Opposition leader Isaac Herzog has called for Israel to open its doors to Syrian refugees.
This is insanity.
The last time Syrian Arabs came into Israel (other than in tanks) was during the first Aliyah, when Jewish farmers provided thousands of jobs in the new moshavim. A hundred years later they named themselves Palestinians and accused us of stealing their country.
This Palestinian lie has dogged us to this very day, when the flag of their fakery now flutters outside the United Nations by an overwhelming vote of its Israel-bashers.
Herzog’s job as opposition leader is to oppose the Netanyahu government – not to oppose the Israeli national interest. His nochshlepper Tzipi Livni never stops peddling the sophistry of demographic disaster, when Arab numbers are supposed to overrun Israel’s democratic majority. And here is Herzog wanting to hasten Livni’s scenario.
Supporting Herzog in this hara-kiri initiative, Mahmoud Abbas appealed to the United Nations to pressure Israel to allow these refugees to move to the ‘West Bank’. He needs them there in large numbers to offset the flowering of Jewish settlement in hills and valleys of Judea and Samaria which Arabs neither inhabited nor cared about before the Jews arrived.
No Mr Herzog… Israel should not and need not do this. And neither is there any moral obligation to do so as part of Europe’s sudden conversion into the Umma’s hospitality tent. When Jews tried to flee Nazi genocide, they didn’t have a choice of 22 Jewish countries to choose from. They only had one, and even that was barred by British soldiers tasked with protecting Arab sensitivities. So, dear world, give us a pass and let our oil-soaked Arab neighbours like Saudi and Qatar show their humanity first – that’s if they have any.
In the morality stakes, Israel is not the same as Germany, Britain or any other of the destinations preferred by the tide of migrants. We did not initiate wars in foreign lands, nor were we so stupid as to withdraw so prematurely as to leave a perilous vacuum for Islamist barbarians to fill with the blood of innocents.
Our tiny Jewish state already has the highest proportion of migrants per capita in the world. Since 1948, Israel has provided a home for millions of Jewish refugees from around the world – Morocco, Iraq, the former Soviet Union, Ethiopia. As the saying goes; we gave already, at the office.
But there is another reason too. Unlike other countries the State of Israel is a game reserve. It is the sole safe refuge for the world’s most endangered of human species. The swift resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe is proof-positive that Jews are never safe among the nations and that our tiny sliver of homeland will have to take in millions more genuine asylum seekers in the coming years. “Save me a place” is the unspoken message in the hearts of Jews all over the world.
We may not have much space to give away, but we have big hearts. That’s why Israelis are first on the scene with emergency aid and first responders to disasters like Haiti and Nepal. We don’t make pledges … we show up.
And we were also the first to take in hundreds of Vietnamese boat people when the rest of the world turned their backs. This was the first act of Menachem Begin as Likud prime minister in 1977. Those Vietnamese and their extended families are now happily integrated into Israeli society and serve in the army and other public services. They have no flag to raise other than a Magen David and will sing the Hatikva without claiming it abuses their national feelings.
And besides, even if we were so reckless as to take in a few thousand Syrian refugees as a humanitarian gesture, do you think that would count one jot with the Israel-bashers? What would be the point anyway?
Surrounded by mortal enemies – now to be vastly enriched by Barack Obama’s presidential legacy - the tiny State of Israel has a national security priority higher than any other nation on earth. Not for us are such rash commitments so easily made by secure and carefree states.
And when such ideas are supported by the likes of Mahmoud Abbas we should know instinctively that they are not in our interests.