The most terrible wars break out at the end of the summer or in the autumn. August: World War I. September: World War II. October: the Yom Kippur War. The war with which everyone is preoccupied now is also supposed to break out at the end of the summer or in the fall: August, September or October. Anyone that lengthens his summer vacation abroad, may get his life as a gift.
There is no support for this war at this time. Not in the world, not in the United States, and not in Israel, nor in its defense system. Anyone who disregards professional advice by claiming the supremacy of the political echelon, must ask whether there is even a majority in the Israeli government that favors such a war. The prime minister is performing scandalous juggling tricks in order to get together a majority. Adding Knesset member Avi Dichter of Kadima to his government. Delaying the planned departure of Minister Without Portfolio Yossi Peled. Altering government regulations.
The war justifies all the means. This war will be decided on the basis of merely one vote. It will be the worst war of all for the citizens of Israel. We will look back on the previous wars with nostalgia. Tens of thousands of missiles are tens of thousands of missiles; it doesn't matter what the experts from operations research say. The rescue services and the hospitals are likely to collapse. It will be a chaotic war and no place will be immune from it other than the well-connected shelter where those who brought it upon us will stay: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
I have a question to put to them: If you lived like I do, like most of Israel's citizens do - in an apartment without a protected space, without a nearby bomb shelter that works properly - would you decide to embark on this war? Why is your safety more important than ours?
You speak about preventing a second Holocaust, but are ready to bring one upon us with your own hands. The professional assessments speak of limited and temporary damage to Iran and its nuclear program in the wake of an Israeli attack. On the other hand, they say, such an attack would result in international isolation of Israel instead of Iran, as well as the certainty that Iran would want to avenge the attack for an unlimited amount of time. What is the point of a bloody war that may delay the Iranian bomb for a year, but will almost certainly increase the risk that it will be used against us? We want to live for more than one year.
Meanwhile, Iran has not been bombed. But the prime minister blasts us and the entire world all the time with words and threats. I have not yet decided whether to attack Iran, he announced recently with great benevolence, supposedly with the intention of calming people. But the subtext was horrifying: It is my decision. I am an absolute ruler. There is no government and no democratic system and no professional echelons and no international relations. There is only me. The entire world will be holding its breath in August, September and October, and waiting submissively for a decision from King Bibi that will decide its fate.
There is nevertheless one comforting thought. King Bibi is strong at words but not at actions. From the psychological point of view, despite his meteoric rise, he is still fixated on his previous role as Israeli ambassador to the United Nations. His tenure as prime minister has been padded by a flood of extremely powerful but meaningless words. The fiery speech he gave at Bar-Ilan University about two states for two peoples did not produce even the slightest shadow of a peace process. The Trajtenberg Committee set up in the wake of the social protests last year, which was supposed to deal with public housing and the high cost of living, did not provide even a small part of a solution. The idle chatter about bringing the date of the elections forward dissipated after one night. The Plesner Committee, appointed by Netanyahu with such fanfare in order to arrange an equal sharing of the military burden, turned into a short comic episode in our lives. The slogan of making the tax burden easier turned into an action that made it heavier.
So this is what I request of Netanyahu: Don't suddenly change in the next three months. It's not that we have fallen in love with you out of the blue. But please, remain what you are - an unreliable public orator - until the end of October. Don't all of a sudden go to play in the big boys' field.
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