Haim Misgav

Anarchy isn’t democracy

Law and order not top priority of journalist charged with espionage

Democracy has many faces – this is what we’ve been hearing night and day from many people since soldier Anat Kam, who apparently belongs to the anarchist leftist camp (whose members seek to undermine the legitimacy of the elected government) stole documents from the Central Command chief’s computer.


Now, they are trying to grace the theft with an ideological aspect: The soldier in fact did not steal the documents, they say, but rather, merely sought to “leak” them via an innocent journalist who would present them the public, in order to seemingly avert the death of innocents. And if this is what she did, fans of anarchy tell us, why should she be indicted?


If all the soldier sought to do was help the State of Israel maintain its moral character, we are told by all those people who are seemingly concerned about freedom of press and its ability to function in a state run by, lo and behold, the rightist camp, why was it wrong?


These types of arguments, by the way, are voiced every time spies of the same camp are caught. This article is too short to name them all –there are quite a few of them, who always premise their acts on the same ideology – but we should mention a few at least: For example, Marcus Kleinberg, a researcher at Israel’s biological institute, who was sent to 20 years in prison, or Udi Adiv, who spied for the Syrians and was sentences to 17 years in jail, or Mordechai Vanunu, who worked at the Dimona nuclear facility.


There was also the case of Aharon Cohen, who back in the 1950s believed he knows better than the State how it should conduct itself. He handed over information to the Soviet Union, which at the time was headed by a man who murdered millions of his countrymen, including dozens of Jewish authors.


All of them, of course, boasted ideological righteousness, as did Anat Kam. She merely sought to act in line with her conscience, says her attorney Avigdor Feldman, who also represented Kleinberg and Vanunu, two other people who sought to guide the state in the direction they favored.


Freedom of press not in danger

This argument is appealing, on the face of it. Here we have a young woman (just like Tali Fahima, who joined forces with a young Palestinian man thirsty for Jewish blood a few years ago) who seeks to perform a wonderful service for the benefit of her state, while assuming immense personal risk; what can be more altruistic than that?


Yet there’s no greater foolishness than uttering these words. The IDF’s combat doctrine is the business of the elected government. In a democratic state, this is how things should work. Those who believe there is some kind of flaw, moral or otherwise, in this conduct cannot take the law into their own hands. Anarchy is the opposite of democracy. Nihilism is the essence of the anarchist, and this is how rather large groups belonging to the radical leftist camp conduct themselves at this time.


Anat Kam is one of them. Law and order are not her top priority. Let no one tell us that the freedom of press, which is often premised on “leaks,” is now facing danger. What is in jeopardy at this time is the State of Israel’s very ability to contend with its enemies while it’s being eroded by domestic anarchism.


Dr. Haim Misgav is a law lecturer at the Netanya Academic College


פרסום ראשון: 04.09.10, 14:54
 new comment
This will delete your current comment