Sunday, November 21, 2004

Teflon Terrorism

Musings #84
November 19, ‏2004
The 6th of Kislev

Teflon Terrorism

Once upon a time, in the days the film star, Ronnie Reagan was the President of the United States, the media criticized him as “the Teflon President.” They couldn’t understand that what they saw as his faults and foibles could be ignored by the “obviously ignorant” masses. What they saw as serious faults, just didn’t stick. They didn’t damage his reputation with the American citizens, and they didn’t prevent his being re-elected president.

For me, as a veteran expatriate, over thirty years living in Israel, I have no opinions about the late Ronnie Reagan. It’s none of my business what type of president he was for resident Americans, and all that’s important is that the majority of Americans were very satisfied with his presidency.

Today the Teflon that disturbs me is much more serious. It’s the Teflon that keeps the blood, gore and unprecedented sadism and cruelty off of the Arab terrorism that’s plaguing Israel and other parts of the world. No matter how many people they murder, whether Jewish, their fellow Arabs or any other unfortunate whom they decide needs permanent punishment, the “world” calls them “freedom-fighting activists.” When they riot and attack they’re called “demonstrators.”

When I was in my teens I was a Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry activist and even met my husband at a SSSJ demonstration. We never attacked anyone nor broke any laws. Everytime those words are used to describe the terrorists who injured me, murdered my friends and neighbors and demand that my country, Israel, be destroyed I’m amazed. It makes no sense.

What aura comes from these terrorists that makes every murderous deed and statement slide off, like from a Teflon-coated pan?

In this week’s “Newsweek,” there’s an article that sheds some light on the phenomena. Amazing coincidence—it starts with the same phrase I started this musing with: “Once upon a time…” It’s about Hans Christian Andersen and can be considered an expose`. His stories that we’re familiar with are happy optimistic tales, but in actuality he didn’t write those lovely upbeat stories. His stories “…were filled with tragedy. His heroines died or suffered dismemberment…” He was a lonely, unsuccessful and unhappy writer until “… sanitized translations…became best-selling books…”

In the past few decades, journalists have been doing the same for the Arab terrorists. They sanitize what they see and what they hear to tell the world pretty, little fairy tales. And the world enjoys the stories so much they allow them to block out reality.

That’s how the fiction of “Arab as David vs Israel as Goliath” has taken hold of the world’s imagination. Goliath was a well-armed warrior, part of the Philistine army out to destroy the Jewish Nation. The morale of King Saul’s soldiers was in the minus range. It reminds me of the politicians who claim that we must give away YESHA, because it’s too difficult to hold it. The real David was a young shepherd who heard Goliath taunting the Jewish soldiers. Convinced that G-d was with him (like Nachshon stepping into the sea?) he was armed with a slingshot, picked up some stones (any relation to Jacob’s from this week’s parsha?) and took up the challenge. As everyone knows, his aim was perfectly siyata d’shmaya (with G-d’s help) and Goliath was dead, killed by David and his well-aimed stone.

In the modern fairy tale, the Arabs are the defenseless David, and we, the Jews, are Goliath. But I don’t see how a pregnant mother driving her children can be compared to Goliath and the armed terrorist who shot them all dead is anything like David. I don’t see the “Goliath-like aggression” in some middle-aged and elderly Israelis shopping in the market, or high school students and teachers waiting for a bus to get home, or a pre-schooler being taken to nursery school, or a father and daughter and groups of friends having coffee, pizza or ice cream.

What heroism is there in a terrorist who throws a boulder onto a car that crushes an infant’s head? What type of leaders can strap explosives onto another human being and send him or her into a crowd to be a human murder weapon? If you’re looking for a Biblical figure to compare them to, there is one, Amalek, who tried to destroy the Jewish Nation time after time by taking advantage of our weaknesses. Those terrorists are not David, not our sensitive king who played music and wrote T’hilim, Psalms.

All of us who have ever owned a Teflon-coated pan know that it is possible to scrub off the slickness. And we have a real job to do. We have to get rid of the Teflon, keep scratching it off and telling the truth. Take a look at what the Arab countries did in the twentieth century:
What’s in that kefiya? We have to keep reminding the world that Arafat’s followers are dangerous, cruel, murderous terrorists. If we do our job right, it will stick.

And then, G-d willing, we will live happily ever after.

Batya Medad


Smooth said...

Excellent article. And thank you for the link and traffic. ;)

Hokule'a Kealoha said...

Excellent post and all of your post are very good. Thank you for stopping by my blog from time to time. I will be blogrolling you so that others will have your musings to enjoy