From Dialogue To Disaster: Hebrew University As A Microcosm Of Israel

UPDATES 5 pm Israel time, Wednesday, December 18 2013:

**The military wing of Hamas, the Qassam Brigades, celebrated its 26th anniversary yesterday.

The Qassam Brigades on parade (picture source: el arabiya).

The Qassam Brigades on parade (picture source: el arabiya).

According to statistics that they proudly published, the Brigades are responsible for the murders of 915 IDF soldiers and hundreds of other Israeli citizens.

Specifically, the Brigade claimed responsibility for 87 suicide bombings, 24 kidnapping attempts, 611 explosive IED attacks, 254 ambushes, 188 sniper attacks, and the firing of “more than” 10,000 mortar shells and rockets into southern Israel (apparently even Hamas has lost count of exactly how many).

And in response to the Israeli “humanitarian” aid now pouring into Gaza including construction materials to build more infiltration tunnels into Israel and more fuel to operate the Gaza electrical plant that supplies power to the terrorist rocket launchers, Hamas declared yesterday that it is ready to go to war with Israel again–and this time “it will finish the job.”

So much for Israel’s political correct humanitarian gestures.

**Either you want Jerusalem to be the eternal, undivided capital of Israel or you don’t. In a shocking statement of its lack of support for Jerusalem yesterday, the Netanyahu government led the charge to reject a proposal that would have required the prior approval of 80 Knesset members to “negotiate” on Jerusalem.

The proposed bill, written by MK Yaakov Litzman of the Ashkenazi Orthodox, United Torah Judaism Party, was rejected by a vote of 51-12. Particularly appalling was the fact that 57 members did not vote– including all the cowardly Knesset members from Naftali Bennett’s Jewish Home Party which hypocritically puts on a facade of fighting against the re-division of the city. The only Coalition member with an ounce of integrity was Moshe Feiglin–the same Moshe Feiglin that Benjamin Netanyahu has barred from going to the Temple Mount.

**On the subject of hypocrisy, Tzipi Livni was at it again yesterday. Livni, who is leading the charge to hand over half of Jerusalem–including the Temple Mount to the PLO– issued this “wonderful” statement of sheer nonsense in the Knesset debate over Litzmann’s proposed bill: “Most Israelis want a Jewish Zionist government [which is] democratic and liberal [and puts] an end to the conflict and maintains Jerusalem and Israel’s international standing.”

Of course, most Israelis want a government that is Jewish, Zionist, and democratic. The problem is that Livni’s actions do little except to undermine the state. And the sheer hypocrisy of Livni taking the floor of the Knesset to argue against a law that would maintain Jerusalem and using the argument that Israelis want to “maintain Jerusalem” is Orwellian in its lunacy.

The only thing that Livni cares about is herself–and her standing in the international community. Israeli voters have long since recognized the vacuity of her liberal positions. In the last election, she barely garnered enough votes to even have a party in the Knesset–and recent polls show that were another election to be held in the near future, Livni’s Hatnua party would fade from existence.

Why such a despised figure in Israel has been given such a lofty platform to spout her nonsense can only be answered by Benjamin Netanyahu.

**On the subject of lunacy, Netanyahu coalition Transportation Minister Israel Katz announced yesterday that”all” Israeli airlines would begin flying to Turkey again next summer.

Ostensibly, Israeli airlines stopped flying to Turkey two and a half years ago because of “security issues.” The truth, of course, is that Turkey withdrew the landing rights of Israeli airlines following the incident involving the Turkish terrorist ship Mavi Marmara.

What has happened during this time is that the number of Israeli tourists to Turkey–whose money propped up numerous Turkish tourist locations–dropped precipitously (ironically Turkish airlines continued landing in Israel).

Why any Israeli would want to go to Turkey is beyond your humble servant’s comprehension–and in our family, we have decided that we will never return there until Turkey apologizes for the Mavi Marmara.


Speaking of your humble servant’s family, four years ago when our daughter was in undergraduate school, she attended the Hebrew University in Jerusalem for a semester as part of a study abroad program through the University of California.

All in all she loved the experience. The courses and teachers were wonderful (she was an Archaeology and Religious Studies double major), and despite the fact that she was born in Israel and had spent a considerable portion of her life in Israel, she had never really gotten to know Jerusalem–which she grew to love.

The only part of her experience that she was disturbed about was the constant “hassling” she and other students received on and around the Hebrew University campus. She was appalled at the constant Arab student demonstrations against Israel, and the lack of safety that precluded her from walking alone through the eastern part of the city.

This lack of safety has grown progressively worse since 2009.

Yesterday, the Knesset’s Internal Affairs and Environment Committee held a hearing on the dangerous situation around Hebrew University.

Testimony at the hearing revealed that:

*”Rock” and Molotov cocktail attacks take place everyday.

*Female students are “harassed” by Arabs in the vicinity everyday. The situation is so bad that female students have to be driven to their dorms.

*19 sexual offenses, 45 other violent crimes, and 119 property crimes have taken place in the vicinity of the school this year (these numbers do not include “rock” and Molotov cocktail attacks as described above).

*Soldiers at the IDF base beside the university (as previously reported on israelstreet), are no longer permitted to travel individually in the area–all soldiers must travel in convoys.

It turns out that most of the increasing Arab attacks are emanating from the Arab neighborhood of Isawiya–even though the mukhtar of the neighborhood is supposedly working with the police to patrol the area and has been for years.

Note the distance between the University and the students' dorms (map source:

Note the distance between the University and the students’ dorms (map source:

The underlying problem was expressed clearly by Amit Barak of the student organization Im Tirzu: “Israeli sovereignty has disappeared from Mount Scopus . . . [However individual] police are not to blame . . . because they are crippled by a twisted political correctness that does not want to deal with the Arabs of Isawiya.”

And there it is. By not aggressively seeking to solve this problem years ago and trusting in dialogue with the Arab community, the Israeli security establishment has allowed an already bad problem to grow infinitely worse. 

Everywhere one looks in Israel these days–on the Temple Mount, on the roads of Judea and Samaria, in the Negev region–one sees the same dynamic at work. The more Israel talks and attempts to “engage the Arabs”, the more the Arabs sense weakness, and the more the situation deteriorates.

Inaction fed by a desire for political correctness is leading to disaster. 

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