Let’s just not.

1 Jul

The abduction of 3 Israeli teenagers has sadly ended in tragedy long before this was known. Today, their bodies have been found and it was estimated that they must have been killed shortly after their abduction 2 weeks ago. 

This is the triple murder of innocent teenagers. It is, for its motives, also an act of terrorism and antisemitism. The culprits deserve the harshest possible punishment, with no appeal or pardon. Their accomplices, their enablers, must all be punished as well. 

However, let’s not do this again, this call for collective punishment – more specifically, genocide – of the Palestinian people. It is really no better and no different from Arabs calling for the death of all Jews or all of Israel when the IDF (or any Jewish person or entity) kills innocent Arabs (and yes – they do, too). Never, ever, can an entire people be held accountable for the crimes of a few. Even if all Arabs were to hate us Israeli Jews, this would not make them guilty of anything unless they were to act on that hatred. After all, many Israeli Jews also hate all Arabs collectively – does this justify hating all of us? He who does no harm, does no harm. A hateful Arab is no different from a hateful Jew – he either acts or he doesn’t, and if he does, he’s a criminal. If he does not, he’s innocent. It is that simple.

We must not apply 2 different measures to Jews and non-Jewish Arabs. We must not go around shouting “Death to Arabs” (which is exactly what way too many Israeli Jews are now doing) and then go “Woe is me!” when Arabs go around doing the same. We Jews are not above anything or anyone. We commit the same crimes as everyone else. We steal, we rape, we drive under the influence, we kill on accident and on purpose, we lie, we slander, we litter, we damage property. Just like everyone else. ‘
Statistic says that a murder is committed in Israel once every 3 days. Where is the outrage? Where are the “Death to [culprit]” screams? Why only when the culprit is an Arab? Doesn’t that strike anyone as racist? Anyone? What does it matter who the killer is? Would you rather be murdered by a Jew for your money, than by an Arab for Palestine? Personally, I don’t care why I’m murdered. Please just don’t murder me? Thank you! Really now, people of Israel – all of you, not just Jews – pull your heads out of your asses and realize that murder is murder. Why should an Arab be hated more, or a Jew less, for the same crime? Why is the widely publicized abduction and murder of three Jewish teens by Muslim Arabs, considered so much worse than just as many murders of Jews by Jews or of Gentiles by Jews or of Gentiles by Gentiles or Arabs by Arabs? Remind me, how many awful, callous, murderous parents have “forgotten” their child in a hot car and left him or her to die a horrific death? Where was your outrage? Remind me, where was the outrage when an interfaith couple was found murdered in the Carmel forests? Remind me, why was there less outrage at the murder of Shelly Dadon than of “our boys”? Or are you simply more outraged at the boys’ murders because it turns out that all your adorable little #hashtagging turned out to be a waste of your time after all? 

Where is your outrage at the twice-weekly murders of people less religious, less Zionist, less publicized? I fear for the future of my people, because while it pretends to look out for each-other, this is only true within the respective fractions. Settlers and ultra-rightwing Zionists are one fraction, the ultra-Orthodox another, and then the secular and the non-Jewish. Across these fractions, there is dearly little solidarity. And while we, the secular, do a lot more looking-out for those of other fractions – I and my friends and family were very emotionally involved in the abduction – the opposite is true for the ultra-rightwing Zionists and the settlers who will gladly dismiss or shrug off any misfortune that befalls leftists, seculars, homosexuals, Arabs, etc. They have even been known to mock it. There is no unity. There is collective outrage and cross-sectional hashtagging, but that is all.
Now, I know how ultra-rightwingers will respond to this: “Well, if you stinking Arab-loving lefties would just”… No. Unity is possible and necessary even without everyone changing their opinions to fit one particular view. Unity between all the Jewish fractions, and even beyond the Jewish population of this country – non-Jewish citizens do count – is possible by accepting that we may not agree on everything, but when it comes down to it, have the same goal: peace upon Israel. The goal is not to eliminate Palestinians, the goal is not to get rid of the settlers; these “goals” are merely different interpretations of how to reach the true goal – peace. If there are so many discriminatory solutions, there should be inclusive solutions, too. Long story short, we can be united without dismissing one-another for our political beliefs as long as we agree on one thing: wanting to live here in peace and prosperity. And we do.

The other question is whether a Jewish life is worth more than a non-Jewish Arab’s. I specify “non-Jewish Arab” because as much as they hate the thought, Jews from Arab countries are Arabs. Arab is not a dirty word, so deal with it. I refuse to say “Sephardic” because it’s simply bullshit: so what if they set foot on the Iberian Peninsula, my grandfather came through Iran and that hardly makes him Iranian. I will not call Moroccans, Iraqis, Yemenis, etc. what might as well be another word for “Spaniards”. I know that since the establishment of our state, a social and political preference has been given to European/white Jews and the Mizrachim/Arabs are still not quite as respected and so it’s tempting to appropriate them and tell them “You’re from a white place, now act the part!”, and it’s easier for them to pretend, too. But you guys aren’t white, you aren’t Europeans, and that is totally cool!
But I digress: the value of Jewish life. I know that religious Jews, political Zionists, radical right-wingers, and a couple of others like to emphasize the value of the “Jewish soul” over that of “Goyim”, but let’s just not. If we want to prance around like a gay unicorn squealing “We’re God’s chosen people!”, then we have a moral obligation to act the part. And if we are to believe that our God is merciful and good, then we don’t get to oppress or discriminate against other people. And while I know I’m asking for quite a lot here, I will do it anyway: no matter how religious you are, would you please make some room in there for common sense and non-religious morality? Such as, hey, let’s not dismiss the death of Palestinian/Muslim/Druze people because they’re not Jewish! How’s that sound?
After all, no matter what your justification is, considering one life more precious than another, is an immoral and utterly despicable mentality. It matters not whether you base this thought on your religious, racial, political, or other views. It does not matter whether you’re Jewish and quoting some Torah verse, or a white supremacist quoting Hitler when you proclaim that some lives are worth more than others based not on their actions, but on their ethnicity, religion, sexuality, appearance, or other such factors. And here’s where I’ll just say it: the same goes for americans screeching that their troops are heroes for murdering all those Iraqis. So, when an Arab kills americans with the goal of destabilizing the enemy, he’s a terrorist. Okay. But now it gets weird: when an american bombs an entire Arab country, now that’s heroism? This implies that an american life is considered more worthy of preservation than an Arab life. And this implies that whoever feels that way, has been watching all those Nazi documentaries for the wrong reason. Solidarity with your own people is great – but you can love your own without dehumanizing others. Collective strikes against an entire people, are dehumanizing. If an individual does not threaten you or your people, you do not get to devalue their life. The absolute, rock-hard fact is, that the majority of Iraqis did never, ever, threaten americans. The absolute, rock-hard fact is, that the majority of Arabs, Palestinians or other, may hate Israel, but will never do us any harm because they want the same as we do – to be left the fuck alone.

Once again, it has been evidenced that Israel’s problem is not “leftists” or “Palestinians”. It’s people who cannot look beyond their own indoctrinations, and who judge people by their ethnicity, religion, or political fraction. People who defend the murder of Arabs but condemn the murder of Jews, people who defend the murder of Jews but condemn the murder of Arabs, they are both the same thorn in the ass of peace. Once again it has been proven that hate-spewing radicals on both sides of The Conflict are the true problem. Arab radicals who abduct and murder Jewish civilians on one hand, and Zionist radicals who make sure to continue to provide Arab radicals with excuses to carry on hating us by inciting against Arabs, and regularly putting this incitement into practice.

It is by no means anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, or pro-Nazi to oppose the genocide of Arabs or to question the outrage only seen when a victim was obviously identifiable as Jewish. Not determining the tragedy of the loss of someone’s child by this child’s ethnicity or religion, is only one thing – anti-racist. If you disagree with something so obvious, you are why antisemitism exists because in its nature, antisemitism is the same as any other kind of minority hate. Is antisemitism really worse than white supremacy, homophobia, or any other violent persecution of people for what they are? Why can’t we agree that all political, ethnic, religious, gender, and racial persecution needs to end? And why won’t you take a step towards that?

 

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