Adding to the pain of inter- generational trauma over recent events is a rising tide of anger, frustration, and fear. As our courageous IDF troops valiantly confront the enemy that butchered, burned, and raped innocent Israeli civilians on that fateful morning in early October the streets of western world capitals are overrun by hordes of proponents of jihad against the Jews. In the meantime, decent people cannot possibly understand how there can be any moral equivalency between the indiscriminate slaughter of targeted civilians and the unfortunate civilians inevitably caught in crossfire because their terrorist minders are standing BEHIND them. Can there be any justification whatsoever for kidnapping 240 or more hostages ranging in age from 9 months to nearly 90? We don’t think so, but many conjure a distorted way to make such evil actions sound reasonable and appropriate.
As I have stated previously, we did not see supporters of Al Qaeda or ISIS on the streets protesting ill treatment and pleading for cease fire. There was no ceasefire when the allies battled the Nazis. Was there such an outcry over war’s regrettable collateral damage in the wake of Dresden, Hiroshima, and Mosul? No is the definitive answer which leaves Jews scratching their heads as to why they are judged to an entirely different standard than anybody else.
The illusion of comfort of American Jews has been shattered as one sees images of Jewish students cowering in hopefully safe places with death threats hanging over their heads. One cannot even imagine what the next generation of complicit hate mongering leaders will look like after graduating the likes of Harvard, Yale, and Cornell.
Can one really abide those who rip hostage posters off walls because they ‘know’ from social media that the captivity of these innocents is in fact fake news?
Our heads sag and our hearts bleed because we are left with no choice but to arrive at the inevitable conclusion that the antisemitism virus is the only explanation for why we are constantly victimized and marginalized. It may mutate among those infected, but this pandemic is fundamentally alive and well and spreading. So far, we have not succeeded in developing a fast track towards an antidote or even a slow track. After all this problem is as old as the hills.
When I asked my esteemed Rabbi where do we find comfort in all of this? He said that we are the eternal people. Only some weeks later did I notice that word in Hebrew for eternal נצח is contained in the word for victoryנצחון .
Famed British author and columnist Douglas Murray said in the wake of the October 7 massacre in the Gaza envelope that hitherto Israel was the only nation on earth that was not allowed to win a war. I join him in hoping it is different this time and that justice will be served by the victory of light over darkness. Victory must be ours to deter our enemies, to reassure our own people and to impress upon the world that we are here to stay.
Victory will be ours because we are the eternal people. Perhaps that is the underlying message from my Rabbi and hopefully we shall soon return to being shining lights to the nations rather than victims of the nations. Then we shall see that they can see that the world has changed- for the better.
G-d bless Israel. G-d bless the IDF.