Is There a Major Disaster Brewing?
I believe so. Thousands, if not millions, will die.
Here is the potential scary scenario.
Several political academics (1) have claimed that the Jewish people in Israel are experiencing the Masada syndrome.
Masada is a fortress overlooking the Dead Sea. Built by Herod on the top of a steep mountain, it is very inaccessible. During the First Jewish-Roman War, Jewish rebels hid at Masada with their families after the Romans destroyed the Second Temple. They held on there for several years: The Romans unable to conquer the fortress, the Jews too weak to overcome the surrounding garrisons.
Running out of supplies, the Jewish fighters decided to commit suicide rather than surrender and become Romans slaves and be exiled. They killed themselves and their families––man, woman, and child.
Yitzhak Lamdan’s 1927 poem “Masada” portrayed Israel as a Masada, a safe fortress, where survivors of the Holocaust believed they could feel safe. I suppose it also meant they will “commit suicide” if they are unable to overcome the surrounding enemies.
I do not agree with this theory.
There is a story that I do believe: the story of the hero Samson.
Samson was a man of extraordinary strength, attributed to his long hair. He was so strong he could defeat a lion.
He had an affair with Dalila who cut his hair while he was sleeping, causing him to lose his strength. She then informed the Philistines, enemies of Samson and the Jewish tribes, and they captured him.
The Philistines chained Samson to two major columns supporting the Philistine temple. They abused him, plucked his eyes out, and stabbed him, all while laughing at his suffering. He endured it, but in the meantime, his hair grew back. Once he got his power back, he made a decision: tamut nafshi im ha plishtim, may my soul die with the Philistines. He pulled on the chains demolishing the two columns, collapsing the whole temple onto both himself and the Philistines. And everyone died.
The Jewish people have been tormented, murdered, gassed, raped, and despised for two thousand years. The Jewish people hoped that by returning to their homeland the world would finally let them live in peace. It was a tiny piece of land, the size of New Jersey, sixty percent desert, forty percent swamps dominated by malaria-bearing mosquitos. But the dream to be finally safe did not work out.
The displaced Palestinians, who adopted the name of the Philistines, suffered. As a refugee myself, I feel for them, but all over the world refugees eventually, settle. In spite of billions of dollars from Western powers and philanthropic associations to help the Palestinians, they have not settled for over two generations. Where are the billions of dollars? Not in factories. Not in businesses. Not in education. It is either in arms to destroy Israel or hidden by corrupt Palestinian leaders in Swiss banks. Where is the cement Israel allowed into Gaza so that the Gaza people can rebuild their homes? It is in the tunnels built to cross the border underground in order to terrorize Israel.
Why keep living in misery? Why can no settlement be reached? I suggest a reason. According to Islam and the Qur’an, no Muslim can give up Muslim land. Those that do are executed.
The Palestinians cannot, and will not, ever give up their right of return to their homeland.
Palestinians have demonstrated that resolution whether during the Oslo or Camp David Accords. Each time negotiations have closed on a two-state agreement, the Palestinian leader has refused to sign at the last moment. Even now in the talks on the Deal of the Century of Donald Trump, the Palestinian authorities say it clearly: they are against a two-state solution. I believe it is because they could not appear in Palestinian history books as the person who gave up their homeland.
So where are we now?
The Jewish people in Israel have no place to go and even if they could, they do not want to go back to the Diaspora and be subject to scorn and hate, in fear for their lives as they pray in a synagogue. The Palestinians are surrounding Israel from the West Bank, Lebanon, and Gaza. In May 2019, seven hundred missiles rained onto Israel from Gaza falling less than ten miles from Tel Aviv. Soon it will be Tel Aviv, where the majority of Israelis live. These missiles have caused serious casualties. They did it before. They will probably do it again.
What country in the world would tolerate this?
Rather than show outrage, the world sympathizes with the hopeless Palestinians who live in squalor and suffering although it is perpetuated by their Arab brothers and sisters who refuse to let them settle in their countries.
The Israelis, in spite of the terrorist attacks, continue providing electricity and water to Gaza. They allow medical supplies to cross the border and provide significant medical assistance to Gaza residents in Israeli hospitals. To show good will, they even removed all Israeli settlements on the border of Gaza, giving the Gaza people the settlers’ houses and fertile agricultural land. And what happened? The houses were razed to the ground and the fields were neglected and turned back to the desert. The Palestinians perpetuated their own misery and dropped hundreds of missiles into Israel.
What the hell is going on?
My theory: if the Palestinians settle, there will be no legitimate reason for them to return to the land they left behind. If they build and improve their quality of life, there will be no misery and no money coming to those Swiss banks.
Missiles continue to fall on Israel and Palestinians continue to sacrifice their own children to carry bombs on their bodies, to kill themselves for the sake of killing Jews. The Palestinian authorities even make heroes of those that kill as many Jews as possible: each family that loses a member to terroristic suicide gets a stipend from the government for years to come. Then the Palestinians claim in alto voce that they want peace.
Israelis continue to live with daily terrorist attacks, with missiles targeting little children’s nurseries and schools, innocent children crying, terrorized in underground shelters.
How long will this continue? How long will Israeli live with terror and worldwide scorn and rejection? How long will they live with injustice, the UN targeting only Israel for condemnation? Will there be a moment when it will be just too much?
Israel is not anymore, the Diaspora Jews who suffered quietly. In Israel, Jewish hair is growing. It is rumored that Israel has over two hundred nuclear bombs. Could the Samson story repeat itself and outrage might erupt—outrage over the thousands of years of suffering and injustice. May there be a moment that Israel, seeing no solution to the conflict or feeling truly threatened, will pull on their chains, collapsing the columns of the temple and killing all inhabitants, including themselves.
One scenario: They could drop a nuclear bomb on the perpetually threatening Iran, who openly calls for the destruction and annihilation of Israel, the one who denies that the Holocaust ever happened, the one that provides missiles to Hamas and Hezbollah that rain on Israel and kills children and women. Israeli nuclear submarines are allegedly already in the Strait of Hormuz, just across Iran, ready to fire a nuclear device if needed.
If that happens what will be the next event? Will Iran reciprocate with support from the Muslim Pakistanis’ nuclear arsenal? Will the Palestinians access from Pakistan a tactical nuclear device and detonate it in the middle of Tel Aviv, killing hundreds of thousands of Jews? And how would Israel react with the two hundred strategic nuclear devices it supposedly has if that happens? Did Israel not swear that “never again” would we be led quietly to the slaughter?
And when a nuclear war starts in the region, what do you think is going to happen beyond the Middle East? How will the 2.2 billion Muslims around the world react to what is happening in the Middle East? Would they not turn en masse against Western powers and accuse them of supporting Israel? Imagine the nature of the serious and frequent terrorism that will happen in Paris, London, or the US, in Disneyland or at the Super Bowl.
For anyone who thinks that this horrific potential scenario is a sick product of my imagination, please note that when Israel was on the brink of destruction during the Yom Kippur War, then-Prime Minister Golda Meir seriously considered utilizing nuclear devices.
Israelis will not commit suicide and silently disappear like the rebels of Masada did. That is the wish of their enemies. If they must die, they will take the world with them like Samson did and the world would be in flames.
The Middle East conflict is not local, not even regional. Its impact is global, and the world had better take that into account.
Ichak Kalderon Adizes