Lazarre Seymour Simckes

As is its name, so it is

The word “hamas” means violence in Hebrew. Genesis 6:13 cites violence as the reason for the destruction of the world in the days of Noah. 

 וַיֹּ֨אמֶר אֱלֹהִ֜ים לְנֹ֗חַ קֵ֤ץ כׇּל־בָּשָׂר֙ בָּ֣א לְפָנַ֔י כִּֽי מָלְאָ֥ה הָאָ֛רֶץ חָמָ֖ס מִפְּנֵיהֶ֑ם וְהִנְנִ֥י 

.מַשְׁחִיתָ֖ם אֶת־הָאָֽרֶץ

But the terrorist organization of Hamas glosses the word differently. Its Covenant defines hamas as zeal, strength, or bravery.

This shocking contrast in the word’s meaning symbolizes the crisis we now face. The survival of the world is at stake. We cannot let terror redefine violence as bravery.

About the Author
Playwright, novelist, psychotherapist and translator from the Hebrew, Lazarre Seymour Simckes is a graduate of Harvard College, Stanford University, and Harvard University. He has taught literature and creative writing courses at Harvard, Yale, Williams, Vassar, Brandeis, Tufts, and abroad as a Fulbright Scholar and Visiting Writer at Haifa University. He has also conducted a live, interactive writing workshop, delivered via satellite, linking Israeli Jewish and Arab high school students with their counterparts in America.