Albert Russo
"Art is but a moment of happiness, it is like a lightning of bliss cleaving the never-ending horrors of our world."

The making of a new society

There is a small country of just 9 million inhabitants, which is admired by almost 2/3 of our planet, for its innovations in the fields of medicine, science, agriculture and high-tech, all to the benefit of humanity as a whole.  Israeli hospitals even take care of the country’s wounded enemies without asking a cent.  Doctor Salman Zarka  has just been honored for saving thousands of Syrian lives in spite of Syria being an enemy country –

Among these nations are the most populous countries of Asia, North and South America, Australia and the majority of Black Africa, that cooperate, trade and have cultural exchanges with it.

The same country is constantly vilified by 2/3 of the European population and by the majority of Muslims.  They are the antisemites, who, with their streak of evil, sickly load of envy and jealousy and will to kill the ‘father figure’, are the new scourge of the 21st century.  Not only did the Church, since ancient times, appropriate Jewish monotheism, the Torah, which constitutes 3/4 of the Christian Bible – Jesus who was a Jewish sage of the linage of King David never intended his followers to attack and torture his own people.  Actually, he would be sad and furious to see how they are still treated today – but along with Islam, it rebelled against the ‘father’, and ever since, they could not rest unless they found a way to eliminate ‘him’- who? the father figure.  They tried and tried, savagely, intractably, every way they could, with the Spanish Inquisition, and the Popes’ blessings, with the pogroms and killings in Russia and elsewhere, and I was going to conclude, “finally with the Holocaust”.  But antisemitism is spreading again with a vengeance, as if nothing happened during WWII. Memory as a black hole!

Yet, lo and behold, to the great chagrin of these Jew haters, there is one tiny country today, smaller than Belgium or Maine, and which is one of the most innovative nations of the world second only to the USA, which is thriving and prospering.  That country is the State of Israel, the so-called Zionist entity, like there is a European entity or an American entity, for Zionism is nothing more than the definition of a Jewish State.  How many Islamic Republics are there???

To the antisemites, the words ‘Jew’, ‘Zionism’ and ‘Israel’ sound like as many insults.  The irony is that Israeli scientists, security agents and medical experts, among many other specialists, closely cooperate with their European counterparts … but, these ties are kept secret from their population, as if they were something to be ashamed of. European governments – a good example is France -, afraid of offending their large Muslim minorities whose votes are so important, play a sick and perverted game, that is already backfiring.                           As for the self-hating Jews who are a minority but a very vocal one, they are as dangerous as the antisemites.  You have them in Israel and in the diaspora.

Then there is the oft repeated lie that the Jews stole the land of the Arabs in what was known as Palestine in the Bible – ie. the land of the Jews, for ‘Palestinian’ is a contemporary misnomer. Here again one can see how definitions have been corrupt.  Not only did the Arabs of Palestine refuse to share this tiny strip of land with the Jews when the UN decreed its plan of partition, but again and again, they refused to sign any peace agreement with Israel, not even heeding the advice of their Egyptian, Jordanian and Saudi neighbors who encouraged them to conclude a definitive pact.

The so-called Nakba (catastrophe) was invented after the war of independence when six Arab armies tried to crush the Jews and create a second holocaust.  The six aggressing nations told the Arabs living in the Holy Land to flee the territory until he Jews would be pushed into the sea.  But contrary to their expectations, the aggressors lost the war.  In this ferocious battle, the Jews, who were fighting for their survival, did expel thousands of these Arabs, lest they be massacred, but kept a great number of them in the land.  The descendants of the latter are the two million Arab Israelis who now share the country with the Jews.  So why is it that the PLO still insists that the land was stolen?  The Nakba!  To compare it with the Holocaust, which is an absurdity.  I must admit that the ‘Palestinian’ propaganda machine has been well oiled during all these decades and that it has convinced the Western antisemites to side with them against the ‘cruel and blood thirsty Zionists’.

Note that after the Ottoman Empire fell to the British and the French, the Arabian peninsula and the territories that comprise what is contemporary Syria, Jordan, Irak and Lebanon, with the exceptions of historical cities such as Damascus, Bagdad and Beirut, were lands peopled by scores of Bedouin tribes.  It was the British and the French who ‘created’ these countries, defining their borders and installing new kingdoms in Saudi Arabia and in Jordan.

Concerning the Israeli-‘Palestinian’ conflict, the ill-intentioned representatives of the United Nations (what could you expect with 57 Muslim countries present) ought to revert to facts and to stop spreading their ideological distorsions.  By repeating these lies, they keep on hindering the peace process, not advancing it.

Israel is here to stay, and an increasing number of Muslim personalities and journalists are now recognizing this fact.  I invite you to read these comments and to click on the following links.

From the Arab journal Asharq Al-Awsat published in London,  3 March 2019: “Allah has ordered us to love and respect the Jewish people. Antisemitism in the Arab World is the product of a racist and detestable education.”

“Cooperation with Israel will benefit everyone,” Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor stated, while singling out Iran as the real danger to the region.

From the Moroccan TV presenter Rachid: in Arabic, with French subtitles
https://www.jforum.fr/ce-journaliste-marocain-se-moque-du-boycott-contre-les-juifs.html  +            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nhsIfMmJuE

See what this Lebanese journalist has to say about the current situation in the Middle East, by clicking on this link – the video clip has English subtitles:  https://www.europe-israel.org/2019/04/le-journaliste-libanais-nadim-koteich-je-soutiens-la-politique-anti-iranienne-de-trump-et-de-netanyahou-beyrouth-est-plus-importante-que-jerusalem-ou-le-golan-video/

I would also advise you to read about the great French-Moroccan freedom fighter Zineb El Rhazoui who worked as a journalist at Charlie Hebdo (you do remember that the best French comics artists were murdered by Islamic terrorists four years ago). She is now fearing for her life in Paris. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zineb_El_Rhazoui

http://www.bbc.com/travel/gallery/20190417-the-indian-synagogues-preserved-by-muslims

Then there are the other brave men and women who, having been subjected to the Sharia law, denounce the cruel and barbaric punishments meted out in the Islamic autocracies.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, originally from Somalia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JTCMwdrpt4

Anni Cyrus, orginally from Iran:               https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bUksL30PP4

Brigitte Gabriel, orginally from Lebanon: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brigitte_Gabriel

Raheem Kassam: https://raheemkassam.com/

Mosab Hassan Yousef, originally from Ramallah (West Bank), known as the “Son of Hamas”, aka The Green Prince:          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9sCvyOE_ys                                                                                                    +   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NX-atfFWeq8

 

Coming back to what I refer as Israel’s ‘new society’, anyone who has visited the country, say thirty years ago, and only returned to it today, would never recognize its population. Having lived on four continents, I have witnessed many changes in the world, but nothing has prepared me to what I have discovered here.

The Israeli youth is probably the most mixed in the world, for here you have a microcosm of humanity, with young men and women whose parents and grandparents hailed from Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, India, Iran and Central Asia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and from countless other parts of the world, including the Americas.  With the result that this is one of the most beautiful, healthy and educated youth in the world.  No wonder that they contribute so disproportionately to the wellbeing of humanity.  The millions of foreigners who come in contact with them are ravished.  They go back home with an entirely different opinion of ‘that terrible country’ which is so often equated with ‘the killers of Palestinian children’, finally understanding that the main culprits of these bloody clashes is the Hamas terrorist regime that incessantly launches rockets and missiles towards Israel, from within the premises of schools, mosques and hospitals, having no regard for the lives of their own people. They admitted, more than once, on Gaza television, that the total Muslim population around the world being 1.5 billion strong, they could afford losing a few millions.  Witness: all the innocent people suffering or massacred, mostly Muslim folk, but also Christian, Yazidi and other minorities, caught in the Sunni-Shia crossfire, not mentioning Daesh, Isis, Al Qaida et al, which have extended their murderous hands around the globe.

To show how belligerent the Hamas continues to be, in the last 48 hours, unprovoked,  they have launched more than 800 missiles into Israel, killing people and wounding hundreds of them.  Hamas and Hesbollah vow to destroy Israel, they are not interested in the wellbeing of their people.  But how clever they are: when Israel retaliates, they show images to the world of women and children being killed by the ‘aggressor’.  Who is the agressor, I ask you?  And the gullible believe them!

As for the imbeciles who organize regular Israel apartheid weeks, they have no clue of what apartheid actually is.  Some South Africans even join them, they know nothing about Israel.  I myself have spent time in South Africa during the despicable apartheid regime.  One of my novels was banned there for supporting mixed race marriages.  It is the Arab dictatorships that apply apartheid: they don’t allow other religions to be practised in their countries, their women are submitted to the level of servants and homosexuals are either imprisoned or killed.

I have a last advice for the ilk of Linda Sarsour, Ilhan Omar, Tlaib and other supporters of Hamas, Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood in the USA, as well as for Mogherini, who represents the European Union, and has the arrogance to give lessons of morality to the Israelis.  To her and to her acolytes I say: “try first to repair the damage caused to the large Muslim population which has so much difficulty integrating, as you continue to let in millions of refugees without knowing a thing about their customs and backgrounds.  And by the same token, you should also protect your own fellowmen, who are in constant fear of being submerged by the uninterrupted waves of migrants.  The other irony is that the more Europe is nearing the spectre of a bloody civil war, the more their governing authorities blame Israel for defending itself.  Does the Stockholm syndrome ring a bell?

I urge you to read what this French commentator has to say about her country’s attitude towards Israel. She denounces its duplicity and its lack of morality, while praising Israel’s achievements and contribution to the world:

La Française Marie Autesserre écrit : “Tandis que le terrorisme islamique fait rage sur toute la planète, Israël est pointé du doigt dès la moindre riposte contre ces jihadistes-là. Non que l’opinion internationale ait à cœur de soutenir ces derniers, l’empathie a ses limites. Mais le ressentiment viscéral envers les Juifs, qui n’a jamais cessé depuis la Shoah comme au cours des siècles, cette rancœur judéophobe vieille de 2000 ans incite à se ranger du côté des ennemis d’Israël, quand bien même ces ennemis seraient tout autant nos ennemis. Une sombre jalousie inavouée, tapie dans l’inconscient collectif, naît du constat qu’Israël renaît des cendres de la Shoah et des pogroms antérieurs récurrents. Ce ne sont pas seulement ses prouesses technologiques, sa réussite économique, sa jeunesse éclatante de vie, son amour de la terre aride qui fait pousser l’impossible. Dans le Sionisme qui imprègne quasiment toute la population Juive à quelques très rares exceptions près, ce qui dérange, c’est la fraternité. Elle atteint des niveaux qu’aucun autre peuple ne peut atteindre, un amour profond pour l’autre, même celui avec qui on s’écharpe verbalement pour une place de stationnement ou une opinion politique opposée. Face à l’adversité, en réponse à une demande de solidarité, face à un événement festif national, en toute occasion, le peuple Juif s’unit de manière très forte. Cela offusque le nombril français, cela l’accable et le renvoie à son vide existentiel, à peine égayé par quelques faux-semblants de communions nationales d’un jour.”

There is also the so-called prestigious Western media, including the New York Times, the Guardian and Le Monde, France 24, CNN and the BBC, among a score of others, which are less and less reliable, so biased they are, where Israel is concerned. They continually ‘rewrite’ the history of the Middle East to please their political factions and their lectorat.

Concerning the proponents of BDS (boycotters), you can go to my previous blog in The Times of Israel.  How inane and downright irresponsile these people are!  Without Israeli medical and scientific innovations, they wouldn’t be able to use their computers, their cell-phones and so many other high-tech products.  They are so ignorant that, without knowing it, they take drugs and medicine invented by Israeli researchers.

Of course, there are problems in Israel, like in any true democracy, but I am witnessing the evolution of an exemplary society, a society admired by countries like India, China, Black African nations, by the majority of Buddhists, Hindus, Kurds, etc. Israel is a unique human laboratory, it is a work in progress, and as any work in progress it has its hits and its misses, with many more of the former.  This being said, there are, like anywhere else, issues that have to be tackled and problems that have to be resolved, such as poverty among the ultra-orthodox Jews, who have large families, among parts of the Arab population who live in the country and in isolated villages.  I repeat, there are two million Arabs who are citizens of Israel.  I have met many of the latter, and not one of them, in spite of their difficulties, would want to live in any of the neighboring Arab countries, for here they feel protected and free to voice their grievances.

I have asked that question before: when will we have another Gandhi or another Mandela to resolve the problems of this region so that its peoples can live in peace, interact and prosper?  WHEN?

About the Author
Albert Russo who has published worldwide over 85 books of poetry, fiction and essays (35) and photography (50), in both English and French, his two mother tongues, and sometimes in Italian, (Italian being his 'paternal' tongue) - he also speaks Spanish and German and still has notions of Swahili -, is the recipient of many awards,such as The New York Poetry Forum and Amelia (CA) Awards, The American Society of Writers Fiction Award, The British Diversity Short Story Award, The AZsacra International Poetry Award (Taj Mahal Review - US$ 500), the Books & Authors Award, several Writer’s Digest poetry and fiction Awards (winner and finalist), aquillrelle Awards, the Prix Colette and the Prix de la Liberté, among others. His work has been translated into about 15 languages in 25 countries, on the five continents. He has co-published Gaytude with Adam Donaldson Powell, which won Best Gay Book in the USA. Albert Russo’s major books are the AFRICAN QUATUOR (AQ), his memoir CALL ME CHAMELEON (CMC), his humorous ZAPINETTE Series (Zapy), GOSH ZAPINETTE, the first ever series of global Jewish humor, his books of stories and of poetry encompassing 40 years of writing, entitled: THE CROWDED WORLD OF SOLITUDE, vol. 1 -CWS1 (the stories and essays) and THE CROWDED WORLD OF SOLITUDE, vol. 2 (the poems) CWS2 + the two big books dedicated to his beloved mother Sarah Russo (SR) + about 50 books of photos. His definitive biography penned by the Norwegian African-American writer, poet and artist Adam Donaldson Powell, UNDER THE SHIRTTAILS OF ALBERT RUSSO was released by l’Aleph (November 2017), Wisehouse Publishing. A humanist with roots in Central, Southern Africa, and the Mediterranean, he has been acclaimed by James Baldwin, Edmund White, Martin Tucker, Douglas Parmee of Oxford University, Joseph Kessel, Pierre Emmanuel, both of the Académie Française, among many other literary authorities, as well as by his African peers, Chinua Achebe among them. Albert Russo was also a member of the 1996 jury for the Neustadt International Prize for Literature which often leads to the Nobel Prize of Literature. Latest Prize: Best 2013 Unicef Short Story award in defense of childhood worldwide, for Revenge by proxy / Vengeance par procuration.  His 50-odd books of photography have garnered awards in the USA, UK, Russia, France, etc. Some of his work has been exhibited in the Louvre Museum, at the Espace Pierre Cardin, both in Paris, in Times Square, New York, at the Museum of Photography in Lausanne, Switzerland, in Art Berlin, in Tokyo, in Moscow, etc. The former Mayor of the Big Apple, Mr Bloomberg, has lauded his two photo books on Paris and New York. Some of his novels and memoirs have also been filmed in English, with videos 90 and 100 minutes long. Latest award: I have just received the following award. "Dear Albert, It is with great pleasure to announce that you have been selected as a Book Excellence Award Finalist for the following book: 'GOSH ZAPINETTE! the first ever series of global humor’ (770 pages). There were hundreds of entries from around the world and 'GOSH ZAPINETTE! the first ever series of global humor' was selected for its high-quality writing, design and market appeal. Congratulations. The Book Excellence Award Committee.” The Book Excellence Awards Advantage. More than just an awards competition, the Book Excellence Awards provides authors and publishers with extended support and resources on topics such as publishing, marketing, writing, publicity and social media. The Book Excellence Awards is a smart investment on your publishing journey and the results and benefits will last a lifetime! Literary website: www.albertrusso.com - "Art is but a moment of happiness, it is like a lightning of bliss cleaving the never-ending horrors of our world." Albert Russo “Inspiration is like delicious food that your taste buds remember, or a perfume you have long forgotten and whose whiff suddenly brushes your nostrils again, giving you pangs of nostalgia.” Albert Russo
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