OpinionIsrael at War

A crucial moment in the history of the Jewish people

We have no choice but to win and emerge stronger than ever before.

Israeli flag. Credit: Maxim Studio/Shutterstock.
Israeli flag. Credit: Maxim Studio/Shutterstock.
Dan Illouz
Dan Illouz is a member of Knesset from the Likud Party.

We are at a crucial moment in the history of the State of Israel and the Jewish people. It is imperative to reflect on the gravity of this moment and the responsibility that lies on our shoulders. We are not just witnesses to history. We are active participants in a chapter that will be remembered for generations to come.

The masks have fallen and the true face of our enemies has been revealed. Hamas, with its acts of terror and violence, has shown that it is no different from the worst of our historical enemies. The only difference between Hamas and the Nazis is their capability to realize their murderous aspirations.

One of the primary goals of Zionism, alongside the return of the Jewish people to their homeland, was to prevent our enemies from fulfilling their murderous intentions. Unfortunately, on Oct. 7, we fell short. They seized an opportunity and, for a few hours, went on a rampage of satanic violence.

Unlike in the past, however, today we have the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Our grandparents in Morocco, Poland, Yemen or Iraq could not have imagined a reality in which an act of violence against Jews would be met with such a robust response. If we told them that hundreds of thousands of reservists would be called up to defend a sovereign Jewish state and to eliminate the enemy responsible for such a heinous crime, they would not have believed it possible.

This is why we stand at a critical moment for the Zionist movement and the Jewish people. If Israel decisively defeats Hamas, eradicates it and hurls it into the ash can of history, we will have proven that we are no longer helpless Jews in exile, but a strong nation on our own land.

But if, heaven forbid, we fail to complete this task, if Hamas survives the coming months, we will be sending a message to the world and to ourselves that we are still helpless Jews who can be slaughtered without consequence, even on our own land.

There is no other option but a resounding victory and the complete elimination of Hamas. Not only do the 1,400 victims of the Oct. 7 massacre demand it, but so do the generations who dreamt of the Jewish people’s rebirth in their homeland. We are writing a new chapter in the history of the Jewish people, and it is up to us to ensure it is one of strength and resilience.

But this moment is not just crucial for the Jewish people. It is crucial for the entire free world. If a murderous terrorist organization can survive such a severe assault, the whole world is at risk. It will encourage terrorism not just in Israel, but in the United States, Canada, Europe and around the world.

To our dear soldiers in the IDF, both regulars and reservists, you have been chosen to continue the fight for our independence. You are tasked with saving the free world. The entire nation of Israel stands united behind you in this mission.

This will be a tough battle, but I promise you that when you complete this mission, we will enter a new era of prosperity. We will remember the goodness that has emerged in these days—the volunteerism, the unity, the mutual responsibility and the civic initiative. We will carry all of this with us and we will be stronger than ever before.

We have always been strong. Against all odds, we built a state that is a beacon and source of pride to us all. But with all the goodness that is being revealed today, we will emerge even stronger.

We are at a crucial moment, and thanks to our wonderful people, we will navigate it successfully. Together. Am Yisrael Chai!

The opinions and facts presented in this article are those of the author, and neither JNS nor its partners assume any responsibility for them.
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