IF ISRAEL HITS ROCK BOTTOM…
If Israel Hits Rock Bottom, We Will All Hit Rock Bottom
(Jose Maria Aznar)
Far too long ago, it became very unfashionable in Europe to express any support for Israel. But after the recent incident on board a ship on the Mediterranean Sea, filled with anti-Semites and activists, it is difficult to find a more unpopular activity for support. In a perfect world, attacks on the Israeli Naval Commado on the “Mavi Marmara” would not have ended up with 9 dead and dozens wounded. In the perfect world, everyone would peacefully greet the soldier on the ship. In a perfect world not one government, not even speaking of the recent ally of Israel, Turkey, would sponsor and organize fleets, whose sole purpose was to create an impossible situation for Israel, giving it one choice: to reject it’s own political security and end the naval blockades or to risk the wrath of the entire world. In our relationship with Israel we must separate the red fog of evil, which often blocks our ability for a normal judgment. A sound and balanced approach must consider the following facts: first, the Israeli government was created by the choice of the UN. That is why its legitimacy should not be under question. Israel is a country with deep-rooted democratic institutions. It’s a dynamical and open community that stands out in its culture, science and technology. Secondly, thanks to the roots, the history and the values of Israel, Israel is a fully fledged country of the west. In reality, it is a normal western country, found in, however, abnormal surroundings. It is a unique case (occurrence) of the west- the only democratic country, whose existence has been under question since the very birth of its existence. In the first moments of its existence, it was attacked by its neighbors using the conventional weapons of war. Then it was found in the face of terrorism, growing wave after wave reaching the climax of having suicide bombers. Now, with the help of radical Islam and its supporters, Israel is facing a campaign of DE legitimization by international law and diplomacy.
Sixty two years later after its birth, Israel is still fighting for its life. Being punished by rockets in the north and in the south, being under threat from Iran, trying to obtain nuclear weapons, being extruded by friends and by enemies, it seems as though Israel doesn’t have a minute of peace and quiet.
Throughout many years, all the attention of the West had been on trying to have peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and this is understandable. But if Israel, today, is in danger and all the region is rolling to a more alarming and a problematic future than this is not a consequence of lacking understanding of the parties on how to reach a solution to this conflict. The parameters of any prospective peace agreements are clear, as hard as it may seem for both parties, to make a final effort to come to an agreement.
However, the real threat to regional stability must be found in the midst of the rise of radical Islam that sees, in the destruction of Israel, the reincarnation of the religions purpose; but as in the situation with Iran, the expression of its claim of the status of regional hegemon. Both of these views present with it a threat not only to Israel but to the entire western civilization, and even to the whole world as a whole. The problem is in the ambiguous and misleading manner, in which too many western countries react to this situation. It’s very easy to blame Israel in all the problems happening in the Middle East. Some are even speaking out and acting it out as though there might be some type of new understanding of having peace with Islam, only if we would be willing to offer the entire Jewish government into their hands. This would be completely absurd.
Israel is our first line of defense in this non-peaceful region that is always on the verge of being overwhelmed in chaos; the region is important for our energy security, because of our excessive dependence on Middle Eastern oil, in a region that is the first line of defense against extremism. If Israel hits rock bottom, we will all hit rock bottom.
The protection of Israel for a peaceful existence in secured borders requires some degree of moral and strategic clarity, which, as it seems quite often, completely vanished in Europe. The United States also demonstrate evidence of movement into this direction. The Western civilization is going through a period of confusion and loss of vision for the future of the world. To a larger extent this confusion is the result of a masochistic doubt in our own identity; in the power of political correctness; the multicultural community, that makes us fall to our knees before others; and secularism, how ironic! It blinds us even when we are found facing the Jihadists promoting the most fanatical incarnation of their religion.
If we leave Israel in its arbitrariness fate, exactly at this point, then this will serve as an illustration of how low we have fallen and how we are steadily sliding downward. This should not be allowed to happen. Inspired by the consciousness of the need to restore our own Western values, expressing deep concern at the wave of aggression against Israel and recognizing that the power of Israel is our strength and its weakness is our weakness. I made a decision to let out a new initiative Friendship with Israel. This initiative received support from some outstanding people; people like David Trimble, Andrew Roberts, John Bolton, Alexander Toledo (former president of Peru), Marcelo Pera (philosopher and former president of the Italian Senate), Fiamma Nirenstein (Italian writer and politician), financials Robert Agostinelli and the Catholic intellectual George Vigel. Our intention is not to protect and individual policy decision or any particular Israeli government. Sponsors of this initiative will certainly, in some situations not agree with the decisions of Jerusalem. We are democrats and believe in different views. However, one thing that unites us is this non-comprisable support for Israel’s existence and self-defense. For the western countries, to stand on the side of those who question the legitimacy of Israel’s existence, and to play international organizational games that deal with the question of life security of Israel, to please and placate those who reject the worth of the western countries instead of standing firmly to protect this prize – This is not only a frightening moral mistake but a strategic mistake of paramount importance.
Israel, this is the foundational part of the West. The West is what it is today because of the Judeo-Christian roots. If the Jewish element of these roots would be destroyed and if Israel loses, than we also will be lost. Whether we like it or not, our fates are inextricably intertwined.
Jose Maria Aznar was the prime minister of Spain from 1996 to 2004. The above article was published in the British newspaper “The Times” on June 17, 2010