Gilad Meltzer offers a comparison between the latter-day tactics of Muslim-hating settler fanatics and an earlier historical tragedy:
“In 1930s Germany when they burned synagogues they called it ‘Kristallnacht.’ Here [in Israel] we’ve moved to the language of capitalism: ‘price tag.'”
A bit of historical context: when Kristallnacht happened in 1938, no one except Adolph Hitler and perhaps his intimates knew what he had in store for European Jews. The Shoah hadn’t yet been devised or implemented except possibly in Hitler’s mind.
Similarly, the jury is out on which direction modern Israel will go. Will it turn to extremist violence, forced expulsion of Palestinian citizens, annexation of the West Bank, and a form of Jewish totalitarianism (or what these Judean madmen call the “Jewish kingdom”)? Or will it turn away from its appointment with “national suicide,” as Nicholas Kristof called it in yesterday’s NY Times, and embrace real democracy for ALL Israeli citizens, including its non-Jewish citizens?
Contrary to many Jews who love and support Israel (perhaps to a fault), I have no crystal ball nor certainty that things will come out right in the end. There is entirely too much complacency around these issues both in Israel and in the Jewish Diaspora. There is evil within our midst and we’re not doing enough to denounce it and uproot it. Those who truly love Israel and wish it well in the long term would do well to act accordingly.
downtown dave says
The situation is Israel is very difficult and confusing. Who can sort it all out? One thing I know: The Jews are God’s chosen people, Jerusalem is the place where God has chosen to put His Name, and Israel will survive.
Richard Silverstein says
Sorry, the notion of anyone being a Chosen People gives me the willies. I’d rather just be a Jew working to merit God’s & the world’s approbation through good deeds. Choseness is something I can do without.
An Jew who had lived for a while in Israel (early 1950s) visited my family in (late) 1950s and said, apropos off what I don’t know, “the Jews are a chosen people, chosen to suffer.” The settlers seem to be saying, “Not on my watch!”
The comparison is way out of line.
On Kristallnacht hundreds of shuls and shops were burnt and looted and hundreds of Jews murdered and injured, and then the Jewish community made to pay a levy for the damage. Anti semitism and racist laws were firmly entrenched in the society, and Jews who could had long since run away.
The attack on the Tuba mosque is appalling, and there seems to be a serious suspect in custody. Yes, there are extremists who will do this ON BOTH SIDES. Just this week Kever Yosef in Nablus was damaged by extremist Palestinians. Unfortunately places of worship have never been out of bounds during conflicts throughout history.
Richard Silverstein says
Have you not read my post? There is a suspect in custody who will be released in a few days. Evidence against him is exceedingly weak acc to an Israeli source who knows whereof he speaks.
The level of hate & racism within Israeli society against what you call “Arabs” is appallingly high. Their houses of worship are almost routinely torched. Rabbis call for boycotts of stores employing Arabs. They call for expelling them. They in some cases support the mosque burning.
Suspects are never charged in these cases. Jewish terror operates almost w impunity.
No sorry the comparison is apt & jury is out on which way Israel will go. I see just as much possibility for a totalitarian state as a democratic one. My warning holds, I’m afraid.
The attitude of the brown-shirts of 1938 and the settlers today seems the same: we may cause extreme suffering, we have the right, we are immune, we have impunity. The laws may be a bit different, but not much, as Israel arrogates to itself the “right” to ignore all the humanitarian law which was created by the international community in the immediate aftermath of WWII, Hitler’s crimes then in everyone’s minds. AND Israel’s confiscation of housing, confiscation of land, confiscation of taxes collected in PA’s name, and USA’s confiscation (refusal to continue to pay) humanitarian aid money to PA — all seem in line with Shmuel’s comments on “Jewish community made to pay a levy for the damage.”
Neither the kristalnacht in 1938 or the settler (and STATE) rampages in the OPTs today are merely “tragedies” — they are vast crimes deserving of condign punishment.
I had know idea what horrible people these Israelis were! Thank you for opening my eyes Richard, clearly the only solution is to dismantle this terrorist state and let the Muslims take care the of the rest, they only brought it upon themselves. Jerusalem a Jewish city? Fat chance! All traces of Judaism should be cleansed from this city, people and buildings should be cleansed I hope you agree.
Richard Silverstein says
Wow! You must be kidding. I can read you as a troll a mile away.