9-11 in New Jersey, 2001; 9-11 in Israel, 2023.

The murderous attacks by Hamas of Israeli citizens this weekend constituted a tragic horrific first-time event in Israel’s history.  The Jewish State had suffered massive losses of lives in past wars, most notably the Yom Kippur War of 1973, which was also an unanticipated attack.  The losses in that war, however, were overwhelmingly combatants.  Unarmed Israeli civilians, for the most part, never found themselves in harm’s way.  The Yom Kippur War, from an historical perspective, can best be compared to the destruction of the American Pacific fleet and the loss of 3,000 lives at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on December 7, 1941, where the losses of lives were primarily not civilians.

In truth, an apposite comparison may be made between the Hamas uncivilized murders, kidnappings, and misogynistic brutality towards women this past weekend and the destruction of the World Trade Center and the slaughter of those present on September 11, 2001.  I had a unique perspective on these events.

I was in Israel on September 11, 2001, the day of New Jersey’s 9-11, and in New Jersey this past weekend for Israel’s 9-11.  The juxtaposition has been on my mind all weekend.

On September 11, 2001, I was participating in a mission to Israel sponsored by the Metro-West Jewish Federation, the purpose of which was to comfort Israeli victims of terrorism.  By the end of the day, the Israelis were comforting us.  And we received the news after lunch at the Eruz Crossing in Northern Gaza, the same location where Hamas launched its invasion this past weekend.

The truth must be told about Hamas and the Israeli “occupation.”  Hamas is not an heroic revolutionary organization fighting for freedom.  It is instead a Nazi-like collection of inhumane brutal lowlifes whose charter, as noted by the famed columnist Jeffrey Goldberg, is an incitement to genocide of the people of Israel. And the spiritual ancestral godfather of Hamas is the late Haj Amin Al-Husseini, the leader of the Palestinian Arabs prior to the establishment of Israel in 1948.  He was an ally of Nazi Germany who was feted by Adolf Hitler in Berlin in 1941.

I am well aware of the claims of Palestinian Arab nationalism.  My honor’s undergraduate thesis in political science at Northwestern was on the development of Palestinian Arab nationalism.  Assisting me on the study was Ibrahim Abu-Lughod, then the leading Palestinian Arab academic in America.

Accordingly, I understand Palestinian Arab nationalism, but I do not sympathize with it.  Prior to the June, 1967 war, the Palestinian Arabs were the majority in Jordan and Gaza, living under the rule of their fellow Arabs, the Hashemite King Hussein and Egypt’s Nasser, respectively.  They never in those years sought a separate Palestinian Arab state.  Instead, the then Palestinian Arab terrorists, the fedayeen launched murderous raids against Israeli civilians.

This eventually resulted in the June, 1967 Egyptian act of war, the blockade of Israel in the Gulf of Akaba, and the Jordanian attack on Israel that same month.  The Israelis defended themselves, counter-attacked and won, gaining control of the West Bank and Gaza in a war which the Palestinian Arabs instigated and the Egyptians and Jordan started.

The loss of a war by aggressors is a misfortune, but not a moral argument.   The conflict persists because of the refusal of the Palestinian Authority on the West Bank and Hamas in Gaza to recognize the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.

From the time of the Hamas invasion this past weekend, I had no doubt that this was done under the assistance and management of Iran.  Last night, the Wall Street Journal confirmed this.

President Biden is a friend of Israel and will fulfill his pledge of assistance.  The refusal of Secretary of State Tony Blinken to recognize the role of Iran in this slaughter of Israeli civilians is most disturbing.

Tony Blinken is a devotee of the failed Barack Obama/John Kerry School of Appeasement of Iran.  The Clintons, Bill and Hillary do recognize the Iranian danger.  They should advise Biden to remove and replace Blinken post-haste.

None of the $6 billion being held in escrow in Qatar should be released to Iran.  Money is fungible, and although the six billion ostensibly is to be utilized only for humanitarian purposes, the release of these monies to Iran will enable the totalitarian Iranian regime to utilize other funds in their treasury for terrorism assistance.

I have problems with both American political parties on Israel.  More on this in a future column.

Alan J. Steinberg of Highland Park served as regional administrator of Region 2 EPA during the administration of former President George W. Bush and as executive director of the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission.



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20 responses to “9-11 in New Jersey, 2001; 9-11 in Israel, 2023.”

  1. Biden is no friend of Israel. How can you say this?
    Biden & Barak Husain Obama before him despise Israel.
    Anyone can see this.

    You then correctly state that Blinken fails to recognize the role Iran plays in this slaughter of Israeli.

    We know Biden released $6 billion to Iran. Husain Obama provided cash to Iran also.
    This is not support of Israel. The media’s blame for the barbaric attacks is already being placed on Israel.

    Mr. Steinberg is attempting to sound intellectual and fails.

    One cannot logically support Israel and the Biden Obama democrats. Pick a position.

  2. I failed to mention the so-called squad members.
    All democrats. all Israel haters. In fact, all America haters.

    These people are out there blaming Israel for the attack on Israel.

    Mr Steinberg, where is your criticism of these people? Perhaps because they are democrats you do not want to criticize them?

  3. Mr. Steinberg presents a very thoughtful essay on the Israeli situation . You can understand the Palestinian position % not support it; you can be critical of Israel’s government policies and still fervently support Israel’s right to exist in peace, but you cannot (as some Israeli critics have done) ” romaticize” Hamas as ” freedom.fighters”- their inhumanity & tactics have ripped the mask off that fabrication they are terrorists interested only.in murder and annihilation with no legitimate political agenda. There are serious issues of intelligence failure to be dealt with , after an effective response from Israel, its Allies & the world community. Mr.Steinberg has provided ( once again I might add) a genuinely intelligent , thoughtful.& appropriate framework for evaluating the current crisis

  4. Israel will clean house now. They’ve been very restrained for the past decade. Now that the Socialist Democrat Biden Administration gave a terrorist organization (Iran as proxy for Hamas), the Administration has no credibility in demanding Israel stand-down and come to the “negotiating table”. Israel was hit hard in a surprise attack (re: Israeli Pearl Harbor). They are coming out swinging and will end this malicious, violent war against their people.

  5. Steinberg references one column from two and a half years ago to show his impartiality with regard to democrats.

    Are we to believe you are not democrat leaning columnist? Really?

    I’ve read scores of columns on this platform alone favoring liberal democrats over others.

  6. Since Trump authoritarianism took over the GOP, I have had a preference for the Democrats over the GOP, but when it comes to Israel, I have had no bias whatsoever to either party.

  7. Right, Trump’s to blame. Not Biden. Not the weak democrats. Typical liberal spin, double talk.

    Trump was more of a friend to Israel than any Democrat. Biden and Barak Hussain Obama willingly threw Israel and others under the bus. They have no regard for Israel.

    But you just cannot bring your democrat loyal self to admit this.

  8. We have to remove the Socialist congresscritters who are pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel, e.g., Tlaib, Omar, Pressley, AOC, “The Squad”, etc. They are inciting the support of Palestinians against Israel, and inciting the murder of women and children (40 babies beheaded by Palestinian terrorists). If The Squad and other anti-semitic Democrats want to support Palestine, they should leave the U.S. and move to Gaza, or Syria, where women are treated as 3rd class humans and gays are murdered by being tossed off of rooftops of tall buildings. It’s time to remove the Socialists and anti-Americans from Congress, since they are violating the constitutional oaths they took to support, uphold and defend the United States (and it’s allies).

  9. Alan Steinberg once again knows not what he speaks of. He now accuses Trump of being “dishonest and despicable” by politicizing life and death crisis for Israel and the Jewish people. I remind Steinberg that Trump went to Israel and got the Abraham Accords signed by Arab nations and Israel. I remind Steinberg moved the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. I remind Steinberg that Trump supported Israel with the latest military equipment and supplies. I remind Steinberg that Trump was Israel’s biggest support; not like the anti-American enemies a/k/a Clinton, G.W. Bush, Obama and Biden. I remind Steinberg that there was peace during Trump’s 4 years and the terrorist factions feared Trump after he sent them drone pictures of their living compounds or houses and families, and told them “we know where you live”.

    Steinberg reminds me of the type of person Soviet dictator Vladimir Lenin wanted to use to propagandize Communism–a “useful idiot”.

  10. Well said. Clearly Mr. Steinberg is more concerned about himself and twists this discussion to be about himself and Trump.

    How about condemning Democrats who have come out publicly in defense of the barbaric acts of Hamas?
    Will you denounce these Democrats?

    How about denouncing some cable news media defending the behavior of Hamas? Will you?

    How about denouncing some college and university groups defending Hamas? Will you?

    Be honest with yourself.

  11. Here is the response of Israeli Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi, speaking on behalf of the Israeli government, regarding Trump’s defamatory comments on Israel, Trump’s vile, despicable, attempt to politicize this life and death crisis, and the absurd claim that Trump is “Israel’s best friend.”

    “Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi responds to former US president Donald Trump, who appeared to mock Israel for failing to anticipate the weekend Hamas onslaught and for not going on the offensive against Hezbollah amid several deadly clashes along its northern border.”

    “Trump also launched personal attacks against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whom he accused of ‘letting him down,’ and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, whom he called a ‘jerk.’ “

    “Karhi told Israel’s Channel 13 that it is ‘shameful that a man like that, a former US president, abets propaganda and disseminates things that wound the spirit of Israel’s fighters and its citizens.’ “

    “ ‘We don’t have to bother with him and the nonsense he spouts,’ Karhi says. Asked if Trump’s comments make it clear that he can’t be relied on, Karhi replies, ‘Obviously.’ “

    “Trump’s comments stood in sharp contrast to the full-throated support given to Israel by serving US President Joe Biden and his officials, who have expressed steadfast backing of the country as it reels from the brutal massacres committed by Palestinian terrorists in Gaza border communities over the weekend.”

    Case closed.

    Source: Times of Israel:


  12. Case closed because you say so?

    Once again I’ll state the obvious. The Democrats are no allies of Israel. One or two newspaper opinion columns make no difference.

    You turned this discussion to make it about Trump when it is about the current US leadership and it’s position towards Israel.

    Biden, the squad and many other democrats are no true friends of Israel. Many dems are already calling for Israel to restrain their response. They speak of standing with Israel but their support is fleeting.

  13. Follow up to show what democrats believe. Here is is a quote from Dem Rep Talib just yesterday

    As long as our country provides billions in unconditional funding to support the apartheid government, this cycle of violence will continue.”

    Comments such as this by many other Dems prove their true positions.

  14. Just today a post from Democrat Rep Ilhan Omar.

    Ilhan Omar reposted an image supposedly from Gaza, but is actually a 2013 image out of Syria of child victims of the Assad regime’s Eastern Ghouta gas attack.

    This is a blatant lie about the result of Israeli actions in Gaza. This democrat is disgusting.

    This is a sitting Congresswoman. There are others democrats like this as well. How can anyone defend the democrats or believe they will stand with Israel.

  15. Some background as to what Trump actually said.
    Without the spin. Without the anti-Trump rhetoric.

    As I said this discussion was never about Trump. Mr. Steinberg twisted this to avoid being call out on his support for some of the most anti-Israel democrats.

    Trump criticized Israeli intelligence for not detecting Gaza-based Hamas’ brutal, large-scale terror operation and blamed the Biden administration for outwardly signaling to Iranian-backed Hezbollah militants in Lebanon of Israel’s vulnerability along its northern border.

    Referring to Israeli Defense Minister Gallant, Trump said, “They have a national defense minister or somebody saying, ‘I hope Hezbollah doesn’t attack us from the north.’ So the following morning, they attacked … Anyone listening would attack from the north because he said, ‘That’s our weak spot.”

    He was just pointing out the error of Mr. Gallant making comments like this. Of course Hezbollah and the Iranians were listening. They heard Israel admit to a weakness. Who does that.

    Trump remarked that Hezbollah was “very smart” for following every word put out by American and Israeli officials.

    Trump was clearly pointing out how incompetent Biden and his administration were by telegraphing to the terrorists an area that is susceptible to an attack.

    So again, let’s not spin this to be about Trump. It is about phony democrats and their supporters backing the wrong people (democrats) when it involves Israel.

  16. So just recently Iran’s Hossein Amirabdollahian
    met with United Nations envoy to the Middle East Tor Wennesland.

    Abdollahian said Iran doesn’t want the conflict to spill over to other parts of the region, but insisted that Iran will have to respond if the Israeli operation continues in Gaza.

    It will be interesting to see how how much support Israel will receive from Biden if this situation does escalate.

  17. I don’t know if anyone still follows this but now Democrat Biden is giving Hamas $100 million in aid for allegedly humanitarian assistance.

    This is taxpayers money being given to terrorists at a time when our national debt is at record levels.

    Way to go Biden. Case Not Closed.

  18. So now many Democrats and Biden are calling for a pause. Do you still believe Biden is a great friend of Israel.

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