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How can a tiny nation, hated wherever it resides, possibly survive? This has been the paramount question governing Jewish life for two millennia.
During Israel’s War of Independence in 1948, the country lost more than 6,000 of her finest soldiers, which was 1 percent of her total population, the equivalent of 3 million losses pro-rated for America’s population. A devastating start on the road of independence.
So when one recalls the reality that faced Israel in 1948 and where the country is today, it is nothing short of a miracle. Every other people so conquered and exiled has in time disappeared. Only the Jews defied the norm. Twice.
But, I fear, never again. That’s why Israel’s worst-case scenarios matter today, even if the peaceniks continue to protest against occupying anybody except the cafes in Tel Aviv.
Maybe imagining nightmarish scenarios is only the fantasy of some pessimist writers. Maybe Israel will live through a very quiet period ahead and the worst-case predictions will never materialize.
But Israel’s enemies are working for a future that is clear to them: a world without Zionism, a world without Israel.
Why is it not alarming when Haifa, the third-largest Israeli city, is building “the largest underground hospital in the world” to be used in case of war? Is it immoral to be on alert for a possible disaster when the Jewish State is distributing new gas masks or when the Habima Theater in Tel Aviv installs numerous underground shelters? Even the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, is building a labyrinth of tunnels and rooms from where the Jewish leadership would guide the country in case of attacks.
Israel remains the only “bunkered” democracy in the world, a country where its military Research and Development Directorate calculated the effects of an Iranian nuclear bomb on Tel Aviv: “A blast radius of about 500 meters and 20,000 people killed,” they said.
According to a Yedioth Ahronoth poll published in 2007, 47 percent of Israelis said they were concerned that in 2048 – the centenary of Israel’s founding – there will be no Israel. Now the deadline is September 2011.
What will happen after the Palestinians will have sought the unilateral declaration at the United Nations?
Pinhas Inbar, one of the leading experts of the Middle East, in a dossier for the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, explained that the Arabs could launch a “Third Intifada.” Other experts suggest that the Palestinians have no material interest in resuming the Jihadist struggle.
The Israeli Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, just declared that the Palestinians are planning “violence and bloodshed such as we have never seen.”
If the Palestinians get a vote for independence, the day after the UN resolution, the Arab security forces could violently lay claim to the land now in Jewish hands. If instead the UN enterprise is a setback, terrorist groups could revive terrorism on a large scale.
The Israeli Defence Minister, Ehud Barak, says that the army is not ready for “a mass invasion of the borders,” after Marwan Barghouti, a terrorist leader of the Fatah movement, sponsored an appeal for “popular marches” against the Jews. The army is building a northern barrier against Syrian and Lebanese infiltrations.
The Jerusalem police just held the largest joint drill since 2005, when Israel dismantled the Gush Katif. Attacks are expected against Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria. Violent episodes could take place against the military checkpoints and the security barrier.
There is a dossier about “popular terrorism” with road blocks and fire. The Arab community in Galilee could join the violence under the incitement of some violent Arab MKs that are asking to change the name of Israel in “Falastin” and to remove the portrait of Theodor Herzl from the Knesset.
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