top of page
  • Lillian Rosengarten

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 ?



Please share  this post and comments on social media.

Recent Posts

See All

Darkness InThe House of Hate

I speak as a Jewish Refugee from Nazi Germany as well as a citizen of the US. I speak as a grandmother, a poet, a lover of soft air, sunlight and freedom. I speak of truth, hope and love as it combi


Likud lawmaker Hanoch Milwidsky addressed the Knesset recently. “ When you fight terrorism you have to use crude means that may infringe on certain rights but it is necessary to defend ourselves agai


In these troubled times we are dangerously close to more destruction. As we witness Israel's endless, disturbing and hard held belief that security brings peace, it seems that nothing is farther from


bottom of page