A Boycott, Divest, Sanction resolution passes, Jewish graves, homes, and fraternities are vandalized, Jews are threatened in city streets, Israel and her supporters are demonized and ridiculed.
All of the above headlines reflect the exponentially growing hostility towards Israel supporters and Jews throughout the entire globe.
On three-hundred and six university campuses through the United States, professors and students alike have called for the severing of ties with the Jewish State. They place the blame in its entirety on Israel. Their supporters compare Netanyahu to Hitler, Zionism to Nazism, and Israel to apartheid South Africa. Additionally, they isolate Jewish students, and create a climate of aggression and hate. While the BDS Movement claims that they stand for justice and peace, anti-Semitism and Israel’s ultimate destruction are the foundations of their motives.
In Europe and on college campuses, Jewish buildings have been targeted. On the campus of Emory University, the AEPI fraternity house was spray painted with swastikas, thus exemplifying the increasing hatred and animosity towards Jewish students on American campuses. The enmity towards Jews does not just exist within the United States. According to the Anti-Defamation League, since January 1st, 2015, there have already been anti-Semitic attacks in eleven different countries, beginning with the France supermarket attack that killed four Jewish men. Then a month later, in Copenhagen, a gunman opened fire at the Great Synagogue, killing Dan Uzan, 37, a member of the Copenhagen Jewish community. Throughout Europe, anti-Semitic attacks are continually increasing, creating a dangerous climate similar to that of during the Holocaust.
Recently, a video surfaced of a Jewish journalist walking through the streets of Britain. He wore a kippah, so he was identifiable as Jewish. Upon being recognized as a Jew, he was stalked, spat on, threatened, called scum, and told to f**k off. No longer can a Jewish man or woman openly display their religion in various areas without a significant risk.
Lastly, one could argue that the source of all of the disgust towards Jews stems from the hatred of the State of Israel. During this past summer’s Operation Protective Edge, Israel was greatly criticized for their offensive against Hamas. This launched a global spread of anti-Israel protests in which Israeli flags were shown with swastikas, and Jews were threatened. In today’s world, all of the good Israel does for the world is overlooked, and the IDF’s battle against terrorism is critiqued intensely.
Undoubtedly, the future seems bleak. Israel is loathed on a world-wide scale, and Jews can no longer freely express their religion safely. But now is not the time to cower in fear; now is the time to stand up. We need to illuminate the fact that never again will the Jewish people fall victim to genocide, never again will the Jewish people not have a homeland, and never again will the Jewish people succumb to those who wish to destroy us.
The Jewish narrative has been one of horror, downfall, and triumph. There never seems to be a period of time in which an entity, or leader, is not trying to destroy us. Today, more than ever, we must stand up and say no. We must display the strength and determination of our people. We must show the world that the Jewish people, the Jewish state, and the Jewish dream are not going anywhere. We must stand up for what we believe in; the values and morals taught to us in the Torah.
In order to send a strong, resolute message to the entire world, the Jewish people must unite as one. Whether you are a Reform, Conservative, or Orthodox Jew. An Ashkenazi Jew or Sephardic Jew. An Iranian Jew, Ethiopian Jew, or French Jew. A Republican Jew, or a Democratic Jew. Now is the time to unite.
One robust and powerful voice of a united people will send waves throughout the entire world. It is integral we show that the Jewish people are as resilient as ever, proud as ever, and tough as ever. We must exemplify that we will not bend in the face of danger, and dodge the obstacles that obstruct our path ahead. Perseverance is ingrained in our history, and flows through our blood. It is time we exploit that, and persevere like we did after the Holocaust.
At Masada, Israeli soldiers take an oath: “Masada shall never fall again”. As a people, we must never let Masada fall again. We must secure a Jewish future, with a homeland, for our children and grandchildren.
Hillel HaGadol, an ancient Jewish religious leader stated, ” “If I am not for myself who is for me?”
If we, as the Jewish people, are not for ourselves, who will be for us?