After 9/11, every songwriter, poet, author, or journalist, took to pen and paper to write, because as Toby Keith once said: “it’s what we do”. A month into 10/7 and most of us who write for a living or write for opinion, have inundated social and printed media with anger, thoughts, opinions, and personal pain. Some questioned, lamented, but always told the story or stories of the victims, their families, the soldiers, but most of all, Israel. The Jewish diaspora has never been so united as right now. But with so much to say why does it seem that our words still falls on the echoing silence of the global community’s deaf ears? Is it possible that we are not loud enough? Obnoxious enough? Emotional enough? Angry enough? Or perhaps not immoral enough to tweak the horrible truth in an attempt to gain public support?
As the wave of antisemitism and Jew hatred rises, Israel remains stoic and true to its moral determination that evil should and must not be permitted to exist or proliferate. Putting the 10/7 attacks in a “vacuum” “context” “reference” is just an excuse-to-excuse atrocities. Unacceptable. There is no justification for what happened on 10/7. No matter how much it is twisted, reasoned, manipulated, or geopolitically explained: barbarism has no place in a civilized world. But we were and still are being told otherwise. As I write this, a 69-year-old Jew, Paul Kessler, was attacked and killed on a sunny California sidewalk in broad daylight by a pro-Hamas “activist”. In Indianapolis, a woman drove her car into a building mistaking it for an “Israel School”. The irony to her stupidity: the building (according to the police) is affiliated to the Radical Hebrew Israelites, an antisemitic, anti-LGBTQ, anti-white, xenophobic, and misogynistic hate group.
To put this global Palestinian love affair in context, one must look back to the past when the world was globally united and determined to fight evil regimes. The joint effort in WWII against the Nazi Germany and Japan was based on the fundamental moral compass and logic which defined evil at its source sans excuses or reasonableness. It was the inherent righteous ability to differentiate between good and bad. No doubts, no second guessing, and definitely no modification to the truth. It didn’t cross anyone’s sane mind that giving the enemy time to regroup and strengthen its resolve to cause more human tragedy was somehow the correct thing to do. When did humankind change its obligation to fight evil and instead make excuses for it?
Millions of civilians died in Europe during WWII. Referencing WWII against the current wave of pseudo intellectual and nebulous righteous anti-Israel rabid activism demonstrates the systematic historical ignorance of our times. The allied war campaign in defeating Nazism at all costs aligns itself with Israel’s current war against Hamas and terrorism not only for the good of Israel but also for the good of the region. This should mostly concern the Gazans who experience squalor and poor living conditions on a daily basis. They deserve a quality of life without strife, with clean abundant running water, electricity, schools that teach children how to succeed not kill, safe mosques without rockets stashed in their basements, hospitals that can assist and cure rather than be used as convenience warehouses for terrorists, and just plain safe neighborhoods. If the pro-Palestinian activists truly want the best for Palestinians, then removing, disbanding, eradicating, and completely destroying Hamas should be greeted with applause not condemnation.
If one had to imagine the current generation during the WWII allied bombardments on German cities like Dresden, Nurnberg, or Berlin: would Londoners have gone out in the streets demanding a ceasefire with Germany? Or perhaps humanitarian aid? Evacuation? Would they have worn swastika t-shirts? Waved Nazi flags? So, what gives? Why was it considered morally obligatory for the allies to bomb German and Japanese cities with alacrity and determination without condemnation? I assume because my parents’ generation were fighting for their lives and knew that the only choice available was either Nazi terror or freedom.
Estimated deaths in Europe during WWII were between 70-80 million. We concentrate on Germany’s death count and homelessness after several allied sorties on four major cities. Clarity in devastation in war. Starting in 1945 in an attempt to bring Nazi Germany to its knees, the allies started bombing several major German cities.
On January 2, 1945, British bombers dropped bombs and incendiary devices on Nurnberg. These left 1,800 civilians dead and another 100,000 homeless. A very dear German friend of mine was four at that time, and she remembers the rubble that once was her home. But that is a story for another day. On that day, the RAF dropped 521 bombs and over one million incendiary devices on her city. A month later, between February 13-15, 1945, the city of Dresden was basically demolished in a barrage of bombing. A city known for its art, music, and architectural beauty, found itself enduring over 1,000 air raids and 3,000 tons of bombs, which left between 25,000 – 30,000 civilians dead, mostly women, children, and the elderly. The number of dead was later changed to a probability of 250,000 because thousands of refugees that had fled from other cities to Dresden were not counted. On March 16, 1945, a 19-hour raid on Wurzburg killed 5,000. 1,200 tons of bombs were dropped in 20 minutes. Finally: Berlin was bombed by all the allies which included the USSR. The combined bomb tonnage was approximately 104,000 tons. The number of dead is still unsure, but estimates are at least 5,000. The number of homeless Berliners was upwards of 450,000. The connection to Israel’s war with Hamas? Getting rid of evil so “never again” is permanent often and unfortunately demands desperate decisions. There were no demands by Whitehall, the White House, or the Kremlin for humanitarian aid, ceasefire, corridors for refugees, or funding the devasted German population. The allies didn’t drop leaflets warning Berlin, Nurnberg, Dresden, or Wurzburg of pending bombings. The goal was to stop a regime at all costs from causing more harm to more people if they were allowed to remain in power.
Israel gets the short end of the stick in the global community public relations arena. Israel tries its best to avoid civilian targets like hospitals, schools, and mosques. Israel warned of pending bombings way ahead of its Gaza campaign. It urged Gazans to be safe, to evacuate. An unprecedented move by an alleged “aggressor” as the UN and other global communities would like you to think. But the finger pointing is still at Israel. Why? Is it because it is a Jewish State? I don’t see the UN going after China, Iran, and the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Israeli hospitals regularly treat children from Gaza, Syria, Iraq, Jordan, and the West Bank. Many Israeli based organizations transport these children and their families to Israeli hospitals for treatment. All this courtesy of the Israeli taxpayer. A recent interview after 10/7 by Times of Israel in the coastal city of Ashdod where some Gazan children are being treated, revealed a disturbing fact. That no matter how much Israel opens its heart unconditionally in humanitarian acts to the region, being appreciated is another story.
Since 10/7 these children and their families had to remain in Israel because of the war in Gaza, and obviously there is no guarantee that their homes are still standing. When interviewed, family members all appreciated the medical treatments to their kids; but admitted that they just didn’t like Israelis. Some even justified the Hamas attacks as a result of the “occupation” they had to endure. To be fair and as the Times of Israel article pointed out, these statements could have been made under fear of being on the Hamas radar, and some still have families in Gaza. So, we leave it at that. However, one Gazan did divert from that tune and admitted that it was the fault of Hamas that the war started, because they were the first to attack. If they hadn’t attacked there would be no war. (he reasoned)
Trying to follow the logic of the “ceasefire” marching mantra I get caught in the hypocrisy and misguided pretense of demanding human rights for the “oppressed”. The problem is that those protesting and wrapping themselves in Palestinian and Hamas flags could care less about the Palestinians and their oppression. In DC, during the weekend protests, when interviewed and asked about the atrocities by Hamas in Israel, one “righteous” marcher replied without hesitation: there is no Israel. And there you have it folks. You can call it anti-Zionism, anti-Israel or any other flavor of the month, the end result is still the same. Anti-Jewish visceral.
Raw antisemitism is no longer hidden, subdued, or even subtle. It is in your face and the media is eating it up. When the camera pans on a loon smiling and showing off his Hamas t-shirt, we know that the world is on the brink of mayhem and anarchy. When politicians to include former president Obama attempt to lay equal blame and relevancy to terrorists through a convoluted word salad, we know that we are on the brink of degradation disguised in intellectual garbage. Giving irrelevancy to the atrocities of 10/7 and relevancy to the butchery that occurred on that day should be political suicide not an opportunity at scoring political points. But it’s not so. Instead, such irresponsible rhetoric gives the green light to attacks on Jews globally. Currently, the US is the most dangerous place to be in if you are a Jew. Let that sink in.
There are only 16 million Jews in the world. That is 0.2% of the world population. The population of Israel is the same as that in NYC. According to Anti-Defamation League Center on Extremism, since 10/7 antisemitism has risen by 338%. Are we surprised? We shouldn’t be. When antisemitism is celebrated on a t-shirt, at the UN, in the US Congress, in political rhetoric, on the streets, in the media, and in what was referred to as academia, then we have reached rock bottom of civilization as we know it. The silent majority are allowing the loud minority to set the narrative. Are we in an era any different than 1938 Germany?
Martin Niemoeller, the German Lutheran pastor and theologian supported Hitler until the Nazis claimed that the state was more supreme than the church. Niemoeller went against the state and eventually was arrested and sent first to Sachsenhausen and then Dachau until he was liberated. Niemoeller is renowned for the post war speeches he made where he “confessed” to the complacency of the churches and the population as selections were made on who should live and die. “We preferred to keep silent,” said he. How right he was.
“First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me.” Martin Niemoeller
Berman, Lazar. November 2, 2023. Angry and tired, Gazan mothers stuck in Israel after medical care want to get home | The Times of Israel