Okay, now this is fucking bullshit.
Israeli Embassy in Ireland twitters this
And apparently this
exists? (American Freedom Defense Initiative
) - It says a lot about your concept of ethics if you think 1. in the categories of civilized vs. savage 2. that applies to Israel/Palestine and 3. think the "civilized" party is always right.
Because I wrote my prior entry in German, I'll probably have to explain my point of view (simplified of course):
This is not the black-and-white conflict as many make it out to be, so I'm not "pro Palestine" or "pro Israel".
I do acknowledge the conflict is asymmetrical.
I'm against Israeli politics and their brutality, against settlements, against islamophobia.
I'm also pretty sure the Hamas doesn't give a fuck about Palestinians, and that a lot of them actually do think Hitler was a swell guy with the right ideas. Under no circumstances would I ever stand next to the protesters with "88" tattoos chanting anti-Semitic slogans.
Although I do have my doubts that the state of Israel would be accepted if they recognized Palestine and stopped the attacks and settlements, it's only going to get worse with the current strategy.
Yes, the situation is horribly unfair. But Israel won't go anywhere, it's the Israelis' home now, too. (Excluding settlements.) Israelis (and Jews worldwide) have the right to exist, as do Palestinians. Any eliminationist rhetoric needs to stop.
Europeans who think that's all not our business are wrong. Lets not forget why Jews fled Europe in the first place, and who controlled the Middle East at the time. We are not free of responsibility, we helped cause this tragedy.
The conflict is more than Israel/Palestine. It's intertwined with Islamophobia and anti-Semitism in Europe too, and we need to protect the Jews in our countries, as well as the Muslims. (And no, the argument "Arabs are Semitic too, so they can't be anti-Semitic" is neither valid nor clever.)
I wrote my last entry because my Palestinian and European friends and co-workers are all jumping on the "fuck Israel" train, including accusations of Jews controlling the media, and denying the protests are largely anti-Semitic. My Facebook feed is full of links to articles about Israel's brutality, but one about Israeli reservists who refuse to serve in what they themselves consider an unjust attack gets ignored. German or American articles that criticize Israel get ignored too, and only the ones that report with a bias towards Israel get linked to and cited as proof we're all brainwashed.
I'm sick of this.
Here are a couple of links I've found. Not all of them are neutral, and I don't necessarily agree with all that is said. Most are in German, sorry :/
From 2008 (a lot of the olive trees have been cut down by settlers since then): [Israeli] "Settlers clash with rabbis guarding Palestinian olive harvest near Hebron
German, about Israeli reservists who refuse to serve: "Kriegsboykott israelischer Reservisten: 'Wir weigern uns'
German, about criticizing Israel in
Israel: "Wer anders denkt, gilt als Verräter
German, about rockets found in UN-funded schools in Gaza (my co-workers were especially outraged by this article and said it was an example for the pro-Israel bias): "Gaza-Konflikt: Uno-Generalsekretär emport über Raketenfunde in Schulen
", similar article, but about the two earlier findings in empty schools: "UNRWA condems placements of rockets, for the second time, in one of its schools
Current situation for Jews in Germany, all in German:
"'Pro-Gaza'-Demonstranten skandieren in ganz Deutschland antisemitische Parolen
"Juden in Deutschland: Angst vor Übergriffen
"Anti-Israel: 'Tief verwurzelter' Judenhass explodiert
" (here are several different opinions quoted, I don't agree with all of them)
"Israelische Kicker in Österreich vom Platz geprügelt
"Neonazis stören Fußballspiel gegen israelische Mannschaft
" (in Dortmund)
And now a researcher of anti-Semitism who thinks anti-Semitism is bad, but has not gotten worse since the newest escalations of the Gaza conflict: "Judenhass in Deutschland: Antisemitismus ist keine Lawine
Another thing to be considered: There is more than one right-wing group. While one is apparently happily using the occasion to attack Jews, the other is using anti-Semitic protests as proof that Muslims are savages and should best be deported, but not accepted in Europe/the US (see links at the beginning).
I've seen their kind of reasoning in Munich, when a right-wing party was protesting against a new Islamic cultural center in Munich, reading from the Quran to show how violent the religion was (I could do the same with a Bible, but apparently that doesn't count), and comparing Muslims with Nazis because of their anti-Semitism and "Führerkult". Yep, really, they compared worshipping the Prophet with the Hitler personality cult. I don't know how they could forget, I don't know, JESUS in their equation, but I don't expect much logical consistency from their kind anyway.
When you see a discussion about Israel/Palestine on the internet, it's a 50/50 chance whether the majority will be pro Israel or pro Palestine. If it's pro Israel, it's usually heavily islamophobic, if it's pro Palestine, it's anti-Semitic.
That alone should be a warning sign that things aren't that simple.
And finally, a book recommendation: "Live from Jordan: Letters Home From My Journey Through the Middle East
" by Benjamin Orbach.
As you may gather from his name, he's Jewish American. He was a student of Middle Eastern Studies and spent a year abroad in Amman (until the Iraq war), travelling to Syria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, and Egypt. He speaks Hebrew and Arabic, and tries to reconcile what he thought and knew about Israel/Palestine with what he learned in Amman about the Palestinian perspective. He writes about the history of the Middle East as well as his own personal experiences with the people there.
I read this book in my first two weeks here in Jordan, and it helped me understand a lot of things better. He also got to know a different Amman - of course because he spoke Arabic, but also because the students at the University of Jordan are from a different, more conservative background than my own students.