Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

I have a very uncomfortable question about Israeli police racism

I apologize in advance for the below question but I think it should be asked no matter the discomfort. But I will first tell you its backdrop.

We don’t find in Israel that police kill Jews except — rarely — Ethiopian Jews. And they are not known for being more violent than other Jews. But, Judaism is antiracist. And, I cannot imagine, as someone who grew up in the Netherlands, that one would kill a brown person more quickly than a pink person. Not because there is no racism in the Low Countries — there is. (Think of blackface in Dutch Santa Claus celebrations.)

I know that racism is much more virulent in other countries — infamously the US, that just is in the process of finally dealing with it.  But also — but less known — in Russia and the Arab world.

Now, my difficult question is: What are the statistics on ethnicity and roots of security officers who hurt or threatened violence against Ethiopians?

And while we’re at it, please include the IDF. I find it equally unbelievable that an army commander would speak racist against an Ethiopian.

This is not to incriminate police, army personnel or civilians of the to be found extractions — most are obviously not going to perpetrate racist violence. But still, knowing the cultural background of violent policemen and soldiers against Ethiopian Israelis could show more precisely the origin of the underlying problem. Which could teach what must be done.

Let’s change the focus from the victim’s ethnicity to that of the shooter. This is not a roundabout hint about something I know already — I don’t. The media I follow didn’t tell me even once an assailant’s background. How many have French, Polish, Moroccan, US, UK, Russian, Dutch roots?

Yes, that approach is unpleasant. But facing and uprooting racism always makes us white people nervous (and defensive) anyway. And, racism kills.

I rather have all Caucasian Jews feel uneasy for a few moments than have one more Ethiopian shot by the police. It’s really our turn to be nervous. That would be a small sacrifice to pay for a great cause.

At the demonstrations, there certainly should be restraint. But I don’t know if the police should say so. Sounds kind of insensitive if not brazen.

Getting furious means that we feel unheard and unseen. I’d prefer that our president would go and acknowledge and join the demonstrators.

Last but not least, no official comments are being made on the facts of the case until the end of the investigation. But meanwhile all news reports rehearse over and over again the policeman’s version of the event. This reinforces a one-sided questionable viewpoint and violates at least reporting both sides. It so cements the version of one partial involved account which frankly sounds like publishing propaganda.

About the Author
The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. To see other blog posts by him, a second blog - under construction - can be found by clicking on the Website icon next to his picture.
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