Wednesday, July 16, 2008

What Price Morality?

?עַד מָתַי רְשָׁעִים יְהוָה עַד מָתַי רְשָׁעִים יַעֲלֹזוּ

My thoughts today, along with everyone else's, are with the Regev and Goldwasser families, as they struggle with the horror and sadness of seeing their sons' remains being handed over the border by the animals who murdered them. This grotesquely uneven "exchange" called for Israel to hand over 199 dead and five live Hezbollah terrorists, including the infamous child murderer Samir Kuntar. The Israeli public, and ultimately the Israeli government, felt that this was the morally correct thing to do. Through a spokesman, the families issued a statement saying that Israel should be "proud of its moral integrity and the value of camaraderie."
Meanwhile, the family and friends of these two young soldiers are deeply in mourning, while the Arabs of Lebanon and Gaza celebrate with sweets and ceremonies. (The Lebanese government declared today a national holiday and actually laid out a red carpet for Kuntar!)
There is nothing morally correct about that.
A Hamas spokesman was quoted as saying "It shows that the only successful way to free the prisoners is by kidnapping soldiers." About Gilad Shalit, who is still being held by Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, Gaza’s Hamas prime minister, said that Israel will also have to “pay the price” for the release of Shalit. “There is a captive Israeli soldier, and thousands of our sons are in prison. ... Let them answer our demands."
My heart absolutely aches for the families of these soldiers. I can not imagine the pain and sadness that they are feeling. And of course they have the right to receive their sons' bodies back, so that they may bury them and mourn for them properly. But I can't help worrying about all the other soldiers, whose safety is now in even more jeopardy as Israel's enemies look for more soldiers to kidnap.

For the most honest analysis of what this exchange means for Israel, please check out these posts by Treppenwitz and Seraphic Secret.


Baila said...

Very well said. I just added the link for Seraphic Secret because he also said it so well.

1rabbi said...

A horrible, painful day indeed. A horrible decision to have to make for our people and government.

Thank you for the comment on my blog. I appreciate the comparison you made.

May all our sons and daughters serve in safety until the day comes when there is peace and they have to serve no more.

Anonymous said...

I believe that the deal shouldn't have been made, but the question that Israelis should be asking now is what you should do next!

Did you know that two thousand years ago a Roman citizen could walk across the face of the known world free of the fear of molestation. He could walk across the earth unharmed, cloaked only in the words Civis Romanis I am a Roman citizen. So great was the retribution of Rome, universally understood as certain, should any harm befall even one of its citizens.

Where was Ehud Goldwasser's protection, or Eldad Regev's? Where is the retribution for the families and where is the warning to the rest of the world that Israelis shall walk this earth unharmed, lest the clenched fist of the most mighty military force in the history of the Middle East comes crashing down on your house!? In other words, what the hell is the Israeli government doing here?