It’s been a little over a week since the riots in Gaza began. We’re promised riots every week, till May 14th, the date commemorating Israel’s Declaration of Independence in 1948.
When I wrote this, new riots were massing on the border (the great tire demonstration).
Last Friday was the grand opening of the “March of Return”. Hamas orchestrated the event, billing it as something across between Woodstock and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Selma march. Supposedly, this would be an event for the entire family, men, women, and children – a peaceful march to the border of Gaza to declare their desire to “return”.
And by doing so, turn Israel into Palestine.
Last Friday was the night of the Passover Seder. Choosing the night of this very important holiday for the date of mass demonstrations was very deliberate.
Preparing for Passover creates its own tension (imagine preparing for Christmas, Thanksgiving or a wedding) – it begins with a type of spring cleaning that can range from cleaning the house to remove chametz (leaving) to make the house kosher for the holiday to painting the house and even full-blown renovations. There is a massive amount of shopping and cooking to be done for the Seder which lasts long into the night and is when everyone hosts family and friends – or is hosted, which means buying presents, getting stuck in traffic and having to drive home in the early hours of the morning.
But that is a fun kind of tension.
The tension of the unknown is much less pleasant. Would the peaceful demonstration remain peaceful? Not likely. How bad would it get? While getting dressed and making the finishing touches for the evening we were receiving more and more updates from Gaza which had quickly become a scene of mass, violent riots in five locations along the 60 kilometer, Israeli side of the Gaza border.
Soldiers who were supposed to spend the holiday at home had to remain on duty. That in itself was a success for Hamas, ruining the holiday for many families. Israelis in the communities surrounding Gaza who are licensed to carry were requested to take their guns with them to holiday celebrations, their family meal and even to the synagogue when they went to pray.
It would be necessary for civilians to have guns to defend themselves and their families in the nightmare scenario of the border being breached and terrorists invaded Israeli communities. Or Israeli Arabs choosing to use the distraction to kill Jews.
The night celebrating freedom, smelled like war.
And celebrate we did. Because that’s what we do. And when the Seder was over, we heard that an emergency UN Security Council had been convened to discuss the “indiscriminate killing” of “peaceful demonstrators”.
Here too, the timing was deliberate. How could an Israeli representative be available, in time, to counter the accusations, on the eve of one of the most important Jewish holidays of the year? But, according to the UN, this was an emergency. There had been a massacre!
At 3:00 am we listened to some of the live session from New York. The accusations, twisting of reality was absolutely sickening. But it wasn’t really a surprise. We are used to it.
What struck me was the callous abuse of children. Not Israeli children (we’re used to no one caring about the lives of our children). Listening to the various UN representatives discuss Israeli “atrocities”, I was thinking of the children of Gaza.
I could not help but think of a little boy I saw in 2005. Israel had just executed the Disengagement Plan, ripping thousands of Jews from their homes in the Gaza strip, dismantling 21 Israeli communities, handing to control of the Palestinian Authority.
This tiny child was taken to one of the demonstrations celebrating Israeli withdrawal. Too small to really understand what was going on, someone had given him a cardboard Kalashnikov to hold, like a real, grown-up member of Hamas. He looked so confused in the photo… as if he was searching for guidance from a grown up. But what guidance was he getting?
13 years have passed. That boy is old enough to be any of the Gazans killed in the riots. Interestingly 15 out of the 19 killed in the riots last Friday are known terrorists. How do we know? Not because of some special Israeli military intelligence gathering. We know because the PA announced, with pride, exactly who each individual was at which organization they were affiliated with.
Now here’s a math logic problem. There were 24,000 rioters. 19 were killed. 15 are known terrorists. Does that mean that the other 4 were not terrorists?
Note that the youngest man killed was 18. No women or children were killed, although there were many women and children there.
So much for the “Israeli massacre” and “indiscriminate killing”.
It is a war crime to use women and children as human shields. But the UN has no concern about Hamas abuse of their own people. In my mind, it is a crime against humanity to raise entire generations to hate and kill.
The people in this video are shouting the ancient Islamic chant “Khaybar, khaybar ya yehud.” This chant refers to the Muslim massacre of the Jews of the town of that name in northwestern Arabia in 628 CE and means “Jews, remember Khaybar, the army of Muhammad is returning.” This is a threat of genocide and is directed at Jews, not Israelis, not soldiers – this is about Jews.
Many a beautifully posed image of “Palestinian resistance” has been published. Here is an image that is reminiscent of the imagery of the French revolution. A fantastic image, meant to pull at the heartstrings and help the viewer choose the “correct” side to support.
This is not journalism. This is art – the art of propaganda.
The statements by Hamas leadership that, if Israel does not give in to their demands they will come and “eat our livers” were given less media focus. Many will, of course, assume that this threat was meant as a figure of speech, conveniently forgetting the video from the beginning of the Syrian civil war of the Syrian rebel eating the liver of a Syrian soldier he had just killed.
When the agenda is to delegitimize and, ultimately destroy Israel, nothing matters. Not truth, not facts.
It does not matter that Israel is a sovereign nation with a duty to defend her borders and the lives of her citizens. This is the duty of any State, not a right.
It does not matter that these demonstrations were nothing close to peaceful, they will still be presented as such.
It does not matter that the only Gazans killed were males, over 18 years old, active in terrorist organizations. It’s still a massacre.
And no one, absolutely no one, cares about the children of Gaza, callously used as human shields to make Israel look bad, raised to hate and trained to become murderers.
If the “pro-Palestinian” crowd actually cared about Arab lives, they would stop lying about Israel and start demanding the freedom of Gazans, especially the children of Gaza, from the oppression and abuse of Hamas.