By Isi Leibler, Israel Hayom—
The recent decision by the interior and public security ministers to establish a special task force aimed at expelling foreigners engaged in anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions activities is a long overdue remedial action against anti-Semites and renegade Jews who demonize and delegitimize Israel.
In this context, I applaud the government for taking action, albeit belatedly, to expel or bar entry to foreigners who come into Israel in the guise of tourists to promote or assist BDS and provoke Palestinians in the Judea and Samaria to clash with Israeli troops.
No doubt this will lead to a torrent of hysteria by the delusional Left claiming that this “denial of freedom of expression” is another move by the government toward implementing a “fascist” regime. But this initiative should have been introduced long ago.
The timing coincides with impending actions by European governments, floundering in their efforts to provide security to their citizens from attacks by crazed Islamic fundamentalist killers, both imported and homegrown. They will be seeking to impose legislation that will, to some extent, limit civil liberties that compromise security. If they fail to act, they will be overwhelmed at the polls by radical right-wing parties, which have already mushroomed in response to the recent terrorist rampages.
But the situation in Israel is infinitely more acute than in any other country. The Jewish state is the only country in the world whose right to exist is constantly challenged by neighboring states. Israel’s purported peace partner has made it clear that a Palestinian state is merely the first step toward the ultimate goal of eliminating Jewish sovereignty in the region. Ironically, even though much of the world refuses to recognize it, the reality is that today most Israelis would be ready to separate from the Palestinians if long-term security could be ensured. It is the Palestinians, brainwashed by late PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat and current Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, that can only see the destruction of Israel as the means to end the conflict.
In addition, unlike Europe, Israel is an oasis of relative tranquillity in a continent of dictatorships and fanatic Islamic rogue states. In most of the region, the concept of human rights is simply nonexistent. Moreover, over the past few years, the region has transformed into the most brutal killing field in the world, with hundreds of thousands massacred and millions displaced from their homes.
It is particularly galling for Israelis to see terrorist attacks throughout the world covered extensively by the media and given the focus of various governments while similar attacks in Israel are globally ignored. Their sickening justification for these omissions is that terrorist attacks in Israel differ from those in Europe because they are based on “resistance to occupation.” Never mind the fact that terrorism in Israel far predates 1967, when Israel triumphed over the combined Arab armies seeking to conquer it. The fact is that Israel has been the canary in the coal mine of terrorism, and many Europeans are now likely to try to emulate our techniques and strategies in dealing with their own threats.
The government seems to have, only now, finally recognized that a crucial component in our enemies’ efforts to destroy us is a war of ideas — one that we are painfully losing. Foreign governments are surreptitiously pouring vast sums of money NGOs, not for the promotion of human rights but to delegitimize the State of Israel.
Our government has been nonchalant while simultaneously being intimidated by the delusional Left and deterred from taking steps to protect itself from internal and external enemies.
There is also a strong case in favor of prosecuting Israelis who engage in activities that subvert the state or seek to delegitimize it. When the radical left-wing media, academics and activists broadcast blatant lies demonizing their own country and besmirching it by falsely accusing the Israel Defense Forces of engaging in war crimes, in the present climate this amounts to subversion. No other country confronting the threats to its existence would tolerate such behavior or enable taxpayers’ funds to subsidize “cultural” activities designed to demonize the nation.
How would Winston Churchill have dealt with such behavior during World War II? A British parliamentarian expressing seditious remarks supporting those seeking the destruction of the nation — the way Joint Arab List MK Hanin Zoabi has done in Israel — would face charges of high treason.
Bleeding hearts opposing the exclusion of foreign BDS activists should review U.S. policy during the Cold War, which denied entry to any foreigner who had been a member of the Communist Party. The dangers confronting Israel are infinitely greater than those the U.S. faced from the Soviet Union at the time.
Let us be under no illusions: Since the establishment of Israel, we have been and continue to live in a state of war. The vast majority of the Israeli public would doubtless agree that limited curtailment of civil liberties is highly justified if it inhibits those engaged in demonizing and delegitimizing us, or even saves a single Israeli from becoming a casualty of terrorism.
Isi Leibler’s website can be viewed at www.wordfromjerusalem.com. He may be contacted at email@example.com.