Near East 911
By Wendy Wippel
I lived through the Watergate era, but to be honest (I was 14 at the time.) had very little idea what Watergate was about until I finally saw “The Post” last week. Nixon, apparently, was fairly devoid of both ethics or grace. But God used him anyhow.
It was 1972, and Nixon was in his third year of his presidency, with a whole lot on his Presidential plate:
Riots over the continuing Vietnam war, which at this point had claimed nearly 40,000 lives.
Race relations at home.
A sharp rise in inflation and downturn of the American economy.
Efforts to establish diplomatic relationships with China.
A scheme to break into the Watergate Hotel in order to steal Democratic secrets (although no one knew at the time).
An Oil embargo that was driving up gas prices. The last thing he needed was another hot spot to deal with.
But another one promptly landed in his lap.
Israel. Specifically the beginning of Israel’s Yom Kippur war, with the U.S., as usual, just about the only ones willing to be on their side.
On October 6, 1973–with the goal of recovering territory lost to Israel during the six-day war (1967)– Egyptian and Syrian forces launched a coordinated attack against Israel on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Jewish calendar.
The attack took the Israeli Defense Forces completely by surprise. Meaning they were majorly unprepared.
Egyptian troops reached deep into the Sinai Peninsula, while Syria worked to remove all Israel troops from the Golan Heights.
Bottom Line? Israel was in deep, deep trouble.
Half of their aircraft had been demolished in just the first three days of conflict, and other resources were running equally low.
Who could they turn to?
Nixon and Golda Meier had had multiple conversations since he had taken office three years before, but their relationship was not cozy.
But Golda was facing the annihilation of the Jewish state. She did what she had to do.
She authorized the use of atomic weapons as a last resort.
She provided her staff with lethal pills, provided by her personal physician, in order to take their own lives if needed.
And she made that call.
There was really only one person she could call.
And –as promised in Deuteronomy —
Deuteronomy 31:8 “And the LORD, he it is that does go before you; he will be with you, he will not fail you, neither forsake you: fear not, neither be dismayed.”– God had gone ahead of her.
Nixon got the call at about 3:00 in the morning.
History records that he heard the words of his mother, decades before, as he listened to Meier describe her plight. That unless the United States helped her, the Jewish homeland and their people could cease to exist.
He heard his mother’s voice because, in his formative years, Nixon’s mother (a devout Quaker), had told him repeatedly that God had confided to her that one day he would be in a powerful position, one that would enable him to help the Jews.
And she made him promise that when that time came, he would help.
But when the time came, there was just one problem… Nixon hated Jews
Kissinger’s detailed plan to help the Jews in this war was greeted by Nixon, “let them bleed”.
He didn’t want Jews in infiltrating the U.S. Government, either. “No Jews. We are adamant when I say no Jews.”
From an only recently discovered set of tapes: “The Jews are just a very aggressive and abrasive with obnoxious personalities.”
Other parts of the tapes document more vicious language—language that make Nixon’s anti-Semitism indisputable.
Back to 1973, and the surprise attacks on Yom Kipper.
The holiest of Jewish holidays. Holidays that both observant and non-observant Jews celebrate. Holidays that demand that everything comes to a standstill and all forms of media are avoided.
Israel was a sitting duck.
The combined tanks of their enemies outnumbered Israel’s tanks by hundreds.
Near the Suez canal, 180 thousand Egyptian soldiers waited to slaughter the few hundred Israeli soldiers available to fight.
And Israel stood facing the enemy alone, with no less than 11 Arab states combined in the desire to wipe them off the face of the Earth.
And the soviet Union.
It was at that point that the great Israeli General Moshe Dayan and Prime minister Golda Meier started to talk about surrender.
But they had one last hope.
Golda Meir made the call. Nixon remembered his promise to his Mom, true to his promise, he honored it.
The rest is history. The U.S. provided Israel with 56 combat aircraft as well as nearly 28,000 tons of ammunitions and supplies.
Israel won the war. And still exists today. Which should be no surprise.
“Once for all, I have sworn by my holiness– and I will not lie to David–that his line will continue forever and his throne endure before me like the sun;it will be established forever like the moon, the faithful witness in the sky. Sela”
Mother knows best.
And our Father in Heaven? He never fails!