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October 25, 2014 / 1 Heshvan, 5775
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An Open Letter to Hamas

Feel free to keep shooting rockets. Sure seems to have worked out well for you.
Missile hits an area in Rafah, southern Gaza Strip,, July 9, 2014

Missile hits an area in Rafah, southern Gaza Strip,, July 9, 2014
Photo Credit: Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90

Dear Hamas

Thanks to your principled stand against our Zionist aggression, I’ve had a lot of time to hang out in the bomb shelter with my kids over the past week. It isn’t the first time, of course, but they are older now, and I cherish the opportunity to just hang out with them, and to talk.

These discussions, particularly with my astute 16-year-old, helped me put some things into perspective, and helped me organise them onto paper.

Let me tell you about myself: I grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa in a  traditional Jewish family. Like many members of our community, my parents were active in the anti-Apartheid movement. We were all thrilled in 1991 to see Nelson Mandela walk out of prison, and again in 1994 when we had the privilege of voting for him.

My parents commitment to justice and civil rights formed a central part of my Jewish identity.We were proud to represent Orthodox Judaism while our country transitioned to a free and democratic society.

I made aliya in 1994. Though my life in South Africa was rich and fulfilling, it could not match the vibrancy and passion of life in Israel. For all the beauty of South Africa- land and people alike – I found myself at home in Israel in a way I never did abroad.

Building my life in the land that God promised to my forefather Abraham has been thrilling, challenging, scary, frustrating, exciting, wonderful, infuriating and a thousand more things – often all at once.

But I’m proud to say I’ve built my life here, and I’m desperately proud of what Israel has accomplished. Thank God, I have a loving wife and four terrific kids. Economics are tough – salaries in Israel don’t really match the cost of living – but we have been fortunate to built a solid middle class life. My Israeli passport has taken me all over Israel and the Palestinian arena, and all over the world. I’ve met many interesting and wonderful people, covered some of the most horrible tragedies imaginable, and a whole lot more. With the exception of a reporting trip to Jordan, my Israeli identity has never, ever served as a hindrance of any kind.

Even more: Twenty years after moving here, I continue to marvel at the accomplishments of my fellow Israelis. Our contributions to science, medicine, agriculture, technology, literature, music, alternative energy, maximizing water usage leave me humbled to count myself as part of it all.

I mention all this because I, like all Israelis, have had plenty of opportunity to allow myself to be overtaken by hatred and desperation. Although thankfully I have not experienced your murderous culture first-hand, I know far too many people who have. Twenty years of exploding buses, roadside shootings, family like the Shabos and Fogels and too much more have provided ample justification to become wallowed in the muck of hatred, or even to run away.

But I’ve learned in life that the main victim of hatred is the hater himself. I’ve learned that object of hatred is rarely bothered by the animosity, if he or she feels the animosity at all. The most likely result of hatred stomach ulcer for the individual who simply cannot let go of a perceived – or even a real – slight.

Let me return, for a moment, to my former home in South Africa: I moved to Israel at the height of the Oslo Process. I believed in it at the time, and hoped the tough process would lead to a new era between our peoples, a time that Arabs could freely visit Jaffa and Tzfat, and that I could freely visit Hebron and Bet El. I recognized that you harbored a laundry list of grievances against me personally, and against Israel in general, but I hoped that the political process would give you an avenue to express those grievances in a constructive manner, and that we would move together towards building a joint future.

But since then, you have done nothing but ramp up the flames of hatred in your society, and done nothing to improve the lot of ordinary Palestinians in Gaza, or any other area administered by Palestinians. With the highest per capital foreign aid assistance in the world, you have chosen to promote a culture of death (“You love life, we love death,” I believe your mantra goes) and the image of Jews as “sons of pigs and monkeys.” Instead of focusing on the exalted Islamic principles such as taubah (repentance) and taqwa (private, personal devotion), you have chosen not only to embrace violence, but also to turn violence into a virtue.

Are there errant weeds in our society, such as Baruch Goldstein or the sick individuals who murdered Mohammed Abu Khdeir? Yes. But believe it or not, they are the rare exception. I believe I speak for nearly all Jewish Israelis when I say that I dream of the day we can feel safe to welcome you and your countrymen into our society without feeling that the opportunities we afford will be turned against us at the first chance. I believe with perfect faith that if you eventually choose to value life over death (there’s that old quote, again…), you will find an Israel passionate about peace and co-existence, a country hungry to change the paradigm of blooshed and pain.

So, in closing,we’ll keep doing what we’ve been doing for decades: Dodging your bullets and missiles in order to grow and build our society. We’ll grow our economy and take pains to maintain our morality in the fact of a difficult situation.

At the same time, why don’t you guys just keep on keeping’ on. Keep on throwing your junk rockets over the border, and make sure to keep publishing your anti-Jewish cartoons that would have been entirely at home in Der Sturmer. Keep on firing from civilian buildings and using civilians as human shields, and make sure to keep on storing weapons in your mosques and schools. It all seems to have worked out pretty well for y’all.

Have a nice war. You know where to find us when you’ve had enough.

Meir

About the Author: Meir is a news writer for JewishPress.com - and he loves his job.


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24 Responses to “An Open Letter to Hamas”

  1. Isn’t that the truth! Am Yisrael chai!

  2. Fran London says:

    I guess Obama is thrilled to no end about this using well earned money

  3. Fran London says:

    I guess Obama is thrilled to no end about this using well earned money

  4. Ronald Raff says:

    Why are we giving them money??

  5. Ronald Raff says:

    Our God is a loving God he does not kill people!!

  6. Ronald Raff says:

    If they are so ready to die for Allah why do they need land??

  7. David Cohen says:

    “Inhumane, evil Israel” continues to provide water and power to Gaza residents and gives warnings when destroying a Terrorist Stronghold. Would Hamas and it’s allies do the same?

  8. Tracy Ramsey says:

    It’s been 65+ years now, you’d think Allah would have gotten up off his fat butt to help by now if he really cared. Right?

  9. He who brings ant infested wood to the house should be blame for the numerous lizards in the house, who is the trouble maker in this case?

  10. Amir a terrorist is someone who hides there children and use them as human shields

  11. Amir you are confused by your dead god while Israel s and my god still lives

  12. Raul Belleza says:

    Hamas is doing a great favor to Fatah and also Hamas is busy working on self annihilation or committing mass suicide , a fastruck to false paradise .

  13. Raul Belleza says:

    Hamas is doing a great favor to Fatah and also Hamas is busy working on self annihilation or committing mass suicide , a fastruck to false paradise .

  14. Vincent if you have a better idea of how to defend the country please say

  15. Marcel Murad says:

    Vincent sit on it

  16. Mary Pinion says:

    Thanks for giving our money to terrorists. You should have give it to Israel. Don’t worry Israel will win. She’s a born leader.. Amir , get saved and see the true light of God. He is on Israels side. Yeah. God is a winning God for Israel.

  17. Allah gave you a message in 1948. Allah is the God of Israel because He is All There Is, and Islam did not want to listen, Israel doesn’t always want to listen, and the Christians hear crazy noises. Jews feed you (Arabs in Gaza), and the infidels pay your leaders to cheat you. Allahu Akhbar, indeed. But He deserves better than cowards, deceit, and dishonor.

  18. Mary, I’m sure Muslims, Gazans have enough trouble than to worship a dead man. As screwed up as they are, they’re a step ahead of Christians and can count to 1. Don’t mix a winning God of Israel with a losing god.

  19. Steve Marks says:

    Amongst all the **** that’s flying around FB – something that’s actually worth reading.

  20. You can label them anything you want. But I suggest you look where they are sent from and among whom those firing the rockets hide. The Israelis are able to pin-point targets, not perfectly certainly, but Hamas & co. fire them deliberately at civilian targets as they have always. We have the technology to save our people. We can survive the indignation of those who wish we couldn’t. Reaping what we sow? Israel provides water, food, electricity, and medical care to even Hamas families but even the **** of your rhetoric won’t grow anything to sow and the Arabs would have us tend the garden while they kill us. Might is not always right? Perhaps, probably. That is why Israel exists. Might of Muslims, Christians, Romans, Greeks, Babylonians, Assyrians, Egyptians failed against the tiniest place and people, Israel. Figure that one out, and then explain it to your pals.

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