Stephen Plaut published the following post in Israel. As I was reading his list of what we have learned, and not learned, it occurred to me that this list would make just as much sense by changing the words Israeli and Israel to American and America, and the words anti-semitic to anti-American. See for your self:
I am writing this in between ducking in and out of the bomb shelter as Haifa is bathed by the Katyusha rockets and other missiles that Ehud Barak has now fired at the city. Why Ehud Barak? Because as Israeli Prime Minister in 2000, HE ordered the cowardly unilateral withdrawal of Israeli troops from the security zone in southern Lebanon, and so HE positioned the thousands of Hezbollah rockets on Israel’s northern border.
It occurred to me that now would be as good a time as any to sum up everything that has been learned about the Middle East conflict, that is, everything that the Israeli government and chattering classes refused to learn for the past two decades.
1. Nice fences do not stop missiles, rockets, and mortars.
2. Complete removal of Israeli forces and Jewish settlers from an area does not achieve anything, and merely signals Israeli weakness, inviting escalated terror and aggression from the Arabs.
3. The Hezbollah and the Hamas cannot be defeated with air strikes. There is no effective alternative to ground invasion and ongoing control of the ground.
4. Unless the Israeli military controls the ground on the OTHER side of fences, those fences achieve nothing.
5. Goodwill gestures by Israel increase terror.
6. Goodwill gestures by Israel never produce moderation of Arab goals and demands, but rather produce the opposite.
7. Terror is not caused by settlements, but rather by the *removal* of settlements.
8. Terror is not caused by Israeli military occupation, but rather by the *removal *of Israeli military occupation.
9. It is impossible for there to be two sovereign entities between the Jordon River and the Mediterranean.
10. No matter how many concessions Israel makes, the world will always justify Arab terrorism, because there is always one more capitulation that Israel failed to make (e.g., giving up the “Shebaa Farm” on the Golan Heights)
11. No matter how nice Israel is to Israeli Arabs, no matter how many affirmative action programs it implements, it will always be accused of being an “apartheid regime”.
12. The Israeli Far Left is an openly anti-Semitic movement that seeks Israel’s destruction and automatically endorses the enemies of Israel in all things.
13. The Israeli Labor Party and its Kadima cousin may be more effective at fighting terror, once they decide to do so, than the Likud. The reason is that if the Likud were fighting terror, the Israeli Left would take to the streets in mass demonstrations against Israeli imperialism and aggression, and the leftist Israeli media would declare that 400,000 protesters turned out.
14. The *real* enemy of Israel is not Arab fascism but Jewish leftism.
15. The world likes to see Jewish civilians murdered by terrorists and will applaud and justify all such murders as comeuppance for the Jews for being so insensitive.
16. The Israeli Left will oppose every conceivable act of Israeli self-defense, other than total capitulation.
17. Israeli niceness and flexibility fan anti-Semitism.
18. Israel-bashing is nothing more than anti-Semitism and Israel-bashers are increasingly open about their delight at seeing Jewish civilians murdered.
19. Israeli pursuit of the “peace process” has triggered a world-wide storm of anti-Semitism.
20. Terrorists cannot be appeased.
21. Arab terrorists do not morph into statesmen.
22. There are no Palestinian moderates.
23. Israel bashers do not care about dead Arab civilians, other than as a useful bludgeon with which to delegitimize Israel.
24. The Western Left would celebrate if Israeli Jews were shipped off to concentration camps in cattle cars, and would demand improved rail service.
25. The vast majority of Israeli Arabs want to see Israel destroyed and the Jews thrown into the sea.
26. There are hundreds of Jewish professors in Israel who serve as an academic Fifth Column that will do anything to collaborate with the enemies of their country.
27. The Arabs will not accept an independent Israel in ANY set of borders, no matter how small. Hence one achieves nothing by reducing Israel’s territory, other than to signal weakness and destructibility.
28. Much of the Western media believes that there are no problems on earth that could not be greatly improved by destroying Israel.
29. Most of the governments of Europe do not believe Jews should be treated with respect, and certainly do not think Jews should ever be allowed to defend themselves.
30. The only country on earth that is expected to respond to mass murder of its civilians through turning of the other cheek is Israel. The only country on earth that spent many years trying to defeat aggression and terrorism by turning the other cheek is Israel.
31. No matter how Israel responds to aggression and terrorism, it will always be a “disproportionate” response.
32. Those who claim that anti-Zionism is different and distinct from anti-Semitism are anti-Semites.
33. The only people on earth whom the Left believes should be denied the right to self-determination and self-defense are the Jews.
34. “Palestinians” are not a people and never were. They are simply Arabs who happened to migrate into historic Western Palestine. They have no right whatsoever to statehood.
35. The Golan Heights are not “Syrian” and never were.
36. Noam Chomsky is an anti-Semite and Norman Finkelstein is a neo-nazi. People who endorse them are anti-Semites, even if they happen to be Israeli Jews.
37. Israeli politicians are among the stupidest on earth.
38. Israeli leftists never learn from the failures of their policies and “ideas”. Every failure is simply because their policies were not applied thoroughly *enough.*
39. The moral and legal responsibility for every single Arab civilian killed or injured in the Middle East conflict rests squarely upon the shoulders of the Arab fascists and terrorists.
40. There is no moral or legal reason for Israel to refrain from attacking terrorists and murderers when they hide among civilians.
41. “Anarchists” and others who protest against Israel’s security wall want the wall removed because they want terrorists to murder Jewish civilians.
42. Palestinians are the Sudeten Germans of the Middle East.
43. Israel has no obligation to share its water resources with the “Palestinians” or anyone else.
44. There are no non-military solutions to the problem of terrorism.
45. One can only make peace with one’s enemies. One also only makes war with one’s enemies.
46. There are no significant differences between the agenda of the PLO and the agenda of the Hamas and Hezbollah.
47. The Middle East conflict is not a marital spat. Going through the pretense of holding hands and holding talks does not calm tensions and achieves nothing.
48. One cannot make peace by pretending that war does not exist. 49. One cannot buy off anti-Semites and Islamofascists with trade
concessions and subsidies.
50. The only way to stop terrorism is to kill terrorists.
Steven Plaut is an American-trained economist, a professor of business administration at Haifa University and author of “The Scout.” He frequently comments – both seriously and satirically – on Israeli politics and the left wing academic community. His website address is http://www.stevenplaut.blogspot.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org