Gil Mildar
As the song says, a Latin American with no money in his pocket.

I am a Leftist. Excuse my language

In the complexity of my being, I find myself a stranger, as if I had woken up in a skin I do not recognize. Those Zionist, socialist, and humanist ideals that once embraced me tightly now rebuke me, denying the comfort they used to provide. Israel, my home, which resonated with the melody of joy, now echoes the sound of hatred, an uninvited guest that settles in every corner, dark and persistent.

The years have stealthily advanced, robbing me of my youth while I lay in a deep sleep of complacency. I awaken to find the traces of what I loved faded, the voices that were dear to me now merely distant whispers. I have been left behind in a race where I never saw the start, and those I held dear seem to have forgotten the way back to me.

In this solitary journey, I realize that my words, once alive, now dance alone on an empty stage, with no willing ears to listen. The sounds I strived to hear seem to have been carried away by the wind, leaving me in a deafening silence. And, in front of the mirror, I confront a stranger wearing my face, where the beard grows, marking not only time but also the distance between who I was and who I have become.

But I refuse to mold myself in the image and likeness of this new reality, this new Israel that I no longer recognize as the homeland of my values. “Leftist” is now a mark of scorn, a label used to divide and diminish. Yet within me, the enthusiasm of resistance burns, refusing to succumb to despair.

The transformation of Israel from a nation founded on Zionist, socialist, and humanist ideals to a place where these very ideals are seen as treason mirrors the metamorphosis confronting me personally. The chasm between the past and the present widens, not just in the mirror’s reflection but in the heart of society. The left, once the vibrant heart of this land, is now relegated to the shadows, their voices almost silenced under the weight of a new order.

How can I adapt to this Israel, where what was once considered moderate is now deemed extreme? My resistance is twofold: against the estrangement of my image and against the marginalization of the values I still cherish. I reject this forced adaptation both in my reflection and in the political landscape that tries to define me.

This is the moment to weave a new narrative, to seek bridges between the lost self and the transforming society. The fight to keep alive the ideals of justice, equality, and solidarity is now a battle fought both internally and on the streets and in public discourse. In an Israel that seems to have forgotten its roots, my rebellion is an act of memory, a refusal to let the values upon which it was founded become mere footnotes in history.

In this mirror before me, I see more than an unknown face; I see the reflection of a nation at a turning point. And, although the future may seem uncertain, my decision not to adapt, not to mold myself to the image that others expect of me, is the first step in redefining my identity and destiny in Israel. The true essence of who we are, both individually and collectively, lies in the ability to face transformations while maintaining our unwavering values. And it is at this intersection of personal and collective challenges that my story and that of Israel will continue to be written.

In this journey of discoveries and losses, I have learned that in dispossession lies an unexpected freedom. Those who find themselves stripped of everything, unarmed of prejudices and devoid of fears, stand before the vastness of the possible. Absence becomes the canvas for the painting of new dreams. After all, when nothing is left, there is nothing to lose – and this profound understanding, this resignation to emptiness, paves the way for a rebirth full of daring and hope. Herein lies the secret that pulses in life: only when we empty ourselves can we fill up with the true meaning of existence.

About the Author
As a Brazilian, Jewish, and humanist writer, I embody a rich cultural blend that influences my worldview and actions. Six years ago, I made the significant decision to move to Israel, a journey that not only connects me to my ancestral roots but also positions me as an active participant in an ongoing dialogue between the past, present, and future. My Latin American heritage and life in Israel have instilled a deep commitment to diversity, inclusion, and justice. Through my writing, I delve into themes of authoritarianism, memory, and resistance, aiming not just to reflect on history but to actively contribute to the shaping of a more just and equitable future. My work is an invitation for reflection and action, aspiring to advance human dignity above all.
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