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Public Relations Backlash
Last uploaded : Tuesday 19th Mar 2002 at 00:48
Contributed by : Arlene Peck



As an American with strong ties to Israel, I have a tremendous conflict with the subject of “objectors’ within the IDF. I know that those in Israel who will read this will say that I as an American don’t have the right to speak like this. After all, it’s not my children who are at danger. And, frankly, had I had children during the days of Viet Nam, who might have been of draft age, I would have moved them to Canada. It was, for me a confusing war. I never understood who were the enemy and who were the ‘good guys.’ Ah, but that ‘s not the case with the enemies of Israel. Those who want to destroy it surround the Jewish State.

So, I believe the reservist who signed a letter, which ran in the Israeli paper, Yediot, “We hereby declare that we will no longer fight beyond the Green Line (Israel’s pre 1967 border) with its purpose of controlling, expelling, starving, and humiliating an entire people” to be treasonous. If this ideology is allowed to take hold it could be the beginning of the end to the democracy in Israel. Those who encourage this theory, should, in my opinion, be allowed, --- no, encouraged --- to move closer to the bosom of their Arab friends. Isn’t that what the American, turned Taliban, John Walker did in his efforts to understand Americans enemies better?

Do any of you reading this have any idea what publicity they are giving the world to back up their hatred of Israel? What do you think it does when the average person picks up the LA Times and sees a front page spread that continues for two full pages with the heading, “Israel: Army Reservists Protest Military Conduct.” CNN follow up with stories of their own deploring the ‘cruel and inhuman punishment that the Israeli Reservists are protesting, against the ‘poor Palestinian people.” It doesn’t’ matter that there are tens of thousands of IDF soldiers who are lined up to dispute their behavior. The damage has been done. The publicity that they were able to generate for Hizbullah, Islamic Jihad, Fatah and Hamas was tremendous.

When John Walker was arrested in a Taliban cave and it came out that he was a twenty-year old from California, my reaction was, “He’s probably just a misguided kid who really, really, didn’t mean it.” I was wrong. He is a terrorist and should be punished. Soldiers in the IDF who believe their declaration are no different. They endanger those with whom the serve.

Israel is a country besieged with Arab terrorists who thrive on killing Israeli civilians. They teach their children that nothing can be better than to strap bombs on their bodies and blow up cafes, shopping malls and buses. These terrorists, who the IDF objectors defend from Gaza and Ramallah and whom they don’t want to see ‘humiliated’, would like nothing better than to demoralize the Israelis even more. Better these University students should mourn the regular and ever more vicious deaths to the civilians of Israel. How dare they worry about the Arabs when their mothers and sisters are being regularly maimed and killed by them?

Incredulously the soldier who started this protest movement, David Zonsheim, bemoans how badly he felt stripping areas clean of groves and trees that were people’s livelihood. I spent five weeks covering the war in Beirut in June of 1982 and vividly remember how these terrorists came out from behind those very same trees like rats after the sun went down and set bombs for when the Israeli soldiers passed. They used those trees as cover to kill his fellow soldiers! . Are these the same terrorists whom these kids from Tel Aviv University are bemoaning their olive trees being cut down? They’re complaining because they gave livelihoods to the neighborhood Arabs?!!

How does Peritz Kidron, spokesman for the leftist group, Yesh Guvel, justify his consulting such people? I suppose I can compare them to the same self-haters from the ACLU who rushed to defend the Nazis in Skokie, Ill.

While these aberrational groups of reservists were protesting the military conduct that they perceive as against the Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and Gaza, they encourage more suicide bombers. One of the ‘founders’ of this movement, David Zonshein laments how he was raised to be an officer with values.” He’s upset how he now has been turned into a combatant who deals in bloodshed and war crimes. He relates how he now hopes to sign up 500 reservists in the movement.

These renegades desecrate those who have been victims of those he is supposed to protect. I find it shocking how those in this ‘movement’ consider those who defend the territories as war criminals. I remember when the belief were that these brave souls who moved to those G-dforsaken areas were pioneers. Not as Lt Zonshein feels that they are “Ideologically motivated by a political view that Jewish settlements should be abandoned and the ‘occupied territories’ handed over to the Palestinians.

It is absurd that thought is even given to aiding and abetting those who give no thought to the “pacifist objections’ of these few. In the five years since the ‘peace of Oslo” more Israelis have been killed by these same terrorist than in the fifteen years prior. So, while the Lt. Zonsheins give press to the enemy, the Palestinians acquire more Qassam rockets with a range of five to six miles to hit into the heart of Tel Aviv.

At this writing, the army is reviewing these ‘dissenters’ of their commands. I’ll go one step further. Traitors such as these who live in a country whose very existence is tied into the mandate of a national unity should be jailed and then deported to one of the Arab countries that would take them. They should also include Peretz Kidron, who is the spokesman for Yesh Guvel, the leftist group that consuls this group.

Thank G-d, there are those like Nir Aburdam who founded the counter movement. Although there are only a few bad apples, and it is not the norm, such publicity hurts. Over 100,000 brave IDF soldiers signed a ‘counter petition” “Right to Serve” petition in only one day. But don’t you know which group got the world press?

www.jewishcomment welcomes guest editorials but wishes to stress that opinions in this section do not necessarily relfect those of the Editors.


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