Josef Olmert

Hotovely Revisited -Another Thought on Gaza

It was in late November2017, when Deputy FM of Israel, Tzipi Hotovely, a religious Mizrachi woman who broke many walls of tradition and bias in her own Georgian community, dared say few things , which the Progressive Jewish establishment did not like. She said something very factually right, that US Jews live their convenient life, detached from the Israeli reality, and from the ivory tower preach morality to people who risk their lives to defend the state. People who, unlike most American Jews, understand what military service is, and how difficult it is to be in the firing line as opposed the air conditioned editorial boards of magazines.

Well, the peace and dialogue -loving establishment banged her on her head. Dialogue? Yes, with Linda Sarsour and all the other anti Israel, anti- semitic organizers of the women march, but a Right Wing Mizrachi Israeli woman?. God forbid, so Hotovely was boycotted by the bleeding-heart Progressive head of Princeton Hillel, and all became peaceful and quiet again, as the Progressives had the last word, and the one-sided ” dialogue” with Israel continues. The Progressives attack and vilify Israel everywhere they can, and people like Hotovely or those suspected to be like her, continue to be boycotted. For the record-I do not know Hotovely, never met her, and in disagreement of a lot of what she says, but I know what boycott is , and I understand how the Progressives view ”dialogue”, which is to blindly accept the editorial line of the Liberal Bible, a.k.a New York Times[NYT].

So why do I pull Hotovely out of the oblivion to where she was thrown by the Progressive establishment? It is because while we watch the sad events along the Gaza-Israel border, we are subjected yet again to a concerted , hateful , clueless attack by many Progressive Jews on Israel, its government and the IDF.It is as if many Progressives have suddenly, miraculously become the new elite of military experts. People who loath the military in the US, as well as the IDF , people who believe that might is NOT right[sure enough, might was not the ONLY answer to evils like Nazism?….], people who always condemn Israel’s use of force, are now sitting behind their laptops and bombard us with very learned, intelligent advice as to how to handle a situation like in Gaza-Israel border. All of a sudden, they know, they understand , they specialize in military matters. A new expertise , straight from the NYT, and we now have to realize ,that it is a question of crowd control, a matter of compassion, something which is totally detached from any reality, but still rings so many bells of approval with Progressives, because it reflects an American reality , not anything close to Israel and Middle East reality.

Another example of how so many American Progressive Jews do not understand that the Middle East is not the Mid West of the US.There was an attempted armed invasion of mobs of thousands of incited people, who were sent by a terrorist entity with orders to cross, at all costs, the border of a sovereign nation , in order to take over civilian communities in the Israeli side of the border, burn their places and slaughter their people. Hamas planned a terrible crime , and the IDF had to stop it, and by all accounts, of reality, of precedent all over the world, of common sense, the IDF could and should do it only by using live ammunition. There was no alternative, because the IDF is what it is,the Army of Defense, and it is their obligation to defend the civilian population of Israel.

The Progressives in the NYT, the Reform movement, and any other of the organizations which make their living off the Israel bashing business have no such obligation. Theirs is to the fantasy-land theories of Tikkun Olam, the new Judaism, the one which sanctifies the lives of enemies of Israel and the Jewish people, but not of Israeli Jews. Here is where Hotovely comes to my mind, where she is so relevant, even if not so polished, and surely not politically correct. Yes, many American Jews are totally detached from the Israeli reality, for them the ketchup of Hollywood movies is what blood is all about, and notions like self-defense and national sovereignty are an anathema when it comes to Israel. Hotovely was right on this one, and polls taken in Israel show almost universal support to the IDF and to the soldiers who act under impossible circumstances. Clearly, here is another example of the gap between Israel and many American Progressive Jews. The gap between reality and fantasy. The gap between those who in real life have to make harsh decisions, and those who get their cue from editorials .

Let us make no mistake here-I am pained over the deaths of people in Gaza, exactly because I what war is all about, and this reality is one of the things which lead me to be so unimpressed with the crocodile tears of many Progressives who coul not care less about the slaughter of Palestinians in the Yarmuk camp in Damascus, but say Kaddish over people from Gaza. A piece of advice for them-listen to Radio Al Aksa of Hamas, where one of the leaders of Hamas, Salah Bardawil said in Arabic that 50 of the people killed were Hamas fighters. Alas, it was in Arabic, and so many of our good Progressives do not understand this language. Why should they? .The NYT tells them what to think.

About the Author
Dr Josef Olmert, a Middle East expert, is currently an adjunct professor at the University of South Carolina