Thursday, February 05, 2009


People are Talking about Purim Already

Nu? I'll have some Purim related blogging.

One claim that has been made as to assigning 'fault' in the latest hostilities between Israel and Gaza is that Israel "started it" by placing an embargo on Gaza when Hamas took over. Of course an argument could be made that this is, in fact, an act of war, and, at the very least, if Israel wants to encourage democracy and independence among the Palestinian people, they should have "respected" the election results no matter how loathsome they were.

Of course, one counter-argument is "should the WWI allies, e.g., been so 'respectful' of the election which ultimately brought Hitler to power?" Certainly, Hamas ostensibly supports the same genocidal policies as the Nazis. And we have vowed "never again". Like Haman before Hitler and Amalek before Haman, we as Jews must make sure that we will never again allow ourselves to be caught off-guard by those who want to destroy us.

However, does our vow of "never again" mean that we should be so quick to draw our guns to defend ourselves that we end up shooting ourselves in the foot? When Israel "responds to terrorist actions" does it really make those in Israel any safer? Defenders of Israel's policies will say "of course it does -- imagine how bad it would be if we didn't defend ourselves? ... it isn't as if anything we do will change their minds about hating us ... after all, people hate Jews".

The problem is that when we act as if that is the case, we ensure that is the case. Israel and her defenders say "Israel does everything it can do to make peace". But does Israel? Sure Israel withdrew from the Gaza strip, but at the same time Israel also siezed some additional lands in the West Bank and shortly thereafter initiated an embargo against Gaza. Certainly all of Israel's actions are justifiable here (and anyone who doesn't see how that is the case is likely blinded by their own prejudices even if they claim to be "liberal" and anti-racist), but can't we Jews see how even these justifiable actions are obviously viewed? Israel gives with one hand and takes with the other -- and we clever Jews always come up with some "reasons" why this is ok. It's bad enough that anti-Semites claim this is how Jews behave. Should we Jews actually behave this way?

At some point if we Jews don't want Hitler to have any more posthumous victories, we need to make sure that we stop living in constant fear of another Holocaust. Does Hamas want to destroy us? Yes, it would seem they do. But should we respond to every rocket launch as if it were a realistic attempt at genocide? How is it making us any safer to do so? Even if Hamas has never followed through with a "cease-fire", shouldn't we encourage any reduction of fire with positive gestures without all this "we'll give you X, but then we'll take Y" ... rather than respond to any attack with more force that just escalates violence and results in even more rockets being launched at Israel?

At some point if we keep acting as if Hamas is a collective reincarnation of Hitler, we are letting Hitler live in Hamas. The goal of Zionism is that we Jews should stop living in fear -- and yet we are constantly letting the memory of Hitler keep us in fear. Isn't that giving Hitler a posthumous victory?

Already we are making plans for the upcoming holiday of Purim. Do we commemorate our almost annhiliation as a people by cowering in fear of another Haman? No ... we commemorate what happened by mocking Haman and in literal observation of the Biblical commandment to blot out the name of Haman's ancestor, Amalek, we drawn out every mention of his name with boos, hisses and noisemakers. We cannot forget the Holocaust and other attempts to annhialate the Jewish people. But we must remember that -- we survived! We are commanded not to remember Amalek's name and what he did to us, but to remember what he did and blot out his name.

Let us stop allowing the name of Hitler to live on by letting anti-Semitic bullies have us lash out in blind fear, but let us blot out the name of Hitler by refusing to see every threat as his existential threat. We complain that the Palestinian people should "move on" and stop blaming Israel for population transfers that were par for the course at that time (including those involving all the Jews absorbed into Israel), and that the Palestinian grudges that lead to terrorism are hateful to us (which they are): well, what is hateful to us, we should not do to others (as Hillel would say). We should remember the Holocaust but also move on and stop living in fear of bullies who seek to destroy us, but rather blot out their names and ... you know ... sometimes the way to deal with a bully is to fight back. And sometimes the way to deal with a bully is to ignore him.

Responding to Hamas violence with violence and giving them the power of being Hitler hasn't worked. Maybe it's time to change strategies.

Time to change strategies? I'm sure the Israeli voters will take care of that in the upcoming elections and send a message to the redundant wacky liberals who read this blog...(I know DAS is not a liberal.)

The AL TEERA... Never Forget movement is not about not forgetting THAT the Holocaust happened... it's about not forgetting HOW the Holocaust happened. Back in WWII, with a few exceptions, Jews did not fight back and look what happened. It is very important for Israeli's to not let history repeat itself when dealing with the Nazi wanna-be Hamas scum.

Change strategies? heck yeah.. let's blow up more tunnels that Hamas scum are using to smuggle in Jew killing weapons.
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