Why I am proud to be a Jew
With war raging in the Middle East, with global
terror reaching new heights, with global anti-Semitism on the rise, I
thought it might be a good time to reflect on why I'm proud,
more than ever, to be a Jew.
I'm proud to be a Jew because Jews don't kidnap.
I'm proud to be a Jew because Jewish education does
not consist of teaching martyrdom and hatred.
I'm proud to be a Jew because my religious leaders
and religious services don't whip me into a frenzy to kill others.
I'm proud to be a Jew because in the middle of a
war, Jews still demonstrate
and protest to protect the rights of the
Arab-Israeli minority to voice
their opposition to the war.
I'm proud to be a Jew because even when Israel is
wrongly and falsely
accused of killing innocent civilians, Jewish
leaders apologize immediately for any loss of life - instead
of celebrating these deaths
by passing out candy and shooting celebratory
gunshots into the air.
When the world accuses Israel of massacre in Jenin -
when the world
accuses Israel of bombing civilians on a Gaza beach
- when the world accuses Israel of shooting a child cowering
against a wall - when the
world accuses Israel of bombing a Lebanese
apartment building killing 56 civilians - when all of these
accusations turn out to be totally false - to be
vicious anti -Semitic lies - and when all along
I knew in my heart that these stories justcould not be true
- and I'm later proven to be right - then I'm
proud to be a Jew.
I'm proud to be a Jew because the Israeli Army is
so, so good, that when
it takes more than four weeks to wipe out a
sophisticated enemy who has
prepared six years for this war, the world
criticizes the IDF for not getting the
job done quickly.
I'm proud to be a Jew when my army, the Israeli
army, drops leaflets and makes calls to Lebanese citizens
on their cell phones to warn them to evacuate
before bombing begins.
I'm proud to be a Jew when the democracies of the
world talk about fighting
the war on terror, but only Israel is left alone to
bear the burden of
eradicating Hezbollah, the proxy army of Iran and
I'm proud to be a Jew when entire Israeli towns in
Kiryat Shimona, Safed, are reduced to ghost towns
due to the constant shelling, and yet not one looter has
appeared to empty out the property of others.
When Israel must defend its very right to exist,
when it must fight a well
armed enemy representing the Islamic fascists, as
President Bush has
called them, when Israel must conduct this war on
terror with its hands tied
behind its back so as not to take an innocent life
lest the media have something true to report,
that it must fight this war of survival under
the cloud of "disproportionality", as if thousands of
Katusha rockets falling on its
citizenry is somehow "proportionate"- when
Israel simultaneously pushes back these threats both in the
North and in
the South under the added pressure of a biased
media, then I'm proud to be a Jew.
I'm proud to be a Jew when the Edinburgh Scottish
film festival tells an
Israeli director to stay home although his film is
being screened and the
director says "No, I'm coming."
I'm proud to be a Jew because Mel Gibson is not a
I'm proud to be a Jew when the UN's Human Rights
Commission consists of
countries like Syria, Libya and Iran and Israel is
not asked to join.
I'm proud to be a Jew when magician David Blaine
announces his trip to
Israel next week to entertain the children living in
bomb shelters and tells
the press he's doing it to encourage other
performers to stand up for Israel
and its right to defend itself.
I'm proud to be a Jew when a Russian/Israeli
creates not one but two tent cities on the beach to
house Israelis fleeing the
North and provides shelter, bedding, food and drink,
showers and bathrooms - all done
without red tape in a matter of 24 hours - to
house over 6,000
Israeli's, one of whom described it as a "poor man's
I am proud to be a Jew when Israelis on the left and
on the right
support the government's decision to fight - when
97% of the country is united in its own defense -
when Israeli's from Jerusalem give shelter to
families from Haifa - when food from the Negev is donated to
feed soldiers at the front -
when the IDF deploys soldiers on special
assignments to deliver diapers to shelters and to entertain
and calm the frightened children.
I'm proud to be a Jew when the three weeks preceding
Tisha B'Av reminds
us of the terrible things we have endured as a
people and as a nation - and
yet immediately thereafter, Hashem offers us
consolation, redemption and
hope - plus the promise that we shall defeat our
enemies, that we shall endure, that Am Yisrael Chai.
And I am proud to be a Jew because when we proclaim
that God is on our
side, we have the book to prove it.