Resiliency or Stupidity?

I have addressed this phenomenon in the past – the unique ability of the Israeli people to experience horrible tragedy and loss, only to quickly pick ourselves up off the pavement and get back to our lives and our normal daily routines.

A bus bomb goes off, scores of people are killed or injured, and within hours, the blood is cleaned off the road, the debris is hauled away, and the people return in droves to the very same bus stop waiting to get back on that very line.

One school of thought says that going back to normal as soon as possible, or demonstrating our ‘resiliency,’ sends the message to the terrorists that ‘while you have caused us to bend, we will not break. We will not let you disrupt our lives here in Israel, no matter what you throw at us.’

But is this truly an example of resiliency on our part, and is this the healthiest response to the terror?

More and more I am convinced that this isn’t resiliency but just plain stupidity. Perhaps even insanity – using Albert Einstein’s definition – “insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

The terrorists living under Palestinian Authority control are murdering us. They’re killing us on the roads on the way to Passover Seder, they’re killing us as we take naps on the bus, and they’re killing us just for trying to get home from school.

But simply moving on with our lives, knowing our enemy remains intact is nothing short of madness.

To be crystal clear: in no way shape or form is my message through this writing directed at the family members of the three children who are in mourning, after this tragic episode of abduction and murder. There is no doubt they are suffering through an incomprehensible and hellish nightmare.  The strength of these families united our nation, our people, and friends of Israel around the world in a way that I have never seen before.

But to everyone else, how is it possible that we simply move on, knowing that an enemy bent on our destruction remains at our doorstep ready to pounce on the next unsuspecting victim? How do we let known Hamas members roam the streets of Hebron freely until tragedy strikes?

Why do we ignore the daily incitement out of the Palestinian Authority which is breeding a society of Anti-Semitic men, women, and especially children who are taught Jew-hatred from the day they are born?

Let’s look at this from the point of view of the terrorists. While truly evil, they are in no way stupid.  We can do all we want to demonstrate that we have the resolve to go on with our lives, but they know they’ve hurt us.

While our society values life, they value death. They are therefore well-aware of how much pain they’ve caused the families and friends of the victims while spreading fright throughout the country. For them, this is a sign of a successful operation (terror attack).

For 14 years now, Gazan terrorists have been launching rockets and missiles at population centers in the South (and Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, etc.). Our spokespeople always ask, “what other country in the world would tolerate rocket attacks?” The answer is always the same: ‘none’.

Yet, WE time and time again are putting up with these attacks!  In fact the rockets were raining down at the exact time that we were burying our three boys. It was similarly infuriating that the forces sent in to retrieve the bodies of the three children were bombarded with rocks and paint by our enemies during the extraction.

Ultimately what I’m suggesting is that instead of the mentality that ‘life goes on,’ I recommend that we shut down our daily lives until our enemies are waving the white flag, and not one second before.

The people of Israel should rally and close the stock market, the shuk, the Intel plant, etc. – essentially the entire country and demand that our government take action – meaningful action.

No more targeting only empty buildings, and rocket launchers. We must take on the enemy head on.

We are not a people that seeks war, but since war has been forced upon us, our goal must be nothing short of complete victory.

Call me what you want – a warmonger, a right-wing fanatic, a fascist, I’ve heard that all before.

But there were three dead Israeli children buried this week, murdered for one reason only: they were Jews. So stop telling me how we have to be resilient, because being resilient is just being stupid.






About the Author
Joshua Hasten is the International Spokesperson for Gush Etzion. He is host of the weekly “Israel Uncensored” radio broadcast on The Land of Israel Network, as well as an international Middle East Correspondent in print and on television. Joshua is also a sought-after speaker around the world. His workshops and lectures on pro-Israel advocacy have impacted thousands. Joshua was the CAMERA organization’s 2009 Letter Writer of the Year, and is a member of the Judea and Samaria Speaker’s Bureau. Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, he resides in Gush Etzion, Israel.