The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea, March-April 1987
THE PURITY OF ARMS
As I write these words the Israeli government is in the process of considering exchanging 400 terrorists for four American hostages, perhaps other foreigners – French, German, and other such worthies – and the fig leaf, an Israeli soldier(s) held by the terrorists and other Arab gangsters. Whether they ultimately give in to US pressure and go through with a repeat of the 1985 obscenity when they freed 1, 150 assorted terrorist murderers, the fact remains that there would be no such problem today if Israel would have followed the Jewish decree and carried out the death penalty against every terrorist they captured.
Why do they not? That is part of a greater problem, a diseased western mind that has gripped Israel and which includes refusal by the governments of Israel to take the obvious step – removal from the state of Arab menace, the fifth column and internal subversion. It is a disease that causes frightened, timid, gentilized Hebrews stricken with the suicidal curse of false and perverted democracy, to hobble and destroy their own security forces and their effectiveness as the one wall of defense against the Arab flood that threatens to sweep over and drown us.
The newspaper Yediot Aharonot carried what it described as “a monologue with a high-ranking army officer” after the infamous Kahan report that ripped apart the IDF after the massacre of “Palestinians” by Christian Moslems in Beirut. The story itself was headlined: “They Have Turned The Army Into A Punching Bag…”
The gist of the story was the bitter complaint of the army officer concerning the efforts to impose perverted “morality” on the security forces. Let every Jew – liberal or normal read, weep, and think:
“I know how many efforts we dedicated (in Lebanon) to keep from harming civilians. I state categorically that the army had tens of casualties, if not more, only because of the order not to harm civilians. In general, during a war, one first softens a target with artillery in order to prevent casualties among your soldiers. Here, they forbade us lest we hit civilians. From the time we entered Lebanon we adhered strictly to orders not to fire on targets where there was a civilian center. We would hand out flyers, warn them by loudspeakers. If not for that, we could have advanced more swiftly to crush the terrorist strongholds and most important, saved ourselves tens of our own casualties.”
“The terrorist knew this and they entered civilian centers. We could do nothing because of the stubborn orders of Raful (Chief of Staff Rafael Eytan) and General Amos Yaron not to fire even when we were positive that terrorists had penetrated a certain area. Where is the red line that determines for a command which is more important – to preserve the lives of his soldiers or to save civilians, part of whom are aiding the terrorists? It appears to me that the Israeli commanders long since crossed this red line in favor of preserving the lives of foreign civilians even at the cost of casualties among our soldiers.”
A poignant and bitter indictment by an army commander – hobbled by civilian politicians, who in turn are the target of leftist propaganda in Israel’s sick new media that never let up for a day in their self-hating campaign to force Israel to eat of their own vomit of guilt. They are accessories to murder; they are the direct cause of an insane, almost unbelievable policy of military madness, that has led to the death – the murder – of tens of Jewish soldiers.
The irony is that Chief of Staff Eytan, roundly condemned by leftists as a brutal “hawk” also collapsed before the Hellenist onslaught and gave “stubborn orders” not to shell terrorist bases in civilian areas lest we, heaven forbid, cause Arab civilian casualties. Far better that our own boys die…
Too few recall Eytan’s statement (Sept. 25, 1982) after the Sabra and Shatila massacre: “We feel the pain of our enemies. Our moral values arouse within us a feeling of responsibility and determination not to ignore the slaughter that happened in our midst. There is no doubt that the tragedy has cast a shadow over our accomplishments because of the obligation that is instilled in our people for the values of human life.”
What an incredible moral position! Had the Chief-of-Staff of the United States army made a similar statement concerning the bombing of German civilians in World War II, no doubt all ethical Jews would have cheered…
To feel the pain of our enemies, the “Palestinians”: who live and dream of the day they will destroy Israel? From whose ranks come forth the PLO? Who support, nurture and give of their children to terrorists who murder us? We feel their pain? Then we are mad.
And the arch-villain of the Kahane commission, Ariel Sharon, himself wrote the following nonsense in an Op-ed piece in the N.Y. Times (August 14, 1982):
“No army in the history of modern warfare ever took such pains to prevent civilian casualties as did the Israel Defense Forces. Indeed, most of the losses suffered – some 350 dead and 2,000 wounded (as of the date of the article- MK) – resulted from the rule we imposed on ourselves to avoid harming non-combatants. In Hebrew we call this tohar ha’neshek ,the moral conduct of war (literally purity of arms’ –MK) We are proud our soldiers followed this Jewish (sic!) doctrine scrupulously, despite the heavy cost we incurred in warming civilians we were coming, in attacking only predetermined PLO positions and in bombing and shelling buildings only when they served as PLO strongholds.”
What sanctimonious fraud and sacrifice of our soldiers. The murder of Israeli soldiers cried out to the heavens and justifies any soldier’s refusal to serve in an army whose commanders and leaders do not place his life over those of enemy civilians. The life of one Jewish soldier was worth more than those of all the Arabs – soldiers, terrorists or civilians – in Lebanon and how one longs for the days of normalcy of Word War II when normal gentiles of the Untied States and British Air Forces, knowing that their own people would die unless the Germans back and morale were shattered, bombed German cities – with their civilians – mercilessly. They knew that they were fighting a war. A war against forces which, if they won, would plunge them and the world into a nightmare. The gentiles never invented a madness called “purity of arms.” Arms are not pure. Arms are used to kill the enemy – or do not go to war in the first place.
“When you go to war against your enemies” (Deuteronomy20). What is meant by your enemies? (After all, one does not go to war against his friends!). Said the Holy One, Blessed be He: Go against them as enemies; just as they do not have mercy upon you, have no mercy on them.” (Midrash Tanhuma, Shoftim 15).
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