Running from stone-throwers is a Jewish nightmare, a humiliating and depressing trauma of the Diaspora. The early Zionist writers often described the act of fleeing as undermining man’s basic honor, as a catalyst for picking oneself up and returning to the land of our forefathers. Once there, Jews would no longer have to flee hooligans throwing stones; whoever dared try would be taking his life into his hands.
Now the Jews have a state and a military. But its soldiers, though armed to the teeth, are still running away – a phenomenon that began around 25 years ago, during the first intifada. The Arab media, which continuously broadcasts these humiliating video clips, repeatedly expresses its contempt for “the Jews who fled like dogs.”
Here’s a sample of the “commander’s spirit,” circa 2012: “We expect our soldiers to behave with moderation, restraint and accumulation [sic; accommodation?],” a senior commander told military reporters on Tuesday.
A personality for whom “accumulation,” i.e., turning the other cheek, is the ultimate value, couldn’t possibly ascribe much importance to such values as “the honor of the soldier as a man and as a Jew,” “the honor of the army in whose ranks the fighter serves” and “the honor of the state and the nation the soldiers represent.”
This is why terrorists can and will fire thousands of rockets at Israel, and this is what will lead us to the next intifada.