- "Kidnapped Soldiers" blared the Israeli headlines
a few weeks ago, after a soldier was captured in Gaza and two in Southern
Lebanon. I was surprised. Since when is a soldier "kidnapped?"
What, were they watering their mothers' gardens at the time? No, they were
participating in military events. Soldiers are never kidnapped; they are
captured after which time they should be treated according to the international
Geneva Convention. That one simple semantic deceit by the Israeli media
kidnapped the nation's mind.
- "I never thought of that in such a way, but you
are right," an Israeli friend living in Tel Aviv told me after hearing
my reasoning. The semantic bombardment of Israeli citizens by their own
government-controlled media continued, despite my remarks, and a few days
later, I emailed a couple of pictures to my friends there. The first showed
young Israeli girls writing hateful messages on artillery shells destined
for Lebanon. Before sending this photo, I carefully analyzed it.
- The writing was done with a confident Hebrew hand and
included typical spelling errors of Israeli children. As a former officer
of the Israeli army, I can say with certainty that the military equipment
in the picture belongs to the Israeli army. Next to this picture, I sent
a second one of a dead Lebanese child. Not one of my friends questioned
the authenticity of the pictures, but one of them - a major in the army
- answered unapologetically: "They are criminals."
- Hence, soldiers are kidnapped and dead children are criminals;
this is the war's semantic world. I could cite many such examples, but
the most illuminating one dates back to 1982. At that time, the Israeli
government had baptized the Lebanon War as the War for the Peace of the
Galilee. The Hebrew possessive could be literally translated as War-Peace-the
Galilee: a perfect Orwellian oxymoron. The use of these types of semantic
traps has only increased over time and they have become harder to spot
by the confused Israeli public.
- "Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot
for foot" says the Bible in Exodus 21:24. The Code of Hammurabi, dating
back to 1728BC, makes a similar claim. It may seem a bit barbaric nowadays,
but back then it established for the first time the idea of proportional
punishment and - in a sense - a method of indemnification for crimes committed.
But these days, if your neighbor breaks the window of your house - intentionally
or not - you expect to get a new window and maybe some degree of compensation
if the damage was intentional. No modern society would accept the retaliatory
breaking of the neighbor's window - or demolishing his house, as the Israelis
are doing in Lebanon - as a just response.
- For a long time now, Israelis have been running amok
in this manner. Having rejected their last Teacher, they are now forgetting
even their first, and primitive, law and religious texts, receding dangerously
back to lawless times. 3500 years ago, the Israelis had a more comprehensive
and just legal system than they do today.
- That is their choice and they will be judged for their
deeds. However, it is the personal responsibility of each of us to shout
as loud as possible that the Emperor has no Clothes.
- If we won't defend the innocent Lebanese children of
today, we will ignore the French children of tomorrow. And, then, when
American children are forced to carry their own cross, then, it will be
too late to save them.
- Reuven Schossen is an Israeli political refugee, harassed
by security services across several continents since he chose to leave
his home country in disgust at the corrupt practises of Israel's leaders.
The four articles below were published after he signed a contract with
Publish America for his book, "Holygarchy," an account of his
political and spiritual awakening in Israel and a revelation to the world
of the racist, theocratic and "Big Brother" police state policies
of the State of Israel. His efforts to secure political asylum and a new
citizenship require the assistance of understanding individuals. Thorough
research indicates that the San Francisco area would be the best place
to apply for asylum in the US. Attorney fees will run to about $1,500.
We are asking for financial assistance and sancutary in the San Francisco
area so that Reuven can successfully secure political asylum here in the
US. If you can help in any way, please contact Reuven at (505) 982-3609
or email@example.com . His website is at www.schossen.com and it is possible
to donate via credit card or paypal from that site. During the Civil War,
Americans of conscience created an "underground railway" to shelter
African Americans who were brave enough to escape from slavery. Let's not
betray the American tradition of helping those in need by letting Reuven's
situation take a turn for the worse through our inaction. Even a brave
reform rabbi has been willing to help Reuven, so let's not be frightened
into paralysis by Israeli propaganda.
- Leland Lehrman, Santa Fe, New Mexico firstname.lastname@example.org