There is a synagogue I like to stop at on the way home from my own synagogue. When I get there, I often find people learning Talmud and other Limudei Kodesh (religious studies). Recently, I stopped by and a father and son, both of whom I consider friends, were learning mussar (loosely, I would say that mussar is the study of making yourself a better person). I joined them in their learning.
We were talking about how people blame all their problems on G-d and I mentioned that this reminded me of how people were angry at G-d for 9/11 rather than aiming their anger at the true villains of the story, the terrorists who crashed the planes into the towers.
It also reminds me of how people talk about Israel. The "ethnically, linguistically and culturally identical to all other Arab/Muslims in the Middle East" people generally referred to as "Palestinians" live appalling lives. They are suppressed, they are terrorized, they are kept in horrible living conditions. But it is not Israel that is responsible for this crime against humanity; it is the "Palestinians'" own leadership.
The leaders of the "Palestinians" keep their people in ignorance. They spread the lie that their squalor and terror are the fault of Israel. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Israel and the Israeli people not only don’t suppress these people, they give them jobs, they give them food, they give them hospital care. And the money that countries give to the "Palestinians" ends up translated into weapons aimed at Israel or lining the pockets and populating the Swiss Bank Accounts of their leaders.
There is only one reason to be anti-Israel. Being anti-Israel is a more politically correct way of expressing anti-Jewish sentiment. "I’m not an anti-Semite," the Jew-haters will say, "I just object to Israel." What do they object to about Israel? Israel isn’t suppressing the "Palestinians" or keeping her own citizens in squalor. The people of Israel have taken a desert area and made it flourish. They have taken a land which Golda Meir described as the only place in the Middle East without oil and turned it into a scientific giant, a country that can economically and technologically "play with the big boys". Israel is a country to be emulated, not scorned.
If the people aiming their disdain at Israel were truly concerned about the "Palestinians", they would also care about the millions of people in the world living in worse conditions or with more right to a land than the "Palestinians". They would be protesting the treatment of non-Muslims in Darfur. They would fight for the Tibetans, whose land was annexed by China. They would join the struggle for the Afghanis who are still at war with the Taliban. They would speak out against the treatment of women under the current corrupt Iranian regime. They would campaign for the Basques, who are ethnically, linguistically and culturally different from all other people in the world but are refused a land of their own by France and Spain.
If the people aiming their disdain at Israel were truly concerned about the "Palestinians", they would not aim their contempt at Israel since Israel is powerless to change the status of the "Palestinians". We have evidence that proves this.
A few years ago, Israel vacated Gush Katif, their settlement in Gaza, leaving families who built the area from a wasteland into a showplace, a place where families had homes and lives and what we in the United States would call "the American dream". Did the leadership of "Palestinians" use this area as towns for their people? Did they employ the homes and offices and infrastructure the people of Gust Katif had created for themselves? Did they resettle their own refugees in this garden spot? No. They razed all the homes and gardens and farms and dug in their heels because all they really want is for Israel to cease to exist. They took the area and turned it into a military outpost, a place to lob bombs on Sederot and other populated areas of Israel. They don't really want homes for their people. They only want to destroy us and create hatred.
So next time you hear someone say they aren't anti-Jewish they're anti-Israel, remind them that this is not possible. Remind them of all the countries in the world who are suppressing other nations. Remind them of what Israel has done for peace versus what the "Palestinian Authority" has done for war, terror and hatred. And tell them you’re wise to their subterfuge.
Israel is a beacon of hope for the world. Israel has proven that a nation, a people and a land can rise Phoenix-like from the ashes of hatred, from the ashes of Buchenwald, Treblinka and Auschwitz, from the hatred of the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Pale of Settlement. Israel has shown the world that there is hope for suppressed peoples, for nations who are living under corrupt regimes, for people living in exile from their lands. Israel should be lauded and copied. And anyone who thinks otherwise is anti-Jewish. Period.
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