We tell ourselves that we have one of the most powerful armies in the world. In fact, according to Global Firepower 2021, Israel is ranked at number 20. This is way below countries such as Japan, Brazil or even Italy.
We tell ourselves that, for all their in-fighting, our politicians have the safety and security of the state and its inhabitants as their first priority. And yet ……
We watch in horror as incoming fire balloons set light to large areas around the Gaza border. Crops, planted for the good of all of us, burnt to ashes by something as simple as a child’s balloon.
No hi-tech is needed. Helium-filled balloons, condoms, or even plastic bags, carry a piece of burning string or a cigarette. Can it really be that Zahal, the Israel Defence Force, is powerless in the face of a children’s toy?
Perhaps our all-powerful army could learn from a wise saying that dates back to the middle 1800s – Fight fire with fire.
To fight fire with fire means to use against an aggressor the same weapons that they are using on you. Not a difficult concept to understand.
Our own Torah is quite clear on the matter. The Book of Leviticus states – An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth (Lev. 24:19–21).
So how do we fight fire with fire? I offer two options.
- Move the border. Let the Palestinians know that, for every fire balloon that lands in Israel, the border will be moved 10 meters back into Gaza. How much territory would they be prepared to lose before they stop the balloons?
- For every balloon, our tanks would destroy a Gazan village. The inhabitants would, of course, be given a week’s warning to allow them to safely remove themselves and their possessions.
The New Testament had a somewhat different outlook.
“Vengeance is Mine; I will repay, says the Lord.” Romans 12:19
But, while our fields burn, we do not have time to wait for the Lord. And we are not looking for vengeance, we just want to protect our fields. If they stop sending balloons, we will have no need to take any further action.