Like obedient little boys, the Islamic Jihad School for Brainwash and Seventy Heavenly Virgins has visited the innocents of central Hadera. Basking in the warming light and encouragement of Iran's 'World Without Zionism' conference, a misled 20-year old Palestinian has returned shivers to the collective Israeli spine. We did not know which of the thousands of brainwashed, helpless creatures would actually take the bait this time, but we knew it was coming and we know that there will be more.
During my twelve days or so caught up between apple and honey, vacation and illness, I have had a little time to get some perspective. We who write and talk publicly often find ourselves needing to satisfy the urge to write immediately following any major breaking news. I have taken the liberty not to do so until now and it feels good to approach the keyboard with 12 days of contemplation behind me.
The new Jewish year has complicated my train of thought. Still, help comes from the strangest sources sometimes and there we have it, right when we needed it. Iran has delivered us the diplomatic gift of the century - this century is still young of course but let's not lose the moment!
After two ghastly terror attacks in the last 10 days or so, (one apparently against "young Jewish settlers" and the other against "innocent Israel civilians"), the Israeli leadership has been sent back to the Arafat era. In their own words, the Prime Minister and security chiefs are ready to embark on anti-terror operations like those we witnessed in the dark aftermath of Sbarro, Dolphinarium, Park Hotel and so on. In essence, they have been given no choice. Their political futures and Israel's sanity depend on Israel showing its strong hand in addition to its Disengagement and patient hand.
I have seen cynical little online comments from interesting folk who proudly claim that the Hadera massacre has proven that no wall, no helicopter and no tank will stop the Palestinian struggle. In the opinion of these people, only ending occupation will see an end to terror.
And you know what, they might be right - but there is only the slightest chance that Abbas and the terror groups will ever change their strategies for even a minute in order to allow for a Palestinian state to emerge and occupation (if that's the best word for it) to disappear.
Little comments online (even if I admit I make plenty myself) do not necessarily reflect reality nor truth. The way I see it, the IDF is quite capable of providing a fairly massive blow to Islamic terror in Israel and the Palestinian Authority regions. That's not to say that such a response would not further enrage the masses or that it will not indirectly lead to the loss of innocent life on both sides. I am sad to say that at this stage, in light of Disengagement and the upward terror sprial in the region, I can not advocate for staying the IDF hand for the sake of avoiding these regrettable consequences.
However, the hands may yet be tied, handcuffed and chained. There is no need to delve into the history of US and world pressure on Israel to respond with proportionality only. Whatever proportionality the world preaches, it is such that applies to Israel only. G-d only knows what Britain would be doing now if they had somewhere in the world other than Birmingham, Liverpool and London in which to retaliate...
... which is why I am pleased that Iran has played its joker - and what a joke! On the very day that Israel needs some means of getting the green light for taking care of Palestinian terror networks, Iran has less than gently, rather ridicuously jolted the world with one of the most arrogant and hopelessly undiplomatic statements in the earth's history. Thank you - you have done Israel a great favor and shown the world (in particular the Europeans) that your intentions, whether truly nuclear or not, smell of evil and of hate and of destructive terror.
Personally I am pleased to see countless world leaders expressing their horror at the Iranian rhetoric. Coupled with the Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad performance of Wednesday, Palestinian terror and Iranian extremism are now seen for what they really are - connected at the hip and the bank and heading on a collision course to the great sorrow and loss of their people as usual.
Here's hoping that tomorrow the world will still be standing strongly and honestly in defence of Israel's right to exist and her right to defend herself. Please don't lose any sleep calculating the odds...