Like Sheep to Slaughter

Like Sheep To Slaughter

We are facing anti-semitism – again. It is touchingly couched in a humanistic plea for ‘ceasefire’. Given our immediate past history, we Jews are being admonished  for waging a war that has taken the lives of thousands of ‘innocent’ children (terrorists of 15- 18 years of age are children in Hamas statistics), and displacing  ‘innocent’ families  (though statistics show that 80% of the ‘innocents’ side with Hamas). We are also asked to conveniently forget that these ‘innocents’ include those who murdered, raped, mutilated, beheaded, our brothers and sisters. And would do so again, by their own admission.

What if a sharp-witted interviewee were to turn the conversation on the ABC around, and have the chutzpa to ask the interviewer how he/she would feel if his/her sister were found with a knife stuck in her genitals? I would guess the response would be one of incredulity. And then a quick call for an advertisement break (Oh, the ABC doesn’t have advertisements!) Hard evidence, witnessed and photographed, records that the cruelty of Hamas knows no bounds. Nevertheless, it’s far easier to wear intellectual blinkers, and preach the mantra of a genteel, distant, unsullied, western stance – a call for ceasefire. Forget the hostages. Forget the murderers. Forget future defence. Let’s just have ‘peace’. If the theory doesn’t fit the facts, so much the worse for the facts. An illusion is so much prettier than reality. 

And if those grotesque images don’t turn your stomach, our own cowardice will. We are projecting a posture of fear. No, not our brother Israelis –  I mean you, yes you. You keep saying publicly in almost every interview how afraid you are. I can just imagine the immense pleasure our antisemites and Palestinian cohort derive from watching and hearing our youth and adults alike, admitting fear in every second interview.  ‘We are being placed into a situation of fear’. Is this a plea for empathy? Then forget it. Is it an appeal to authoritative intervention? Then forget it. Each time I watch another Jew or Jewish group admitting to police, to authorities, to media, , ‘they put us in fear’, I want to spew! Can you just imagine the absolute joy the enemy experiences when another Jew says “I am afraid!”.

Stop displaying fear! It’s about time we learned how to be defiant and resilient. It’s time to get rid of our ‘puppyfat’ of trepidation and anxiety and learn to stand tall and even be brave. It’s high time that in the place of feeling doleful and woeful about the rising tide of antisemitism, and tut-tutting how terrible the situation is, and exclaiming “I am thinking of leaving” and “ I want to remove my Mezuza’ and hide, we should begin to show some backbone!

The bully loves punching the weakling.  So stop being a punching bag. Walk tall. Davka put on a Kippa.  Davka wear a Magen-David necklace. Davka look the enemy in the eyes. And also: time to learn how to respond to bullying words, to antisemitic sloganizing, to the use of antisemitic tropes, and yes, even learn how to defend yourself physically.

Are our Jewish schools providing courses in verbal and physical strategies? Are our children hearing strength of conviction and Jewish pride and courage at home? Are our community leaders being inspirational and Churchillian?  Or is everyone ‘playing safe’, being ‘sensible’, ‘proper’, not wanting to upset the apple-cart – gone into hiding.

How often was I told by a younger generation, ‘we wouldn’t have walked like sheep to slaughter.  We would have fought’. Well, here is your chance. Jewish university students – you are at the coal face of antisemitism. Here is your chance. Don’t duck for cover.  You are not facing a government-sponsored Nazi SS like my parents did. You are facing a relatively small fifth column alien un-Australian grouping who has been unwisely admitted to this country and so many other countries, and become a tipping point for politicos holding marginal seats. So walk the talk. Don’t be like sheep.  Take initiatives.  Think creatively. Respond deliberately and meaningfully. We Jews are said to be innovative in so many areas – then be innovative.

There will always be the guilt-ridden few who need to side with the enemy, curry favour, seek approval, proving how fine and peaceful Jews really are –even in the face those who seek to murder us. They even demonstrate in Caulfield Park. They seek their lacking self-esteem through the bait of the Stockholm syndrome, not realising that one can never hide one’s Jewishness, not matter how much the leopard tries to wash away its spots. History testifies to that.

So, what do we have on the menu: a superficial clamour for peace that simply ensures future wars and more deaths; a hand-wringing United Nations, a plaything for recalcitrant politicians sent away to their Island of St Helena, that is in cahoots with tyranny and terrorism (UNWRA) ; a police force that orders Jews to ‘move on’ not to upset the Palestinian demonstration and cause an unnecessary ruckus; and more. The odds are stacked clearly against Jews. So what’s new? Yet, ‘when good men do nothing, evil triumphs’.

Are you a good man?