FROM THE EDITOR
By Larry Gordon
NOT OUR WAY
No, we are not like them. And it has been a little too much this week watching all kinds of Jewish organizations falling over one another with repetitive and unnecessary statements condemning the alleged charge that six Jewish teens teamed up to murder an innocent Arab teen last week. I suppose as an organized group or community we sense that those who have us under a carefully calibrated microscope in the immediate world have a solid basis on which to assume that we do not look askance or condemn this type of depraved and brutal criminality according to the our reputation as conjured by others.
But that is our problem and we disappointed ourselves with flying colors this week because we apparently think that they think that we would endorse or condone this type of offense. But no, that is not the case. Like I said in the first sentence, we are not like them.
Of course we do not tolerate the murder of innocents or for that matter any type of murderous act regardless of the rationale. Despite the reality that exists we have somehow been inculcated with the image and impression that they have of us regardless of the contradictory nature of that image or impression.
As for the six alleged perpetrators they will rightfully receive their day in court and if convicted at a fair and open trial will be sentenced accordingly. Who out there, that is fair and honest, genuinely believes that if found guilty as accused that these six young men do not represent an exception to the rule and the worst type of aberrant behavior.
The information out there is that two of the boys who will be charged are from Bet Shemesh. I don’t know who they are yet or what their family life was like, but I know people in Bet Shemesh and though they know the suspects family no one was out in the street handing out candies, other sweets or honking their horns in celebration because a young Arab boy had been murdered. The reaction was rather much the opposite of the reaction to the kidnapping and murder of the three Jewish boys four weeks ago. No, there is no moral equivalency because we are not like them. Rather than celebrating death, we mourn and feel revulsion at the alleged acts. This is not our way, not the Jewish way or the way of civilized human beings. It is, however, the way of Islamic leaders in Gaza and Ramallah who stood idly by after the kidnapping of the three boys and are participants encouraging the latest salvo of rockets emanating from Gaza and directed at Israel’s civilian population.
Why did we have to bang into one another condemning the horrible death of the young man from Beit Hanina in Jerusalem? The world knows we do not subscribe or encourage this way of doing things. But we are suspicious that they do not know or that they doubt us so we issue statements and press releases with condemnation and denials. And it is no surprise that the chief apologist and excuse maker, Israel’s President Shimon Peres came out on Tuesday with the most absurd and even unforgiveable of comments. He said of this event that “evil has emerged from Zion.” Is he kidding? This sordid episode has no reflection whatsoever on Zion, Jews or Israel.
These are a few wild and obviously irresponsible kids who may still be discovered to be dealing with serious mental deficiencies. No one taught or sent these teens to kill. They acted crazily and on their own if nothing else then sadly emulating the pathetic yet mot apprehended killers of the three boys on June 12. This is not a stain on Israel or Jews anywhere. Of course our enemies, enemies of Israel and Jew haters everywhere are already well underway in their efforts to convey that these teens represent the sum total of Jews and Israel. By contorting ourselves with all kinds of disavowals and apologies we are complicit in their effort to hang this around all our necks.
Jews and Israel do not conduct themselves or us in this fashion. This is not our way and they know it and we should conduct ourselves in a way that expresses that we know it well.
Israel’s leaders have been badgered into worrying about reacting to attacks with restraint and proportionality. As the anti-terror Gaza operation revs up these are terms you are going to hear a great deal about over the coming days. The sources will include President Obama, Secretary of State Kerry and the broken record at the UN in Secretary General Ban ki-Moon.
The President has already urged Prime Minister Netanyahu to act with restraint. Does the US send predator drones to eliminate terrorists and their families in Yemen and Afghanistan act with restraint? No, those who are not targets of the drone attacks are simply listed by the State Department as collateral damage.
Is the US acting with proportionality when they send these drones in to kill? Well, if Yemen and Afghanistan or the terror merchants that control large swatches of those countries do not have their own drones then the US is acting with disproportion which may be a violation of international law according to some. Yet, no one in the international community utters as much as a syllable.
Interestingly the BBC informed viewers in England the other day that they are receiving photos of killed and injured from sources in Gaza that are either photo-shopped pictures or pictures from the violence in Syria and Iraq. It will not take long for the New York Times to run one of these Syrian pictures with a caption about Israeli bombing runs over Gaza. It is unusual to write the words integrity and BBC in the same sentence but there you have it. More in this week’s 5TJT and at 5TJT.COM