Mississippi White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. Hamas. The difference, anyone?
How much history was changed by three names: Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman. Alas, add three more names to the list of dead heroes, with the short-term prospect of more violence and the long-term prospect of a decline in racism.
Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman — three idealists, three young men — were murdered during “Freedom Summer” in the American south 50 years ago. These young men were fighting for voter rights. More violence would inevitably come — climaxing in the murder of Martin Luther King, Jr. — before the tide would turn.
Frankel, Shaar, Yifrach — three idealists, three young men — were murdered because they were Jews. Nothing more, nothing less. Their kidnapping and murder were not anti-Zionist. Not anti-Israel. Not anti-settlement. This was anti-Semitism. They were killed not for doing; they were killed for being.
Israel is fed up with this satanic evil, with this Palestinian killing for killing’s sake. No longer will Israel trade Palestinian prisoners for Israelis dead or alive, we dare predict. No more will the perverse illusions of the likes of John Kerry and Benjamin Netanyahu — if only we just give the Palestinians some more blood, some more murderers, some more convicts — peace will magically burst forth like steam from Aladdin’s lamp.
Last Monday evening, when these three innocent boys were found dead is the day when the music stopped.The utter futility, not to mention the moral vacuity, of negotiating with terrorists, or over terrorists, became crystal clear.
The US can pretend that it can keep its interests and security intact by keeping its distance from the brutality in Syria, in Iraq, in Egypt and in many other places in the Middle East. Israel cannot pretend.
Especially Israel. So small. So interwoven. So vulnerable. Twenty seconds across its national width by fighter jet; as small as New Jersey, in square miles. The great outpouring of prayer went unanswered, as least insofar as the human being can trace the trajectory of prayer, and we are now left, yes, with the continued mandate to pray, but with something hard. Something else. Something by way of that most influential factor in history: an idea. Not just with a new security doctrine. Not just with let-Hamas-alone-if-only-it-doesn’t-fire-any-more-missiles-at-Israel, but with this idea:
Ending pragmatic “patience” with Hamas.
Mahmoud Abbas said it. In Arabic. In an Arabic country. In Saudi Arabia. This kidnapping was wrong. This was against humanity. They are human beings, too. Abbas may or may not follow this logic to its conclusion and sever his unity government with Hamas. Israel will follow the logic. No supporter of, operative of, agent of, or apologist for the pure anti-Semitism purveyed by Hamas will be given any more leeway.
For hate speech alone by the various minions of Hamas, no doubt Israel will not act. But in the world of Hamas, the link between hate speech and satanic action is frequent and deep-seated. For that, expect no more leeway extended to Hamas by Israel.
We expect more, infinitely more, from the President of the United States, who found that he could publicly name the racism that kidnapped 300 Nigerian girls, but could not publicly name the racism that kidnapped three Israeli boys until they were dead.
Martin Luther King, Jr., for all of his praise and practice of non-violence notwithstanding, did not fail to name a racist. He knew his enemy when he saw him. He knew that the police in Philadelphia, Mississippi, complicit in the triple murder of Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman, were racist. He did not shy away from the word or the battle. Hamas is racist. It calls for, and acts on its own calls for, the murder of Israelis and the end of Israel. The sides are clear. We believe that Israel’s actions will follow accordingly.
A game changer.
This triple murder in Israel is a game changer.
We cannot see Israel ever returning to the illusionary, phantasmagoric, Alice in Wonderland scenarios under which, for this or the other concession, for this or the other pressure from the US, for this or the other boycott by the EU or others, Israel will cease to name Hamas for what it is: a racist, anti-Semitic enemy that is to be fought and defeated, hook, line and sinker.
Dark days ahead — for the short-term. As the racism in the American south eventually gave way, after it was widely and unflinchingly named, to a more peaceful, productive and tolerant reality, so too in Israel.
Thus may it be His will.
Copyright © 2014 by the Intermountain Jewish News