I woke before dawn today, a bit disoriented and very tired. I need to avoid the traffic because, yeah…I’ve abused my arm enough and driving isn’t the easiest of things to do. I’ve got two working arms, but one that needs babying a bit. It’s kind of funny to watch my arms, almost as an outsider. The left, always sure of itself, is in pain and quite annoyed at the right. The right arm is less sure, clumsier, more inexact.
Sheesh – just dip it in the sauce and put it in the breadcrumbs…how much effort does it take? Oh, forget it, I’ll just do it myself – OUCH. And so it has been for almost two weeks – an endless argument from the left, which wants it done as I’ve always done it, to the right, which is trying so hard.
So, I dressed in the morning – also not the easiest of tasks and left the house early, hoping to avoid the worst of the traffic. In doing that, I probably found the best of the day. Dawn was breaking as I climbed the mountain up to Jerusalem, leaving the Judean Desert behind. The desert has bloomed over the wet winter and there is more green than you can imagine.
I passed through the northern roads of Jerusalem, between the slumbering neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo on one side and the hi-tech, Har Hotzvim area on the other. Golden stones begin reflecting the light as I drive through the still-sleeping city.
The Jerusalem forest was to my left and right as I pass the neighborhood of Ramot and exit through the latest tunnel built to help traffic flow. Free of Jerusalem, my car climbed slowly to join the old Tel Aviv-Jerusalem Highway.
To my left are the graves of tens of thousands of Jews – Har Menucha…the Mountain of Rest, the largest cemetery in Jerusalem. Having cleared the city in little time because of the hour – I began the descent down to flat areas of Israel.
Past the beautiful suburb of Mevasseret Zion, the road descends again. The first reports of traffic in the north didn’t faze me as I continued down. There to the left are the beautiful hills covered in trees while to the right, Neve Ilan and further down, Abu Ghosh – an Arab Israeli city known for its humous and the fact that Jews can actually enter and exit safely.
Shoresh is located almost at the edge- where the hills give way to a view of the sea sparkling in the distance, a reminder that we are really a very tiny country. You get the first glimpse of miles and miles of land and towns below. As you approach the bottom, to the right is the Burma Road – a dirt path used by amazing heroes who trekked into Jerusalem under cover of darkness in 1948 to break the Arab siege of the Old City and bring food and medicine to the starving elderly Jewish population. And there, in the center between the two pathways of the Tel Aviv – Jerusalem highway are a series of ancient relics.
These are the seemingly ancient trucks and vehicles used in the 1948 war. Close to here, as they began the ascent to Jerusalem, they were stopped. This is a memorial we leave to them as we pass this site – always to remember their bravery and sacrifice. On Memorial Day, they lay wreathes of flowers here and drape the trucks with Israelis flags – there to remain through our Independence Day.
And then you are down off the hills of Jerusalem. I pass Latrun, and a memorial to the tank division, as I see signs to Beersheva – ancient and modern, it is a name that comes from the Bible and reminds us that we were here long ago, still are, and always will be.
I reach the open fields – between the cities of Beit Shemesh and Modiin – they are building a speed train deep in the ground to connect Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. I drove into the fog, not really minding it a bit. It changed the light as the sun hid behind the fog but I knew the sun would be out soon. I drove past the relatively new intersection that shortens the trip to several points south – more cars on the road; more reports of traffic.
Israel was waking up and starting another day. I called Aliza to make sure she got up and reminded her that she had to call Shmulik, who had offered to drive her to school because her stomach has been bothering her lately.
And on I drove – simply enjoying the time, the road, the view. Israel coming awake is a beautiful thing to watch – fields and fields of green passed my view and Route 1 from Jerusalem joined with Route 6 – the newest “super” highway that travels from up north to far into the south.
And then I was into the central area – Gush Dan, because this is the land given by God to the tribe of Dan…yes, we still know where those lines are and even today – in Tel Aviv, they know they are located in Gush Dan, as Jerusalem knows it lies in the land of Binyamin (Benjamin). Now on the main roads of central Israel, there was a lot of traffic and little time to enjoy the views other than to note passing through Petach Tivkah (the opening of hope) founded in 1878, home today to over 200,000.
And then, the first glimpse of the sea – the Mediterranean. A right turn, another major highway, and I’ve arrived at my destination where I will spend much of the day working onsite at a client’s offices before going to a meeting later today.
A few days ago, I saw a strange and horrible avatar (picture) on Twitter. It was a swastika; the Nazi flag. I thought perhaps it was a joke; perhaps it was ignorance. It certainly is ignorance, but not the kind I had expected. There are whole worlds on Twitter and it would be impossible to find them all. I am connected to many different worlds, but this was a new one.
I know it sounds hopelessly naive to say this, but it just never occurred to me that they were there – this underworld of hatred. Oh, I know there are those filled with hatred – I follow the #GAZA stream all the time. I know there are those who will lie and deceive – did I mention I follow the #GAZA stream?
But this was a different kind of hatred, a deep, ancient one. I understand the Arab hatred – I know what they want. But this one is a mindless hate bred into their bones, their souls, if they even have souls. Not all Arabs are filled with hatred but to be a Nazi, to be a racist, is to believe in the extremes. All Jews must die; all Jews are guilty. All Jews caused all tragedies and are responsible for everything.
It’s hard to believe, I wrote one twit, that in this day and age, there could be people who are so ignorant, so stupid, so naive. But of course, there is an agenda, a cause behind this. It’s there in the avatar…it is as new as the concept of Twitter, and as old as time. It is a hatred so strong, so evil, it touches and destroys anything, everything, in its path.
Hate-filled, ignorant, small minded, racist. For a day or so, I responded. It felt good to show them, to answer them. We will NEVER fall to you again, I told them in anger.
But that was the problem – this discussion, this discovery that they live and breathe among us and spread their hatred filled me with fury. We are strong. We will not ever, ever let you do what you did once.
I even laughed when one wrote, “Have no Mercy! Cry for vengeance! The enemy Jew will turn pale! Beat the enemy Jew and push him back!” He was quoting Goebbels, but I couldn’t resist the simple response, “HELLO? IDF? Duh”
Quickly, the “discussion” got to the Holocaust and, of course, they denied there ever was one. They deny the gas chambers I have seen with my own eyes. They ridicule the Jews as weak.
For a day or two, I responded. To the lie that the gas chambers never existed, I wrote that my mother-in-law had been in one and was pulled out at the last minute for a work detail. That too he called a lie. The proof that the Holocaust happened was made by the Nazis themselves. They were so proud of what they did, they kept records of who they killed; they filmed their tortures and genocide. I doubt any crime in the history of man has been so meticulously documented as the Holocaust against the Jewish people.
And I find it ironic that what Hitler took great pride in doing – advancing the destruction of the Jewish people, these idiot modern-day followers are struggling to deny.
A few joined me in expressing their disgust, more wrote to me and told me it was no use even wasting time answering them. I had to get to that conclusion on my own.
As I often do, I came here to write. I started with the title – Neo-Nazis on Twitter and I started to copy in images of the tweets I have seen in the last few days. And then I stopped. I went home and this morning, as I drove, I realized the truest answer was to come here and write about my trip this morning. And that’s what I did…
These Nazis of today are pathetic losers living on past glories. Their king is dead…such a coward he killed himself. Those that survived – on their side, have spent their lives looking over their soldiers. It is not over until they are in the grave. Until then, even in their 90s, they could fall to the incredibly slow justice system.
And when they die, for those of us who believe in hell and justice, we know that what man did not give them, God most certainly is. I can fight them, we can all fight them, but perhaps the best thing to do is let them live in their dark caves while we drive in the sunshine.
Every step I took today, every mile I drove was the greatest response. Yes, you murdered millions of Jews – men, women – over a million children….but four of my children carry the names of those you harmed. Through their namesakes, they live on.
The truest answer is for me to do two things. First, I will write to Twitter and ask them to delete the following accounts – these are the Nazis I found (and will continue to report as I found others):
@NSofAmerica (an alternate account for the previous one)
@NSFM_CoS (an alternate account for the previous one)
@TheNSFM_CoS (an alternate account for the previous one)
@SkinheadPride88 (more racist than anti-Semitic, but neo Nazi for all that)
One account boasts that he has already had several accounts deleted – they know they are being hunted. So many of the accounts were new, and few had many followers. This shows that Twitter is vigilant and I hope they will continue to be.
And the second thing I will do – is live in this land, continue to be all the Nazis hated most of all. My children will live here – my grandchildren and on and on. I started this post wanting to describe the horrible tweets I have seen in the last few days – those that deny the Holocaust, the gas chambers. I have stood in those gas chambers. I have seen the ashes of my people left in the ovens built by theirs.
I thought I was not naive, but I am. I know there are Nazis in the world today. They don’t scare me, but they do bring forth an anger so deep, so sharp, so strong, that it can cripple me if I let it. They are nothing because we are strong.
I have the greatest answer of all for these worthless things that plague the earth – I have the sunshine and dawn in Israel – only surpassed, perhaps, by the sunset I see out the window nearby, as the sun sets on another day in my land.
May God bless the people of Israel and bless the memories of those who didn’t make it into the sunshine I enjoyed today – because Hitler’s cursed plan condemned them to death. Yes, there were gas chambers and yes, the Nazis murdered over six million of my people. And yes, remembering brings back the pain and the anger but it also brings forth the pride.
From what they did to us – look what we have built. The mountains have been here throughout time, but we’ve built cities, planted the trees. We’ve paved the roads and built a hi-tech community known throughout the world. We’ve built an army of our sons – not something we would have wanted, but something that had to be – and with that army, we have sworn to protect Jews everywhere. It is in their names – our sons and daughters – that we can promise that never again will they have the power to hurt us, to torment us. And so my final tweet will be the simplest of all.