I’m used to hate mail. People from all over the globe, dozens of countries, compete in insulting and threatening me. Leftist liberals who seek to accommodate an enemy which refuses accommodation, the Jewish religious right that screams at me for even considering a Palestinian entity, ideological nuts who want the world to share their personal opinions about the ownership of the Promised Land. I’m used to them all.

What really irritates me is praise from jingoists. They pick and choose from my writings, see only the calls to kill, and applaud that. Jews who eat pork and violate scores of Judaic ethical laws, Christian youngsters who never lost a dear one or saw a dead body, armchair military who never had to shoot a human at point blank range or break his bones – they want to kill Arabs.

Israel has been fortunate to have prime ministers with extensive military experience. Battlefield experience can make people evil, but more often it makes them considerate of others. They are ready to kill but know the value of life. They try other measures before resorting to the final one. Not coincidentally, raging warriors often became dovish prime ministers, such as Begin and Sharon. On the contrary, prime ministers with limited battlefield experience often were expansionist or hysterically aggressive like Rabin who ordered Jewish soldiers to break the arms of Palestinian children during the intifada.

We must know our enemy and kill him when other means fail. We must not demonize the enemy. Muslims, objectively, are the enemy of Israel and the West. They are not islamofascists. Islam is a communal participatory ideology, as far from fascist totalitarianism as possible. Muslims do not seriously seek to destroy Western civilization; they are disoriented during the death pangs of their paternalistic societies. In practical terms, there is no difference: terrorism is the Muslim occupation; it won’t cease, and must be opposed by any means. That does not make Muslims evil: the West killed civilians on a much larger scale; Jews conducted many terrorist attacks during the Mandate period and invented airplane hijacking and hostage taking. Jewish and Christian teenagers fought ideologically inspired battles just as Muslims do now and undertook suicide missions which we called heroic. Muslims are the enemies, but they are fighting heroically. Give the soldiers the honor due them.

The US cooperated with the Soviets against the Nazis, and we are ready to ally with anyone to destroy the Muslim enemy ideologically and contain them militarily. But some of our allies are evil.