I wrote about my friend the assassin because she represents the incredible moral dilemma that Israel struggles with every day.
My friend has strong moral values. She loves her mother and brothers.
She would make a great mother. In fact, I can’t imagine too many who would be more loving and devoted to her kids.
Her comrades look up to her, like an older sister.
But, she has a hollow tooth with a radio transmitter. She is a black belt in three martial arts. And, she is deadly accurate when her finger is wrapped around a trigger.
That is Israel.
From the very beginning, Israel wanted to be a society of ideals. She wanted to be an example to the rest of the world of a just society living in peace and harmony. She loves her children and is devoted to her family.
Her medical teams have been everywhere in Africa. She reaches out to her neighbors and to her enemies. Her scientists are at the cutting edge of physical (and not-so-physical) science research.
She has created miracles in the desert. She stamped out malaria in the Galil and dramatically raised the standard of living among the Arabs living there. She quadrupled theÂ income of Palestinians living in the West Bank.
But, Israel also has the most effective intelligence services in the world. Her army isÂ dedicated and massively well-trained. And she has never lost a war.
Many of you have expressed horror at what my friend has had to do, and believe me when I say that she joins you in that feeling.
Israel is the same. Golda Meir puts it this way:
It is true we have won all our wars, but we have paid for them. We don’t want victories anymore. Â
In another speech, but in the same vein, she also said:
We do not rejoice in victories. We rejoice when a new kind of cotton is grown and when strawberries bloom in Israel.
The tragedy of Israel is like the tragedy of my friend. She would make a great mother because she loves children. She’d make a great neighbor because she likes to help others. She’d make a great leader because people tend to respect her.
Unfortunately, the Arabs have not given her the chance to be any of those things – which means that she’s had the opportunity to show another side to her character: absolute and total determination.
Israel hates what she has had to do to survive, but she will never hesitate to do what she needs to do in order to survive.
Golda had a better way with words than I do, so I’ll let her sum it up this way:
We Jews have a secret weapon in our struggle with the Arabs; we have no place to go.Â