A war that doesn’t matter

Israel is at war.

We may not call it that. And we may not say it out loud. And some may not even believe it. But there can be no doubt that Israel is currently fighting an enemy that is… well everywhere. Because when your people are attacked with knives on streets, when rocks that kill are being hurled at your cars, and when parents are shot to death in front of their children — what other word is there but war?

And yet, in many ways, this is a war that doesn’t matter.

Because it doesn’t matter if you’re a left-winger or a right-winger. It doesn’t matter if you’re religious or not. It doesn’t matter if you’re an Ashkenazi Jew or a Sephardi Jew or something else. It doesn’t even matter if you think Abbas is a man of peace or a man of war. It certainly doesn’t matter if you believe the land the Arabs want is called the West Bank or Judea and Samaria or Israel itself. And at times, it doesn’t even matter if you’re Jewish — as a Palestinian Authority minister found out when his car was mistakenly targeted by rock-throwing thugs.

None of that matters, because as some deranged Arabs launch their murderous rage against the innocent people of Israel, one thing is certain — their goal is murder — whoever they can reach, whenever they can reach, and how often they can reach. And the last thing they think about — as they lunge forward with their instruments of death is your view on the world.

But this is a war that is not only fought in the streets of Israel. It is not only fought by the brave IDF forces who fight every second to keep evil at bay. This is not only fought by the brave citizens who put themselves in harm’s way so that others may be saved.

No, this war is fought across the world. It is fought with every media headline that refuses to record the events accurately. It is fought with every government spokesman who refuses to call terrorism for what it is. It is fought with every statement that calls on all sides to “promote calm” while refusing to acknowledge the incitement that Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas has shrieked from his pulpit with statements such as “Every drop of blood that has been spilled in Jerusalem is holy blood as long as it was for Allah” or “Al-Aksa is ours and so is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. They have no right to desecrate them with their filthy feet. We won’t allow them to do so and we will do whatever we can to defend Jerusalem”

It is also fought across the great spectrum of social media that is embedded in our very lives. There is a war on Facebook too, where those who post images and statements in support of Israel are taken down and banned due to “not abiding by community standards” and yet Facebook pages like “F**k Israel” exist with impunity.

And it is also fought in society where the idea of open Jew hatred, once socially unacceptable, is now part of mainstream conversations, coated with a dose of “evil Zionism” to make it palatable to the taste.

And it is fought as well in the hypocrisy of US State Department officials, who are “appalled” and say an Israeli accidental attack on a UNRWA shelter is “disgraceful” prior to any investigation, and yet cannot find the words when one of their own attacks kill 22 people. Suddenly, they don’t want to comment, because… well… they need to wait… for an investigation, you see…

But as much as there are things about this war that don’t matter, there are also so many things that do…

Because Israel stands at the forefront between a world of hope and a world of fear. There is an unbridled violent Islamic fanaticism that is sweeping the entire Middle East, except for one small spot — a spot not much bigger than the state of New Jersey. A country so small that it can fit into the surrounding Arab countries 650 times.

Israel stands as the gatekeeper between chaos and civilisation. Between sanity and madness. Between order and anarchy. It resists the dark forces that gather up against it — dark forces that are supported by many in the world who have been duped into believing these forces represent justice rather than injustice.

Israel is our last line of defence between a world of hope — and the gates of hell itself.

And that’s something that truly matters.

About the Author
Justin Amler is a South African born, Melbourne based writer who has lived in South Africa, New Zealand and Australia.