By David Rubin, former mayor of Shiloh, Israel
President Trump has repeatedly cited Israel–even quoting our next guest on Twitter–to prove that border walls work.
With the President threatening to close the Mexico border, some Democrats are expressing fear that while the world might not completely end, avocado deliveries might.
In Israel, temporary border closures have been used for days and even weeks at a time, and nobody complains! Why is that? Furthermore, in Israeli’s current close election campaign (Election Day is April 9), neither Israel’s frequent border closures nor its walls are mentioned by the leading left-of-center party. How can that be?
Here are 5 questions and answers I am offering Americans to perhaps benefit from my experience as Mayor of Shiloh, Israel, located in Judea and Samaria (a.k.a.the West Bank). Some of these insights may also be found in my new book “Trump and the Jews.”
- How is it possible that Israel frequently closes its border with Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) and very few people complain?
Answer: Israelis understand that even though it temporarily hurts the economy, everyone ultimately benefits because we are all safer when it’s harder in the long-term for terrorists and thieves to enter.
- Lots of folks in America are warning that such a closure would halt our supply of avocado and other fruits that we import from Mexico. Don’t Israelis care about the shortages of fruits and vegetables?
Answer: Of course, they care, and by the way, I also love avocados and we have great avocados in Israel, but a mature people have to sometimes put aside its selfishness and sacrifice on a temporary basis for the common good. And who knows, maybe Americans would learn to like the home-grown avocados from Florida and California!
- In the upcoming Israeli electionsApril 9, 2019, why is Israel’s Blue and White Party, the main left-of-center party, silent about Israel’s border walls?
Answer: In Israel, it’s considered a done issue. When our walls were being built, there were protests, mostly from the Left, charges of “racism” and “inhumanity”, and there are even protests from some on the Right, but the proof is in the pragmatism. Now that it’s built, all the politicians support it because the public supports less street crime and less terrorism.
- With elections in Israel rapidly approaching, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in the battle for his political life, with Benny Gantz’s Blue and White Party consistently leading Netanyahu’s Likud. Can Netanyahu survive?
Answer: In our parliamentary system, success depends on the political breakdown. Netanyahu’s Likud Party may or may not get the most votes, but the smaller parties to his right are expected to get more votes, and they prefer to join a coalition with Netanyahu. Therefore, even if he loses, he is likely to have the best chance of forming a workable new coalition.
- Why is it ironic that these two embattled leaders met in the week that the Mueller report results were revealed?
Answer: Both leaders have suffered from unprecedented political attacks designed to keep them on the defensive and extract a toll from their political popularity. Trump now feels vindicated, and Netanyahu, despite his own pending indictment, which is subject to a July hearing, is hoping that the Israeli people will rule in his favor on April 9.
David Rubin, former Mayor of Shiloh Israel, is the author of the new book, “Trump and the Jews”. Rubin is the founder and president of Shiloh Israel Children’s Fund, established after he and his then three-year-old son were wounded in a terror attack. He can be found at www.DavidRubinIsrael.com or at www.ShilohIsraelChildren.org