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Enemies Should be Fought, Not Treated
Saeb Erekat (Abbas Momani/AFP via Getty Images)

Enemies Should be Fought, Not Treated

Maariv, Israel, October 24

Could anyone in their right mind imagine British Prime Minister Winston Churchill sending a British airplane during World War II to pick up Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels for medical treatment at a London hospital? Would the British premier save the life of one of his country’s most notable enemies, knowing that the latter would recover, return home, and resume activity against Great Britain? The answer is clear: Churchill and the entire British people would have not even contemplated such a thing. Enemies are to be destroyed, not saved. And yet, there are those we fail to understand this lesson. One of them is Binyamin Netanyahu, who deployed a special ambulance escorted by IDF soldiers into Jericho, in order to evacuate Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat, one of Israel’s bitterest enemies, for medical treatment in Jerusalem. Erekat is a mega-threat whose damage to Israel far outweighed that of many of its most vile enemies. Just like Goebbels, whose damage was far more severe than that of any individual Nazi soldier or officer, Erekat has fought Israel in international forums for over 25 years. It is Erekat who promoted the claim that Israel is an apartheid state that should therefore be boycotted. In the past, he called Netanyahu a “filthy war criminal” and tried to get the countries of the world and the United Nations to put Israeli politicians on trial. How hypocritical it is for the same person who calls to boycott Israeli products, who accuses Israel of poisoning Palestinians and depriving them of their livelihoods, to seek medical treatment at an Israeli hospital. This is the same person who has banned ordinary Palestinian men and women from normalizing their ties with Israel, yet he was quick to make a trip to Jerusalem to receive VIP treatment at an Israeli hospital. Some voices in the Israeli political system claimed that we must practice compassion and mercy toward Erekat. But where was Erekat’s compassion and mercy when he launched vile campaigns against Israel? What compassion did Erekat show in the face of the murderous victims he and his friends sent to slaughter us? Why should we have mercy on those who deny our right to live here, those who try to expel us? The decision to hospitalize Erekat in an Israeli medical center is the ultimate testament to how the Oslo mindset still dominates our society. Instead of seeing our enemies for who they really are, we see them for who we wish they would be. Netanyahu might seem like a hawk when he speaks about the Palestinian leadership but secretly, behind closed doors, he continues to strengthen and support it with material and nonmaterial aid. This aid ensures that the very entity seeking to destroy us remains afloat. – Nadav Haetzni (translated by Asaf Zilberfarb)

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