Since Monday night Hamas has fired over 1,000 missiles at Israel, all aimed at civilians. For some inexplicable reason, the authorities allowed an outdoor concert to take place last night at the Israel Museum here in Jerusalem, usually a beautiful night time venue. And for some stupid reason, my wife and I went.
Besides the usual police tactics, decisions, and overreactions, unfortunate occurrences that are endemic to policing everywhere but that can be particularly combustible in this region, there is a combination of causes. Among them:
--Final days of Ramadan, a reflective, community-minded month-long holiday that also brings with it heightened religious fervor and intensity, coinciding with Yom Yerushalayim, a day marking the 1967 reunification of Jerusalem after 19 years of illegal Jordanian rule during which Jews were prohibited from entering the Old City and during which many Jewish holy sites were desecrated and destroyed. Unfortunately, some intentionally celebrate this day in a highly provocative, in-your-face manner.
Many in Israel's security agencies urged that Yom Yerushalayim Day activities be greatly curtailed or cancelled. While there has been an effort in recent years by people with a more moderate political orientation to engage in activities promoting coexistence and goodwill, the day is still dominated by activities and people that are often obnoxious, overly nationalistic, and unnecessarily provocative. Still, people, even ones I don't care for, have the right to gather and parade as long as they are not violent. In the meantime, 90,000 people came to Al Aqsa for Ramadan. We wouldn’t dare cancel that.
--Mahmoud Abbas, the 85 year-old President of the Palestinian Authority now in the 17th year of his four year term, cancelling the elections he had called. He laid the blame on a dispute with Israel over the participation in the election of Jerusalem's Arab population, but it is doubtful that even his immediate family believed that was the real reason. Everyone, particularly the Palestinian "street," knows that the real reason is that he feared losing the election.
Smelling an opportunity, Hamas capitalized on this embarrassment by stepping up its West Bank activities, particularly in "defending" the Al Aqsa Mosque from non-existent Israeli "aggression" and in supporting some Arab residents of Sheikh Jarrah who are fighting eviction by a right-wing Jewish group intent on reclaiming houses owned and occupied by Jews prior to 1948.
--Iran. The region's major exporter of terror and destabilization, supporter of Hezbollah and Hamas, never misses an opportunity to stir the pot. It has upped its hateful anti-Israel rhetoric and its trading in false accusations.
--Sheikh Jarrah. If this happened in any other country, few would care. Almost no one would know about it. It involves about 100 people. It’s wound its way through the Israeli court system for years.
But, because it’s Israel and the Palestinians, because it involves Jews trying to resettle in a neighborhood where Jews lived with Arabs prior to 1948, because it's a right-wing group with an agenda asserting the property rights, because Israel has more Western journalists than any other country in the region, because the story ties in nicely with the far left's fiction that we are nothing but colonizers in the land in which we are an indigenous people, it’s a big deal. The EU, the UN, the U.S. and a host of NGO's, have to get involved.
In the meantime, a million Uighurs in China are imprisoned and everyone is planning for the 2022 Winter Olympics there, and Qatar, a dictatorship built on slave labor is getting ready to host the 2022 World Cup in stadiums built by slave labor, and no one cares. Perhaps that's the key. Perhaps we need to host a world sporting event.
Hope you continue to be safe. One of the summaries that I saw today on Twitter: “Both the IDF and Hamas are not satisfied with the number of civilian casualties. The difference is that the IDF wants there to be fewer.”ReplyDelete
I was hoping you would send a Random Thoughts (thank you!) and share your experience and perspective. We so appreciate your ability to provide context about this complex situation.ReplyDelete
This is an amazing piece. Gave me such a clear sense of some of what you and others are experiencing right now. Most of the news stories we're getting are generally about the conflict generally (lots of missile and black smoke footage).ReplyDelete
I hope you and your daughter continue to be safe. Thanks again so much for your as-always thoughtful, insightful observations and keen eye for detail. You're a wonderful writer.
Always right on point, we are always mystified by the anti -Israel sentiment. We are also so grateful when we hear that we have a right to defend ourselves from attacks, thank you.ReplyDelete
We wake up terrified to hear the news. Our hearts break for those families who have lost dear ones.
Especially disheartening and upsetting are seeing posts on Facebook from liberal relatives who place blame for the present situation solely on Israel.
Let’s hope and pray that things will get better soon.
Thanks for your insight and perspective, hope you reach many, many people.
You are an amazing writer. Thank you for sharing this. I am devastated to think about the danger you and your family are in. Sending prayers of protection to you.ReplyDelete
They must have a fair of the band that they're advancing just as their fans. Regardless of whether a concert draws in an immense crowd or a little one relies upon how well the occasion was advanced, easy. buy twitch subscribersReplyDelete