I recently read this ridiculous cartoon strip on Mondoweiss, an Israel-hating site I should stay far far away from. Then I went ahead and did something even worse: I read the comments. Because knowledge is power. And because I’m a masochist. So I came across this comment by an ethereal entity who calls himself John Douglas (who knows what his real name is):
I was driving on a bridge when a neighbor I’d been tormenting for 8 years passed me and nicked my side view mirror. We got out and I threw him off the bridge. Not only did this terrorist assault viciously devastate my car, it left me traumatized and worse, it made me into a killer so now I’ll have to defend myself in the courts, which by the way are proven to be prejudiced against people like me who throw others off bridges.
Naturally, I take sincere umbrage to everything written in this statement. I know what you, dear reader, will say: These are comments. No one should ever read comments, especially on such a biased website.
My only response to this is that to ignore these comments is like Europe ignoring the Global Pogrom: if you don’t deal with it, it will fester and grow. Comments like these need to be addressed because they are not constructive criticism or critique. This comes from complete ignorance of the situation. A failure – at best, and a lack of desire, at worst – to understand what is going on.
What is really going on?
If we were to extrapolate from Mr. Douglas’ analogy: My neighbor’s car wasn’t just passing by. He was actively and deliberately trying to hit me. The only reason there was only a nick and not a head-on collision is because I have a magician sitting atop my car who waves away other vehicles, preventing car accidents. Sometimes he slips up a bit and I get nicked. Sometimes he misses completely and a four year old child gets killed.
To go back to real life: Purposefully aiming munitions at civilians is absolutely a war crime, even if we just “get nicked”, so yes, this “neighbor” is a terrorist who must be stopped. There is no justification for his behavior. The “trauma” that Mr. Douglas makes light of goes beyond spending summers in shelters and flinching every time a motorcycle drives by; these are months when a large portion of our work force is not working or spending, which hinders our economy. Our magician, Iron Dome, costs approximately $100,000 per interception, not including the cost of running an Iron Dome battery itself, further hindering Israel’s economy. Israel spends nearly 6 percent of its GDP on security, almost 5 percent more than the usual 0.5-1 percent of other OECD nations. This, of course, does not include the costs of fixing damage, yet another economic strain.
I can only presume that Mr. Douglas would mind a lot less if we didn’t have Iron Dome to protect us so instead of getting “nicked” we were crashing and burning. Maybe he wouldn’t mind because more dead four year olds would make it okay to respond to the constant barrage of rockets. Or maybe he wouldn’t mind because it would mean less Jews. Who knows?
What I do know is that, back in real life, this is unsustainable economically and socially. We can only pay the exorbitant price of Iron Dome for so long, and that 5 percent GDP difference could be spent on helping us climb the OECD ladder, like most other Westernized countrie. Seeing how we’ve already taken our country so far in such a short period of time, I can only wonder how much more we could do if we had a few extra billion to help us. Socially, we have children who are growing up wondering why the whole world hates us, and parents speculating when their kids will have a normal summer playing in the sun without having to check their surroundings for protection from flying rockets.
And I’m pondering why it’s such a crime for Israel to defend herself from those rockets. I’m pondering how it’s become our fault that a whole group of people is launching rockets at us merely because we exist, when their charter calls for the demise of the entire Jewish people. I’m pondering why everyone pretends that car isn’t trying to hit us head on and kill us.