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Even reservists and pilots refuse to serve Netanyahu

The State of Israel was born out of a mixed marriage.

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Even reservists and pilots refuse to serve Netanyahu

The State of Israel was born out of a mixed marriage. It is the child of a connection between the Bible and the Enlightenment, the longing to return to Zion with the springtime of the peoples in Europe, the Jewish community with the republic, the Israeli Knesset with the spirit of parliamentarianism, the life that takes place in the shtels and ghettos established by the diaspora, with modern ideologies that have taken up the cause of freedom and brotherhood for all people.

No government in the history of the Jewish state since 1948 has flouted this balance as grossly as the current one of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In order to avoid his own criminal proceedings and to fulfill the wishes of his sinister coalition partners, the Likud leader is preparing to override the separation of powers in the Middle East's only democracy.

Furthermore, Netanyahu is putting his country in a position it has never been in before: for the first time in the history of the Jewish world, the behavior of an Israeli government is causing the Jewish communities, primarily in the United States, but also in Europe, to move away from the begin to avert the Jewish state. A momentous loss when you consider that of the approximately 15 million Jews in the world, only seven million live in Israel.

The authoritarian steamroller Netanyahu may not be impressed by this danger at the moment. However, he should be deeply worried that his constitutional capers are jeopardizing his security policy. Should Israel be forced to take military action against Iran's nuclear threat, it will have to rely on its reservists.

Most of them, however, are already announcing that they would refuse to serve under an illiberal regime like the one we have today. Netanyahu got a premonition of what that could mean on Thursday. That day, most El-Al airline pilots refused to fly the prime minister to Italy. Netanyahu had to switch to a small plane.

If anything can be counted on in Israel today, it is its proud and courageous civil society. For Israel's security and the survival of its democracy, one can only hope that she sweeps her government out of office.

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