Self-flagellation hurts Israel, as does selfishness
Time and again Israelis fall prey to their own sense of self-righteousness. The death of 18-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha from Duma near Nablus (biblical Shechem) has spawned an embarrassing display Jewish self-flagellation.They're correct; even if Rivlin's not the worst of his kind, he's still a very embarrassingly PC president, and his pathetic display is only going to hurt Israel.
Though arson attacks carried out by Palestinians in order to falsely accuse Israel are not unheard of, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin didn't even wait for the start of an investigation into the fire before demonstrating just how ready Jews are to take the blame.
"More than I feel ashamed," he said, "I feel pain over the murder of a little baby. Pain caused by a few of my people who chose the way of terror and thereby lost their humanity. Their way is not my way. Their way is not our way. Their way is not the way of the State of Israel and not the way of the Jewish people."
Rivlin's response, which Arabic-language Israeli newspapers headlined with "I Am Ashamed," only served to bolster the impression that Israel was directly responsible for this murder.
Rivlin, who more than once has demonstrated an inclination toward political correctness, again revealed that his concern for Israel's image comes at the expense of Israel's future. Otherwise, it is difficult to explain why he didn't use this sad occasion to likewise condemn the Palestinian Authority, which hails as heroes the killers of Jewish babies.
For those who would deem such a condemnation improper, the very least Rivlin could have done is point out the difference between Israel's contrition and the Palestinians' institutionalized incitement.
The lack of similar outrage over the premeditated killing of Jewish babies raises as much concern as the death of Ali Saad Dawabsha.
Ruthie Blum's also written about how the leftists who held a rally protesting the murder of the teenage girl don't seem the least bit angry at the Haredi extremists, and only seemed to want to take out their anger on Netanyahu:
Schlissel had been released from prison a mere three weeks earlier, after spending a decade in jail for committing exactly the same crime at the very same venue. Indeed, at the 2005 Gay Pride Parade in Jerusalem, he stabbed three marchers. This led to his being convicted of attempted murder and aggravated assault, and sentenced to 12 years in prison -- a sentence which was reduced in 2007.It goes without saying this is a "everyone else's fault but ours" type of mentality. If the leftists had been elected, they would've formed a coalition with the Haredi parties if that's what it took just to maintain power and control. That's just what ended up causing so much damage to this country's psyche over two decades or so.
Secondly, upon his release, Schlissel exhibited behavior that should have set off alarm bells. In the lead-up to the parade, he distributed a document to neighbors in Modiin Illit in which he wrote: "It is the obligation of every Jew to keep his soul from punishment and stop this giant desecration of God's name next Thursday."
He also gave a radio interview to a haredi station reiterating this sentiment and call to action from fellow zealots.
So the fact that he was able to roam around freely, with no surveillance, is shocking to many observers.
Not to me, though, because neither the overly lenient justice system nor the incompetence of the police, coupled with its limited manpower, is the least bit new.
Nor is it surprising that politicians across the board, along with the public, the pundits and all rabbis who recognize and respect the laws of the state and the Torah, promptly denounced the attack. (Though Schlissel and his ilk claim to be upholding Jewish law, they seem to think they are above adhering to the Ten Commandments as well as to the Israeli courts.)
What should cause one to pause is the reaction of the Israeli Left to the incident. Rallies held over the weekend, ostensibly for the purpose of reiterating the call for "tolerance" and "togetherness," turned into hate-fests. Not against the anti-Israel ultra-Orthodox; not against the police; not against the courts; and not even against the electoral system, which is responsible for the power of the haredi parties.
No, the hatred and vitriol were directed at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his coalition partners. Chants full of Hebrew rhymes, accusing the prime minister of incitement, were shouted everywhere, from Zion Square in Jerusalem to Rabin Square in Tel Aviv.
Education Minister Naftali Bennett was asked at the last minute not to speak at the rally in Tel Aviv, when the shouting and cursing at the mere mention of his name grew too menacing. Energy and Infrastructure Minister Yuval Steinitz was only able to reach the podium with escorts. Members of the LGBT faction of the Likud party ushered him to the front, while being jeered and called "fascists" by gays with opposing political views -- and by other leftists with red paint on their palms, to represent blood on the hands of anyone and everyone who might have a different opinion of why they were all gathered there in the first place.
The irony is that Schlissel hates Netanyahu just as much as they do, but for being a secular Jew in the modern State of Israel, whose espousal of liberal values is intolerable.
There is no doubt that this time around, Schlissel will be sentenced to life. Thanks to the Left and Netanyahu -- who prevented the passage of a proposed bill favoring capital punishment for terrorists -- the murderer will live to see his next release, rather than die for slaughtering an innocent girl.
This travesty is what allows Arab terrorists to bide their time until being freed as part of Israel's repeated "prisoner exchange" and "peace process" deals.
But this is of no concern to the Left, which treats every individual Muslim murderer as a "lone wolf," yet blames Israeli society as a whole (with the exception of themselves) for the likes of Schlissel.
Judging from the reaction by LGBT activists, it's clear they have no problem with Haredi extremists and are only exploiting innocent blood for anti-rightist attacks. In fact, where was their condemnation of Haredis who committed sexual abuse of children? Where was their condemnation of Mordecai Elon after he disgraced himself? You'd think that kind of behavior would be a concern to them. Their failure to condemn even men like him suggests otherwise.