Why is the Jewish and Israeli Left so Extreme?
While Arab nations bordering Israel don’t permit women to vote, Israel was the first nation in the world to have a woman Prime Minister – Golda Meir. Described as the “strong-willed, straight-talking, grey-bunned grandmother of the Jewish people”, Meir led the Jewish nation for many years.
While many of Meir’s views on economic policy would differ from those of today’s Prime Minister, as she was a member of the left-wing Mapai political party, her views on security coincide with the leaders of the Israeli government today.
Nowadays, the Left has moved to the extreme far-left – far further than many of the Zionist forefathers of the State of Israel (Meir was one of 24 signatories, two of which were women, of the Israeli Declaration of Independence in 1948). They are well beyond the pale of consensus.
Golda Meir’s ideas in her own words:
- “Now they say we should go back to the ’67 borders, but that’s where we were so why was there a war? And we had ’47 borders… we didn’t like them very much but we said yes to them. But there was still a war. And after the ’48 war they said we should go back to the ’47 borders. But that’s where we were…and that’s where they wanted to get us out from…They still nurture a hope that at some time we’ll disappear.”
- “One need not have a fertile imagination to realize what the situation of the State of Israel would have been if we had been deployed on the June 4th 1967 lines… The Arab rulers pretend that their objective is limited to reaching the lines of June 1967 but we know their true objective: the total subjugation of the State of Israel.”
- “There can be no greater mistake in assessing the current situation in the Middle East than to assume that the conflict continues because of a specific Arab grievance – the plight of the Arab refugees, the Israeli presence on the West Bank, the reunification of Jerusalem. The heart of the problem is what caused the Six Day War… Simply put the root issue is the Arab attitude to Israel’s very existence…They don’t want us here. That’s what it’s about. It isn’t true that they don’t want us in Nablus or Jenin. They don’t want us, period.”
- “Everybody today tells us there is no such thing in the world today as secure borders. Yet I haven’t seen any people stepping back from their borders and saying “we don’t care what our borders are.” They tell us there will be international guarantees. … does any other people depend on international guarantees? No. But we should. And if we don’t, we’re stubborn or intransigent or not accommodating or we don’t care about public relations.”
- “There are those who threaten with a gun and those who try to defend themselves…to say a plague upon both your houses is an injustice.”
- “If we are criticized because we do not bow – because we cannot compromise on the question, ‘To be or not to be,’ it is because we have decided that, come what may, we are and we will be.”
- “There is nothing Israel wants so much as peace – With all the bleakness of the desert, the desert of hate around us is even more bleak.”
Another Zionist leader, before Meir was Ze’ev Jabotinsky who wrote in 1929: “The Jewish people – all of us, 100 percent want peace” – but more important than peace is survival. The mistake the Left makes today was highlighted by Jabotinsky when he said: “A great commotion is currently afoot in Zionism, caused by the community of the seekers of peace, whose intention is to achieve (by way, of course, of preaching to the Jews alone) agreement with the Arabs.”
Whether one defines themselves as a Revisionist Zionist like Jabotinsky, or a Liberal Zionist like Meir, Zionists must be concerned with the security of the Jewish state more than “peace” with an enemy who wants to destroy Israel piece by piece.