Israel Is Not the World’s Doormat
A Jew, a Muslim and a Christian all land at a British airport. The Muslim is the first to go through passport control and encounters no problems whatsoever. The Christian also breezes through. The Jew is summarily arrested and interrogated for hours over “war crimes.”
If this were a joke it would probably be deemed politically incorrect by the liberal thought police for reasons that my brain is not wired to comprehend. Unfortunately, however, it is not a joke. A few weeks ago, a retired IDF officer was detained when he landed in the United Kingdom for a business trip, and questioned over allegations that he was involved in “war crimes” during the Gaza war in the summer of 2014.
The officer was questioned for hours and was only released following intervention by the Foreign Ministry and the IDF’s Operations Directorate and International Law Department. Furthermore, according to media reports, the officer was only released because it was a matter of mistaken identity. The British authorities subsequently apologized to the officer, but apparently only for arresting someone who was not on the list.
In an interview with The Algemeiner, international law expert Avi Bell said: “The British authorities arrested an Israeli under the power of universal jurisdiction. Apparently, anti-Israel activists produced a list of Israelis that they want arrested in the UK on the basis of false charges of war crimes, and the relevant British authorities are obeying the demands of the anti-Israel activists. According to media reports, the only reason the British released the Israeli was that he was not on the list of people that the anti-Israel activists demand be held for a show trial. These reports do not show that the British have apologized for the outrage of agreeing to arrest Israelis on trumped-up charges from a list prepared by anti-Israel activists. Rather, they indicate that the British have only apologized for arresting someone who was not on the list.”
Has the rule of law been abolished in the UK? How can British law enforcement authorities be acting on the orders of anti-Israel activists? Did the British Parliament pass a law that Israeli officers are outlaws as soon as they set foot on British soil?
The Brits have a sordid history of arresting Jews, which they did with considerable deceit and glee when they held the mandate of Palestine. Perfidious Albion clearly finds it hard to change its ways.
Israel should not accept this apology. It is time to respond in kind. For one thing, if at all possible, Israel should proceed to sue on behalf of the officer who was arrested in this way and not settle for a disingenuous apology from the British authorities. What the British did is serious and if Israel does not respond harshly it will be signaling that Jewish rights can be violated with impunity.
However, Israel should not stop there. Hostile measures toward Israel should be met in kind with refusals of cooperation in vital areas where assistance from Israel is indispensable. The European Union wants to boycott Israeli goods from Judea and Samaria, it should be forced to pay a price for this extremely hostile move. It should have to pay that price on several levels: Diplomatically, legally and where it hurts the most: intelligence sharing.
It was a specific intelligence warning from Israel that led German authorities to call off a soccer game between Germany and the Netherlands on November 17, German media reported back in November. Around the same time, German department stores were removing Israeli wine from their shelves because Germany is part of the European Union, which had at that time released its new guidelines on the labeling of Israeli goods from Judea and Samaria.
Why is Israel supplying Germany with intelligence while Germany is labeling Israeli goods and even removing them from its stores?
Likewise, Israel supplies the world with amazing technology and medications that even the worst Jew-haters have no qualms about using as long as it saves their sorry lives.
World leaders, several of whom not only wish to boycott Israel but wish to see it disappear from the face of the earth, were protected in Paris during the 11-day climate summit by an Israeli-made Skystar 180 aerostat surveillance balloon. The Skystar 180 is one of several aerostat models designed and manufactured in Yavne by RT Systems for use in intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and communications.
Israel should of course continue to put its unique inventions out there and it obviously cannot stop them from being used by those who are hostile to us. It would be infantile to try.
However, there is a limit. Actively aiding those who wish us harm in one way or another — like the EU — in matters of vital importance to them, and being met with hostility in return is not clever government policy. It only encourages disrespect and more of the same denigration and hostility.
We owe the world nothing. Everything we ever accomplished we did despite long and intense efforts on the part of other world powers to destroy us. We do not need to prove ourselves, explain ourselves or pay off any debts.
We are not the world’s doormat. Can we please stop acting like one?
This article was originally published by Israel Hayom.