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Netanyahu Wages War Against the Soul of Israel

June 20—Every nation has what you might call a collective soul, even if it is not always apparent from the behavior of its people. But when a nation is thrown into a deep crisis, that soul emerges to do battle with the forces that are driving that nation and its people toward destruction.

The tyrant and “Butcher of Gaza,” the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin "Bibi” Netanyahu, whose genocidal savagery toward the people of Palestine makes comparisons to the Nazi Adolf Hitler valid, has by his actions kicked the soul of Israel to the curb, as he has turned the young men and women of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) into Waffen SS units killing, not the terrorists of Hamas, who Bibi has paid and sponsored in the recent past, but innocents, especially women and children. As the Nazis understood in conducting their genocide against Jews, gypsies and others whom they declared “untermenschen,” the fastest way to eliminate a people is to kill women, especially of child-bearing age, and children.

It has taken time for the shock and horror of the savage Hamas attack on October 7, 2023 not to go away, but to abate enough so that reason might supersede simple rage in Israelis. That has happened, and now Israelis are looking for answers as to how this so-called terrorist attack wound up strengthening the hand of Bibi, who by his direction, has turned Israel against its better self, making a once admired nation into one reviled by people all over the world who place value on human life. A recent poll finds nearly a majority of Israelis now willing to entertain the possibility that someone might have deliberately let that attack occur. For those willing to entertain that thought, at the top of the chain of command, and therefore responsible for what was a Reichstag-fire type event for Bibi, is the Prime Minister himself.

There has always been something wrong with the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands. While sensing this, most, even decent Israelis, have looked the other way. Just as there was something wrong with the Nazi practice of lebensraum, there has always been something wrong with the settlement policies that stole other peoples’ land ostensibly for greater Israeli security. While most Israelis despised the zealotry, bigotry and racism of the settlers, the policy continued.

But the images of the dead women and children of Gaza, and the walking-dead look of those who have somehow managed to survive Bibi’s slaughter, even if censored from most of the Israeli media save the brave folks at Haaretz, has managed to come through on cell phones and computer screens. Those gruesome images have struck deep into the hearts of a people, many of whose families had suffered similar horrors at the hands of the Nazis.

And then there were the hostages, taken as bargaining chips by Hamas, whose lives Bibi’s government declared to be their sacred objective to protect and return home, but whoNertanyahu himself declared as unfortunate casualties in his war of extermination. As he has rejected deal after deal that could bring their safe return, which would lead to an end to this terrible war, it has become clear now to most Israelis that Netanyahu is no different in moral outlook from the sick beast-man of Hamas, Yaha Sinwar, who has also declared that the war must continue, and that it does not matter if a 100,000 Palestinians, including innocent women and children die, or even a million, for the cause: A Palestinian flag that waves over a vast graveyard. (No wonder several intelligence sources have mooted that perhaps Sinwar is a paid agent or asset of Bibi, since it is known that Israel has assets in Hamas, even in its leadership; for some, perhaps even many such people, money is more important than principles.)

Taking all these things together, the effect has been to awaken the soul of the once-proud and admired state of Israel. That soul is expressing itself in the streets, where hundreds of thousands now cry out that there is a limit to a tyrant's power and who are demanding an end to the war in Gaza, which will bring a return of the hostages, and also a return to a pathway toward the two-state solution of peace and mutual economic development once chartered by great Israelis such as former Prime Minister Yitzak Rabin who gave his life to rescue the soul of Israel. This is the same Rabin who was murdered in 1995 by a hand incited by none other than Bibi who called this great man a traitor.

Netanyahu and the lunatics who support him, are now trying to keep the war in Gaza going, while considering launching a new war in the West Bank. But here they face a real opponent in Hezbollah, which is better armed and trained than the Hamas fighters who never mounted any real resistance to the more powerful IDF. The opponent in the West Bank would extract a great price on the IDF and Israel itself in an all-out war, which Bibi now threatens.

But the soul of Israel, where the memory of Rabin resides, can stop this. It must rise up and proclaim peace and seek to create the prosperity that peace and development could bring not just to sovereign Israeli and Palestinian states but to the entire region. In the streets, in ever larger numbers every day, the Israeli people are being met by police brutality that expresses the same beast-man outlook as we have found in the destruction of Gaza. They beat women and children, the old and the infirm—even the families of the hostages! Here are two recent reports:

June 17—Plain-clothes Israeli police officers were recorded punching and pulling a female protester’s hair while arresting her outside Netanyahu’s Jerusalem home. Three people were wounded and at least eight were arrested during the demonstration, including a volunteer doctor who sustained an eye injury caused by a police water cannon, which also threw a 60-year-old protester against a wall, in direct violation of police procedures. A 70-year-old protester sustained a head injury when he was violently arrested by the police.

June 18—Police forcefully dispersed some 20 peaceful protesters who were calling for a hostage release deal, but who were found to be blocking an interchange in Jerusalem. Four were arrested. A woman was sent to hospital after police threw her off of a ladder placed by demonstrators at the scene.

Meanwhile, the Israel Police recently recommended shelving the case against Rabbi Eliyahu Mali of the Shirat Moshe Yeshiva in Jaffa for remarks he made March 7 in which he said Jewish law requires killing Gaza’s entire population, including babies and the elderly.

When U.S. organizations such as the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith (ADL) deploy millions of dollars and their minions to “defend Israel,” they are consciously defending the new Hitler, Netanyahu and his police-state thugs. Most of all, they are defending his genocide against Palestinians. They are not defending Israel, they are calling for the destruction of its soul, which rises up against such outrages. And by suppressing that, they seek the destruction of the Israeli state.

In an editorial last month, Haaretz posed this question on Yom Haatzmaut, Israel’s Independence Day: Whether the Israeli state could survive to see its hundredth anniversary in 2048? Their answer: Not if Netanyahu stays in power, even for another few months. With which all sane Israelis must concur.

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