Rabbi Prof. Dov Fischer
Rabbi Prof. Dov FischerCourtesy
I previously have published here my strong support for Itamar Ben-Gvir (and Bezalel Smotrich and their Religious Zionism party). I am disgusted by this era’s tactic by leftists in Israel — and in America — to depict their opponents on the right as Nazis.

In Israel they compare Ben-Gvir to Hitler. In America, they compare Donald Trump to Hitler. Interesting:

1. Did Hitler have a daughter whom he loved who converted to Orthodox Judaism and whom he continued to love?

2. Did Hitler have an Orthodox Jewish son-in-law whom he brought into the German government’s highest echelons?

3. Would Hitler have moved the Nazi embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem?

4. Would Hitler have had a Nazi embassy in Tel Aviv either?

5. Would Hitler have recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights?

6. Would Hitler have pulled Nazi Germany out of the United Nations Human Rights Council because of their anti-Semitism?

7. Would Hitler have closed down PLO offices in Berlin?

8. Would Hitler have cut off funding for the UNRWA?

9. Would Hitler have named the likes of David Friedman as his ambassadors?

10. Would Hitler have initiated the Abraham Accords to bring Israel greater acceptance in the Arab world?

Tough questions. Really tough. Hard to know the answers. What would Hitler have done?

That is the Left’s formula: “This is the end of democracy!” Trying to prevent Elon Musk from buying Twitter while supporting Jeff Bezos buying the Washington Post. For the Left, that is the only way to protect democracy — by denying conservatives their democratic rights to vote. It is the only way to protect freedom of speech — by denying conservatives the right to speak.

And that is the way the Left operates in Israel.

The only way Yair Lapid could have shoved his Lebanon maritime give-away down everyone’s throats was by manipulating Israel’s democracy to bar the Knesset from voting on it.

The only way Oslo could have happened was by Yitzchak Rabin overriding the will of the public and buying off Raful Eitan’s right-wing-party Knesset members with ministries and personal limousines.

Israeli democracy in action, accepting personal bribes and pay-offs to imperil the country and its citizens — and the same Leftists want to prosecute Netanyahu over cigars and champagne?

Itamar Ben-Gvir is a perfectly worthy Knesset member, and he is as qualified to be a cabinet minister as is any other party head or co-head. Over the course of five election cycles in three years, he has played by the rules, has campaigned as a parliamentarian would, has not had backers terrorize voters. It is irrelevant what he did or did not do 25 years ago. Liberals forgave Ted Kennedy much sooner than that after Chappaquiddick. Liberals elected Bill Clinton amid Gennifer Flowers, Paula Corbin Jones, Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, and Monica Lewinsky. (I think I have the order right.) They forgave Michael Richards (Cosmo Kramer in “Seinfeld”) after his terrible racist rant — because they like his humor. So Ben-Gvir circa 2022 is what matters, not circa 1994.

It has always been the Israeli Left’s way to demonize and lie for political gain, even at the expense of Israel’s very security. They brazenly lied about Deir Yassin to win points against the Irgun for the Labor Party’s pre-State predecessor, the Haganah. They sank the Altalena and murdered Jews aboard that ship that was importing weapons to save Jerusalem from being seized by Arab armies. They depicted Menachem Begin as a Hitler who would end Israeli democracy. That was their campaign slogan against Begin for thirty years.

Itamar Ben-Gvir is fine and worthy. He wants to expel Arab Muslims who are traitors to Israel and who support terror. That is reasonable. He wants to have Arab terror murderers executed. That, too, is perfectly reasonable. Others may differ, but that is how democracy works, and Jews in Israel have voted this time more demonstrably for the right wing. Indeed, if not for the personality hate that Avigdor Liberman and Gideon Sa’ar harbor against Benjamin Netanyahu, there now would be a coalition of 73 or so Knesset seats in a broad all-right-wing government.

So who elected Ben-Gvir anyway? Was it Netanyahu, who engineered an agreement between Bezalel Smotrich and Ben-Gvir to assure that right-wing votes would not be wasted? No.

Ben-Gvir was elected by those who hate the Arab Muslim Jew-haters and terrorists who have been trying to destroy the Jewish state and to murder its Jewish inhabitants, with almost-daily acts of terror. Also the Hamas terrorists in Gaza who fire rockets and even incendiary balloons into southern Israel as their way of showing gratitude to Israel for handing them Gaza unilaterally and uprooting Gush Katif in 2005. It is they — Arab Muslim Jew-haters within Israel and on her borders — who have bred a new mindset to take hold in Israel that can be summarized as “This garbage has got to stop.”

That is who elected Ben-Gvir, perhaps to become an Israeli cabinet minister. An expression of Israeli democracy.


Rabbi Prof. Dov Fischer is Senior Contributing Editor at The American Spectator, Vice President of the Coalition for Jewish Values, was adjunct professor of law at two prominent Southern California law schools for nearly twenty years, and is Rabbi of Young Israel of Orange County, California. He likewise has held leadership roles in several national rabbinic and other Jewish organizations including Zionist Organization of America, Rabbinical Council of America, and regional boards of the American Jewish Committee and B’nai B’rith Hillel Foundation. He was Chief Articles Editor of UCLA Law Review and clerked for the Hon. Danny J. Boggs in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. His writings have appeared in Newsweek, National Review, Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Los Angeles Times, Federalist, Jerusalem Post, Israel Hayom, and other major Jewish and Israeli Hebrew media. Other writings are collected at www.rabbidov.com. To attend any or all of Rav Fischer’s weekly 60-minute live Zoom classes on the Weekly Torah Portion, the Biblical Prophets, the Mishnah, Rambam Mishneh Torah, or Advanced Judaic Texts and Topics,send an email to: [email protected]