I was recently rejected by the editor of a major Israeli newspaper when I asked to write about the new political party revving to enter the Knesset, HaLev HaYehudi (The Jewish Heart), led by Elie Joseph, for which I am third runner-up.
The rejection assumed that the party has zero-chance of passing the minimum threshold of approximately four Knesset seats.
This, argued the editor, could only mean one of three things:
That we want to publicize our very nice and important agenda via the campaign – stopping Israel from the sale of Israeli weapons to countries who commit mass murder – but then back out from actually running; that the people behind the party are “mentally ill”; or that Elie Joseph is being paid by the left to waste votes that would have supported a government loyal to Eretz Yisrael.
Setting aside the empty ridicule and bizarre conspiracy theory directed against an individual who led the Free Pollard Campaign and went on hunger strike for three weeks to protest the Oslo accords as being paid by the Israeli left, I would like to use this as an opportunity to clarify for those still in doubt:
We are running to the end.
Israeli weapons have been being used by the murderous regime in Myanmar, an Israeli-trained and equipped unit is responsible for many of the atrocities that occur in Cameroon, and, just in South Sudan alone, 382,000 innocent people have been murdered by soldiers armed with Israeli weapons.
But the media has been hiding the fact that nationalist parties like Yamina have de facto condoned the arming of these murderers by blocking a law, proposed by Yehuda Glick (Likud) and Tamar Zandberg (Meretz), to prevent Israel from aiding in these crimes against humanity.
And the entire spectrum of lawmakers, from left to right, who have been presented with this agenda are evading its addition to their platforms. These, if anything, are signs of illness. The democratic right of our people, the right to decide what is allowed and what is not allowed to be done on our behalf, has been stolen.
How have Israel’s political, legal, and media systems collaborated in turning a blind eye and permitting a treachery found amongst the gravest of all sins – the abetting of genocide and crimes against humanity?
HaLev HaYehudi is not just another political party. The party’s agenda transcends the left-vs-right political spectrum. Its goal is to plumb the roots and exorcise from the shadows of our collective consciousness the crimes that prevent us from being the nation we have returned to our land to become.
However controversial, especially in a global climate where Israelis and Diaspora Jews grow ever more sensitive to vocal criticism of our government, the party is composed of individuals who find themselves unable, and unwilling, to remain quiet. We believe that the people of Israel do not want to be involved in any form of murder of innocent women and children.
Our party’s goals and vision are worth far more than a few Knesset seats, and the truth will eventually make it in. If not in these elections, then in those to come. Do not waste votes on parties who are making us all complicit in mass murder. Give power to those who stand for justice instead.
As a people who hold paramount the sanctity of life, we must not look away from the crimes being perpetrated and in doing so becoming de-facto partners to the madness. It is up to us to demand a law prohibiting military exports to murderous countries and establishing an external body to oversee the execution of that law.
It is also imperative to understand that our mission in the Land of Israel is not only to fulfill the needs of our individual nationalism, but also to expand towards a unique Hebrew universalism, an international ethic that reflects and expresses authentic Jewish values.
Our role as leaders of the state is to expunge the corruption from our midst, and to see our nation become a moral standard both inside and outside our borders.
Our party has been allocated the letter Kaf כ for the ballot slip.
[You can also support the Jewish Heart party’s positions on arms sales by voting for the Vision movement (slate #5) in the World Zionist Congress elections at zionistelection.org. Learn more at visionmovement.org]