Thank You, Anti-Semites

Dear World,

Thank you for finally releasing your anti-Semitic sentiments that you have so patiently tried (and failed) to suppress since November 2012, Israel’s last engagement with Gaza.

Thank you for reminding me why I moved to Israel, the only democratic country in the Middle-East, a mere twenty-three months ago.

With every ugly protest you hold condemning Israeli violence while simultaneously throwing chairs, tables, stones and Israeli products, I stand that much straighter.

With every anti-Semitic, ignorant, malign hash-tag you tweet, hash-tags that I can’t even bring myself to write, I wave my Israeli flag higher.

With every prevarication you bring to the United Nations, hoping that maybe Israel will disappear once you denounce us on a political platform, I thank you for reminding me once again how fortunate I am to be a Jew living in Israel.

With every odious demonstration. Every violent aspersion. Every savage attack. With every lie you fabricate and every abuse, I am that much prouder that I belong to a religion, to a nation, to a belief system, to a country that epitomizes the meaning of strength in the face of evil.

Love in the face of evil.

Peace in the face of evil.

And defiance against the squalid face of evil which lurks in every corner and between every crevice throughout the world.

You call me an “occupier” for living in the country that God promised me. You call me an “occupier” for living in a country where thousands of Jewish artifacts are found on a yearly basis stemming from all eras of Jewish history. You call me an “occupier” for living in a country that is rightfully mine. A land that my people toiled over, cultivated and now reside.

You call me a “terrorist” for living in a country that my people arrived in with nothing but blood seeping from their ragged sleeves, after enduring the depths of hell, while you turned a blind eye. You call me a “terrorist” for wanting nothing more than a dull moment in Israel. You call me a “terrorist” for standing and holding an olive branch of peace in my hand waiting and waiting and still waiting for someone to genuinely accept it. No strings attached.

You call my army, the Israeli Defense Force “genocidal”. You decry my army for finally defending its innocent people against ongoing rocket attacks over the past decade. But where are your cries for Syria? Sudan? Iran? Where are your tears and criticisms for murdering their people because they are simply in the way of a power struggle? Or do your so called “human rights” not apply to them?

You call me a “Zionist” as if I should be ashamed. Embarrassed. Remorseful.
Well you clearly do not know the pride I feel every time you condemn me for being a Zionist.
If you hate me for being a Zionist it is evident that I am doing something right.

You have tried to attack the State of Israel and the Jewish nation verbally, emotionally, and physically before. You have used physical warfare, psychological warfare, political warfare, and the most recent- social media warfare but we have survived. Not only have we survived, but we have flourished with the word “peace” emblazoned on our chests.

Maybe it is time you open a history book and realize Jews are not going anywhere. And to your dismay, Israel is not going anywhere either.

Perhaps use your fervent energy to chastise something else, because all of your signs, slanders, riots, condemnations and violence only makes me that much prouder to be a Jew living in Israel.

So thank you.

About the Author
Lottie Kestenbaum was born to British parents and grew up in New Jersey. To add to the identity crisis, Lottie made aliyah in August 2012. Hello tri-citizenship! She is currently studying Jewish History and English Literature at Bar Ilan University. Lottie shares more of her aliyah adventures & ongoing thoughts on her blog, Newest Sabra on the Block.