Op-Ed: The Children of Israel’s Leaders
Giulio MeottiThe writer, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly...
Those three children have done everything, really everything, to free themselves from the gigantic shadow of their father, the war hero, and with it the State of Israel.
With the disappearance of the son of General Moshe Dayan, Assi, the most famous dynasty of the Jewish state comes to an end.
In those four generations there is the conquest and the repentance, the euphoria and the melancholy. But above all, a history of self-destruction and alienation. It is the story of many of the children of Israel’s legendary leaders.
It begins with the founding father, Shmuel Dayan, who arrived from Russia with the second alyah and founded a kibbutz. His son would become the warrior global icon of the rebirth of Israel, remembered for the black eyepatch that made him look like a pirate of the sixteenth century.
Unlike his heirs, you would never have met Dayan at the cocktail parties so frequent in Tel Aviv. An epic of courage which has been given away with the hedonism of his son Assi, who symbolically died during the 66th anniversary of Israel’s independence.
Assi’s son, Lior, today is a journalist who writes about private life. A living embodiment of post-Zionism. Like his father Assi Dayan, who called a photographer to be photographed nude at sixty-two years of age in the Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper.
You also have Yael Dayan, the daughter of the General, an Israeli Jane Fonda who met PLO’s terror chief Yasser Arafat in his exile in Tunis and who later said that King David was a homosexual.
Their mother, Ruth Dayan, recently gave an interview to Newsweek saying that “Zionism has run its course”.
The scions of the Israeli political élite frequently flee abroad. In Hebrew it is called “yerida”. The "descent". A choice made by the son of Prime Minister Golda Meir, Menachem. One of the sons of Yitzhak Rabin, Yuval, spent many years in the United States.
Yigal Arens, son of former defense minister Moshe Arens, embraced anti-Zionism in a US university and took part in a meeting in California entitled “Café Intifada”. The brother of former Minister Arens, Richard Arens, a lawyer at the University of Bridgeport, was a well-known anti-Zionist who openly compared Israel to Nazism .
Then you have Ehud Olmert’s family. His wife Aliza is a well-known bohemian writer and left-wing activist. The eldest son, Shaul, resides in New York and refused military service to defend the Jews of Judea and Samaria. The second son, Ariel, fled to Paris to avoid military service and he is active in peacenik groups. His daughter, Dana, a lesbian, took part in a sit-in in Tel Aviv to protest the Israeli military incursion of Sudaniya. Dana Olmert demonstated in Zahala, north of Tel Aviv, where the former Chief of General Dan Halutz lives. “Halutz is a murderer, Intifada will win”, Dana chanted.
Ehud Olmert explained it well during the unilateral Israeli withdrawal from Gaza: “We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning and defeating our enemies”. This is the philosophy of many of the children of Israel's leaders, as opposed to the stoicism and bravery of the masses of Israeli Jews.
You also have Aviv Geffen, the most famous rock star, but also a grandson of Yael Dayan, who has appealed to his generation: “Guys, flee abroad”.
It is the Israeli Oedipus. At the time of the Six Day War, the one won by the general with the eye patch, a bitter joke was in circulation. it went like this: At the airport in Tel Aviv, a sign reads: “The last one to leave, please turn out the lights”. This is the paradigm of rejection of the children of Israel’s leaders.