Do Jewish Lives Matter?

Growing up in Israel, we were exposed to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute and its course on all the media channels. Every life we lost for terror was reported extensively in the national news. On the news we saw the faces of the victims, we heard their families’ reactions, and we listened to stories about their lives. We felt a personal connection to every victim; we all cried for them, and we all cared. In the Israeli media there wasn’t one victim whose story left untold. Likewise, there wasn’t one person who didn’t care about the loss of another human being.

Yes, it was not easy. However, there was one thing everyone in Israel know: our life matter.

About a year and a half ago I moved to Europe, here I learned something completely different.

I was living in France last year at the time when the Charlie Hebdo attack took place in Paris. The phrase “Je suis Charlie” immediately became a popular slogan worldwide to show the support for the French against terror, on social media channels and outside.

Shortly after, there was the terror attack in the kosher supermarket in Paris by the same terrorist organization. This time, the phrase “Je suis Juif” was used almost entirely by Jews only. There is also no denying that this attack got much less worldwide coverage and sympathy than the Charlie Hebdo attack.

The recent terror attack in Paris made many people to change their Facebook profile picture to the French flag and rally against terror, including the citizens of Israel who showed an enormous support for France.

Nonetheless, the world doesn’t seem to care that since October Israel suffered and still is suffering from terror attacks on a daily basis by Palestinians who stab Jews. This continuously terrorism against Jews in Israel was barely covered in the international media, and the little that was covered was biased coverage. One of the many examples that comes to my mind is when a reporter for NBC accused Israeli police for shooting down an “unarmed Palestinian”, when the picture behind him showed beyond doubt that the person was indeed armed with a knife.

Today I’ve heard the devastating news that during the course of one day, five Jewish people were murdered in Israel in two separate terror attacks, including an 18-year old American boy.

Only that this time no one changed their profile picture to the Israeli flag.

No one hashtaged “Pray for Israel”.

No one marched for peace.

No one condemned Hamas.

No one cared.

Whenever a terror attack occurs in Europe, the entire world cries, the entire world cares, the entire world fears, the entire world shows sympathy.

I have heard people say it is not just Paris they should pray for, but also Bagdad and Beirut, but once again, no one mentions the terror attacks in Israel.

So this is what I learned from living in Europe:

In Europe, when the Israeli-Palestinian conflict intensifies and Jewish people are losing their lives, none of my classmates hears about it, despite being political sciences students.

In Europe, when Jewish people lose their lives to terror, no one in social media shows support for Israel.

In Europe, when terror strikes in Israel, no one mentions it.

Israel is dealing with the same radical Islam that is behind the terror attacks in Europe, but the world’s reaction to terror on Jews seem to be different. By not condemning the terror attacks in Israel the world is showing inconsistency and hypocrisy against Israel.

Therefore, my question is, do Jewish lives matter?

About the Author
Hadas moved from Israel to England to pursue her Masters in International Relations at the University of Birmingham.