Israel's Wake-Up Call: Confronting Extremism Before It's Too Late

In a sobering analysis of recent events, Haaretz delivers a stark warning about the encroaching menace of extremism within Israeli society, urging immediate action to prevent the nation from hurtling towards an inevitable collapse

by Sededin Dedovic
Israel's Wake-Up Call: Confronting Extremism Before It's Too Late
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If the political center fails to take action to marginalize extremists, the complete collapse of Israel is only a matter of time, writes the Israeli newspaper. The Haaretz newspaper commented on the events surrounding the so-called Flag March a few days ago, referring to the words of Israeli social critic and philosopher Yeshayahu Leibowitz (1903-1994).

The newspaper stated in its editorial that "it is impossible to observe the documented display of ugly, violent demonstrators during the Flag March in Jerusalem streets on Wednesday without echoing the warning of Professor Yeshayahu Leibowitz." Haaretz notes that Leibowitz previously stated, "The national pride and euphoria that followed the Six-Day War (1967) are temporary and will lead us from proud, growing nationalism to extreme, messianic ultranationalism.

The third phase will be brutality, and the final phase will be the end of Zionism." The Israeli newspaper described the philosopher as farsighted. The newspaper added, describing what happened during the march, that "the general spirit was a spirit of revenge.

The symbol prominently displayed on the participants' shirts was the fist of the Kahane flag. The chant they shouted was a song calling for bloody revenge. Participants also chanted slogans of 'Death to Arabs' and 'Let their village burn.'


'Intimidating' Atmosphere

Haaretz stated that the most popular figure was Minister of Public Security Itamar Ben Gvir, and the overall atmosphere was "intimidating." The newspaper adds that its correspondent Nir Hasson was attacked by a group of youths who knocked him to the ground and kicked him.

Haaretz adds that its correspondent Hasson was not the only person attacked because the troublemakers, as described, threatened, insulted, shoved, and attacked Palestinian passersby, as well as anyone they suspected of being a journalist or those who tried to film them.

"The reason they attacked journalists is that they couldn't find enough Palestinian victims because Palestinian families stayed hidden in their homes," the newspaper adds. "Palestinians have already learned that it's better to leave the area when Jews celebrate Jerusalem Day, so celebrants won't lynch them," the newspaper continues.

Haaretz believes that "brutality" is no longer confined to the margins, settlements, or outposts but has penetrated the Israeli army, the Knesset, the government, and among ministers and representatives. Ministers Bezalel Smotrich, Miri Regev, Ben Gvir, and others participated in the march.

The newspaper concludes its editorial with a warning: "If the Israeli political center does not take action to marginalize extremists, eliminate Kahaneism, and remove the malignant growth of occupation from the political body of the state, then the complete collapse of Israel is only a matter of time. The countdown has already begun," writes Al Jazeera.