There is nothing extreme about Israel's new government - opinion

Israel's new government is dedicated to protecting Israel's safety and identity as a Jewish state.

 President Isaac Herzog poses with the 37th government of Israel, December 29, 2022. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
President Isaac Herzog poses with the 37th government of Israel, December 29, 2022.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

The Zionist Organization of America congratulates Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his Likud party and his coalition partners on the formation of the new government. In these times, when Israeli citizens are being subjected to terror attacks perpetrated by Palestinian Arab terrorists every day, it is vital that Israel has a strong government such as the incoming coalition, which is dedicated to protecting Israel’s rights and safety.

There is nothing “extreme” about proposing to give the necessary tools to Israel’s brave young soldiers to enable them to protect their fellow Israeli citizens from rampant Palestinian Arab terror. The constant attacks on innocent Jews need to be stopped. There is similarly nothing “extreme” about proposing to deport convicted Palestinian Arab terrorists. 

The real extremists are the leaders of the Palestinian Authority – who incite and pay Arabs to murder innocent Jews. Yet those, such as Rick Jacobs of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) and The New York Times, who falsely scream about an “extremist” Israeli government say nothing about Mahmoud Abbas’ heinous incitement and “pay to slay” payments.

There is nothing extreme about proposing to give Jews and other non-Muslims equal rights to pray on the Jewish people’s holiest site, the Temple Mount. In fact, it is religious discrimination to allow only Muslims to freely pray there. King Solomon built the Temple as a place where all people can pray. 

There is nothing extreme about the proposal to permit Jews to build homes in the lawful and historical Jewish lands of Judea and Samaria. These are areas guaranteed to the Jewish people under international law. Nor is it extreme to enforce the law against the massive illegal Arab building on state lands in Area C and the Negev.

 PM Benjamin Netanyahu in the Knesset. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM) PM Benjamin Netanyahu in the Knesset. (credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

Protecting religious studies

THERE IS, moreover, nothing “extreme” about the Jewish state protecting Torah study in a Basic Law: Torah study, or repealing the “one grandfather” rule that allows people who are clearly non-Jews to immigrate to the Jewish state under Israel’s Law of Return.

Ironically, the same left-wing media, groups and leaders who patter about “democracy” and “respecting elections” are refusing to respect the results of Israel’s democratic election.

ZOA praises Netanyahu’s response to the nasty op-ed in The New York Times which condemned the incoming Israeli government. Netanyahu stated: “After burying the Holocaust for years on its back pages and demonizing Israel for decades on its front pages, The New York Times now shamefully calls for undermining Israel’s elected incoming government. While the The New York Times continues to delegitimize the one true democracy in the Middle East and America’s best ally in the region, I will continue to ignore its ill-founded advice and instead focus on building a stronger and more prosperous country, strengthening ties with America, expanding peace with our neighbors, and securing the future of the one and only Jewish state.”

ZOA is particularly appalled – and the Maccabees would have been appalled as well – by URJ leader, Rick Jacobs’s twisted threat that he and his organization will “fight” Israel’s incoming government “with the determination of the Maccabees.” The Maccabees fought to restore the holiness of the Temple on the Temple Mount; to prevent Jews from adopting or being forced to adopt Hellenistic practices; and to end foreign rule over Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria, so that Jews could live freely in the Jewish homeland. 

By contrast, Rick Jacobs joined Palestinian Arab demonstrations against the Jewish state; seeks to give away Jewish land to the Palestinian Authority terror regime; and unfortunately stands for much of what the Maccabees fought against. I am happy to support this proud and courageous new Jewish government in the Jewish state of Israel.

The writer is national president of Zionist Organization of America (ZOA).