Analysis of a Comment

You know, you have to be careful what you say. I was at a blogger’s session at the Tomorrow 2012 conference here in Jerusalem and someone asked what to do with comments. A few bloggers talked about comments often being a pain; another said sometimes they are really dumb comments and I opened my big mouth and said I love comments – most are so supportive. I told the people about some of the comments that people have made on my blog and the way I handle them. 

So, my luck, of course, I posted what I would have thought was a simple post – a protest in the only way I can protest. With words. I can’t fly planes to stop the terrorists firing these rockets, but I can write about it. And then Brooke R. left this comment: (the gray text will be discussed in the next post…this one has become too long…just on the first two lines.)

50 rockets hit Israel, but how many people were injured or killed? If 50 rockets hit the West Bank or Gaza at least a thousand people would be killed or injured. The land you live on is stolen. The way you treat the people who you stole the land is abominable. If you lived the way they did you’d be angry too. If I lived the way they did I’d be angry. Crazy thing? There are people who are angry but who don’t hate you like you hate them. Crazy thing is that those people are looking to their faith and what it teaches them, what God teaches us. To love, and not oppress. To love your enemy. I think its a bit out of whack for you to play the victim card. You are not a victim. The Palestinians are the victims. They are the victims of my government, your government, many Middle Eastern governments. For once why don’t you try to put yourself in their shoes. Let go of your anger and victim mentality. That’s what I try to do when I think about how your government treated me recently.

I need to explain something here – and so, line by line, Brooke, let me correct you.

50 rockets hit Israel, but how many people were injured or killed? 

This is a common mistake that people who are, in truth, anti-Israel, love to make. They need to explain that is it, essentially, okay to fire a rocket at one million people so long as you miss them. It is akin to putting a little kitten in a garbage can and rolling it around for a while – so long as the cat isn’t hurt and you release it, is it really animal cruelty? Have you actually done something wrong? I will tell you that you have.

When the rocket is launched from Gaza, Israel’s brilliant army knows the launch site, knows the trajectory of that rocket and knows within milliseconds, the general location of where it will land. Within seconds, a siren is sounded in that area and surrounding areas. We do not take chances with people’s lives and so we warn them – run. RUN FAST. NOW. Get to a safe area.

And we instruct them – how to protect themselves. The safest part of a building if they can’t get to a secure room; what to do if they can’t get to a building at all. What if you are in a car? In a field?

The rocket lands and explodes…and then there is silence. The terror of those seconds before the rocket lands and the panic when you hear the explosion near by and wonder where it hit, who it hit…and where your children are, your parents, your siblings…

In the end, after rolling that cat around in the garbage…if you release it…is it okay? If a person isn’t hit by the rocket or the little metal balls the Arabs pack into the missile so that when it explodes, if you don’t get hit by the rocket, maybe you’ll at least get hit by this bullet-like balls that explode out with a force strong enough to kill and maim – is it okay?

Is the only measure of the right and wrong here – that one criteria – if someone was hurt or killed. I know that four people…yes, they are soldiers…were hurt by one missile – one is in critical condition. Is that enough blood for you, Brooke?

 If 50 rockets hit the West Bank or Gaza at least a thousand people would be killed or injured.

Actually, Brooke, more than 50 Israeli rockets have hit Gaza and a thousand weren’t killed because unlike the Arabs, we target our missiles to hit terrorists who are firing rockets at Israel, Hamas training grounds, etc. As for the West Bank, well, you’re wrong there too because geographically, the area that Gaza is firing at is more less densely populated than the cities (Beersheva, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Shderot, etc.) at which the Arabs are firing.

The land you live on is stolen.

Do you actually know where I live…the house, the city, or are you sort of just talking about all of Israel? A question I often ask people is when do you start history…is there a specific moment that gives someone more or less rights to something? But in this case, let me answer specifically. You are wrong. I bought the land that I live on from a man who was born in Israel. His parents fled Iran after Israel was created and the Arabs thought there was a chance for them to push the Jews into the sea. Only, they didn’t.

During the war they started in 1948, the Jordanians pushed westward, hoping to advance that great dream of a final resting place in the water for my people…they were stopped, of course, and Israel remained in existence, but this area where my home now is, became part of Jordan. Prior to 1948 and the Jordanians occupying/capturing it, it was a barren hill under the control of the British and their mandate. They got the land from the Ottomans.

Under the Turks, under the British, under the Jordanians – no one built on these hills to the east of Jerusalem. In 1967, when it was clear that war was coming, the Israelis launched a preemptive strike – no rational person believes it was Israeli aggression and even the Arabs admit they were about to attack us – that we just attacked them first.

Shortly after the strikes were launched against the Egyptians and the Syrians – Israel sent a message to Jordan through international channels asking them not to attack and telling them that Israel did not want a war. Jordan responded that they would stand with their brothers and attacked. And lost. The land on which my home was built was a barren hill controlled by the Jordanian government until the Israel.

It was not built on stolen land and so you are wrong again.

Wow – I still have to much of your comment to process…next post, I guess.

7 Comments on Analysis of a Comment

  1. Paula, thank you for your blogspot. You are making all of us out here aware. Very good. Thank you.

  2. Yes, thank you, Paula!

  3. Hi Paula, i love your blog. I think you are very biased to the Israeli side but that is understandable and it is a good balance as to what we hear from the Palestinians. I agree that you cannot turn the clock back, the war has been won by Israelis. But why does Israel let the thousands of refugees that are still living in camps in Israel, Jordan, Lebanon. When the Ottoman’s and the British were in power they let the indigenous people live on the land of their ancestors. As far as i know from history Jew and Arab lived peaceably as neighbors before the mass immigration of Jews that started after WW2 and before (many as illegal immigrants at that time).

  4. There will, unfortunately, always be Misters Brooke who call us “robbers”. And what we should tell them is what Rashi tells us to tell them:

  5. Hi Anonymous.

    Thanks for the compliment! I love to hear that people are enjoying my blog. Yes, I am biased for Israel…which makes sense on many levels…one of which is that if you know the truth and history, it’s really very easy to be pro-Israel.

    Why does Israel “let the thousands of refugees that that are still living in camps in Israel, Jordan, Lebanon?” Okay – so the first question is why you think Israel has any control over what happens in Jordan and Lebanon? During the 1948 war – when some Arabs became refugees…they were put in camps by their so-called Arab brothers. At the same time, almost the same number of Jews (a few tens of thousands more or less on either side depending on whose numbers you accept), became refugees as they fled Arab countries – often with nothing. For example – in Yemen, they were told to get out with nothing – within 48 hours. We took in those Jews…in the tiny state of Israel and yes, we put them in tent cities (camps, basically) and as quickly as possible, we built them homes and dissolved those camps. The children and grandchildren of those refugees are not refugees today; they are my neighbors – next door, across the street. From Morocco and Yemen to my left; from Tunis, Libya and Egypt across the street and to my right.

    It was our obligation, as their brothers, to give them homes…here in the land to which they fled. Why didn’t the Arabs in Lebanon and Jordan, Saudia Arabia, Egypt, and Syria do the same? Ask them, please.

    As for the “refugee camps” in Israel – I only know of one – Kalandia…no…two – I think Shuafat is one as well. These “camps” are a name but not a reality – they are neighborhoods of buildings, fully furnished, electricity, running water, indoor plumbing, schools, lights in the streets; people walking with cellphones. Televisions in the house – trains running nearby. In short, your image of a refugee camp (at least in Israel) is far from the reality of their lives.

    Finally, no – Jew and Arab did not live together in peace as neighbors before World War II – that is a historical inaccuracy – google “Hebron Jews 1929” and you’ll learn about the massacre and forced exile of the Jews who lived there (and the property that was stolen from them). You’ll often hear Arabs in Hebron claiming that Jews are trying to steal “their” land…but if you check carefully, you’ll find the building they are fighting about was owned by the person’s grandfather or great-grandfather.

    As for entering the land illegally before WWII – the “law” which made that illegal condemned hundreds or perhaps thousands or more to death by the Nazis by giving them no place to flee. If the Nazis were hunting you, wouldn’t you try to get out…somewhere, some place.

    Yes, there was a larger influx of Jews that came after World War II – and still there would have been room for all the Jews then – just as there is room for all of them today. It was never about land and all about the Arabs not wanting infidels anywhere in or near land they claim as their own.

    Finally – the Palestinians are the only people in the world that are allowed to bequeath refugee status to their children. Even Yassir Arafat wasn’t born in Palestine, but in Cairo. The actual number of real refugees alive today is tiny – you are talking about people who are at least 64 years old. All the rest are victims not of Israel, but of the intransigence of their culture and of their fellow Arabs.

  6. re the claim made by a poster above, that ‘Jews and Arabs lived together in peace as neighbours before World War II’.

    It has already been partially answered, by the reference to the Arab Muslim massacre of Jews in Hebron in 1929.

    And that was not the only such attack, far from it. ‘

    And there were other Muslim pogroms against Jews, going right back – for example, there was a terrible Muslim persecution of Jews in Jerusalem in the 17th century, and of Jews in the land in the 18th century, and there was a Muslim pogrom against the defenceless Jews of Safed, 1833-1834.

    For the full awfulness of Muslim treatment of dhimmi Jews, throughout dar al Islam, see Maimonides’ letter to the Jews of Yemen, also Norman Stillman, ‘The Jews of Arab Lands’, Martin Gilbert ‘In Ishmael’s House’, Andrew Bostom ‘The Legacy of Islamic Antisemitism’, and David Littman’s book on the Jews of the Maghreb, together with Bat Yeor’s ‘The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians Under Islam’.

    For an analysis of just exactly what it means to be a dhimmi living under Muslim overlords, read Australian scholar Mark Durie’s ‘The Third Choice: Islam, Dhimmitude and Freedom’. My final witness is a humble Aussie soldier, Ion Idriess, who took part in the campaign that broke the Ottoman Muslim hold on eretz Israel, in 1916-1917, and kept diaries, and wrote a book, ‘The Desert Column’. Here he is, describing the lot of the Jews whom the Australians encountered in the Land in 1917 (that is, the old Jewish communities who had been reinforced by the recent – late 19th century – Jewish returners from Exile. He writes, of these Jewish communities “Lots of them have had a hard time from the Turks [that is, from Turkish Muslims: my note]. They [the Jews] seem to live between two devils, the Turk [Muslim] and the Arab [Muslim]. Apparently the Turk prevents the Arab from massacring them outright, because the Jews are a very handy people to squeeze taxes from.”

    Anyone who tries to pretend that Jews had a lovely life when they lived as dhimmis under the heel of the Muslim, has got rocks in their heads. I once heard a Jewish poster in an internet forum speak of Jews he knew who had endured dhimmitude in Yemen until the 1950s. He stated that they would *die* rather than be dhimmis again; and then he stated that they would *kill* rather than go back to being dhimmis.

    (signed) Aussie friend of Israel

  7. I think it’s wonderful your able to counter people’s misconceptions or downright lies about what’s happening in Israel with the FACTS.

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