SO THIS IS WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN…
Ten days ago, as a direct result of numerous Hamas rockets, Israel launched “Operation Protective Edge.” To any friend of Israel there was little else Israel could do. Over 5,000,000 of its citizens were living under threat of being hit by rockets. Many of its citizens were practically living in bomb shelters; normal day-to-day routine was being dictated to Israelis by Hamas and the rockets.
What choice was there? What would any other country do?
Israel did the only thing possible. It launched an operation to protect its citizens and end the threat of Hamas. At every opportunity Israel has gone to extraordinary lengths to minimize civilian casualties. Tell me of one other country that would warn civilians of impending danger, or abort bombing missions to preserve life, drop leaflets or ‘knock’ on targets prior to attack, warning civilians to leave.
Meanwhile, Hamas militants hide behind their ‘civilian shield’, break cease-fires and launch attacks via air, sea and tunnel. While Israeli casualties have been vastly lower than those of the Palestinians, the world blames this ‘disproportionality’ on Israel. The public should applaud Israel, not condemn it. Israel needn’t apologise for valuing the lives of its citizens more than members of the Hamas death cult.
Right or wrong, good or bad, that is what’s happening. The question now is: What we should be doing to support Israel here in the UK?
As I am sure you will now be aware, on Sunday a rally has been called so that ALL friends of Israel can show their support and that is what concerns me.
As I write this, a Malaysian plane has been shot down over Ukraine. At present it is unclear exactly who shot it down but for arguments sake let us say it was the Russians. Do you think that on Saturday morning there will be 5,000 people outside the Russian Embassy screaming at the senseless slaughter of 300 innocent civilians?
Of course not, it is not Israel!
How can I be perfectly clear? We need to wake up. Those who protest against Israel and the Jewish people hate everything we stand for as Jews and supporters of Israel. The 5,000 (?) mindless bigots who gathered outside the Israeli Embassy last week do not like us, they do not like our families and they do not like our friends.
And they are not going away! Russia? Ukraine? No problem there. But a country that is trying to defend its citizens from an organisation that values suicide and is willing to sacrifice its children – and wants to dismantle the Jewish state? Now that’s what gets their juices flowing.
So what should happen on Sunday? On Sunday at 2pm there should be a sea of blue and white as far as the eye can see.
It should be the greatest gathering of friends of Israel this country has ever seen. No excuses, no buts, no maybes. Just pure passion and energy in support of our brothers and sisters in Israel.
On Sunday, Kensington High Street, if only for two hours, should become the worldwide centre of the pro-Israel movement. And you know what? We can do it.
We have the numbers. We have the resources. We have the commitment. And we have the ability!
We should come together, listen to some speakers, sing some songs, wave some flags, maybe eat some bagels, show that we support Israel, loudly and clearly and go home.
In ten years’ time, we should still be saying, “I was there.”
This event could be such an event – a turning point in the history pro-Israel advocacy.
Somebody wrote to me today asking whether they should bring their kids. Yes, of course bring the kids. In years to come they will be the people Israel will depend on and we need to be setting an example now for them to follow. Actually it is imperative that you do bring your kids.
Let us be absolutely clear: the Met Police and CST have got this covered. It is the duty of the Met Police not only to keep us safe, but to also facilitate our right to assemble.
I promise you, from someone who has seen the police in action every Saturday in Brighton, they will do a great job. At present no evidence exists of a counter-demonstration. If there is, the Police and CST will deal with it.
Any fears or concerns you might have are unfounded. So bring your kids, bring your bubba and bring your Auntie Dolly. If the current situation, the constant demonization and vilification of Israel, both in the media and on the streets of your home town, is not deserving of two hours of your time, tell me, please, what is?
If you don’t come on Sunday, I genuinely fear for the future of this community. In recent years there has been no greater need to get off our tuchases and show that we are friends of Israel. Our friends and family in Israel, at this very moment, are in bomb shelters hiding from Hamas missiles and we complain that it’s too hot to schlep to Kensington High Street. Israeli kids are hearing the sound of Iron Dome destroying rockets overhead and we go other plans!.
And we’ve got other plans? Really? Seriously? Do you have somewhere else to be? In my honest opinion, doing nothing is no longer an option. We, the friends of Israel, need to be seen being friends of Israel and not just paying lip service. You owe it to your kids and their kids to show them that it is OK to support Israel, to be Jewish and to do so publicly.
So, that’s what should happen. What will happen, well that’s what concerns me. But you all have the power to make it happen. Get in your cars, get on the train, get on the underground, and get on a bleedin’ plane if that’s what’s required.
But your presence at the Israeli Embassy on Sunday is desperately needed. Many of us have done everything possible to get you there and to stress its importance. Now it’s all down to you!
I cannot tell you how much I look forward to seeing you all this Sunday at 2 Palace Green, London, W8 from 2pm.
Trust me, it’ll be fun.
Incidentally, as I finish writing this, alarms are going off again across Israel and I think Edmund Burkes quote holds no greater meaning than at this time:
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”
Am Yisrael Chai