A review: Israel & Caroline meet Tom Phelan

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Glick, Caroline (2014) The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East. NY: Random House.

Also at



I used Dr. Phelan’s “1, 2, 3 Magic” for nearly three decades, teaching mothers (and fathers) how to discipline their 2-12 year olds and sometimes their own marital partner. Phelan noticed that parents use “too much talk” and “too much emotion.” His advice was to count 1, 2, 3 and then put the infant or teen on a chair for three minutes. When time was up, he/she could leave the chair but there was no further discussion . . . more talk simply led to more arguing and more misbehavior.

The effects were predictable. They were dependable. And three of more kids per week learned not to argue with mommy and three or more mothers per week stood taller, frowned less, and left their screamer mode.

Glick – and for that matter, Michael Rubin – document the failures of “talk-it-out” policies and diplomatic “engagement.” I remembered Phelan’s advice.


1)     Jews are gifted. Murray (2003) tells us of their disproportionate share of Nobel Prizes and many of our most gifted performers, composers, and conductors are Jewish, not Palestinian, and the Jewish sections of Odessa birthed and trained many of them (Babel, 2002). Differences in the IQ of Israelis and Palestinians (Lynn & Vanhanen, 2006) are associated with order, planning, and a sense of the future or with impulsiveness, defiance (oppositionality), and assault (conduct disorder!) (Barkely, 1997). The supervision delivered through a Mullah resembles that from a special ed teacher – step by step directions, close observation, immediate, personally relevant consequences, and even time for meditation on a rug.

2)     Kuramoto gave us the math that explains partnerships between oscillators, if the oscillators share fundamental frequencies (Strogatz, 2003). Synchrony emerges between two or ten thousand participants. Similarity makes order from chaos. The bases for synchrony between Israelis and Palestinians, however, are nearly absent. Likewise for Jews and many Europeans. The Jews build greenhouses in the desert but when given possession, Palestinians destroy them.

3)     Tit-for-Tat is a game that captures the basics of making trades (Poundstone, 1992). Each partner does better by taking less than he/she wanted. The exception occurs when one partner plans to leave but without telling anyone . . . in these cases, massive cheating is the winning strategy. Traveling sales discovered this before the Rand scientists. The Palestinians have “cheated” for a half century and, according to Rubin, we Americans were “suckered” by the North Koreans, North Vietnamese, Russians, Iranians, Syrians, and most nearly everyone else in the Middle East and North Africa. We paid them to talk to us and then paid them some more to talk to us some more. I suppose that we’d still be debating with George Wallace but Ike sent in the Federal troops and gave George his own time-out.

BECAUSE THERE IS NO PALESTINIAN STATE . . .                                                                           

1)     There are 4000 years of Jewish civilization . . . Israel exists because the Jews have always been there and its existence is not a payoff for their dying in Polish barracks.

2)     The Jews, especially those in “liberal” NYC, have their own lust for “engagement” and they are participants in whatever “cluster fucks” the Arabs contrive. “You can talk to me but I must screw you first.”

3)     War is blamed on the lack of a separate “Palestinian state.” The odds favor a possibility that there would be terrorists even if there were five Palestinian states. Glick advocates that ISR incorporate Judea and Samaria. If so, no one will do anything but bitch. The chief obstacle appears to be Israel itself – her citizens also like “engagement.”

4)     Engagement . . . another chapter for Rubin’s book.  There is now a feminine bias in our culture, a bias taught in our schools because of underlying changes in the nature of our children (Copley, 2012). Talking forever and spinning endless strands of rules will end us.

5)     The European Union . . . its members delight in rules and make lots of them. The EU, however, won’t save Israel – they can’t save themselves.


1)     I’ve followed Glick’s columns for at least five years: This book is an easier read. Her paragraphs are shorter, sentences lead somewhere, each chapter makes its point. This is really great stuff and I wonder if her editors supplied their own versions of Tom Phelan!

2)     Israel now pick the smart Palestinians through delays, plans, & contracts. The bad ones self-select out just as was once true at the border between the U.S. and Mexico.

3)     Think about leaf blowers, snow blowers, and lawnmowers when you consider guns instead of pleading, giving money, or swapping sugared lies.

4)     The Israelis have discovered fields of natural gas and oil. They are also an inventive people who will find synergy with inventive people in India, China, and oddly, Iran.

5)     Obama acts like a Muslim and a pusher. He is not to be trusted while he and Valerie use his final years to get his next job. He may become a domino that tips because of his own ambitions.

6)     Kerry was wounded in Vietnam by grains of rice. He also made tapes of himself running through Vietnamese fields (O’Neill & Corsi, 2004). Make him buy his own gas . . . he’ll talk less and spend more time with Theresa.

7)     As for media lapses in the EU, USA, and Israel . . . remember there are girly men under nearly every masthead.

8)     Do not start with small sanctions while intending to “teach a lesson,” protect engagement, or gradually increase severity. All you do is toughen your target and lose your own humanity. Dresden and Hiroshima provoked opposite reactions because of the gradual escalation in our attacks on the former. The Germans starved St. Petersburg for 872 days but couldn’t finish the job.

9)     Find our next Patton, Grant, or Sherman now . . . we will need them before missiles land.


Babel, Nathalie (Ed.) (2002) The Complete Works of Isaac Babel. New York: Norton.

Barkley Russsel (1997) ADHD and the Nature of Self Control. NY: Guilford.

Brody, James (2014) “Michael Rubin: Girly Men of the West” A review of Michael Rubin (2014): Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Engaging Rogue Regimes. NY: Encounter. http://www.deadcatsandclippings.com/?page_id=3026

Copley, Gregory (2012) Uncivilization: Urban Geopolitics in a Time of Chaos. Washington, D. C.: The International Strategic Studies Association.

Lynn, Richard & Tatu Vanhanen (2006) IQ and Global Inequality. Augusta, GA: Washington Summit.

Murray, Charles (2003) Human Accomplishment: The Pursuit of Excellence in the Arts & Sciences, 800 B.C. to 1950 NY: Harper Collins.

O’Neil, John & Jerome Corsi (2004) Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry. Washington, DC: Regnery.

Phelan, Thomas. (1990) 1,2,3 Magic. Glen Ellyn, IL: Child Management, Inc.

Poundstone, William (1992) Prisoner’s Dilemma: John von Neumann, Game Theory, and the Puzzle of the Bomb. NY: Anchor.

Rubin, Michael (2014) Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Engaging Rogue Regimes. NY: Encounter.

Strogatz, Steven. (2003) Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order. NY: Hyperion.

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