Dear world: I don’t care anymore
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'We fight for light over darkness, Morality over evil'

Dear world: I don’t care anymore

High-tech worker and Australian oleh Avi Lewis has a strong message for Israel's critics.

An Israeli soldier on patrol in the southern city of Sderot, October 11, 2023. Photo: Oren Ben Hakoon/Flash90
An Israeli soldier on patrol in the southern city of Sderot, October 11, 2023. Photo: Oren Ben Hakoon/Flash90

(TIMES OF ISRAEL) – I don’t care that you sympathise with Hamas.

I know you wouldn’t tolerate any of the things they did to us if they had done it to you.

I don’t care that you’re outraged by Israel’s response to the massacre more than the massacre itself. I know you would do everything to eliminate such pure evil if you experienced it yourself.

I don’t care that this doesn’t fit neatly into your carefully constructed narrative of “Israel as aggressor” and “Palestinian as victim”. The truth hurts sometimes, but hey, don’t let facts get in the way of your feelings.

I don’t care if you think we are at fault, that we had it coming, that Hamas’s actions’ didn’t occur in a vacuum (or to deny they ever happened).

If you feel that the poster of a kidnapped child hurts your cause, maybe yours is a lost cause.

I don’t care about your calls for a premature ceasefire, about your demand that we provide them with electricity, that we stop fighting for “humanitarian reasons”. What of a humanitarian gesture to release our 230-plus hostages – elderly, children, babies – snatched from their cribs?

I don’t care that you’ve rallied for Palestine as part of your march for LGBTQ rights, trans rights, workers rights, socialism, climate change, intersectionality, Black Lives Matter, fighting Islamophobia and “all forms of racism”. Your gullibility would be laughable if it wasn’t so hypocritical. None of those things exist under Hamas.

I don’t care that you “love Jewish people – just hate Israel”, that you have some friends that are Jewish, that maybe you’re ethnically Jewish yourself – and therefore you’re entitled to levy every libel in the playbook against us.

Words matter. They lead to actions. When a lie is repeated often enough, it’s accepted as truth. You are laying the groundwork for more attacks against us.

I don’t care that you wave the flag of ‘human rights’, that you’ve become overnight experts in international law, that you shout fancy slogans you don’t understand such as proportionality, occupation and apartheid. Your humanity is selective. In your mind, human rights don’t apply to us because we are undeserving. You didn’t speak up when our women and children were horribly assaulted.

I don’t care if you think we are colonialists, imperialists and settlers and that we should just go back to where we came from. We are back to where we came from.

I don’t care if you believe in a one-state solution, a two-state solution, a federation, an internationalised Jerusalem or any other theory drawn up in your ivory tower. We won’t readily hold out our necks and endanger our lives in order to satisfy your thought experiments and placate your conscience from afar.

I don’t care if you consider yourself anti-Zionist but not antisemitic. We’ve seen enough Jews around the world attacked over the last three weeks under the guise of “anti-Zionism”.

I don’t care that you think we are too powerful, too technologically advanced, too sophisticated. If we didn’t build ourselves up to this point we’d get eaten alive by Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, Iran and Palestinian terrorism.

I don’t care that you blame us for 1948 refugees, for the fact that they have no state, for the keys that they wave in their fantasy of “right of return”. Four weeks ago we got a glimpse of what that “return” looks like and what it means for our children.

I don’t care if you think we aren’t real Jews, that Zionism has nothing to do with Judaism, that Jews are a religion and not a nationality and so we deserve no state. Your denials have zero impact on the strength of our ideals and the self-affirmation of our identity.

I don’t care that you accuse us of flaunting the myriad UN resolutions, inquiries and statements.

They reflect more on the institutional decay of the UN than on us.

I don’t care about your media coverage, the lies, the equivocation, the acceptance of Hamas talking points and statistics. Your echo chamber is just another weapon in their strategic arsenal.

I don’t care that you accused us of bombing the Al Ahli hospital. It was only a matter of time before you found a symbol for Israel’s wickedness. The subsequent retractions were a fig leaf once the truth emerged that Islamic Jihad was responsible and the hospital is still standing.

I don’t care that you see us as a criminal state, a terror state, usurpers, baby killers, Christ-killers, Khaybar Jews or any other depravity that exists in your mind. Your libels lay the groundwork for our dehumanisation. Rings a bell. We will fight it.

I don’t care that you’ve inverted the truth by accusing us of genocide. If positions were reversed and Hamas held the power we do now, you’d see what a genocide looks like.

I don’t care that you’re angry, boiling and outraged. I don’t care that you’re glued to your TV screens and Telegram channels. I don’t care that you’re mad.

I don’t care if you’re out on the street, waving your flag and chanting your slogans. We won’t die silently the way you want us to.

For the first time in 2000 years we are organised, we are motivated and we will defend ourselves.

We fight for light over darkness, Morality over evil.

Avi Lewis. Photo: LinkedIn

Not that it matters to you – but we will stick to the rules and hold the high moral ground not because you expect it from us, but because they are a value for us. We will do so ethically and thoughtfully, for we are the People of the Book.

Our power and strength are a necessity because the alternative for us is: Be’eri, Kfar Aza, Pittsburgh, Toulouse, Farhud, Hebron, Birkenau, Belzec, Babi Yar, Kristallnacht, Kielce and Kishinev.

Do you think for a moment that we would return to that reality just to make you feel a little better?You are deeply mistaken …

World,

For so, so long, I really, deeply cared. I cared about fitting in; I cared about what you think; I cared about being a model citizen; I cared about setting a personal example of how a tiny people in a tough neighbourhood could be a Light unto the Nations.

How the world’s oldest minority – now a majority here – could treat its own internal minorities par excellence amid the complicated and messy reality of ethnic conflict; How we could painfully dismember parts of our homeland and offer them on the platter of peace to Palestinians that want neither peace nor some parts (they want all of it); How we could dazzle you with USB sticks, drip irrigation, operating system kernels, Nobel Prize winners, swallowable medical cameras, deep tech, quantum mechanics, generative AI and cures for disease.

But now I’m finally accepting that you don’t care. You never did.

You don’t see and you don’t hear. And because I cared about what you think so much, that so deeply hurts.

But you don’t have my best interests at heart. You take issue with my base identity, with what I represent. Don’t expect me to wait for your approval this time.

It doesn’t matter what I do, you’re not going to change. It doesn’t matter how I act, because your issue is with who I am.

Now I’m going to block out your noise and do what it takes to win this war.

 

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