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The year has only just begun and yet fear seems to be the theme of 2016.

If you were to question as to whether I was an optimist or a pessimist, my choice of answer would be a realistic optimist.

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I like to hope that the tension in Israel will come to a peaceful halt, I wish to kid myself that European cities are no longer targets for terrorism, I’d love to read articles detailing the fall of IS; but sadly, the newspaper pages I proof daily never fail to induce panic.

A video was released recently which included, what is thought to be, a British boy. Five men were kneeling awaiting imminent death for allegedly spying on behalf of Britain. The chilling footage (which I will never be able to view) bore a threat to Prime Minister David Cameron and the UK as a whole.

This is a message to David Cameron….O slave of the White House, o mule of the Jews…. we will continue to wage jihad, break borders and one day invade your land where we will rule by the sharia.”

Now if that doesn’t strike fear into any British national, I don’t know what will.

Paris underwent a 2015 from hell; no one anticipated the events that unfolded during those 12 months.  Copenhagen, London, Brussels – the whole of Europe felt, and continue to feel, the repercussions.

The jihadi in the video not only made reference to Brits, he singled out my religion by name. I’m a British Jew; I’m proud of both my faith and nationality, but at the moment, it seems the safest thing is to hide both from view.

I never dreamed I would ever feel that way in today’s modern society, but then again, I guess German Jews didn’t either.

100 years ago today, the world was in the midst of a global war. 30 years later and it was recovering from a second. Honestly, today I believe we’re on the brink of yet another and that terrifies me to the core.

If there’s one thing I’ve always said in jest, it’s ‘Selena’s not built for war’. I can’t jokingly say that anymore as I begrudgingly click onto the news yet again for another update. Maybe, I’ll have no choice but to be.

The fact is, I just clicked onto my Facebook newsfeed for a quick glance and the first thing I see?

BREAKING: Man shot dead outside Paris police station following his shouting of Allahu Akbhar on the anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo shootings.

Does this scare me? Tremendously. Does it shock me? Absolutely not.

This is our lives now, this is our reality.

I say to myself to keep praying that nothing befalls my country but as I said, I’m a realistic optimist. I can’t tell you everything will be OK because I don’t believe that in the slightest. But how we respond, how we all come together, that’s what matters most.

The war is waging, we need to stand up and fight.

I never want to leave my house and grab a yellow star but as history has shown, our nation will always feel prosecuted. IS are intimidating everyone to join their way of life but their hatred is singled out for our religion. Our existence is massively insulting to theirs.

I hope the UK stands by its Jewish citizens and doesn’t leave us abandoned. Following last year’s Charlie Hebdo murders, a shootout at a Kosher supermarket unfolded. There is always an element of anti-Semitism in an attack and that should serve as a warning to us all.

I never want to have to choose between being British or Jewish; both words should always be able to be combined. Never, ever should they become mutually exclusive.

But, if it came to it and I had to, I’d choose a yellow star.

 

 

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15 COMMENTS

  1. I have no problem with this, I am an Australian gentile (Christian). But I respect Israel’s sovereignty, (as well as the rights of the non-extremist Palestinians to live their lives). But if ISIS is the next Nazi holocaust movement, I’m on your side!

    P.S. Screw Daesh!

  2. I wear the Ten Commands locket necklace my grandparents brought me fom Israel in 1956. Dec 31st I turned 67 & enjoy it more than ever! My Chanukah gift from my brother was my Father's Tallit which I wrap myself up even when I'm not in Shul. I would wear everything including a yellow star!

  3. I wear the Ten Commands locket necklace my grandparents brought me fom Israel in 1956. Dec 31st I turned 67 & enjoy it more than ever! My Chanukah gift from my brother was my Father's Tallit which I wrap myself up even when I'm not in Shul. I would wear everything including a yellow star!

  4. We have to educate yourselves in Torah, the Tanach the Prophets in the Tanach, the Minor and Majors, and then educate yourself in what Islam and christianity did to the Tanach back in the 1550's, they confiscated it during the Spanisg Inquisition and changed it to fit their political needs. I have I have looked all of the up just so I know how to fight it. The one thing that Muslims have programmed their people to do, is kill anyone that puts their book to the test, so I look things up anyway. I am an American and that is what we are suppose to do. So here it goes: 1st last week's parsha:Va'eira in the Torah – Exodus. It states that Our Creator made a distinction between his Chosen People – "The Hebrews" and the Pharaoh's people. I believe it is forever, and it happen in the Forth plague, with the Beasts. Exodus is about the World power at the time not allowing our Creator's Chosen People the Right to Serve Him, actual words. Still holds true today. Now Islam and their prophets:Prophets in Islam List- Adam, Enoch, Noah, Eber, Salah, Abraham, Lot, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Job, Ezekiel, Jethro, Moses, Aaron, David, Solomon, Jonah, Elijah, Elisha, Zechariah, John, Jesus, Muhammad. Look it up and see for yourself what they did to it. You will never be afraid to be killed by a muslim again. Actually at least Our Creator would know that you are not suppose to fear man, only g-d.

  5. I live in the UK and run of the largest pro Israel advocacy groups- North West Friends of Israel – and I do not recognise the fear in this post. Yes we have to be vigilant all the time and yes there are anti Semitic attacks, but we have never suffered on the same level as Europe (and PG we never should) but we have the most Pro Israel Prime Minister and government of ALL time, and we are not afraid to be Jewish or say so. The numerous activities my group has undertaken in the past 12 months proves this. Yes, we live is worrying and sometimes frightening times but here, in the UK, as Jews, we are fine.

  6. The world is going crazy the fear the author speaks about is real.
    It is time we remember what "being Jewish" means.
    We belong to same Nation which Nation was established upon national unity and absolute mutual responsibility towards each other.
    This unity and mutual responsibility is what safeguarded our survival against all odds for thousands years.

    Thus regardless of where we live today, what passport we hold we need to reawaken the same familial ties among ourselves, we have to feel that "all of Israel are responsible for one another".

    This time it is not only for our own survival. Only this unique Jewish method, mutual guarantee above inherent differences, above even hatred can offer solution to this "crazy", self-destruction humanity, struggling with life in a globally interconnected and interdependent world.

  7. I agree with this. It might be an age thing, given those who have commented already showing their disagreement, but Selena is right. There will probably come a point where we are persectued again in this country (hopefully not in my lifetime) and I, like Selena, would also chose the "Yellow Star".

  8. paraphrasing: the choice between being British or Jewish but if it came to it I'd chose the yellow star? Here's a solution to your confusion in identity – move home to Israel and be proud of being Jewish, wear all the "Jewish" jewelry you want and leave that yellow star in the history books where it belongs.

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