On one of the holiest days of the Jewish year, a day that celebrates the Torah, which is the source of Western ethics and morality [yawn, is this going to be another one of those thingies where they talk about the massacre of those Jews at that concert and in their homes? Again??], a carefully trained cohort of bloodthirsty Hamas terrorists [Yup. Been there. Seen that. My Gender Studies Professor says it didn’t really happen. Or maybe he or she or they–I can never tell–said it was OK because the babies were colonial settlements, or something] brutalized, raped, murdered, tortured, and kidnapped [b-o-o-o-ring] thousands of innocent Jewish civilians (did anyone see the remote? I can’t find the remote).
Obviously, we are doing something wrong. Or we are going about this in the wrong way. Apparently, very few people other than Jews (”VFPOTJ”) care about dead Jews, VFPOTJ care how they were killed, and VFPOTJ care who killed them.
Moreover, even if they used to care, they no longer care, because they have seen this movie many times before. Hamas kills some Jews. The Israeli army blows up some buildings. There are casualties because Hamas shelters among civilians. The world is outraged about the disproportionality of it all. CNN and the BBC carry that picture of the Arab girl with blood on her face being carried to the hospital. There will be a temporary truce struck. A period of quiet will ensue during which Hamas will build tunnels and rearm. And, then–rinse, repeat. Again. And again. And again.
The world will not remember that one side tried to kill children and the other side tried to avoid killing children while bringing the murderers to justice. No one cares. No one cares that Hamas uses children as shields in order to maximize civilian damages. No one cares that they, as part of their plans, beheaded babies, kidnapped holocaust survivors, raped girls, tortured autistic children, immolated people alive. And took pictures and bragged about it.
No one cares. Perhaps no one expects better of Hamas, who have learned and been taught nothing other than hate since they were born (Thanks UNRWA). Perhaps the cumulative impact of distorted education and intersectional hate in the US and Europe is finally bearing its poisonous fruit. Perhaps all of the pious disavowals and repudiation of rape, torture, kidnapping, prejudice, and barbarism, simply do not apply when the victims are Jews.
Whatever the reason, our message is not getting through as it should. People who should know better still support Hamas.
So, if we want to win hearts and minds on the campuses and in general enlightened society, we need a better strategy than the simple truth.
And it will not surprise a single person who knows me that I happen to have that better strategy, for I taught at a large Midwestern US university and I attended a prestigious law school, so I know how to appeal to those hearts and minds. (Of course, it was 40-50 years ago, but I imagine that nothing much has changed.)
Here it is:
Hello, New York Times, Washington Post, Sky News, MSNBC, BBC, CNN—and student newspapers at US universities? I have a scoop for you.
Hamas hates transgendered people, and kills them when the opportunity arises, EVEN IF THEY ARE NOT JEWISH!!!
Hamas hates queer people, and tortures and kills them when they are discovered. EVEN IF THEY ARE NOT JEWISH!!!
Hamas men kill female members of their families (and, it goes without saying, other families) if they walk outside with their hair uncovered, or if they are found to have had sexual relations, or–Allah forbid–danced in public. AND, OF COURSE, THEY ARE NOT JEWISH.
Hamas hates black people and considers them inferior, though they welcome the endorsement of BLM. (WOULDN’T MAKE A DIFFERENCE WHETHER THOSE BLACK PEOPLE WERE JEWISH OR NOT; HAMAS WOULD STILL HATE THEM AND WELCOME THE ENDORSEMENT.)
Hamas violated the sanctity of a music festival to commit their atrocities. A music festival!! During a ceasefire. (FORGET ABOUT THE JEWS; YOU MAY NOT BE SAFE AT THE NEXT TAYLOR SWIFT CONCERT. THINK ABOUT IT.)
This isn’t necessarily their fault, but Hamas is part of the same people as Rashida Tlaib. [It’s OK if you shudder in revulsion; it would be strange if you didn’t.]
Thought exercise: CLOSE YOUR EYES, TAKE A DEEP BREATH, AND CONSIDER . . . WHO KIDNAPS BABIES AND HOLDS THEM FOR RANSOM? DO YOU REALLY WANT TO BE ON THEIR SIDE? STOP! THINK ABOUT IT! WHAT SORT OF MONSTER ORDERS BABIES TO BE KIDNAPPED AND HELD FOR RANSOM AND WHAT SORT OF DEFICIENT HUMAN BEINGS CARRY OUT THOSE ORDERS?
Like the CEOs in the decadent West whom you detest, the political leaders of Hamas live opulent and luxurious lives in Beirut and Doha, while their policies bring death, starvation, destruction, and misery to the common people whom they are supposed to serve and for whom they purport to be responsible. Think about it: Ismail Haniyeh purposefully starts a war, knowing with absolute certainty that many of his people will die, be displaced, lose their homes, and suffer–and he has been living in splendor in Qatar since 2017. Got to feel sorry for those Palestinian refugees. Someone should, because their leaders sure don’t. (By the way, Haniyeh was fired from his leadership position by Mahmoud Abbas in 2007, but he refused to relinquish office; what kind of petty tinhorn dictator refuses to relinquish office when he’s fired?)
Did I mention that Haniyeh is a multimillionaire? Did I mention that he made his money charging a 20% tax on goods that came through the tunnels from Egypt to feed and supply his poor brethren? Did I mention that Haniyeh purchased a 2500 sqm (27,000 sqf) beachfront parcel of land in Gaza and registered it in the name of his son-in-law? Did I mention that his son was arrested by Egyptian authorities trying to smuggle a few million dollars into Gaza? Rotten apple doesn’t fall far from poison tree. Believe me, I could go on and on and on. (BY THE WAY, HE SENT HIS GRANDDAUGHTER, DAUGHTER, AND MOTHER-IN-LAW TO BE TREATED IN ISRAELI HOSPITALS–apparently the rockets, Kalashnikovs, RPGs, and anti-tank weapons were taking up all the beds at Al-Shifa.)
Instead of spending the hundreds of millions of dollars that it got from the EU and Iran in humanitarian aid on projects to make life better for its people, Hamas built tunnels, assembled armaments, and prepared for and waged war. THIS CONSTRUCTION COMMITMENT DOES NOT EXTEND TO THE BUILDING OF BOMB SHELTERS FOR CIVILIANS, BECAUSE CIVILIAN CASUALTIES ARE AN ARROW IN THEIR QUIVER; THE MORE THE MERRIER–PREFERABLY CHILDREN. They say, “We will win because the Jews love life and we love death,” BUT THEY MOSTLY NEGLECT TO MENTION THAT THE DEATH THEY SEEK IS FOR . . . OTHER PEOPLE (you know, the ones they were elected to serve and protect).
Did I mention that Hamas hates concerts?
Hamas does not allow anyone to choose a pronoun that is inconsistent with his/her/their gender assigned at birth. Think about that the next time the Pakistani or Palestinian or other masked classmate in the US on a student visa invites you to a rally. (AND REMIND THEM THAT VISAS ARE A PRIVILEGE THAT CAN BE REVOKED IN THE DISCRETION OF THE US GOVERNMENT; there may be a right to free speech when one is in the US, but there is no right keep a visa or to stay in the country. Why do you think that they are wearing masks?)
When Israel imposed a siege, Hamas hoarded all the fuel, water, and food that it thought it might need, and left the people of Gaza to fend for themselves. The greater and more widespread the suffering, the more effective the CNN/BBC strategy. (I DO NOT WANT TO BE INDELICATE, BUT WHO, OTHER THAN A – – – – – – S, WOULD BEHAVE THIS WAY?) Do you really want to be on their team?
Hamas is NOT about a two-state solution. Hamas is about a FINAL SOLUTION. Hamas wants all the Jews dead and gone. [As a matter of fact, Hamas irrefutably demonstrated, as graphically as possible, that a two-state solution will never work when one side is consumed by hatred for the other. There was not a single Israeli or Jew in Gaza between 2005 and 2023; did Hamas build a peaceful neighboring state? Did they try?]
Hamas does not have any political opposition remaining alive. They waged a war against their fellow Palestinians in Fatah. Any expression of dissent in Gaza is punishable by death. Hamas sees no difference between Joe Biden and Donald Trump. No university under the auspices of Hamas has a gender studies department. They spell DEI with the “I” and “E” reversed. It goes on and on . . . these people should not be your heroes or your buddies.
The Hamas Charter, which has not been amended, calls for the murder of Jews (not Zionists, not settlers, not colonialists, not trespassers–Jews). Hamas has not held an election in the 16 years since it came to power in a coup. When it obtained dominion over Gaza, it showed, with absolute clarity, what a Palestinian state adjacent to Israel looks like–a tyranny, a war machine, a repository of hate and violence. If Gaza is indeed an open air prison, it is the Hamas members who are the jailers.
And . . . pay attention, because it bears repeating . . . they hate not only Jews and Christians and other Moslems who don’t share their version of the Faith, but also transgender people and blacks and gays and lesbians and [shudder] if they ever got control of a country and, somehow, someone sponsored a Taylor Swift concert there, before allowing her to perform, she would have to wear a garment that covered every part of her body but her eyes.
Now, are you going to support a people like that, even if their enemies are Jews? Get a life!