What one Jew feels about Israel today


by Q

I read this opinion piece today and thought to share it with the Iranian community. It is truly powerful and represents the inner struggle that peaceful Jews must go through every day when dealing with Israeli crimes.

Today I end my support of Israel

by Chilean Jew
Sun Dec 28, 2008 at 02:07:48 PM EST

Like davidminzer, I'm Jewish and descendant of holocaust survivors. Moreover, I've been a Zionist all of my life. I went to a Zionist school, I was active in Zionist youth groups. I've always been a fervent supporter of Israel as a refuge for Jews around the world who seek a place to exercise their traditions and embrace their identity in peace.

I sang the Israeli anthem in the train rails of Aushwitz-Birkenau and I pledged to fight every day of my life to make sure the savage crimes that had taken place there would never happen again. Every year I pledged: Never Again. Remember and Never forget.

Well, I haven't forgotten. And so to honor that pledge, to honor the memory of my family members who died in those death camps and because "there comes a time when silence is betrayal", today I finally and publicly end my support for the state of Israel.

I do this with great pain in my heart, but nonetheless with the overwhelming conviction that it is the only right thing to do. I was patient: I tolerated the destruction of the Oslo process by refusing to end or slow down the constant and criminal construction of settlements. I held my nose and stood my ground when Barak killed the final status negotiations at Taba 2001. I even remained loyal after Sharon's massacres in the West Bank, the brutal Annexation wall, the illegal "selective assassinations" and Olmert's war crimes in Lebanon.

I had to defend Israel and Israelis with my friends and others who demanded I be consistent with my progressive views and oppose a country that was responsible for horrible crimes against innocent human beings. "Israelis are scared, they are traumatized, you have to understand...", "Israel is responding to attacks on itself, tell me one other country that wouldn't respond when attacked...", I demanded understanding, I pleaded for a fair and comparative analysis.

ENOUGH. I'm done justifying crimes against humanity by a country that claims to be an illuminated western democracy. I'm done defending a country that is unwilling to grant self-determination to a neighboring people because it won't let go of a few settlements and divide a city. I'm done tolerating the slaughtering of innocent kids, the murderous and barbaric occupation of an impoverished people, the utter disregard for human life.

Fuck them.

If they think their daily peace of mind is worth the lives of hundreds of innocent people, Fuck them.

If they think the best way to go right now would be to vote for Natanyahu (who is so far winning in the polls), Fuck them.

If they won't bat an eye before keeping millions without electricity or water, before bombing civilian neighborhoods at exactly the time when kids are leaving schools, before breaking every standard of international law or moral decency, Fuck them.

It's time for every true progressive in this country and around the world to do the only thing that our consciences should allow us to do, the only thing that can keep us consistent with our supposed beliefs that human life is precious and that unnecessary violence is always criminal, barbarous and unacceptable. We must demand that Israel stop violence and immediately put an end to its colonialist military occupation of Palestine.

And until they do so, we must organize and do everything we can to make sure our money is not financing mass murder and oppression.

It is time for the progressive movement to demand immediate Divestment from Israel, just like we divested from other oppressive states like South Africa.

The only reason not to do so is willful hypocrisy.

And I don't know about you, but I'm done being a hypocrite.

Unnecessary murder of innocents is always wrong.

Selfish and unjustifiable occupation is always wrong.

Inaction in the face of massive suffering and injustice is always wrong.

It is thus our responsibility to make sure Obama and the rest of our leaders understand that this time we will be relentless, this time we mean business and this time we will honor our pledges.




Update: Thanks for putting this on the Recommended list. Now, if we could only come together as a community and think of different ways to organize a divestment campaign and other ways of putting pressure on the Israeli government, that would be truly amazing. Please read

this great diary where different ways of supporting Gaza's population and organizing against Israeli occupation are presented.

Also, for those who are willing to work to pressure and lobby the American government to do something, please take a a look at this cool group. Toda Raba le culam (Thank to all).

The Original is here:


more from Q
DW Duke

Reply to Jafar

by DW Duke on

It isn't always that simple in the US Jafar.  That I can tell you having practiced law for 23 years in the United States.  Often there is comparative negligence and multiple judgments.  And in criminal matters it is not at all uncommon for multiple parties to be convicted. 


When there is a lawsuit to a

by Jafar (not verified) on

When there is a lawsuit to a dispute, one side wins over the other.

Even if a Judge orders punishment in a fight case where both parties were brought to court by Police, one side still wins over the other.

The point is you can't have it both ways in a court of law but you can have it both ways in a court of public opinion, depending on the "public" sample.



by Zinn (not verified) on

Jafar, lets figure out what you mean by sides in a criminal case to make sure we are on the same page. The prosecution in a criminal action is the government. So the case might be State of New York v. John Doe or whom ever is the individual being prosecuted. So I assume when you say both sides you are referring to two individuals who have both being charges with a crime. In answer to your question it happens all the time in every court in the United States. There are very often multiple defendants and they can all be convicted.

In criminal actions it is very common that one person violates the law and starts a fight for example, but the other person uses excessive force in response. Both can be charged and convicted of a crime even though they were on opposites sides in the altercation.

In civil actions, as I indicated, most states in the United States now apply comparative negligence. For example, if a pedestrian walks in front of a vehicle and the driver of the vehicle does not stop but should have, the jury might say it was 40% the fault of the pedestrian and 60% the fault of the driver. If the total damages are 1 million dollars, then the the award would be reduced by $400,000. and the driver would have to pay $600,000. instead of the full 1 million.

If you are in Iran this might be foreign to you because Iran blurs the line between criminal and civil actions with ghisas or blood money. In the United States a person's imprisonment would not be dependant upon whether he could pay money to the victim's family. However, the victim's family could bring a civil action and obtain a judgment for wrongful death and be paid that way but is not a criminal proceeding. We don't merge civil and criminal actions in the US. (There are some cases where courts will order restitution as a criminal penalty but that is not as common and never in lieu of a long prison sentence or a death penalty case.)


Zinn Judge "often" convicts

by Jafar (not verified) on

Zinn Judge "often" convicts both sides?! Please identify the court so that criminals can ask for that Judge.

American Wife


by American Wife on

Sometimes I get a little silly and actually believe in miracles myself.  Perhaps because it's the season...:-)

Your words are refreshing amidst the ugly back and forth accusations on both sides.  And I believe you're absolutely right about the cheerleaders.

I think from now on I'll just keep my opinions on this matter to myself.  It doesn't take much to incite a riot on iranian.com....lol.

peace out


American Wife,

by Princess on

Thanks! While I have absolutely no sympathy for the hard-liners on both sides, I still understand when people tend to be a bit more critical of Israel.

Yes, Hammas would probably "score" as many Israeli civilian deaths as the IDF, if it had the same military might, but the fact is that it doesn't, so I agree with most when they say that the IDF response is way out of proportion.

I also wish all outside "cheerleaders" on both sides would keep out this; they are just making things worse.

Anyway, for the sake of all those peace-loving citizens who just want to live a normal life with their Arab and Israeli neighbours, I really hope a viable solution is not as impossible as it seems. After all, miracles do happen, I'm told.



Both Sides of the Story

by Zinn (not verified) on

Actually Jafar it is about both sides. Neither side is completely guilty and neither side is completely innocent. And yes, in civil litigation liability is often shared by what is called comparative negligence or wrongdoing. And yes, when people go to court the judge often convicts both sides in criminal matters.


Jews Opposed to Zionism

by Zinn (not verified) on

Here is an article that might be of interest to many here. Contrary to the propoganda that some self-proclaiming Zionists like to disseminate here at Iranian.com, there are many Jews opposed to Zionism. Some of them such as the Neturei Karta go too far in saying that Israel should be given back to the Palestinians. Even among those who believe that the Zionist movement was a mistake, the majority believe that there is no going back. Now that Jews are there they must be protected and whatever resolution is devised must go forward not backwards.

My point is don't allow some of the self-proclaiming Zionists who have invaded this forum allow you to believe that they speak on behalf of the World Jewry. As you listen to them you will see that they know little or nothing about Judaism, they are vulgar and disrespectful and they try to assert their legitmicay with the etiquette of a bull in a china shop. Most of us would like these rude loud mouthed and extreme Zionists to go away because they are only pouring fuel on an extremely volatile situation and they are disgracing honest Jews everywhere. If you look at Rabbi Leiberman's descriptions of Zionists if this article you will see the same behavior exhibited by some of those who claim to be Zionists here. It is ironic. It almost looks like Rabbi Leiberman was reading some posts at Iranian.com. Be assured these loud mouth arrogant clowns who describe Israel as a liberal democracy do not speak for most Jews and they do not speak for me.


It is important to understand that not all Jews in Israel are Zionists. Incidentally, you might be interested to know that the first man killed by Zionist violence was an orthodox rabbi.


Reply to JJ, Re: News/Article

by Q on

Mr. Javid,

I thought it was important to reproduce the entire letter. It's not a "news" article at all. It's just another blog and it could change or be taken down at any moment. I'm aware of your wonderful news section, but I didn't think of this as news.


Issue is not both sides.

by Jafar (not verified) on

Issue is not both sides. When you go to a court does the Judge convict one side or not?!

American Wife


by American Wife on

interesting point... I think I agree with you!  The major issue is "both sides".



by IRANdokht on

Very good article thanks Q



Thanks for sharing, Q!

by Princess on

This only goes to show that what's been going on between Israel and the Gaza strip is not between Jews and Arabs, but rather between peace-loving moderates and warmonger hard-liners on both sides. So sad and despicable.

David ET

Good article Q

by David ET on

Thanks for the post

Jahanshah Javid


by Jahanshah Javid on


In future, please post news and areticles from other sites ONLY in the news section:




South Africa

by Zion on

was an apartheid state because of its constitution. Israel is a liberal democracy. I would say the constitution of the Islamic Republic is the ME counterpart of South African apartheid,and without the free press.


Sure, there are differences of opinion in every country

by Q on

so to say he doesn't "get it" based on any part of a conjecture that he hasn't live there, is a meaningless statement.

In any case, what he's calling for (divestment) is a specific idea that can be done from USA. It gives a sense of responsibility to American citizens, who - yes, they don't live there - but whose money is supporting murder nontheless.

Apartheid South Africa, also, called itself a "democracy" and pointed to its free press.


Logic matters

by Zion on

Not living in Israel is one possible explanation for why some don't get it. Logic does not necessitate that it should be the only reason. There are fools in Israel as well, who benefit from her freedom and the sacrifice of her citizens and yet make no positive contributions themselves or side with fascism against their land. Nothing new or surprising there. The majority desire peace yet know very well the difference between what needs to be done and ideological rubbish. Israel, after all, is a democracy.


"He does not live in Israel"

by Q on

That is an interesting excuse.

Yes, he does not live in Israel and neither do you, Zion. Because if you did you might realize how popular his opinion is there:

"Hamas is not a terrorist organization holding Gaza residents hostage: It is a religious nationalist movement, and a majority of Gaza residents believe in its path. One can certainly attack it, and with Knesset elections in the offing, this attack might even produce some kind of cease-fire. But there is another historical truth worth recalling in this context: Since the dawn of the Zionist presence in the Land of Israel, no military operation has ever advanced dialogue with the Palestinians."

From Haaretz

Here's some more from people inside:

One analysis at Haaretz: "A million and a half human beings, most of them downcast and desperate refugees, live in the conditions of a giant jail, fertile ground for another round of bloodletting. The fact that Hamas may have gone too far with its rockets is not the justification of the Israeli policy for the past few decades, for which it justly merits an Iraqi shoe to the face."

Another opinion piece in Haaretz -- titled, "Neighborhood Bully Strikes Again" -- by Gideon Levy: "Israel embarked yesterday on yet another unnecessary, ill-fated war. On July 16, 2006, four days after the start of the Second Lebanon War, I wrote: 'Every neighborhood has one, a loud-mouthed bully who shouldn't be provoked into anger... Not that the bully's not right - someone did harm him. But the reaction, what a reaction!' Two and a half years later, these words repeat themselves, to our horror, with chilling precision. Within the span of a few hours on a Saturday afternoon, the IDF sowed death and destruction on a scale that the Qassam rockets never approached in all their years, and Operation 'Cast Lead' is only in its infancy."

Also from Haaretz, Zvi Barel writes: "Six months ago Israel asked and received a cease-fire from Hamas. It unilaterally violated it when it blew up a tunnel, while still asking Egypt to get the Islamic group to hold its fire." Yet the U.S. media refers that only Hamas violated the ceasefire.

Another columnist there, Yossi Sarid, writes: "I can only hope that this time, for a change, we will know when to stop. This war must be described from the get-go as a war 'to be on the safe side,' rather than of necessity, and it is still unclear whether the last missile fired will be fired by us or by them."

Amira Hass, the paper's correspondent in Gaza, reports: "There are many corpses and wounded, every moment another casualty is added to the list of the dead, and there is no more room in the morgue. Relatives search among the bodies and the wounded in order to bring the dead quickly to burial. A mother whose three school-age children were killed, and are piled one on top of the other in the morgue, screams and then cries, screams again and then is silent."

From the lead Haaretz editorial: "[T]he inherent desire for retribution does not necessarily have to blind us to the view from the day after....Israel's violation of the lull in November expedited the deterioration that gave birth to the war of yesterday. But even if this continues for many days and even weeks, it will end in an agreement, or at least an understanding similar to that reached last June."

The Independent, a major daily in London has an eyewitness account, ending with: "These bombs were launched by Israel, as we had known they would be. The world watched the situation simmer then boil over, but did nothing. There are some who believe that hell is divided into different classes. The ordinary people of Gaza have long been caught in the tormenting underworld. Now, if the world does not heed what has happened here, our situation will worsen. We will be trapped in the first class of hell."

Plenty of people inside Israel share this opinion and in fact many go much further. It is not a surprise to me. They are the ones who realize they have live with consequences of Israeli massacres.


Long struggle

by Zion on

The chilean Jew is not in Israel. He simply does not comprehend what Israel is facing. I don't blame him that much. It has been a long struggle against a ruthless enemy infested with absolutely no moral qualms whatsoever, willing to kill its own children to satisfy a bloody tribal hatred. Many tire. Many fall away. All are victims, but the struggle will continue until this evil is subdued and all people of the region start a new life under ideals of free democracy.