Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchick in his essay “Kol Dodi Dofek/Behold My Beloved is Knocking” wrote that that one of the Almighty’s “knocks” of religious Zionist opportunity created by the State of Israel is the fact that Jewish blood is no longer “hefker” or ownerless. A government with an army would ensure that there would be repercussions for accosting a Jew.
There is holiness in self-defense and there’s nothing wrong with being powerful as long as that power is not abused. The problem is usually those in power have abused it and so we and the world are understandably suspicious of those with power and we have also gotten too used to the powerless Jew.
Just know the only Peace treaties Israel ever signed with Arab nations (Egypt and Jordan) came only after Israel defeated them in two wars (67 and 73) and through a more of hard line Prime Minister, Menachem Begin. For there to be peace Israel’s enemies need to know she is too powerful to be defeated. That’s ultimately what brought Egypt and Jordan to the negotiating table and please God the others one day as well.