“Dear” Terrorists

After going through hell, an Israeli captive reaches out to her captors one last time to say, "shalom."
You may think that terror is the only way to achieve your goals. But every time you commit a terror attack, you unite Israel and the Jewish people. Each terror attack reinforces the idea of needing a Jewish state in the first place. Terrorism does what no Israeli politician can do: unite Israelis around their leaders, their army, their soldiers, in defense of their homeland. Each terror attack achieves the opposite of your goals.
Every terror attack leads to a stronger Shin Bet, a stronger Mossad, investments in the latest technology, the newest rocket defense capabilities, an increase in the Israeli entrepreneurial spirit. It will lead to a re-examining of the current counter-terrorist initiatives and updating them to reflect the latest developments. Each terror attack reminds us not to be complacent. Israelis will be more prepared now to face any threat that comes their way.
You may find it romantic to engage in violence for the sake of your ideas. But the violence that you inflict on us makes firm our resolve that what has happened will never happen again. Our strength comes from our spirit, and the Jewish spirit during times of hardship is the strongest weapon that we offer. After this particular attack, Jews have been calling friends and relatives they haven’t spoken to for years. Love is in the air, and children will follow.
There is an alternative. There are other news sources that can offer you a different perspective on Israel and Zionism. There are romantic books you can read about Zionist leaders who once had a dream. You could learn about the modern day miracle and its meaning to millions of Jews worldwide. You will be inspired by mankind’s ability to resurrect a dead language. You could find out about Nobel prize winners who have contributed so much to humanity in so little time. You could be amazed by this country, its own little Fiddler on the Roof, “trying to scratch out a simple tune,” surrounded by enemies, “without breaking its back.”
Israel wants to exist in peace and be your friend. That’s it. Soften your heart a little, and you will be rewarded mightily.
About the Author
Alan Kotlyar is an amateur Israeli folk dancer, singer, soccer player, journalist, language enthusiast, history and geography buff from the Chicago area. On the side, he makes time for teaching math and a master's program in Computer Science.
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