A few days ago, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh called on Palestinians to prepare to return to Palestine. He declared that Israel is in a state of political disintegration that reflects the dead-end to which the Zionist enterprise has come. “The beginning of defeat,” he said, “is disintegration from within.” Haniyeh added that because of it, the Palestinians are “at a time of victories, and a generation of great changes.” While his observations are correct, he does not know that from the place where Israel falls, from that same place it rises.
In many ways, Haniyeh is like Haman from the biblical story of Esther. As with Haman, Israel will suffer more and more blows from the wicked, who will grow stronger and stronger and become ever more confident. As with Haman, in the end the Jews will unite and everything that the wicked one has built will turn against him.
For the time being, Israel is indeed disintegrated. We are a divided society whose views range from one extreme to the other on every single issue. We are wholly divided on the issue of the conflict with the Palestinians. We are equally divided on the issue of imposing religious laws, on identity politics and wokeness, and on anything that concerns more than one person.
We know we are divided but we do not care. We do not care even when our worst enemy tells us that this is why we are weak. When will we wake up? On the edge of the precipice.
When we wake up, we will realize that all our divisions are incentives to unite. Since we do not want to unite, and instead choose division and derision, our separation worsens, our enemies point out that this is our weakness, and warn us that they will defeat us because of our division.
Now that our division is well in place, as are the warnings of our enemies, we must decide whether to heed the warnings and unite, or wait for the whip to lash and painfully force us to rise above our mutual aversion. If we choose unity before we are whipped, no lashes will be necessary. The sooner we move toward each other, the sooner the world will understand that the reason they hated us was our disunity, and that unity is our protection from hatred, our guarantee of safety.