There are voices claiming that Bibi should not be held accountable for the Hamas atrocity as it was the security apparatus that was responsible for the integrity of the system. There has been a long-standing principle throughout history including that of Israel, that the person at the helm is ultimately responsible of his/her domain. In industry that principle is often adhered to- the boss, is the boss, and if his/her underlings fail in their jobs- the responsibility makes up the ladder. As president Truman said, “the buck stops here.”
It is the characteristic of demagogues to deflect the blame to others. The best contemporary example is former president Trump who has never admitted culpability for any of the chaos he has brought America. He describes himself as the greatest president ever to hold office in the United States and denigrates all others. His characterization of Anthony Fauci is an example of his shallowness. On his watch more American’s died than in any previous epidemic other that the 1918 influenza outbreak. He promoted useless treatments, denigrated masking, talked about injecting bleach to cure the disease.
Bibi, to achieve power formed a coalition of the most right-wing politicians in Israel- true Jewish supremacists, akin to the white supremacists in the US that chant- “they will not replace us” meaning the Jews. Even his usual ultra-Orthodox partners are not happy with the positions of the hard-right Knesset members. He and has henchmen have vilified Israel Arabs when in this crisis they have rallied around the country with many in the Gaza region acting heroically to save Jews from murder. If Golda would resign after 1973, Bibi should emulate one of Israel’s greatest leaders and do the same. He can have the same cell that Olmert occupied if the small villa-jail is not available for him to occupy with Trump. As a former medical officer in the IAF I laud the pilots for their attempts to be precise. As a person with friend’s children who have been called up to serve in the armour, infantry and navy, I feel proud to hold my Israeli citizenship along with my Canadian.
Michael Gordon, MD, MSC, FRCPC
Emeritus Professor of Medicine University of Toronto