Rachel Bell


I have been contemplating the often stated slogan that murder of Jews is justified, in fact required, because of the occupation. It is legitimate resistance.

I have been thinking of how the Muslims massacred the entire Jewish population of Hebron — one of the oldest Jewish cities in the world, and murdered so many Jews in Jerusalem, which used to have a majority Jewish population, long before the occupation. My mother’s family was scared for the future of their children and decided to move to Europe, for the sake of their children’s futures. Well I guess you know how that turned out.

My father’s family similarly left after Jaffa/Tel Aviv riots. Yes, many of the Muslims of Palestine really didn’t want us to live in our country. No one else really wanted us either. So what next? I have heard the rational that in defending itself Israel is doing wrong and perpetuating the problem  of resistance. That it is the fault of Israel’s occupation, and in fact Israel’s existence, that Jews are hounded and murdered. The Israeli side has to “wake up and change.” Perhaps Israel should be disbanded for the sake of justice.

I thought for awhile that one can wake up and make a change. Somehow Israel can do something fantastic to solve the problem. But then there were more murders. And more murders. And more murders. And more murders.

So I was very reluctantly forced to emerge and cope with reality and not just express my desire for instant peace. What I cannot help but see is the pattern beyond Israel’s behavior, that it is the Muslim “side” that has been doing the same thing century after century, murdering Jews to establish control. Israel and the occupation is the current slogan and rationale, was not the start of this program of murder of Jews to establish control.

The partition plan discussions came after various murder sprees of Jews in Palestine, there have been horrible episodes. Jews lived in Palestine. Many more wanted to come. The Muslim population did not want them. The Muslims murdered Jews to defend the Al-Aqsa mosque.  The British considered the desires of the Muslim population to be the deciding factor in their decision-making.

Why were the Muslims considered inherently legitimate as inhabitants while the Jews were not? This is considered such a matter of course. But it should not be. It cannot be that Muslims are inherently legitimate land dwellers and Jews are inherently non-legitimate. They were both living there, their rights should both have been respected, their safety and needs should both have been addressed. Yet I have heard the expression “legitimate dwellers’ rights were ignored” so many times, words that embody the unquestioned privilege of Muslims only to have legitimate rights to dwell in Palestine/Israel.

And so there is the murder, ongoing sprees of murder. One cannot help but see that many Muslims did not and do not want to give up what they consider their god given right for land and political control through murder of Jews. One is forced to the conclusion that Israel is a huge problem for them because now they cannot establish control by murdering Jews. They murder Jews, but do not establish control. And they are convinced that this is wrong. They should be able to murder Jews and establish control, as in past centuries. What is staggering is that so many people agree.

Many Muslim governing organizations and politicians and military groups and the majority of the population and many other people do believe that Muslims absolutely have the right to murder Jews because they do not have enough control. They have some mystical right to control because they are the only legitimate people who have been living on the land. Jews do not have a right to sovereignty or even to be alive because only Muslims are legitimate land dwellers.

How that makes sense or ever made sense to you, me, or anyone escapes me. People living on land are people living on land, they are legitimate, even if they are Jews. Perhaps you reader also think Jews are not legitimate and can never be legitimate, they cannot have sovereign rights. Certainly many people argue that Jews cannot be legitimate land dwellers and have sovereign rights because Muslims want to terrorize and murder them, so clearly they are in the wrong.

People have started to notice when Muslims randomly mass murder other Muslims to establish control, and this they find horrible. But that horror inspires no reflection. The murders of Jews to establish control is still considered legitimate. I do not understand this level of insanity.

People think it is different because Palestinian Muslims are desperate. They are desperate so they murder Jews. They are desperate because their need to control the land is desperate. But Muslims were not desperate a century and two centuries and three centuries ago and any time before that when they ruled and they murdered Jews, and I do not think they are actually desperate now.

They live on the land, no one is throwing them out, they have work, they own houses, they worship their religion. They are not being forcibly converted. They are not being mass kidnapped and murdered. They are not being forced to convert or die. They are not hounded from country to country.

There are places were people really are desperate, like North Korea, places where a country really is a prison. But I do not believe that desiring to establish control over Jews through murder because it is assumed to be a historical right and desiring to win territory as the only legitimate dwellers of a land constitutes desperation.

I don’t think standing in line at a checkpoint, or taking hours to get to work, or having to have your bags checked, or being questioned by security people constitutes a desperate life. I consider being murdered for your religion or because you are gay or being stabbed to death because you are not legitimate to make one desperate. But standing in line even for hours and being treated rudely by border police, that is not a desperate life. That is actually a fortunate life in the Middle East. 

 I reserve desperation for people who really are under existential threat, of which I would wish there were none. So I think the Muslims’ actions and political goals and activities constitute a horrific act of narcissistic racism with goals that are often genocidal, and no excuse of desperation can make them anything but what they are.

The Muslims really are not in the position that Jews were in Palestine under Muslim control, Muslims can have any profession they want, they can buy homes and can have farms, they are not constantly being murdered to get rid of them. It is the Muslim governing organizations, their popular organizations, their politicians, their majority who want to get rid of Jews and ensure genocide. For many the goal is unabashedly genocidal.

People claim that Israel is not under existential threat from anything except their fear. But in fact many Muslim groups are an existential threat not just for Israel but have declared war on all Jews. They are in fact murdering Jews every week. But that’s OK and not an existential threat even to those who are murdered, I guess, because Israel is causing this problem, by not giving in to all the racist narcissism of so many Muslims and their genocidal goals. Let’s just keep ignoring reality and let’s not analyse anything for ourselves, let’s believe all the slogans. Because so much bullshit must have greater meaning than the evidence of reality, if so many people say it so often. 

About the Author
Rachel Bell considers living in Israel a challenge, as is writing for a living for over 20 years. Her family, from Tzfat and later Tel Aviv, left her a legacy of commitment to the project of self-determination and indigenous self-actualization called Israel.