Craig Frank
Loud and Clear

A Hardening of Attitude

Former US President Obama. (via X/formerly Twitter)

There is a widely held belief that Israeli military activity could, as former president Obama recently stated, “harden Palestinian attitudes for generations”. One has to wonder why he hadn’t thought to make a similar comment regarding Palestinian violence against Israelis.

Why didn’t former president Obama – or anyone else for that matter – think to say after October 7th, “this barbaric random rape, slaughter and mutilation of Jews may harden the attitudes of Israelis for generations?”

Obama – who thinks Israel was created as a result of the Holocaust – holds the world view that measured Palestinian violence against Israel should be viewed as resistance, and to some extent is to be expected. Israelis are supposed to understand and accept the violence as the cost for its existence.

The Jews have been the target of Arab Palestinian violence for more than 100 years – predating the founding of the State. HaShomer was founded in 1909 in response to Arab attacks in the Galil. In 1920 the Hagana was formed after the Nebi Musa (Jerusalem) riots and defended with force the Palestinian Jewish community during the Jaffa riots of 1921, Palestine-wide riots of 1929, the Jaffa riots of 1936, the 1936-1939 Arab revolt, among others.

After 1948 Israel punished fedayeen incursions threefold – by acting with force against the country from which the attack originated, the town from which the attack emanated, and the organization that perpetrated the attack. In 1956, one key factoring leading to Israel’s participation alongside Britain and France was the relentless attacks coming from Egyptian controlled Gaza. While the wars in 1967 and 1973 were not ignited by Palestinian terror, the 1982 war was in direct response to Palestinian terror coming from Southern Lebanon. The same is true for Hezbollah terror sparking the 2006 Lebanon War.

Since the 1993 Oslo Accords over 2,800 Israelis have been murdered in Palestinian terror attacks – not including the 1,200 killed on October 7th.

And yet through all these years no one made any statements expressing worry that the violence was hardening Israeli attitudes.

Yet after the carnage of October 7th, the Jews of Israel – and around the world – are indeed experiencing a hardening of attitude. Jews are tired of the bigotry the attacks have exposed, the double standards, the false equivalencies, the lies, the blood libels, and the undisguised hatred. We are outraged at the indecency of the response to our women being raped and our children be slaughtered. We are done explaining our right to exist – as if someone has the right to question it. We’ve hardened.

Obama should consider the consequence of a hardened Israeli attitude and use his voice to raise concern that the Palestinian commitment to armed resistance, as it always has been, remains the sole cause of continued violence.

About the Author
Craig first lived in Israel in the early-mid 1980's serving in the IDF (1985-1986), returning to Israel 1995-2202 , during which he founded The Tudog Group in 1998 Tudog works with many companies to successfully enter the U.S. market.
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