Events sometimes have a way of stripping all pretext...all nicety...from the positions people carefully occupy, exposing who they really are, what they actually think. The result can be stark, ugly, and wonderfully instructive.
It is good to deal with reality. It is hard to deal with reality, but it can become a really fine habit. Still, when you see a suppurating lesion on the face of the world...or your own countrymen...there is a mixture of sadness and revulsion that makes one want to turn away. With respect to what the "Love Boat" flotilla is teaching us, we cannot turn away; the reality has to be embraced.
When Helen Thomas said what she did, suggesting that Jews should simply "go back to Europe", she was openly expressing what many American and Western media people quietly...in the darker folds of their souls...believe.
I am old enough (60) to remember when the idea of Israel was one that people of good will seemed to universally support. I say that, because I was not likely aware of the deep, abiding racial hatred in some parts of the world, directed at the tiny little nation on the Mediterranean. I remember the movies made during the fifties and early sixties about Israel and its birthing. I grew up...partly (and to the extent I grew up)...in Los Angeles, in a very Jewish area. I never got the whole Antisemitism thing.
Since, of course...and inescapably in the recent history of the world...I have learned, not to understand, but to appreciate or comprehend the operative fact of hatred for a branch of the human family. It simply exists, and it shapes people's behavior and their thinking. It is so powerful, it can overwhelm the feelings of fathers and mothers for their children. Not just the suicide bombers, but the fathers and mothers who consign their children and grandchildren to profound tyranny, poverty, and twistedness in support of that hate. I readily admit that I cannot understand that hate.
Helen Thomas suggested that the Jews simply drop the whole "Israel deal". They should go home. This suggests that they are the problem. They are the reason for so much misery. What a bothersome, burdensome people. Why do they insist on imposing so much misery.
She named a few places...Poland, Germany...vaguely waving in the direction of Europe. Why? I suppose because it is convenient to think of them as interlopers...carpetbaggers who infested a region in which they were utterly foreign. Human Zebra Mussels. But Jews were there. And they had been there. Who built the Wailing Wall, and the great temple of which it used to be a part? Who fought for their land, as they fight now, from the heights of Masada? By then, they had been there centuries. Could she be so ignorant of history? No.
Where, if not there, is there a home for Jews...especially the millions of children born since Israel was established? And where could Jews go where the implacable, insatiable drive to kill them would not follow? Is their mere existence in Israel what causes the "trouble"? Would not that same "trouble" always find them, driven by the same hatred, wherever they go? Could she be ignorant of that truth? No.
Could Thomas...and those slinking supporters of her thinking...be unaware that Israel would be delighted to never have to fight one more day the grinding, tragic, costly war that they have had to fight virtually every hour since they became a nation? If peace...other than the peace of the grave...were a possibility, would the Israelis not rush to gain it? Does Thomas think Israel is a nation of war-mongers who delight in the idea of having to be an armed camp, every hour only hours away from being in a struggle for their own cities, with the sea at the backs of their children? No.
This is about racial hatred. There are Jews who hate their own race, and apparently not a few in the media. There are people who think that Jews should know their place...wherever that might possibly be...and it isn't Israel. They are the trouble-makers of the world, and the world would be better off if they would just go home. Wherever that might be...
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