Thursday, February 17, 2011

“Faith-based revolution”: Israel’s Moshe Feiglin on the Egyptian uprising.

by Bernie Quigley

For The Hill on 2/17/11

Moshe Feiglin is the leader of Manhigut Yehudit, the Jewish Leadership Movement in Israel. He is considered a “thorn in the side” of Benjamin Netanyahu because his group holds sway in the Likud. He calls for authentic Jewish leadership in Israel. We never hear a word about this group in the mainstream American press but in my opinion it is an important parallel to the Tea Party in the United States. His influence will rise in Israel as the Tea Party is rising here. The key to both; authenticity and a sense of place in the world to which one belongs. It is, in essence - in Feiglin’s phrase - “faith-based revolution” bringing into balance “Torah, Temple, Physical and Metaphysical.” His commentary on the Egyptian uprising and Israel gives a sense of this new movement:

“Why didn't Mubarak send in the tanks? Why didn't Tahrir Square turn into Tiananmen Square? Is the Egyptian regime less cruel than its Chinese counterpart?

“How is it that all the dictatorships in the Arab world have suddenly gotten weak in the knees over unarmed civilians doing nothing more than demonstrating? After all, the regime is all-powerful; they have built their security forces over decades in concentric circles so that the inner circle will owe its existence and power to the ruler and will always do his bidding. And if the need will arise, it will always force the ruler's will on one circle after the next until it reaches the very last citizen. What brought about the collapse of all these mechanisms of oppression?

“We all look on in amazement as history unfolds before our very eyes. . . Why are all the wise men - all the foreign affairs commentators, former ambassadors and professors - always surprised, while the regular people look on in amazement, but are not surprised in the least?

“Sovereignty in any type of regime is always in the hands of the nation. When the nation does not view the leader as being legitimate, all the mechanisms propping up the regime are of no avail. They will all collapse like a house of cards. This is true for dictatorships and democracies alike.

“We live in a dictatorship of thoughts, constantly under the watchful eye of the Thought Police. It is not easy to sense our dictatorship. That is why people in Israel are not demonstrating in the city squares. But the suffocation feels the same - the suffocation that doesn't even have a Tahrir Square to light up the end of the tunnel.”

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