Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Bogie Media Fury - Analysis and Conclusions

By Moshe Feiglin

Last week's media fury over Vice PM Moshe (Bogie) Ya'alon's remarks at the Manhigut Yehudit Conference was radically disproportionate to the contents of his speech. Those people who have read Ya'alon's book, The Long Short Way and heard his lectures would have a hard time finding something new or unusual with what Bogie said at the Conference.

The Conference was publicized through our regular channels, the room was filled from wall to wall, people were filming Bogie's speech with their cell phones and no measures were taken to prevent his words from "leaking" out to the press. But from the moment that the media "discovered" the Youtube film of the Conference, they basically went berserk.

Bogie Ya'alon is a Jew with roots in the Mapai of old, who has not yet adopted the rightist slave mentality. Would any politician in the Labor party refuse to meet with another member of his party for fear of what the Likud would say? Would any Labor minister refuse to lecture at a Peace Now conference for fear of the media?

At first, we thought the storm would die down quickly. We admittedly underestimated the impact of the revolution that we are leading. We forgot that Netanyahu preferred to lose one third of the Knesset seats that the Likud could have won just to ensure that our revolution would be forced out of the limelight.

Netanyahu didn't cut his vacation short to come back and reprimand Bogie because of groundless media pressure. Without realizing it, we had created shock waves tantamount to a strategic terror attack. The following article, which appeared this week on Ma'ariv's NRG website, explains the dynamics of what took place:

A Strategic Terror Attack

By Moshe Feiglin

3 Elul, 5769 (August 23, '09)

If, G-d forbid, Kassams would have hit Sderot last week, or if there had been a shooting or stabbing terror attack, would the Prime Minister have cut his vacation short, made special announcements to the press and hurriedly summoned the Minister for Strategic Affairs to his office?

Another Question:
If such a terror attack had taken place, would it have commanded all the major headlines in all the major media outlets for two days?

The answer is clear. So why, when two politicians from the same party speak at a public forum and say things that are not new, do the media and the Prime Minister attach to the non-event the significance of a strategic terror attack?

Last Thursday, my picture made the front page of the Ha'aretz newspaper. The caption was: "Feiglin: With G-d's help, we will do good things together."

Wow. How fortunate we are to have courageous reporters who dare to inform the public of such a horrifying statement.

Let us make some order out of this firestorm.

First of all, we must understand that Ya'alon's statements at the Manhigut Yehudit Likud Activist Conference were nothing new. Everything that he said, including what he thinks about Israel's Left, is written in his book. He has publicly made the same statements many times. Netanyahu was never disturbed by his opinions and the media wouldn't have given them more than the status of "quote of the day" if not for the place in which they were delivered. In other words, the media fury was triggered not because of what was said, but because of where it was said.

To better understand how a meeting between two Likud members takes on the proportions of a strategic terror attack, we have to get to the root of the issue.

Since the Second Aliyah to Israel one hundred years ago, the hegemony over the Return to Zion has been in the hands of the Left. True, in 1977 there was a mini-revolution and Begin became prime minister, but it soon became clear that the Jabotinsky Right could not present a comprehensive alternative to the Zionist Left. Most of the Israeli public is rightist in its views and values, but the classic Right never attempted to develop its identity and values into a ruling alternative. That is why, despite the rightist leanings of the Israeli public and despite the fact that the public elects the Likud to rule time and again, the national agenda does not change and the leftist agenda continues to control Israel.

It's even worse than that. When the Likud is in power, it carries out the Left's agenda even better than the Left itself – despite the clear desire of its voters. Simply put, the Likud's inability to present a comprehensive alternative based on Judaism allows the Left to neutralize its victories in the voting booth and to continue to rule in Israel. Israelis already know that if you vote left, you get Left, and if you vote right, you get double Left

Enter Manhigut Yehudit in the Likud. That annoying Feiglin insists on running for head of the party and the national camp. What he is really saying is that the Jewish majority no longer accepts the old order of things. The Jewish majority demands that when it wins the elections, its collective will will be expressed in reality and that the government will reflect its values.

Manhigut Yehudit has presented a true and comprehensive alternative to the Left – an alternative with faith based, historical Jewish depth. When we speak of a revolution, we are not talking about musical chairs between political clones from the Right and Left. We are talking about revolutionizing the state of Israel, its national agenda and its most basic goals. That is why we are such a threat to those people who have become accustomed to ruling Israel with no regard to the outcome of the elections. Manhigut Yehudit is the only factor that threatens their perpetual hegemony

In his first term, Netanyahu learned what happens to a politician who opposes the "elites". He understands that his political survival depends on living in "peace" with the right people. That is why Netanyahu, with the help of the Supreme Court, downgraded me from my "sure" place on the Likud roster - despite the outcome of the primaries - and knowingly paid the price of the loss of approximately 10 mandates that defected from the Likud to other parties.

Minister Ya'alon's very attendance at a Manhigut Yehudit conference has opened a crack in the wall that has been erected to isolate and de-legitimize us. As far as the elites are concerned, that really was a strategic terror attack. The hysteria that we witnessed last week was actually the elites' attempt to close the crack in the wall and to restore "order" in its court.

The first conclusion from these events is that we must not underestimate the strategic importance of Manhigut Yehudit. Manhigut Yehudit is rightfully considered the only factor that truly threatens the eternal rule of the anti-Jewish minority in Israel. The ruling elites are not afraid of the National Union or of the Jewish Home, Lieberman or Marzel. They are afraid of Feiglin. In other words, Feiglin is pressuring them where it hurts.

The second conclusion is that it is urgent to register for the Likud and to register all of your family and friends. We need more voters inside the Likud to support MKs like Ya'alon and to assure other Likud MKs that their job is to represent the values of the Jewish majority and not of the leftist elites.

The Divine Way to Wage War

By Moshe Feiglin

"When you go out to war against your enemies and G-d will give him into your hands."
(From this week's Torah portion, Ki Tetzei, Deuteronomy 21:10)

This verse is simple in its optimism. Israel goes out to war and G-d gives them victory. Simple as it may be, it is the Divine recipe for victory in war.

First of all, "When you go out to war". War - not a "low intensity conflict" and not "containment." The first condition is to define the situation as war and to invest the resources and fortitude necessary for war.

Secondly, "against your enemies." In a war, there is an enemy. He must be clear and defined. But in order to define the enemy, one must first define himself. If you know who you are, you can know what threatens you, and find the strength and courage to define and defeat it.

When Israel will integrate its Jewish identity into its national life, it will easily define its enemies. And then, G-d promises, He will "give them into our hands."

Friday, August 21, 2009

Pursue Justice

By Moshe Feiglin

Justice, justice you shall follow, so that you may live, and inherit the land which the LORD your G-d gives you. (From this week's Torah portion, Shoftim, Deuteronomy 16:20)

The preservation of our lives and existence in this land do not depend upon "the rule of law." They depend upon the rule of justice.

"And what about the rule of law?" the Ha'aretz reporter asked me.

'"The rule of law" is an abhorrent concept,' I answered. 'I strive for the rule of justice.'

The law is the escape hatch of the greatest scoundrels.
A small time criminal commits his crime against the law.
A medium criminal circumvents the law.
A big time criminal commits his crime by means of the law.

When Vice Premier and Minister for Strategic Matters Moshe Ya'alon spoke this week of returning to Homesh, he was actually demanding justice. But Netanyahu's answer was: "We will work to enforce the law."

The law is nothing more than a tool in the service of justice. When the tool becomes the goal, it turns into fascism, a dangerous version of idolatry. In no time, it is adopted by base forces and destruction will necessarily follow.

After last year's Likud primaries, Netanyahu enlisted Attorney Yaakov Ne'eman to "legally" (by means of the Supreme Court, of course) reframe the results of the primaries and to demote me to an unrealistic slot on the Likud roster. It is no coincidence that Netanyahu chose a religious figure beloved by Religious Zionism to fight Feiglin. Ne'eman gave the Supreme Court justices the small fig leaf that they needed so that they would not feel totally exposed in the face of what everybody in Israel – including the political commentators – fully understood.

Now Netanyahu and Ne'eman, in his new role as Minister of Justice, are using the same tactics – not within the Likud – but on the national front. Ne'eman is currently pushing hard for the election of an extreme leftist who was particularly cruel to opponents of the Expulsion – Sefi Alon – as the new Supreme Court justice. This despite the fact that for the first time ever, the Right holds the majority on the Committee for Selection of Judges. Netanyahu assumes that the faith-based public will ignore this spit in the face because Alon is from a famous Religious Zionist family. But his election as justice on the Supreme Court will effectively maintain and even strengthen the leftist hegemony in the justice system.

The beautiful harmony between Ne'eman and Chief Justice Beinish has made the pursuit of justice in Israel a joke. The minister that is supposed to represent the will and values of the PM's electorate and to reign in the "rule of law gang" that elects itself chose the easy way out. He betrayed the majority in whose name he received his position and subjugated himself to the very same gang. At this point, Israel is painfully far from the pursuit of justice.

Another Diamond in the Necklace

By Moshe Feiglin

19 Av, 5769
August 9, '09

Translated from the NRG website

Lift up your eyes round about, and behold: all these gather themselves together, and come to you. As I live, says the Lord, you shall surely adorn yourself with them all as with an ornament, and gird yourself with them, like a bride. (Isaiah 49:18)

Last week, we were invited to the airport to welcome a young relative who was making aliyah from the US. I had heard a lot about the Nefesh B'Nefesh organization that helps North American (and British) Jews to make aliyah. But until you see it with your own eyes, you don't really understand the amazing work that this organization does. In truth, I really didn't want to give up my morning bicycle ride to hear Bibi speak at 7 a.m. This particular relative has been a guest at our home many times, and I didn't understand why the fact that this time he was officially making aliyah meant that I had to change my routine and show up at the airport. But fortunately, my wife dragged me by the ear. I'm really glad that she did.

The Nefesh B'Nefesh charter plane rolls into Terminal 1. The people gathered to welcome the olim are allowed to wait for the new arrivals literally on the runway. The band plays. Singing and dancing all around. Suddenly, all the cynicism and daily battles peel off and the old and good Zionism shines forth in all its glory. This entire scene plays on some of my rusty heartstrings. Out of nowhere, my eyes fill with tears – that I try to hide behind the daily edition of the Jerusalem Post distributed by Nefesh B'Nefesh so that the people waiting will G-d forbid not get bored until the olim emerge from the plane.

Afterwards, some short speeches by Bibi, Natan Sharansky and the heads of Nefesh B'Nefesh. Netanyahu mentioned something of which most people are not aware. In the upcoming year, with G-d's help, the number of Jews in the Land of Israel will be greater than the number of Jews in the Diaspora – according to Bibi, for the first time in 2000 years. It is nice that Bibi mentioned that, but he was off by about 1000 years. Even in the time of the Second Temple, the Jews in Israel were fewer in number than their Diaspora counterparts. In other words, we are at the threshold of a historic reality that has not transpired since the ten tribes were exiled prior to the destruction of the First Temple. This has far-reaching implications in Jewish law. Furthermore, what is both fascinating and gives me the goose bumps is the fact that the number we are talking about is six million Jews in Israel.

I do not generally write about the mystical significance of numbers. But it is crystal clear that the number 600,000 has special Jewish import. This was the number of draft-age Jews who were redeemed from Egypt and the parameter of 'public domain' in Jewish laws pertaining to Shabbat. In other words, a place through which 600,000 people pass is considered public domain in Jewish law. This number of Jews creates a new reality. When that happens in Israel, it is a positive new reality.

600,000 Jews lived in Israel when the State was established in 1948.

600,000 draft-aged men lived in Israel in the War of Miracles in 1967.

I do not know what the new reality of the majority of Jews in the world living in Israel will bring on its wings. Especially when the absolute number of Jews living here will be the significant 10 times 600,000 – six million. But the words of the prophet Isaiah, who prophesied more or less at the time that the majority of Jews in Israel was lost, strike a chord deep inside my heart.

Behold, Zion, see how your children are returning to you. And you, like a bride under the canopy, stand and watch as the lost diamonds return to you, one by one, to be embedded on the glorious necklace around your neck.

For those of you who want to know what will happen next, just look at Isaiah 49.