Gaza: The bombed open air prison
I want to thank my daughter Lydia for imploring me to watch a Netflix documentary, “The Devil Next Door.” It has just been released and I ask all of my readers to watch this 3 part horror depiction of Ivan Demjanjuk, a brutal murderer and torturer of Jews in Treblinka. This man who lived quietly in Cleveland, a church going, Ukranian, father, was deported to Israel and tried. The devastating testimony of former camp survivors adds to the horror. It is riveting and left me to wonder once again how I escaped from being gassed when I would have been 7 years old.
My connection to Palestinians is our refugee experience, mine and the Palestinians. It is my awareness of man’s inhumanity to man. As a much younger woman, I believed the lies from the Israeli side. My awareness, the eye opener took a long time because there was such a strong propaganda system that continues to prevent the reality, the truth, from being seen and understood. I became motivated in my late sixties to really look, with the help of a member of my family who had Palestinian friends and who was a peacemaker. One had to to go to the West Bank to observe, to see the land taken over by the settlers and the Palestinian houses invaded and destroyed. One had to talk with Palestinians who live in Beir Zeit to hear and see the truth. One had to learn about the prisons and to finally understand that Palestinians were seen as evil terrorists. One had to understand Sabra and Shatilla and to read Ilan Pappe’s work, "The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine.” Israelis learned to kill and developed their own reasons to always defend themselves. It became an illusion to justify their goals, a Jewish state only for Jews.What a disaster. In order to accomplish this, Israel had to be an apartheid state and attempted to keep this hidden. For those who recognized apartheid, they became an enemy of the Jews. This deeply flawed paradigm became Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East.
Zionists have given up everything that has to do with humanity. Empathy for the “state,” Zionism created by Theodore Herzel at the end of the 19th century, was colonialist, racist and super nationalist. Nation States became the ideal then and so a “nation state”, was the goal of Zionism in Israel.
Critics of Israel are accused of anti-Semitism and labeled as self hating Jews. Formerly an anti-Semite was someone who hated Jews because they were Jews. Now an anti-Semite is somebody hated by the Zionists. How hateful and racist, how deprecating the Israeli school books that present Palestinians as aggressive terrorists, when it is the Zionists who are the violent aggressors. How dehumanized the Zionists that can see no human aspects of Palestinians. The Zionist ideology sees “us” and “them”. Isn’t this similar to the 1930’s and 40’s in Fascist Germany?
And now at the end of Ramadan, just over 3 weeks ago, there is a constant thud of airstrikes and missiles over Gaza. Hamas unleashed 200 rockets over Sderot with 4 dead after Israelis killed and maimed hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza. Missiles and bombs in densely populated areas destroy buildings, young Palestinian families try to flee with just the clothes on their back.Most of them, very young and children. The old have died. The Israeli army is strong and powerful attacking Gaza that is an open air prison. The Gaza rockets have killed few. They are symbolic A horrible humanitarian crisis continues. The situation is desperate. It is endless and horrendous. Is the goal to take out all of Gaza? Why don’t I see articles in the papers? Why isn’t this discussed on news programs? When will then US open its eyes? When will the reality be seen and stopped ?
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