Why Israel has a right to defend itself
When I reflected in this space recently about having lost a grandson some 15 years ago, I received a lot of responses, including from those who had shared a similar experience of losing a child or grandchild of their own.
One particular note stood out. A reader who had suffered such a loss said he was approached by some wellintended soul who said, “I can’t imagine what you are going through.” His answer: “No, you can’t.” If you haven’t had the experience, you can’t imagine what it is like.
I thought about that comment as I observed what is happening in the nation of Israel right now. I can’t imagine what they are going through. On Oct. 7, Iran-backed Hamas militants stormed from Gaza into nearby Israeli towns and massacred over 270 people at a music festival and 100 innocent men, women and children in the kibbutz of Be’eri. At least 1,400 Israelis were killed and over 3,400 wounded. Some 200 were taken hostage. Israeli officials now report an additional 100 to 200 people missing.
Israel is fighting back and hard. Israel’s government has vowed to destroy Hamas, the armed Palestinian group that controls the Gaza Strip and has unleashed a devastating barrage of airstrikes against Gaza. At last count, more than 9,000 people are now dead.
Some people are calling for a ceasefire from both sides. What these people don’t understand is that Israel is fighting for its very existence and it didn’t start this war. The terrorists did. What is a ceasefire going to accomplish? Allow the enemy time to regroup and get stronger?
This is the fifth time in its 75-year existence that Israel’s enemies have set out to destroy the nation, which is surrounded by Arab states, many of whom greeted the sneak attacks with celebrations. Not unlike similar celebrations in the Arab world after the sneak attacks of 9/11 when terrorists killed some 3,000 innocent Americans.
Throughout history, the Jewish people have suffered unimaginable persecutions and pogroms. The worst, of course, being the German Holocaust during World War II when some 6 million Jews were killed in gas chambers or shot, some after undergoing horrific experiments.
I recently viewed a Netflix program called “Ordinary Men: The Forgotten Holocaust.” It was difficult to watch, but it should be viewed by everyone to put some context to what Jewish people have had to endure over the centuries. And this happened in the 20th century.
Seemingly ordinary Germans – carpenters, shopkeepers, office workers – were enlisted as members of Nazi police force units to serve in Poland with the sole purpose of killing Jews. This from the land that gave us Brahms and Beethoven a few generations earlier. More than 160,000 Germans applied for some 30,000 openings, and the result was more than two million Jews died by mass firing squads.
Jews were divided into groups of 50. Victims either stood or knelt facing their executioners, positioned so they would fall directly into mass graves or were shot in the surrounding forest. Mothers were told to hold their babies against their chest so that one bullet would kill them both. The firing squads systematically mowed down group after group until nightfall. The shooters would gather after work for drinks and dinner and one even brought his new bride along. And you think Jews don’t have a right to be angry?
As for our own civilized society, we have not committed such heinous crimes as have been inflicted on Jewish people over the course of their history, but we have and still do show our worst side at times. I have a friend who grew up in South Georgia where restaurants refused to serve Jews and kids taunted her and threw rocks at her – for being Jewish.
Antisemitism is on the rise across the country, particularly after the Hamas attacks. Pointy-head academics and simple-minded college kids and despicable vermin like the Goyim Defense League hate group continue to push vitriolic messages about Jews.
It is interesting, though not surprising, to see Israel now being cast as the bad guy in some circles for their all-out assault on civilian targets, overlooking the fact that Hamas hides their weapons in homes, schools and hospitals. How else will you root them out? Israel didn’t start this war. But they aim to finish it. As I stated earlier, I can’t imagine what it is like to be Jewish, but if I were, I would tell the world: [Kiss my Ass]. Look it up.
You can reach Dick Yarbrough at firstname.lastname@example.org or at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, Georgia 31139.