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Should Jews Just Go Back To Poland?

Last May, as Hamas was firing missiles into Israel with impunity and Israel was shooting down those missiles to keep their citizens from dying, the death count became uneven. Israel invests heavily in keeping her population safe, and Hamas, a terrorist organization, uses Palestinians as human shields. Even though Israel works hard to reduce casualties on the other side in these defensive wars (by firing warning shots and sending down pamphlets to warn innocent people to clear out), the numbers will be uneven.

A woman who used to watch my children posted a chart with the number of dead Israelis vs. dead Palestinians. “Look at these aggressors,” she exclaimed. “The death count is so uneven.” Not enough Jews had died compared to Palestinians, apparently. Her friends were all agreeing with her post, so I offered a possible solution. “I have two sisters, two brothers-in-law, and ten nieces and nephews who live in Israel,” I explained. “My daughter will be there next year. Admittedly the numbers are off, so if we offer up my family, who’s been taking cover in bomb shelters as missiles have been raining down in their neighborhoods, that could be fifteen more people for your dead Jew column.”

I continued, “The rest of my family hopes to move in Israel in the coming years, so that could be five more. I know it doesn’t solve the problem of totally, but hopefully it will make a dent.” Of course she found my response exasperating, but that’s exactly how I found the scenario she had set up and the implication of it all. What exactly did she expect us to do? What did she expect a population of nearly 7 million Jews to do except try to not die and try to stop a terrorist organization from killing us?

Some people think the solution to the conflict is for the Jews to just leave Israel. There are approximately 50 countries in the world with a Muslim majority and 22 Arab countries (it should be noted that none of these countries have many Jewish citizens, if any, at all). There is but 1 Jewish State on a tiny sliver of land, and much of the world doesn’t want us to have it. It is no coincidence that one small piece of land is considered too much for the Jews. We are, apparently, not supposed to take up space. (Parenthetically, I will note that whatever we can do to build bridges with those on the other side who seek to live in peace, of course we should do that. Additionally, anyone from the Jewish community who makes broad-sweeping generalizations calling out an entire community is guilty of the things we complain others do to us.)

I found myself in a social media debate with a Muslim woman last May as the violence in Israel was leading to violent attacks against Jews all over the world. What was her solution to the problem? “Jews should just go back to Poland,” she explained. “Go back to Eastern Europe, where you belong.” I told her that we are not indigenous to those places, we were merely expelled to them, and the last time we were there in large numbers, millions of our people were gassed and thrown into ovens. So that wasn’t really an option for us.

The more that violence against Jews increases around the world, the more it is painstakingly clear that we must have a homeland to return to.

I posted an image on social media last May of the Temple Mount. The meme asked how exactly Jews were considered the foreign invaders and colonizers if the Al-Aqsa Mosque was built on TOP of the ruins of the Jewish Temple. I explained that observant Jews face Jerusalem three times a day everyday and pray to return to our land. We pray for the same return every time we break bread. Once a year, on Tisha B’Av we fast, sit on the ground, cry and mourn for the land that we lost with the hopes of returning. We’ve been doing so for the 2000 years since our exile.

A commenter asked, “It’s been 2000 years. Are you still not over that?”

“No, I told him,”we are not.”

And what I realized is that all of these challenges are just what we need. We need to be told we that we should die, move to Poland and give up our land. We need to take these awful suggestions and use them to create enough fire in our bellies in order for us to do the exact opposite. Picking up a life and moving thousands of miles to another country is not an easy thing to do. 74 years after we established the Jewish state, and less than half of us are there. Let’s channel those wishes for our death and destruction and do what we do best: AM YISRAEL CHAI!

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  • Avatar photo Mahmoud El-Yousseph says on May 9, 2022

    Hi Allison, I just stumbled into this article of yours accidentally. As a matter of fairness, I would like to share a letter I wrote on November 17, 2019t the very same subject with you and your readers.
    Western response to Israelis’ unprovoked attack on Gaza is outrageous

    Dear editor,

    Following two days of deadly Israeli airstrikes on Gaza, which took the lives of 34 Palestinians and injured 111 more, including 41 children and 16 women, Western response to the Israeli violence was outrageous to say the least.

    Despite the fact that Israel suffered zero causalities during the assault, the US ambassador to Israel saw fit to defend the Israeli assault. Perhaps the honorable ambassador should read today’s column (11/16/19) by Haaretz columnist Jack Khouri, titled “What do we tell kids who lost classmates in an Israeli strike?”

    Then, two of 2020 presidential candidates, Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg, decided to jump on the bandwagon to defend the Israeli aggression.. Suddenly, out of the blue came a statement by the EU condemning the Palestinians for firing rockets into Israel in retaliation with no reference to the Israel unprovoked air strikes; are Palestinians suppose to surrender and raise the white flag?

    The EU statement read, “Firing of rockets on civilian population is totally unacceptable and must immediately stop.” It is rather bizarre that the EU and US officials feel it is ok for Israel bomb civilian targets in Gaza but Palestinians have no right to defend themselves; are the lives of Israeli citizens more precious than those of Palestinians?

    Using the US and EU officials’ logic of blaming the Palestinians for the violence is like blaming a rape victim for punching her rapist on the stomach, I find this to be outrageous.

    The US government should instead condemn Israel’s most recent assault on two million Palestinians under siege in Gaza and demand the lifting of the 13 years of the illegal and inhumane siege on Gaza.

    Mahmoud El-Yousseph
    Retired USAFR Veteran

    Reply
    • Avatar photo Allison Josephs says on May 9, 2022

      Thanks for your comment. The airstrike Israel carried out was after Islamic Jihad fired long range rockets into Israel, pointed at Tel Aviv that injured civilians. Thank you for your service to the US. Should a sovereign nation sit back as its citizens are being fired on?

      No one Jewish (who’s not insane) wants innocent Palestinians killed. But the Hamas charter calls for Israel’s destruction. Hamas, a terrorist organization got voted into power in Gaza and their mission statement is to destroy Israel. No one sane and normal would want closed borders if they felt safe. Israel has closed down its borders to keep its citizens from being senselessly murdered by terrorists who hate Jews more than they love their own lives. The day that Israel can be ensured safety from terrorists is the day they’d open their borders. Most Israelis want a 2 state solution. Do most Palestinians?

      Reply
  • Avatar photo Mahmoud El-Yousseph says on May 9, 2022

    Hey Allison, that was not cool to delete my two comments. I took the time to give you my honest feedback, but you choose to leave your readers in the dark about the Palestinian perspective. That is not the way to have a fruitful debate. In the past when I posted positive comments to some of your articles, you were happy like a puppy. There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong. That stands the reason why you don’t want your readers to be exposed to the truth. I am disappointed and truly saddened by your reaction.

    Reply
    • Avatar photo Allison Josephs says on May 9, 2022

      No one deleted anything. We have a system of not allowing comments up without being approved as we get a fair share of antisemitic comments here. They’ll be going up shortly with a response.

      Reply
      • Avatar photo Mahmoud El-Yousseph says on May 9, 2022

        Obviously, mine was not anti-Semitic. Otherwise, you would have called me on it in order to bolster your claim. It was a measured response that was carefully drafted. It all good, Allison. My writing have been published widely and uncensored, even by the Israeli press. I was trying to help raise awareness and generated a readers interest on your message board. Sadly, you chose not to. Salam, Peace.

        Reply
        • Avatar photo Allison Josephs says on May 9, 2022

          I didn’t say your comments were antisemitic. I wrote that to explain that no comments appear on the site until someone is available to publish them.

          Reply
  • Avatar photo Mahmoud El-Yousseph says on May 9, 2022

    The last time the Palestinians held an election was in January 2006 – Even though former President Jimmy Carter called it “fair and transparent,” the United States along with Israel led the Western nations in a boycott of the election results by imposing collective punishment on the Palestinian people – simply put, cutting off the food supply line and the millions a month in collected tax revenue that Israel owes the Palestinian Authority. When the Palestinians were asked to choose their own representative, the majority choose Hamas. Immediately, Secretary of State Rice has the audacity to demand the return of the $50 million given as economic aid to the Palestinians. A true lesson in promoting a democracy! By contrast, when Israel elected its 11th prime minister in March 2001, it chose Ariel Sharon for the position. He was an indicted war criminal by his own government for war crimes committed in Lebanon. America’s official reaction was, “We do not interfere in the ‘internal affair’ of other nations.” So, the U.S. president rolled out the red carpet for him at the White House and even called him a “man of peace.” The reason there is no peace between Israel and the Palestinians, Israel wanted a piece of every Arab land. Still, many Israelis don’t like to use the term Palestinians, they simply refer to them as an “Arab.” One reason Ireland has peace but not the Palestinians are because the British sat down at the same table with the IRA representatives. If you believe resisting brutal military occupation makes you a “terrorist,” then you are on the wrong side of history.

    Reply
    • Avatar photo Allison Josephs says on May 9, 2022

      Is Hamas a terrorist organization?
      Does their charter call for the annihilation of Israel?
      How many Muslim countries are there in the world?
      How many Arab countries are there in the world?
      How many Jewish countries are there in the world?
      Nearly 1 million Arab Jews were ethnically cleansed from their lands starting around 1948.

      To be clear – the humanitarian situation that innocent and peace-loving Palestinians have to live through is tragic, but Hamas is to blame. They used foreign aid to build terror tunnels instead of build their own infrastructure. Israel is not a perfect country for sure, but they deserve to live in peace as the only Jewish nation in the entire world.

      Mahmoud – are the majority of Palestinians ready to accept Israel’s existence and peacefully co-exist with them? With the Abraham Accords, Israel has created some very positive relationships with Arab/Muslim countries. As you said, we are cousins. We want to co-exist peacefully. But this is our eternal homeland. We’ve had a constant presence in it for over 3000 years. We pray every day, multiple times a day towards Jerusalem. We cry and fast and sit on the ground and cover ourselves in ashes once a year on Tisha B’av to mourn the loss of our land. We don’t want Mecca, Medina, or any of the 50 Muslims countries or 22 Arab ones. We have just one home where we want to live freely and we are happy to share this sliver of land with other people. But we need to know that their not plotting our deaths.

      Reply
  • Avatar photo Rachel says on May 11, 2022

    And ironically, people of any religion other than Judaism are allowed on the Har HaBayit, the Temple Mount, and are permitted to pray there. If a Jew visits, closes his or her eyes and moves their lips in prayer…they are arrested. How is it that a Jew praying in the holiest place on earth to Judaism is a criminal?

    Reply

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