Sunday, June 5, 2016

Jerusalem Day, 2016

(Last updated: June 5, 2016)

On June 5, 2016, the city of Jerusalem, Israel, remembers the moment in June, 1967, when a divided Jerusalem was captured by Israeli soldiers and reunited as a single Jewish city. It is, for Jews, a moment to celebrate. We renew that celebration every June.

Originally, according to the United Nations Resolution 181 (which created Israel) Jerusalem was be neither Jewish nor Muslim. It was to be an international city, protected by UN administration and dedicated to freedom of access and freedom of worship for everyone. But none of that happened.

Although the Jews of  the British Mandate accepted the partition requirements set up by the UN--including an internationalized Jerusalem--the Arabs rejected it all. They wanted all of the Mandate to be Muslim, including Jerusalem.

Therefore, they attacked the Jews with the intent to destroy all of them. They lost that war. But they succeeded in conquering the part of Jerusalem that held the holy Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site on earth.

The Arabs rejected the UN idea of a free and open Jerusalem. They refused to give Jews any access in the part of Jerusalem they had conquered. They ethnically cleansed all Jews from that area.They banned all Jews from the Temple Mount. 

 Then, in June, 1967, war broke out. It was Israel against Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon. The war lasted 6 days.  When the dust settled, 100% of Jerusalem was in Jewish hands.

Today, Arabs have free access to Jerusalem. Arabs have free access to the Temple Mount, where they worship at the Al Aksa mosque. Arabs have freedom of worship. Arabs live in Jerusalem freely.

In a few words, today, Arab Muslims and Christians enjoy all the freedoms the UN had envisioned for Jerusalem. But these freedoms aren't protected by the UN. They are protected by the Jewish Israel. Today, Arabs enjoy all the freedoms they had denied to Jews when they held control.

To understand the significance of Jerusalem Day, you've got to understand two things: first, how Arabs today speak of Jews controlling Jerusalem; and second, what actually happened in 1967.

The Arab view of Jerusalem on Jerusalem Day is very simple: Jews stole Jerusalem. They (the Arabs) want it back(Ari Yashar, "Abbas demands Jerusalem on 'Naksa' Day', Arutz Sheva, June 5, 2016).

You can see this narrative at work in a prominently displayed news report on the Yahoo Homepage (I'm writing this before 9am ET). The opening line of this story is clear: "on June 5, 1967, an unprovoked Israel invaded Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian territories at once" ("Vanishing Palestine: the making of Israel's occupation," aljazeera on yahoo, June 5, 2016). This story comes with a video that begins with the false statement, "In order to create an exclusively Jewish state, the original inhabitants of the land, the Palestinians, had to be removed" (ibid).

This story-line is false. First, the original Zionist vision in 1947 was not an 'exclusively Jewish' state. That was the Arab vision--an exclusively Arab state. Second, the original inhabitants of the land were not 'Palestinians'. They were Jews. Third, when Israel attacked Egypt, Syria and 'Palestine' (Jordan), that attack was definitely not unprovoked.
Jews need Jerusalem Day to remind the world what really happened in that 6-day war. Here are a few facts:

-Since Israel’s founding in 1948, no Arab country in the Middle East accepted Israel. They hated Israel. They wanted to destroy Israel. In 1967, nineteen years after Israel's rebirth, several Arab countries rallied around Egypt’s President, Gamal Abdel Nasser, to destroy the Jewish state. They called up armies to their borders. They broadcast anti-Israel propaganda. They called aloud for a total war of destruction against the Jews (see video, below).

On May 15, 1967, Nasser ordered a UN peace-keeping force (whose job it was to separate the Egyptians from the Jews) to leave, thereby leaving Israel exposed to attack. Nasser sent thousands of troops and hundreds of tanks into the Sinai desert. He blockaded the straits of Tiran, an open act of war.

Israel turned to the nations of the world for help. The nations listened. Then they all decided to remain ‘neutral’.

Israel was left alone and completely at Egypt’s mercy. Israel was outnumbered and out-gunned. Israel had been abandoned. Few thought Israel could survive the attack that was coming.

-Egypt formed an alliance with other Arab countries surrounding Israel. Those countries rose to attack Israel.

Seeing Israel abandoned, Muslim countries called openly for the destruction of the Jewish state. Jew-hate became a frenzy.

-in the weeks leading up to the war, Egypt’s leader, Nasser stoked an intense Jew-hate, much as the Palestinian Authority (PA) does today.

Like the PA, Nasser had only one goal: to kick the dirty Jews (see below) out of the land and into the Mediterranean Sea (the PA calls Jews ‘filthy’). 

Here are three cartoons from Egypt from that time. The first expresses Nasser’s goal—and depicts the Jew as ugly, long-nosed and big-eared, a demonizing picture of a hated object.

The second cartoon presents the Arab view of what Arab armies will do to Israel. This cartoon appears to depict Israel as a Jew with Jewish stars (tattoos?) on his head. It is an image of brutal aggression.

The third cartoon depicts what Tel Aviv will look like after the Arabs have conquered Israel. It is no accident that this last picture reminds one of the pictures we have seen from the Nazi Death Camps taken right after World War Two ended (these three cartoons are courtesy of Miriam Elman, 
“Jerusalem Reunited 1967: Three Israeli Soldiers, One Iconic Photo”, legalinsurrection, June 4, 2016; Elman indicates that at least two of these cartoons come from 


 Jerusalem Day reminds us all of that time. It reminds us how the nations turned against Israel, abandoned her. It reminds us of the Jew-hate frenzy—and the silence of the nations in the presence of that frenzy.

Jerusalem Day reminds us that the world today repeats its ‘neutrality’. It repeats its disinterest in Israel’s survival.

Actually, the nations are no longer neutral regarding Israel. They have banded together at the UN to attack Israel repeatedly and collectively. Their attacks and villfications seem to have no end.

For many of us in Israel, the new French international peace conference, like the recent efforts of US Secretary of State John Kerry, is not designed to help Israel. It seems instead another attempt that will encourage the demonization and isolation of Israel in the face of raw Arab Jew-hate, just as happened after the recent Kerry 'efforts'.

That hate has nothing to do with 'peace'. It has everything to do with destroying Israel. The nations don't see this?

For us, nothing has changed since 1967--not international indifference to Israel, not the Jew-hate that has so characterize Arab attitudes for generations, not international indifference to that hate.

Look again at the cartoons above. Then look at these modern cartoons of Israel that come out of the PA, our supposed 'peace partner'.

Peace partners don't depict their 'partner' with these kinds of cartoons. These kinds are cartoons are reserved exclusively for a hated enemies.

Take a look. They come from Palestinian Media Watch:  

Cartoon demonizes Israel rights activists  Rabbi Yehuda Glick as a snake (this cartoon, by the way, appeared about two weeks after a would-be Arab-Muslim assassin shot Rabbi Glick in the chest four times):

Source: Al-Asima, bi-weekly distributed with official PA daily, Nov. 13, 2014

Fatah cartoon depicts 3 kidnapped Israeli teens as mice caught on fishing rod (this is the kidnapping which provoked the 54-day 2014 Gaza-Israel war which brought nothing but death and destruction to parts of Gaza. The three boys were kidnapped and almost immediately murdered. Many in the PA celebrated the kidnapping. This cartoon is just one example of that celebration).

Source: Facebook, Fatah - The Main Page, June 15, 2014

Israel is a snake; Fatah and Hamas cut off its head 

Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 8, 2014

Israeli soldier as stabber and executor

Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida,  Mar. 26, 2016

PA daily cartoon: Religious Jews crucify Palestinian boy

Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 2, 2015

No fair minded person can view this hate and turn to Israel to accuse it of no peace in the region. Every fair-minded person would see these cartoons and ask, 'What the hell do these 'Palestinians' think they're doing? They don't want peace!"

Here now, from the Elman essay (above, ibid), is a different kind of picture presentation. It's a video about Israel’s Jerusalem Day'. It is 10 minutes long. It's not about demonizing anyone. 

It's about miracles:

In Israel, we do not publish pictures of Arabs as snakes. We don't showArabs as ugly, less-than-human beings. We don't publish cartoons in our major media outlets of Arabs as killers.

Instead, we create pictures of life--new water technologies to save crops and lives, new medical advances to attack life-sapping diseases and new ways to improve our electronic-centric world. 

We celebrate the miracles of life. Most important of all on this day, we celebrate how HaShem our G-d fulfills His promise to return us to our Holy Jerusalem.

Yes, the nations will turn against us. The Jew-hate that surrounds us and would devour us will create a frenzy of hate against us.

But as the enemies of Israel plot and scheme to divide our Holy City, we will continue to sing. We will continue to dance in the streets. 

We will continue to sing of the miracles that surround us. 

We will continue to celebrate our Jerusalem Day because our G-d, HaShem has fulfilled His promise to return us to Jerusalem.

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