bill for its final vote said that the conformation of the new law nullifies “60 laws and rules dating back to King George VI, so this is a kind of Day of Independence.” He praised the new law for emanating directly from Israel’s real, everyday experiences, “the real life in the State of Israel.”

MK Zahava Gal-On (Meretz) said that the only way to fight terrorism effectively is to eliminate the motivation for terrorism. She voted against the bill , saying, “I think it won’t do one thing: it won’t really provide tools for the war on terror, instead it will place us yet again on the list of countries that take advantage of a democracy’s ability to carry out anti-democratic legislation.”

The Arab MKs objected to the new law, saying it was anti-Arab rather than anti-terrorism. But MK Yoel Hasson (Zionist Camp) said in response that despite the fact that the law is complex, it is an Israeli law and not an anti-Arab law, “and it’s a law intended to protect all the citizens of Israel, since terror, if I may remind you, my friends, does not tell the difference between those sitting by this table or the other.”

JNi.Media

Knesset Committee Wants Less War on Cannabis, More War on Alcohol

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

MK Tamar Zandberg (Meretz), Chair of the Knesstet Committee to Combat Drug and Alcohol Abuse, was highly critical this week of the new campaign of the Israel Anti-Drug Authority. She suggested the campaign was “based on false information, outdated, archaic, irrelevant, and most important — disappointing.” She added: “After all this time that we’ve been sitting here, exposed to the real danger of youth addiction, I for one am disappointed.”

It should be noted that MK Zandberg is a known supporter of the legalization of cannabis, and in 2013 submitted a bill decriminalizing personal use of Marijuana. She has been a supporter of the fight of medical cannabis patients against the Health Ministry, and was a guest speaker at a 2013 rally for legalization at Rabin Square. She said in a television interview that she smokes cannabis and views this as “normative behavior.”

Acting Director General of the Authority, Eitan Gorni, told the committee that “we think cannabis is dangerous. After a long time during which we haven’t dealt with cannabis, and in light of the great outcry and the attempt to say that cannabis is not dangerous it was decided to launch a broad advertising campaign. In light of the numerous attempts on the part of the side that supports Marijuana to deliver messages, we believe there should be counter messages, which is why we launched the campaign.”

One 15-second radio ad in the new campaign features a mother who says her daughter was destroyed by using Marijuana, followed by an anchor saying there’s no such thing as light drugs.

Meanwhile, the committee was informed that the Israel Anti-Drug Authority CEO, Yair Geller, has resigned last May, about a year and a half after being suspended for his role in the bribery scandal involving Yisrael Beiteinu, and eight months after police recommended his indictment for bribery, fraud, and breach of trust. During his 17 months of suspension, Geller grossed close to $208,000 in salary and bonuses, according to media reports.

Eitan Eckstein, director of a rehab center, also warned the committee against taking cannabis use lightly. “Go to the beaches and see for yourselves what joints are doing to people. Most of the girls started with grass and it led them to prostitution. On the eve of summer vacation it’s a time to invest a lot in telling parents to set limits, and that if they suspect something untoward they should seek advice.”

Chair Zandberg suggested that “alcohol is much more dangerous, which is why I’m disappointed that you invest in a campaign against a future [cannabis] legislation [instead of fighting youth alcohol use].”

MK Merav Ben Ari (Kulanu) told the committee, “When I was working with youths I had a much tougher time with alcohol than with cannabis.” Turning to the You have to the Israel Anti-Drug Authority officials, she added, “You must understand that you can’t keep devoting your budgets to cannabis. I get the feeling that all you’re campaigning against is cannabis.”

David Israel

NY Times Blows Winds of Putsch for Israel & How President Truman Got Rid of an Insubordinate War Hero General

Wednesday, June 8th, 2016

The New York Times has long been the mouthpiece of the US foreign policy Establishment. That the NYT is so hostile to Israel up to the point of crude lies demonstrates the deep rancor towards Israel of that Establishment.

We all know that the US and the other major WW2 allies were of little help to the victimized Jews during the Shoah, that is, during WW2. Whereas US warplanes bombed military targets near Auschwitz (Oswiecim) by 1944 –but not the gas chambers at Auschwitz nor the railroad tracks leading there– the United Kingdom prevented Jews from finding refuge in the internationally designated Jewish National Home, the Land of Israel.

During the 1967 Six Day War, the intelligence ship, USS Liberty, spied electronically on Israeli military moves and sent the information to Jordan and Egypt. A US army signal corps truck-mounted electronic intelligence station did the same on a smaller scale from the Jordanian-controlled “West Bank.” The truck had to pull back across the Jordan River with Jordan’s Arab Legion when Israel took the “West Bank.”

Now, the Establishment mouthpiece, the NYT, fans the flames of putsch, of a possible coup d’etat in Israel, publishing an article praising insubordinate Israeli senior army and intelligence officers for being “pro-peace” and “pro-human rights.” The author, Ronen Bergman, has excellent sources in Israeli intel, according to his own writings, and the NYT describes him as “a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine.” He is not a free-lancer but “a contributing writer.” That is a more permanent arrangement. Here are some putschist samples:

IN most countries, the political class supervises the defense establishment and restrains its leaders from violating human rights or pursuing dangerous, aggressive policies. In Israel, the opposite is happening. Here, politicians blatantly trample the state’s values and laws and seek belligerent solutions, while the chiefs of the Israel Defense Forces and the heads of the intelligence agencies try to calm and restrain them. [NYT 21 May 2016]

Now right here we have what would be seen in the USA as justification for a putsch against the democratically elected government of PM Netanyahu. The politicians violate “human rights.” See that buzz term, human rights? Now to another gem:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s offer last week of the post of defense minister to Avigdor Lieberman, a pugnacious ultranationalist politician, is the latest act in the war between Mr. Netanyahu and the military and intelligence leaders, a conflict that has no end in sight but could further erode the rule of law and human rights, or lead to a dangerous, superfluous military campaign.

Lieberman is a pugnacious ultra-nationalist. Obama is not a pugnacious ultra-nationalist. He only wants to give The Bomb to a pugnacious religiously fanatic regime in Iran that believes that it has the right to The Bomb, despite Iran being a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty. And we are warned of the further erosion of “the rule of law and human rights” as well as being threatened with “superfluous war.” Obama incidentally seems to be moving closer to sending ground troops to Syria on the pretext of fighting ISIL which Obama has tried hard not to interfere with over the past two years. Of course, for Bergman, the generals and intelligence honchos who have made mistake after mistake, especially starting with Oslo, are the good guys, whereas PM Netanyahu and his government are the bad guys.

An I.D.F. general told me that the top brass saw the telephone call [by Netanyahu to the father of a soldier who had violated army rules and was being investigated and charged, which treatment Netanyahu did not cancel] as a gross defiance of the military’s authority. The deputy chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Yair Golan, chose one of the most sensitive dates on the Israeli calendar, Holocaust Memorial Eve, to react: He suggested that Israel today in some ways resembles Germany in the 1930s.

So the army has legitimate authority which the prime minister lacks, indeed its authority is superior to that of the elected leaders. Apparently the military is not supposed to be subordinate to the civilian government. And Israeli supposedly resembles Nazi Germany in some ways. I would say that Israel is more in the position of France in the 1930s pre-Vichyite period when “peace movements” in France and Britain were calling on their governments to make peace with Hitler, giving him what he wanted which also conformed to the principle of “self-determination”, some said, especially Communists.

Caroline Glick is one of the few to have seen this coming:

Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon is openly supporting the growing insubordination of IDF generals. In a speech last night, he urged senior officers to publicly air their opposition to government policies. In so doing, he brought Israeli democracy into an unprecedented crisis.. . .  a regime where civilians are free to act in accordance with their conscience even when doing so places them in opposition to the government is a democracy.
A regime where military commanders are free to act in accordance with their conscience even when doing so places them in opposition of the government is a military dictatorship. [Caroline’s facebook page, 16 May 2016]

Also see her as follows:

For the Obama administration, Israel’s security brass is an alternative government. . . . , for the [US] administration, “Israeli democracy” means the Left is in charge [link here]

In other words, the Obama administration might not be averse to a military coup d’etat taking place in Israel, provided that the ensuing military government will follow Obama’s demands on Israel for concessions to the Nazi-like “Palestinian Authority.” Mahmoud Abbas is obviously, in the NY Times lexicon, not a pugnacious nationalist.
Defense Minister Yaalon’s public statements over the past year have too often been dishonest, if hesitant, attempts to smear Jewish inhabitants of Judea-Samaria and the Jewish public in general for crimes against Arabs, for violations of human rights, and so on. This appears to be a coordinated effort, what with the deputy chief of staff Yair Golan comparing Israel with Germany in the 1930s and other lies, totally overlooking the often Nazi nature of the content of Palestine Authority TV and radio programming, mosque preaching, newspaper articles, and so on. DM Yaalon’s first dishonest and improper transgression was to accuse Jews of firebombing last summer an Arab home in the village of Duma near the Shiloh and `Eli settlements in which three Dawabsha family members died. Certainly, this was a terrible act but it is hardly certain who did it and the evidence for Jewish participation is weak, just some Hebrew grafitti. But Arabs too can write Hebrew and even do Hebrew grafitti. The more likely explanation of the crime is that it was part of a family feud or clan vendetta, a common enough event in Arab society. Indeed, houses were attacked with firebombs in that village both before and after the  one that killed three persons.
Another one of Yaalon’s offenses was to intervene in the case of a soldier who killed an already disabled terrorist in Hebron. This was a violation of army rules for opening fire. However, it should be handled by the military justice system. It would have been one thing for Yaalon to say that such events are regrettable and against orders and the case must be investigated and prosecuted. However, it was wrong of Yaalon to accuse the soldier of murder. There is such a thing as due process, even in the army. 

Deputy Chief of General Staff Maj.-Gen. Yair Golan compared Israeli society  to the Nazis on Holocaust Remembrance Day. This was a direct assault on the government’s policy of fighting, rather than joining, Israel-bashers who deny the right of the Jewish state to exist. And his comrades in the General Staff and in the Left praised him for his appalling behavior. [Caroline Glick, here]

Then there is the late Maj.-Gen. Meir Dagan, the retired director of the Mossad. Last Thursday Channel 2’s investigative news program Uvda broadcast an interview with Dagan, conducted shortly before his death. Dagan told the host Ilana Dayan that in 2010, he committed espionage. Dagan revealed that in 2010, he went behind Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s back and informed then-CIA director Leon Panetta that Netanyahu

and then-defense minister Ehud Barak were about to order the security services to attack Iran’s nuclear installations. [Caroline Glick, here]

The US of course does not tolerate insubordination by high ranking officers. We will take up the case of war hero General Douglas MacArthur below. Now back to the NYT’s taste for a putsch in Israel, Ronen Bergman fills out the picture:

In some conversations I’ve had recently with high-ranking officers about Mr. Lieberman’s appointment as defense minister, the possibility of a military coup has been raised — but only with a smile. It remains unlikely.

So Bergman tells the NYT and its readers that the subject of a possible coup has been raised. But it is “unlikely.” It’s cute that the ever so democratic NYT is so interested in hearing about a possible coup in Israel that they publish a piece that transparently and implicitly justifies just that, if not going so far as to advocate a coup. But why is the NYT  pushing a putsch in Israel? The motive is obvious. They want Israel to bend to Washington’s dictates, which under Obama are more blatantly anti-Jewish than under previous presidents. That means Israel surrendering territory to fanatically hate ridden pan-Arabist and Islamist Arabs, obsessed with hatred for the Jews who have stepped out of the humiliated place of the dhimmi as decreed by Islamic law.

The NY Times continues with its buttering up of the army to the detriment of the elected civilian government. A piece by Isabel Kershner [NYT, 29 May 2016] makes ex-Defense Minister Ya`alon look good, democratic, whereas Netanyahu and Lieberman look bigoted and narrow, etc: “the generals . . . have spoken out against manifestations of extremism in the ranks and in broader society,” “shrill segment of the public,” “an aggressive segment of the public.”  The people who are fed up with murder and mass murder efforts are “aggressive,” “shrill,” “extremist,” etc. On the other hand, “Other Israelis want the military to remain a moderating force and a bulwark against extremism.” Are these “Other Israelis” the supposedly good folk who would welcome a military coup against “extremism”?

General Yair Golan, deputy chief of staff, sanctimoniously declaimed on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day:

“if there is one thing that is scary in remembering the Holocaust, it is noticing horrific processes which developed in Europe – particularly in Germany – 70, 80, and 90 years ago, and finding remnants of that here among us in the year 2016.” [here]

This is a Judeophobic accusation. An implicit assertion that the Israeli people are Nazi-like. That is another justification for a coup. After all, he is saying that the people are immoral. Their elected government is perforce immoral. No comment from Golan about the profound Nazi-like hatred of Jews and Israel fostered by the Palestinian Authority, by Hamas, by the press in various Arab countries, and in Western lands where the media habitually misrepresent what happens in Israel as well athe relevant history of Arab-Jewish relations.
The prime minister perceived the threat in Golan’s remarks: “Mr. Netanyahu rebuked General Golan, criticizing his remarks as outrageous, and said, “The I.D.F. is the people’s army and must remain out of political debates.”” [here]
On the other hand:

“While the controversial comments drew fire from many within the nationalist camp, Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon defended Golan, arguing that criticism aimed at him was part of a larger “campaign to harm the IDF and its officers politically.”“The responsibilities of an army officer, especially a senior commander, are not limited to leading soldiers out to war, but also include charting out a path and ethical standards with the help of [his] moral compass,” said Yaalon.” [here]

Yaalon is speaking out of what he claims is higher morality. But since Golan’s comparison to Germany in the 1930s was false and ignorant at best, Ya`alon’s defense was also out of place. And the implicit support in his words for insubordination and possibly a putsch was obviously wrong.
Netanyahu properly rebuked Ya`alon:

Netanyahu reportedly called Yaalon, sharply criticizing him for defending Golan’s comments [here]

Looking back to 20th century history, we can see that the USA, both before and after WW2, rather often supported generals who overthrew legitimate governments abroad. In some cases this was justified as opposition to corrupt and tyrannical regimes, as in Egypt in 1952 and Iran/Persia in 1979. The problem is that corrupt and tyrannical regimes have often enough been replaced by regimes that were even worse by every measure. As in Egypt and Iran (Persia). Ask yourself if the present Islamic fanatic Khomeini regime of the ayatollahs in Iran now is any better than the Shah’s regime that it replaced, with the aid of the Carter Administration. Or is it even worse?

In any event, the powers that be in the United States do not like insubordinate generals who dispute the civilian leadership openly.

Douglas MacArthur was a hero in both world wars, I & II. He was the commander of American forces in the Korean War, starting in 1950. His brilliant Inchon landing behind North Korean Communist troops opened the way for American and allied forces to reach the Yalu River between North Korea and China. After China entered the war in late 1950, MacArthur

“wished to bomb Chinese bases in Manchuria and was prepared to risk a full-scale war with communist China. President Truman sought to hold him in check but MacArthur made public his advocacy of carrying the war into China. This defiance of official government policy led the President peremptorily to relieve him of his commands on 11 April 1952.” [Alan Palmer, The Penguin Dictionary of Twentieth Century History (New York: Penguin 1979), p242]

“When President Truman would not agree to his plan for an attack upon  Communist China, MacArthur made his opinions public and Truman responded by relieving the General of his command. . . . his action represented a challenge to civilian authority which the President did not hesitate to meet.” [Walter Laqueur et al., A Dictionary of Politics (rev ed; New York: The Free Press 1974), p307]

So we see that MacArthur openly defied the president of the time and his policy. He was insubordinate and was dismissed. The US government does not tolerate defiance of its policy by its own generals. But somehow such insubordination is OK when practiced against other governments and may even be encouraged by US government mouthpieces like the New York Times.

Eliyahu mTsiyon

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/guest-blog/ny-times-blows-winds-of-putsch-for-israel-how-president-truman-got-rid-of-an-insubordinate-war-hero-general/2016/06/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: