Henry Tobias

Open letter to ignorant celebrities

Open Letter to Ignorant Celebrities – including, but not limited to, Charlotte Church, Maxine Peake, Greta Thunberg, Susan Sarandon

If the Palestinian leadership, both in Gaza and Ramallah, cared half as much for their citizens as do those many celebrities who feel that they have a God-given right to pontificate on things about which they have very little knowledge, there would have been peace between Israel and the Arabs years ago. One notices that most of these celebrities are women who, if they were living under Hamas rule, would NEVER have been allowed to achieve what they have achieved living in western democratic countries (see the Hamas charter below). Greta Thunberg should know that the Palestinian leaders – all of them – are as interested in combatting climate change as they are in making peace with Israel. 99% of Jewish Israelis care more for the lives of the Palestinians than do any of the Palestinian leaders.

Israel is accused of being a colonial state aided by western imperialism. This is false. The Land of Israel, the Holy Land – the land of both the Old and New Testaments – is the historical homeland of the Jewish people where Jews have lived continuously since Biblical times. Jesus was a Jew, NEVER a Christian. His disciples, some of them Jewish, developed Christianity as a then-reform Jewish movement using Jesus as the figurehead. Reading any history of the region, such as a history of the Christian Crusades, will tell you that Jews were present in the Holy Land, the cradle of Christianity, which the Crusaders wished to free from Islam. Crucifixion was a method of capital punishment used by the Romans, never a religious symbol. If Jesus had been drowned or buried alive or burned at the stake the crucifix would never have become a religious symbol – pure coincidence. Even in the Koran, Jews are acknowledged to be living in the Holy Land. Mohammed fought against the Jewish tribes in an effort to force the Jewish tribes to accept Islam as the “true” religion. Similarly, the Christian churches in Europe persecuted the Jews for centuries – a persecution which resulted in the Holocaust. The Holocaust was perpetrated by the Germans, in the name of Germany, but without the willing collaboration of many of the citizens of Nazi-occupied Europe, they would never have been able to murder as many Jews as they did.

The British, in contempt of the mandate agreement, gave 80% of the original mandated area of Palestine (a Roman designation), a forgotten backwater of the Ottoman Empire, to the Arab Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. The Muslims did not claim devotion and the holiness of Jerusalem until the Jews wanted to retain Jerusalem their eternal capital. The remaining area still held in mandate by the British was to be divided into a Palestinian/Arab state and a Jewish state under the terms of the UN partition resolution of 1947. The Jewish area was in three small very vulnerable parts. Jerusalem was to be an international city. The Arabs rejected the UN partition plan and any compromise with the Jewish inhabitants outright. Five Arab armies attacked Israel as the British withdrew in May 1948. The West Bank area set aside for the remaining Arabs after the ceasefire of 1949 – they did not call themselves Palestinians until the founding of the terrorist Palestinian Liberation Organization in 1964 – was annexed by Trans-Jordan. This annexation was recognized only by Great Britain and Pakistan. Between 1948 and 1967 there was no desire or initiative by the “Palestinians” to build a state in either the area known as the West Bank or the Gaza strip – both of which were ruled with an iron fist. At my first job in Israel, in 1980, I worked with an Arab man, some 20 years my senior, who had lived under Jordanian rule. He told me that if Palestinians under Jordanian rule metaphorically lifted their heads above the parapet in protest, they would get shot – literally. Who can forget Black September in 1970 when King Hussein of Jordan fought the Palestine Liberation Organization of Yasser Arafat? Some 5,000 Palestinians are believed to have been killed by soldiers of the Jordanian army, many of whom were themselves of Palestinian ethnicity.

Just as the Nazis, before and after WWII, blamed the Jews for starting the war and the subsequent Holocaust, so the Palestinians and those who are their “useful idiots” – the ignorant celebrities to whom this letter is addressed – blame Israel for defending itself and fighting back against the barbaric terrorists of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian terror organizations. Even the secretary general of the UN, Antonio Guterres, had the hutzpah (temerity) to say that the pogrom of 7 October 2023 “did not happen in a vacuum.” The continued control by Israel of areas taken in the 1967 Six Day War in self-defense is once again proven essential for the security and wellbeing of Israel’s citizens by the pogrom of 7 October – the worst attack on the Jewish people since the Holocaust and post-Holocaust pogroms in Poland between 1944 to 1946.

In the 1920s, the mufti of Jerusalem Amin al-Husseini aroused his followers to violence by telling them that the Jews were going to destroy the Al Aqsa Mosque. Today, 100 years later, Al Aqsa is still standing. Israel is now accused of genocide. But there is no genocide in Gaza. The Palestinian Goebbels-like propaganda machine uses the very emotive word “genocide” to blame the victims of a true genocide, Israel and ALL Jews. The Palestinians have a prosperous, thriving growing population, the very antithesis of genocide. The deaths in Gaza are entirely the responsibility of Hamas and the other terror groups who refused from the beginning to allow the civilians to evacuate the war zone, but use them, as always, as human shields. Israel provided a humanitarian corridor and waited FOUR weeks before attacking the terror groups. Even the International Criminal Court is biased against Israel and blinded by antisemitism, being themselves ‘useful idiots’ for these terror groups. Judge Richard Goldstone, a Jew, made the same mistake in 2008/9, for which he later apologized. The prosecutor of the ICC, a British barrister of Muslim ethnicity, tried to equate the methods used by Britain to fight the IRA to those of Israel in fighting terror in Gaza. This is nonsense. The IRA never formed an administration, never had control over sovereign territory and never fired missiles at British civilians in the towns and cities of the UK. I’ve no doubt that if the IRA had committed the war crimes of Hamas, the British response would have been on a par with the controversial bombing of Dresden in February 1945.

Salman Rushdie, himself a Muslim, described in a recent article what a Palestinian state run by Hamas would look like. Many Israelis support an independent Palestinian state, but not one that threatens our very existence. The Hamas charter is the Islamic version of Hitler’s “Mein Kampf.” In 2005, Israel withdrew every Israeli, dead and alive, from Gaza. The Palestinians then had land, with access to the sea, on which to plant the seeds of the independent state they say they want – without an Israeli “occupation.” In 2007, after a short very violent Palestinian civil war, instead of building a state for the well-being of their citizens, Hamas chose to build an arsenal of rockets – stored in homes, UNWRA schools (with the knowledge and acquiescence of local UN officials) and hospitals – which they began shooting at Israeli civilians in the adjacent towns and cities. This is a war crime. The Iranian sponsored Hezbollah have similarly built up an arsenal of some 150,000 rockets, thereby thumbing their noses at the unanimous UN Security Council resolution 1701. These rockets are stored, as are the rockets of Hamas, in houses and civilian facilities. This, too, is a war crime.

At the beginning of the present war against Hamas, a rocket landed near a Gaza hospital. The inherently antisemitic, anti-Israel world media, led by the institutionally antisemitic BBC immediately blamed Israel. It turned out that it was a Hamas missile which misfired. In war, nothing is predictable. Israel unfortunately killed three of its own escaping hostages mistaking them for Hamas terrorists. A tank crew was killed in a friendly-fire incident. Israel does not aim to kill innocent Palestinian civilians.

Following are some extracts from the Hamas charter:

Article 7 describes Hamas as “one of the links in the chain of the struggle against the Zionist invaders” and claims continuity with the followers of the religious and nationalist hero Izz ad-Din al-Qassam from the Great Arab Revolt as well as the Palestinian combatants of the First Arab-Israeli War. It ends with Sahih al-Bukhari’s hadith Muslim 2922suggesting that the Day of Judgment would not come until the Muslims fight and kill the Jews.

Article 11 Palestine is sacred (waqf) for all Muslims for all time, and it cannot be relinquished by anyone.

Article 13 There is no negotiated settlement possible. Jihad is the only answer.

Article 18 Defines the role of women as homemakers and child-rearers, providing education and moral guidance to men (not as singers, actors or leaders of climate-change activists).

The updated 2017 charter appeared to moderate Hamas’s position by stating that Hamas is anti-Zionist but retains the goal of eliminating Israel. Its claim that it is no longer antisemitic has been refuted numerous times due to the actions of Hamas as well as the statements of its leadership including Fathi Hamad who has publicly called for the killing of Jews.

In the aftermath of the 2023 Hamas-led attack on Israel, former Ambassador and Wilson Center head Mark Andrew Green described the 2017 revision as having “dressed up [Hamas’s] terrorist objectives in more ambiguous, less violent terms” while the 2023 attack showed their objective remained, as in the 1988 charter, “the destruction of the State of Israel and the murder of Jewish people.”

This is a link to the Wikipedia article: 1988 Hamas charter – Wikipedia.

While Israelis sing of peace, Palestinian popular song lyrics praise martyrs and violence.

As a parent and grandparent visiting Israeli schools over the past 45 years I have seen the walls, both inside and out, painted with doves of peace and quotes from famous people, living and dead, Jewish and non-Jewish, encouraging positive attitudes to life, while the slogans of Palestinians preach war and death. Both the American congress and the European parliament have rebuked the Palestinians for the antisemitic, genocidal content of their schoolbooks. “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” is a call to remove – using the eliminationist tactics of the Nazis – all Jews from the Land of Israel. There is no compromise in living alongside Israel in peace – it is ALL of Palestine or nothing (see the Hamas charter).

If the Arabs/Palestinians disarmed there would be peace, if Israel disarmed there would be NO Israel or Jews left alive.     

About the Author
The author is a husband, father and grandfather, writer and editor. He trained as a pharmacist. He has just published his first eclectic anthology of short stories, 'Just for Fun' available on Smashwords, B&N and Amazon and other e-book retailers. Soon in print at CreateSpace. Born in London, raised in South Africa, he has lived in Israel since 1979.