By Schmoel Yitzhak
At dinner with a New York University graduate student, I asked about his recent trip to Israel.
"Loved it," he replied. "I traveled the country, from Eilat to the Northern border. Best of all was a kibbutz in the Golan Heights. It's beautiful up there."
That's about where the pleasantries of our conversation ended.
The young man then went on to tell me about some Israeli-Arab gatherings in which he participated and how inspired he was about getting the two sides together in peaceful pursuits.
I listened and was tempted to laugh; especially when he suggested that he might be a bit idealistic in his thinking.
No, I didn't go ballistic over my plate of manicotti but I more than forcefully suggested that cows jumping over the moon would be an event taking place before any realistic Arab-Israeli reconciliation.
"My good friend," I pointed out, "the bottom line cannot be denied. The Arabs -- call them militant Islamics, call them what you will want to kill Jews in any manner possible."
I could tell that he was taken aback because young, liberal Jews -- especially in America -- have the cockamamee idea that there meaningful Muslims out there who really want to make nice with Israel.
They certainly aren't in Gaza where Hamas would like nothing better than to outdo Adolf Hitler.
You won't find them in Lebanon where Hezbollah wishes to outdo Hamas in Jew-annihilation.
And, forget about Syria or the soon-to-be-ruled-by-Muslim-Brotherhood-Egypt.
Then again, the so-called Palestinians in the West Bank as well as Jerusalem hardly are an improvement on the aforementioned when making peace with Israel is concerned,
Quite the contrary. The hatred is as intense as ever and what better barometer can be found than reaction to the Itamar Massacre among Arabs in the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem.
Mind you, we're talking about an indescribably vicious attack in which five members of a totally innocent Israeli family were stabbed to death in their West Bank home.
The murderer entered the Fogel family's Itamar home, killing father and mother, Udi Fogel, 37, and Ruth Fogel, 36, and three of their children, Yoav Fogel, 10 , four-year-old Elad Fogel and three-month-old Hadas Fogel.
One would be hard-pressed to find anyone but a psychopathic sadist who endorses the massacre but they not only were found but are in abundance.
Check this out: According to a team of Israeli and Palestinian pollsters, no less than 32 percent of the Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Jerusalem back the attack in which the parents and three Fogel children were killed.
Thus, I suggested to my dinner companion that he would be wise to match his idealism with the facts that have been apparent for centuries. The Cossacks killed Jews; Hitler exterminated six million Jews and Arabs have been at it just as long.
My buddy was taken aback until I pointed out that Arabs slaughtered Jewish men, women and children in Hebron in 1927. Add to that the Jerusalem pogroms during the 1930s.
Another of my realistic pals chimed in: "The Fedayeen enjoyed murdering children in their beds; men, women and children in busses and on highways."
I suggested that my idealistic young friend who is so enamored of Israel read some newspaper other than The New York Times which, not to incidentally, refused to publish Judge Goldstone's refutation of his original, damning, lying report.
Barry Rubin was one such commentator who sees things clearly and sees them whole.
And in case you aren't aware of him, Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs Journal and Turkish Studies.
"It's only a matter of time until Hamas once again launches a larger-scale assault on Israel," says Rubin. "At that point, Israel will have to respond with a major counterattack on the Gaza Strip.
"This crisis is inevitable. Yet nobody outside Israel sees -- or wants to see -- what's coming."
Perhaps, my idealistic young friend will soon see the light.
As Rubin so cogently notes, "Terrorism works; aggression goes unpunished."
The liberal Jewish idealists don't get it.
Sadly, the residents of Itamar do.
Or, as another clear-thinking pal wastes the idealists: "We have lived with this bunch of Islamic murdering goons since the turn of the last century -- and don't fall for the crap that terrorism in Israel is due to the 'occupation.'"
Amen to reality!