Whether Joseph or Simon or Ivan or Achmed agree or not.
History repeats itself when it comes to Jews and Israel – President Obama remains more concerned about Jews building homes in Jerusalem than radical Muslims. Yet, the Jewish State continues to grow and thrive.
There’s a Zionist leader named Ze’ev Jabotinsky who passed away in 1940, yet is considered the forefather of today’s nationalist politicians, including Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, whose late father was Jabotinsky’s personal secretary.
As Jabotinsky said, “We hold that Zionism is moral and just. And since it is moral and just, justice must be done, no matter whether Joseph or Simon or Ivan or Achmed agree with it or not.” Similarly as Jabotinsky wrote in his epic “Ethics Of The Iron Wall”:
Human society is based on reciprocity. If you remove reciprocity, justice becomes a lie. A person walking somewhere on a street has the right to live only because and only to the extent that he acknowledges my right to live. But, if he wishes to kill me, to my mind he forfeits his right to exist – and this also applies to nations. Otherwise, the world would become a racing area for vicious predators, where not only the weakest would be devoured, but the best.
And while Israel wants peace, Israel knows the importance of a strong arm and standing strong against her enemies, yet:
Everything connected with war is “evil” and “good” does not exist at all. When you fire at the enemy do not lie to yourself and do not imagine that you are shooting at the “guilty”… [I]f at that time we would have begun to calculate what was preferable – the result would have been simple: if you want to be “good” allow yourself to be killed and forego all that you made it your aim to defend: home, country, freedom, hope. The Romans used to say: “always choose the lesser of two evils. When you are faced with a situation where the exertion of force prevails, only one question may be presented: “which is worse?”
Amidst criticism that Israel faces world pressure, and should sacrifice to comply with “world leaders,” Ze’ev Jabotinsky wrote a clear answer in "The Story of The Jewish Legion":
"Everybody is wrong and you alone are right?” No doubt this question springs by itself to the reader’s lips and mind. It is customary to answer this with apologetic phrases to the effect that I fully respect public opinion that I bow to it, that I was glad to make concessions….All this is unnecessary, and all this is untrue. You cannot believe in anything in the world, if you admit even once that perhaps your opponents are right, and not you. This is not the way to do things. There is but one truth in the world, and it is all yours. If you are not sure of it, stay at home; but if you are sure, don’t look back, and it will be your way.
As Jabotinsky said in 1940, “Life is not always logical.”
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