I’m both angry with and frightened of a world where, according to the latest BBC poll, Israel is the fourth most hated country on the planet. In this survey, as well as others (where it ranks even higher on the ‘most hated’ list), Israel was beaten out only by North Korea, Pakistan and Iran.
This despite the fact that while not perfect (what small country encircled by an ocean of neighbours hell-bent on its destruction is?), Israel has managed to remain a secular, multi-cultural democracy, where, out of a population of eight million, all of its citizens (more than two million of whom are Arab-Israelis) enjoy a level of religious rights, women`s rights, LGBT rights, freedom of choice, freedom of speech, and a system of checks and balances unprecedented anywhere in the Middle East. And all are zealously guarded despite constant wars and a location smack dab in the most dangerous ‘hood on the planet.
Yes, folks, despite all that, it has become popular sport for the only Jewish country in the world (the size of Lake Ontario) to be denied legitimacy and blamed for most of the ills in the region.
Incredibly, this is happening by a swelling chorus of so-called progressive anti-Zionists, self-righteous banner toting professors and students in our most venerated universities as well as political parties on the left, who, despite sharing many liberal values with Israel, see pesky Zionists (aka Jews) who have the audacity to believe that Jews deserve a state of their own in their ancestral homeland, as evil, greedy, arrogant, scheming and world-dominating. Is it mere coincidence that these are the exact same accusations that have been levelled against the Jewish people for more than two thousand years?
I`ve always been a big supporter of left-wing socio-economic causes as well as Palestinian rights to self-determination (provided it doesn’t culminate in a continued effort to destroy the Jewish State).
So…here`s a scoop. Unlike you who detest what Israel stands for and would love nothing better than for it to disappear, Jews don`t hate you. We simply fear you. For us to feel differently would be pathologically insane. You see, we`ve been there many times. And, despite the cologne you disguise your intent with, we can smell you coming.
In today’s Middle East, while our enemies and their liberal cohorts demonize Israel, Christians, Yazidis, Druze, Kurds, gays, political dissidents, and a host of other innocent folk (some of whose names we have never heard of before) are being systematically exterminated. On top of that, hundreds of thousands of innocent Muslim, men women and children (including untold numbers of Palestinians in Syria and elsewhere) are being slaughtered by their own co-religionists in an orgy of blood-letting and barbarism that hasn’t been witnessed since the Nazis.
In today’s Middle East, indescribably wealthy gulf states such as Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE, Kuwait and Oman as well as moderate countries, such as Morocco, Algeria and Egypt, categorically refuse to accept refugees, leaving it to Europe to pick up the pieces. Yet, somehow they escape your criticism.
Somehow, despite the atrocities perpetrated by ISIS and others or the callous indifference exhibited by many surrounding countries, Israel is branded by `liberals’ as the worst human rights offender. Don`t get me wrong. I believe that Israel, like all other countries, sometimes deserves and even invites criticism. However, as many have noted, there is a world of difference between criticism and blanket condemnation. Nothing humane that Israel does — be it treating thousands of wounded Syrian fighters and civilians in Israeli hospitals without asking who or what they stand for — or sending volunteers to help the hordes of refugees clamoring to get into Europe — will ever be recognized by you. On the contrary, you only attribute sinister motives.
As a life long ‘liberal’, I can no longer support a left that has turned anti-Zionism into a respectable activity. So yes, I am frightened — not only for Israel — but also for the future of my wonderful, tolerant multi-cultural, Canadian homeland that my refugee parents, I and my children fell passionately in love with. I`m frightened for the future of the Western world we feel blessed to live in. And I`m frightened that my children and grandchildren might one day inherit a society most of us thought had gone the way of the dodo bird. A society where old fashioned Jew-hatred, disguised in petty language, comes back to haunt us. That would be too bad!