Opinion

Yair Lapid Just Showed Once Again He Is a Self-righteous Primitive Nationalist

Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat
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Gilad Erdan and Yair Lapid together in 2014.
Gilad Erdan and Yair Lapid together in 2014.Credit: Daniel Bar-On
Odeh Bisharat
Odeh Bisharat

Early last week, Yair Lapid congratulated Gilad Erdan on his appointment as Israel’s ambassador to both the United Nations and the United States. Yair said he was confident of Gilad’s ability to deal with the huge challenges of the job. Gilad thanked Yair for his kind words.

It’s truly heartwarming to see two proud Jews from two rival parties, Likud and Yesh Atid, engaged in mutual back-patting. Yes, two Jews who are part of the chain of generations that stretches back 3,000 years, generations of Jews who have always kept faith with the Land of Israel. As everyone knows, we Arabs came out of the wall, but unfortunately, it was destroyed in 1948.

Why is this so beautiful? Because it’s true that these two friends are on opposite sides of the political divide, but at the moment of truth, they’ll find themselves on the same side. And don’t be confused by their political and ideological differences; when they’re called to the flag, both of them will immediately present themselves in service of that chain of generations.

The government decided, for instance, to evict Arab citizens from the Negev Bedouin town of Umm al-Hiran and settle Jews there in their place. But Yair Lapid maintained his silence, even though he’s on the other side of the political divide. Why? Because the Jewish nation takes precedence over anything else.

Gilad Erdan libeled the late Yakub Abu al-Kiyan, who was shot to death by the police in Umm al-Hiran, saying he carried out a terror attack and claiming he had ties with the Islamic State (even though the facts show the opposite). Erdan incited against Arabs by claiming they engaged in “arson terror,” even though there’s no evidence of this. Erdan, as public security minister, abandoned the Arab community to rising crime without making even a minimal effort to fight it – but his friend on the other side of the political fence praises him.

Here’s another insight for you: As long as a Jew is in conflict with a goy (in our case, an Arab), Jews have to take the Jew’s side, and never mind those clichés about justice and fairness. No matter what he does, a Jews can’t be weakened, because that would strengthen the goy. And when facing the goy, the Jew is always right.

This is how a self-righteous primitive nationalist behaves: On one hand, he objects to the “Zoabis” (as Lapid once derogatorily termed Arab Knesset members, referring to then-MK Haneen Zoabi) and seeks a Jewish majority. On the other hand, he wants to look like he’s progressive and liberal.

But it won’t work. In the end, he looks shady, going down the path leading to “childish, clichéd, superficial and empty” politics, as Gideon Levy described it in an op-ed last month (Haaretz, April 23). Incidentally, Lapid’s sick hatred for organizations like B’Tselem and Breaking the Silence is rooted in the fact that these beautiful people expose his moral failing – the fact that he’s a primitive nationalist wrapped in a cloak of modernity.

This man who scatters empty slogans left and right didn’t see fit to praise the exhilarating Jewish-Arab cooperation in the battle against the coronavirus. Apparently, that’s all he needed – for someone to catch him saying something nice about Arabs.

Nevertheless, we should note that it’s important to build ad hoc alliances, even with Lapid and his ilk, to advance shared interests – against the Netanyahu-Gantz government, for instance. But make no mistake: No ad hoc alliance should halt criticism of Lapid’s racist behavior.

Moreover, we must be prepared for the fact that at any given moment, Lapid may run into the arms of his brother, Yamina chairman Naftali Bennett, and perhaps even embrace Bennett’s Knesset colleague Bezalel Smotrich, since despite everything, he too is a Jew. Don’t be surprised by alliances like that. A month ago, his ally Benny Gantz moved from one side of the political divide to the other, and he fit right in there, as if he had been born into Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s family.

At this opportunity, I would urge “brother” Erdan not to be petty. He should invite Lapid to appear at the United Nations from time to time. There, he can explain to the goyim slowly and clearly, so they understand, about all the dangers facing the Jewish state. And maybe he can charm those in attendance by chanting “We love Israel.”

Why does a drum make such a reverberating sound? Because it’s empty.