Camie Davis

Open letter to Linda Sarsour

Dear Ms. Sarsour,

I admit that I’m slightly jealous of you.  In a very short time you fundraised $130,000 to go towards the cause of repairing Jewish gravestones that were vandalized near St. Louis. I am jealous because while you were fundraising for a Jewish cause, I was too.  That’s where are similarities end though.  I didn’t come close to raising the amount you raised.  And I’m afraid the Jewish cause I fundraised for is not a cause that you support.  I fundraised for Standing Together, an organization that spends its time and resources supporting the men and women in the IDF.

I admire and support the IDF, so I’m sure it will come as no surprise to you that I consider it an affront that you have spread lies about them, and that by spreading those lies, you make their job harder and more dangerous than it already is.

You have referred to the IDF military operations against Hamas in Gaza as “mass murder.” And you said, “Every country has the right to defend itself, but that does not justify the killing of over 85% civilians and children.” And you insinuated that the IDF intentionally targeted schools and mosques.

You have also referred to Gaza as an “open air prison” in which the entire population is under siege, which is beyond anything you can comprehend.

You have repeatedly referred to Israel as occupiers and in referring to the IDF have stated that they are “killing your people” and they “massacre the Palestinian people and call it collateral damage.” You also accuse Israel of being an apartheid state and criticize the use of checkpoints and security walls.

You’ve spoken critically of Zionism, even saying that, “nothing is creepier than Zionism” and have grouped Zionists with Islamophobes and white supremacist, therefore labeling Zionism racism, the exact same thing Yasser Arafat so infamously did in his U.N. speech.

Sigh. I almost don’t know where to begin to counter these lies.  But I’m going to try.  And I’m going to try to give you the benefit of the doubt. Maybe you’ve never heard the truth about Israel.  Maybe you’ve been fed false narratives and propaganda about Israel for so long that you automatically regurgitate it because you believe it’s truth.  But it’s not. You are spreading lies that have and continue to endanger Jews because these lies incite people to murder Jews.

The IDF exist for one reason – to defend the state of Israel, hence the name Israel Defense Forces. They’ve diligently defended Israel for decades.  The reason they’ve had to be so diligent is because Arab nations and Arab terrorists organizations have continually tried to destroy Israel for decades. As an outside military source, British Colonel Richard Kemp, stated, “Israel has never started a war and only goes to war to defend itself.”

Yet, somehow Israel’s self-defense has been distorted and portrayed as a military machine with bloodlust for Arabs. But if the IDF was motivated by and operated by bloodlust, Gaza would be flattened in a matter of minutes by the IDF, leaving no Arab survivors.  Instead, during their military defensive campaigns against Hamas in Gaza, the IDF used extreme measures to warn civilians to get out of harms way.  But sadly, it is well known that Hamas commanded the civilians to stay.  This should cause you to be infuriated.  Not with the IDF.  With Hamas.

Again, Colonel Richard Kemp, who was present in Gaza during the 2014 conflict and saw first-hand the length the IDF goes to limit civilian casualties, often even putting IDF soldiers at risk, said, “Based on my experience and on my observations, the Israel Defense Forces does more to safeguard the rights of civilians in a combat zone than any other army in the history of warfare.”

The IDF does not, nor have they ever committed the mass murder of civilians.  They have been put in a horrible situation of having to fight against terrorists who launch attacks from urban areas and use civilians as shields.  Using human shields is a deplorable form of terrorism that Hamas commits against its own people.  The IDF does not target civilians, nor the homes, schools, hospitals, or mosques of the general Arab population.  They do however, after giving ample warning via leaflets, texts, and phone calls to civilians, conduct military operations against Hamas terrorists who are in civilian areas. Civilians are killed in these military strikes.  They are casualties of war, not murder victims.  And their deaths are the fault of Hamas, not the IDF. Again, this should infuriate you, as well as the modus operandi of Hamas using Arab children to dig tunnels into Israel.

You have stated that you are a critic of the state of Israel?  Why are you critical of the Jewish underdogs, who have survived the on-going threat of Arab instigated war and terrorism for the last 50 years? Why are you critical of a state that believes that saving lives by stopping suicide bombers and other terrorists at walls and checkpoints is worth the inconvenience it poses to people? Why are you critical of a state that gives more rights to Arabs than they are given in Arab nations? Why are you critical of a state that uses cutting-edge technology to save not only Jewish lives, but Arab lives? Why are you critical of a state that literally runs to give humanitarian aid when there is a disaster in other parts of the world? Why are you critical of a state that brings in people who need medical help, including people from Gaza and Syria? Why are you critical of a state where you would be safe if you had one of your demonstrations or Women’s Marches? Would you even be allowed to have a demonstration or Women’s March in Gaza?

Gaza has been under Arab control since Israel evacuated it in 2005.  Arabs had the potential to thrive in Gaza. They have not. Between 2012-2014 alone, Hamas spent 1.5 billion on terror tunnels into Israel.  Money spent on trying to kill Jews rather than trying to help Arabs have a better quality of life.

Due in large part to the poor Arab leadership in Gaza, Arabs need some aid. Israel ensures that this aid reaches Gaza continually. In fact, Arabs in Gaza receive more aid per capita than any other part of the world. And although I don’t know this for a fact, I think it is safe to assume that Israel would rather not have to expend its time and energy on a Gaza blockade. But until Hamas stops spending their time, energy, and resources on killing Jews, the IDF will prohibit resources going into Gaza that could be used to make tunnels for terrorists to use to kill or kidnap Jews. Israel does, however, allow food, fuel, and medical supplies into Gaza.

As Dr. Daniel Mandel said, “Gaza could be home to a large, prosperous population, providing that it was industrious, prudentially managed, well-governed and – above all – peaceful.  It could be the Singapore of the Middle East. But as we can see, it isn’t. The woes of Gaza are not the creation of population density, but of hate and jihad density.  The answer lies not in more territory, resources or aid, but in its population and leadership prioritizing life and peace over death and war.”

I will end by reiterating that the IDF does not murder Arabs. It does, however, kill Arabs who are trying to kill Jews. This is basic self-defense, which the IDF has become extremely good at. Arabs murdering Jews for the sole reason that they are Jews or as a form of “resistance” has tragically and unfortunately become a pattern. On the other hand, a Jew who murders an Arab simply because he or she is an Arab is an anomaly.

It is a pattern that senior Hamas operative Ismail Haniyeh succinctly described when he said, “We love death like our enemies love life!  We love martyrdom.”

You have stated that you will always be a critic of Israel. I hope that changes and that you will become one of the many Arabs who not only realizes, but who takes advantage of the fact that Arabs actually can and do thrive in Israel, depending on one basic tenet; they do not attempt to murder Jews.

Until then, I hope that you will at least take your role in helping fundraise for the Jews one step further by publicly imploring Arabs to stop murdering Jews. Although it is admirable that you want to rectify the damage of Jewish graves, it would be even more admirable if you played a role in keeping Jews out of graves.


Camie Davis

About the Author
Camie Davis is a non-Jewish writer and advocate for Israel.