Due to never-ending Arab hostility toward Jews in the Middle East I am reading more and more people talking about the possibility of transference. Mainly in the comments of various pro-Israel blogs and news websites, but among some well respected high-profile analysts, as well, the idea of inducing Israeli-Arabs to move out of the area seems to be growing.
This is a natural response to the efforts of Arabs within Israel to the murder of Jews, up to and including ramming babies with automobiles. My sense is that Jewish people around the world, although particularly in Israel, have about had it. From my perspective, Jewish people have a tendency to be rather passive. As a historically persecuted minority our tendency has been to keep our head down so that others do not take a kick at it, But there must come a point wherein even the most intimidated minority is forced to stand up for itself in order to defend its own survival.
The Arabs have pushed the Jews to the point wherein physical coercion looks more and more likely. We are, after all, directly within the midst of the Third Arab Terror War (Intifada) against the Jews of the Middle East and my suspicion is that however much fun the previous two were, that Israeli Jews may no longer be in the mood to take the abuse and they should not have to.
Thus some people talk about the necessity of financially inducing Arabs to leave the Land of Israel, while others even discuss the possibility of using armed force to push them out of Jewish lives. I just want to take a brief moment in order to suggest what a terrible idea forced transference is and I have to assume that most Jews who care about Israel are in opposition to any such policy. The first reason that such a thing needs to be opposed is because it violates Jewish ethics. Any policy of forced transference would mean that untold numbers of perfectly innocent people would be dragged from their homes and placed within internment camps in preparation for deportation... to G-d Knows Where.
Polling indicates that the Israeli-Arab population despises Jews and looks fondly upon violence toward us. Nonetheless, not all Arabs of Israel hate Jews and not all want to see violence against us. To push such people out of their homes would be highly unethical and therefore entirely unJewish.
To my ear the previous sentence sounds a bit too vacuous, a bit too obvious, but maybe it needs to be said, anyway. While World War II gives us plenty of historical precedents for population transference, any such move would, in truth, be a moral and practical non-starter... if I may steal another man's line.
Also, of course, the rest of the world community might have a thing or two to say about any such operation. Vicious left-wing anti-Semites already tend to think of Jews as Nazis. Can you imagine what people around the world will say once they start processing images of the IDF pushing old Arab women and young children into deportation camps? If you think that they hate us already and it cannot get much worse, I suspect that you should think again.
The western-left despises Jewish self-defense which they interpret as a form of aggression. Prior to the strangely named Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, the Gazans shot thousands of rockets into southern Israel, ruining communities and lives. The rest of the world did not notice, nor did they care. It was only when Israel finally stood up to undermine Hamas's terrorist infrastructure and destroy those Jihadi kidnapping tunnels that people throughout the world leaped out of their chairs and denounced the Jews of Israel for committing a "genocide" against the perfectly innocent, bunny-like "indigenous" population.
If the Jews were to push the Arabs out of Israel, Europe would go entirely nuts. If you think that BDS is an annoyance now wait until the boost it gets from any Israeli policy of forced transference. The Europeans, who are already generally unfriendly toward Israel, would take harsh measures against what would be perceived as a fascistic Israeli policy. Some might think that due to economic reasons, or reasons to do with scientific exchange and trade, that the Europeans and the rest of the world would gripe, but shortly get over it. That might be the case, but I would not count on it and it would make for a terrible gamble.
As a poker player, I would not make that bet.
This, however, does not mean that there are not forceful measures that Israel can take in order make Arab hatred toward Jews unpleasant for the Arabs, themselves.
This is what my friend Caroline Glick has to say:
Rather than destroy their homes, Israel should adopt the US anti-narcotics policy of asset seizure.There are any number of creative measures that Israel can take short of housing destruction or forced transference to show the Arabs that the government means business and will simply not allow this kind of violence toward the Jewish people in the Jewish State. Seizing assets is one way of showing Israeli-Arabs that if they seek violence toward Jews their family will pay a major price for it.
All assets directly or indirectly tied to terrorists, including their homes and any other structure where they planned their crimes, and all remittances to them, should be seized and transferred to their victims, to do with what they will.
If Israel hands over the homes of the synagogue butchers to the 24 orphans of Rabbi Moshe Twersky, Rabbi Kalman Levine, Rabbi Aryeh Kupinsky and Rabbi Avraham Goldberg, not only will justice be served. The children’s inheritance of the homes of their fathers’ killers will send a clear and demoralizing message to other would-be killers.
Not only will their atrocities fail to remove the Jews from Israel. Every terrorist will contribute to the Zionist project by donating his home to the Jewish settlement enterprise.
Another thing that must be done is liberalizing Israeli policy toward the Temple Mount.
That the Arabs have intimidated the Jews into giving up sovereignty of our holiest site is galling, counterproductive, and should not be tolerated. All people should be allowed free and equal access to the Mount and all people - not just Muslims - should be allowed to pray there. Jews and Christians and Rastafarians and Rosicrucians and Hindus and Buddhists and Taoists and NeoPagans and the Bahai and the Sikhs, and any and all heathens, should all be allowed equal access to the site with Muslims and all must be allowed to pray there.
Anything else represents deference to Arab-Muslim race-hatred toward Jews and others right in the heart of Jerusalem.
And, needless to say, rock throwing and other attempts at murder should be met with ferocity. I may be opposed to home demolitions and forced transference of a hostile population, but I also very much believe in Jewish self-defense.
Michael Lumish is a blogger at the Israel Thrives blog as well as a regular contributor/blogger at Times of Israel and Jews Down Under.