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Hillel must put Jewish diversity and social justice above Israel allegiance

Just as Israel has banned BDS supporters from entering the country and demonizes those who show dissent, Hillel has sent a message to Jewish students that it only recognizes a certain type of Jew, and sees the rest of us as disposable.

By Ally Fernandez

Jewish students with Open Hillel protest the expulsion of an LGBTQ Jewish group from Ohio State Hillel, New York, April 16, 2017. (Gili Getz)

Jewish students with Open Hillel protest the expulsion of an LGBTQ Jewish group from Ohio State Hillel, New York, April 16, 2017. (Gili Getz)

I am exactly the kind of Jew whom Naftali Bennett thinks should not exist. I am a proud, Puerto Rican, feminist, Jewish woman of color who stands in solidarity with Palestine and supports the call for BDS. I am the product of an interfaith and interracial marriage, a strong Ashkenazi mama and an amazing Boricua dad, making me fully Puerto Rican and Jewish, not fractions of either.

I grew up in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, where I knew very few Jews outside my family. When I began my freshman year at Vassar College in New York state, I immersed myself in the Vassar Jewish Union, our campus Hillel chapter. Having spent my life on an island that faces deep economic and social crises, and which grapples with lack of sovereignty and the legacy of colonization, my gut reaction when hearing about the Palestinian cause differed from that of my Jewish classmates. But luckily for me, in the spring of 2014 — before I arrived — the Vassar Jewish Union (Vassar College Hillel) became one of the first Hillels to officially ‘open’ and drop Hillel International’s exclusionary “Standards of Partnership.”

While I am still often placed on the outside of my Jewish community due to my racial and class-based experiences of Judaism and my political views, my experiences with the VJU have enabled me to access Jewish communal resources and have furthered my commitment to Judaism and open discourse. And I have had the opportunity to learn so much more than I ever could from the narrow view that Hillel International currently promotes.

Throughout my years at Vassar, I’ve learned about Jewish history, religion, and traditions, and formed friendships with Jewish students with a range of experiences and viewpoints. I’ve engaged in some of the hardest and most productive conversations here, right in our Bayit and through the lens of my Jewish identity. I am a leader in my campus chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace, and have worked on campaigns with Students for Justice in Palestine and other student of color-led movements for BDS and Palestinian human rights.

In short, I am deeply engaged with the Jewish community and with Israel/Palestine, and my activism in no way contradicts my Jewish identity; rather, I know that I am acting on my Jewish values.

Yet mine is not the kind of engagement that Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett and other Hillel mega-donors want to see. Bennett recently launched “Mosaic United,” a $66 million “Jewish engagement” and “identity-building” program focused on the Jewish diaspora. Mosaic aims to combat “critical discourse” on Israel and to promote a sexist, homophobic, and anti-interfaith vision of the Jewish family. By partnering with Mosaic, Hillel has chosen to marginalize and silence Jewish students like me.

Jewish students with Open Hillel protest the expulsion of an LGBTQ Jewish group from Ohio State Hillel, New York, April 16, 2017. (Gili Getz)

Jewish students with Open Hillel protest the expulsion of an LGBTQ Jewish group from Ohio State Hillel, New York, April 16, 2017. (Gili Getz)

Working with Mosaic has worsened Hillel’s policies of exclusion. Most recently, under pressure from Hillel International, Ohio State Hillel (which received a $73,000 grant from Mosaic United) expelled B’nai Keshet, Ohio State’s Jewish queer group, for partnering with Jewish Voice for Peace on a fundraiser for LGBTQ refugees. OSU Hillel cited Hillel International’s Standards of Partnership in justifying its decision to punish students for supporting refugees and oust LGBTQ Jewish students from the campus Jewish community.

In response to these exclusionary policies and practices, during the Pesach holiday of liberation, I helped lead an Open Hillel rally in New York in solidarity with B’nai Keshet. We called on OSU Hillel and Hillel International to re-admit B’nai Keshet, drop the Standards of Partnership and reject Mosaic United and Naftali Bennett’s money and influence.

As long as Hillel remains closed it will foster division and prevent dialogue between Jewish students and other communities dedicated to social justice. As long as Hillel remains beholden to donors rather than students, it will promote a narrow, exclusionary, and overwhelmingly right-wing vision of politics and Jewish communal life.

When Hillel places allegiance to Israel and its donors above engaging with the most pressing social justice issues of our time — whether refugee rights, Black Lives Matter, or the movement for LGBTQ equality — it leaves behind too many people in the Jewish community. Most importantly, it leaves behind Jews with identities that make those movements just as personal to them as anything within the Jewish community.

Right now, just as Israel has banned BDS supporters from entering the country and demonizes and harasses those who show dissent, Hillel has sent a message to Jewish students that it only recognizes a certain type of Jew, and sees the rest of us as disposable. But the members of B’nai Keshet are not disposable. Queer Jews and refugees are not disposable. Palestinians are not disposable. Jews of color are not disposable. Jews coming from interfaith families are not disposable. Anti- and non-Zionist Jews are not disposable. I am not disposable.

Naftali Bennett sees pluralism, diversity, and open debate as signs of the degeneration of the Jewish community. Yet I and all of us at Open Hillel know that our diversity ensures the Jewish community’s vibrancy and strength. We cannot allow ourselves to remain stagnant and close-minded. We are all a part of a living, breathing, dialoguing and disagreeing community, and we all belong at the Seder table.

Ally Fernandez is a junior at Vassar College studying English and Latin American Studies. She plans on attending graduate school and working towards a career in higher education and public service. In the meantime, she likes to organize, drink coffee, and spend time on the beach with her family when she’s home.

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    COMMENTS

    1. carmen

      Best of luck in your studies and your future Ally and thank you for your story. You sound like the beautiful child of wonderful parents –

      Reply to Comment
    2. Lewis from Afula

      I agree with current Hillel policies. Only normal pro-Israel Jews should be allowed to join this body. All leftist, feminist, anti-Israel Jews should be banned from Hillel. However, I do definitely support the right of leftist Wierdos to set up their own parallel organization (which will eventually vanish when the Leftists ultimately assimilate, intermarry or die off).

      Reply to Comment
      • JeffB

        @Lewis

        I just wrote a long response to Ally. But I have to say you are going to the opposite extreme. Feminism has been a movement with huge Jewish input and part of Judaism for generations. The left in America is still highly highly disproportionately Jewish. I think American Jews (not sure if you are Israeli) should consider participation in BDS activities to be grounds for religious censure, in the same way as getting baptized would be. I see no reason at all to be that harsh with regards to feminism or the left more generally.

        Reply to Comment
        • Lewis from Afula

          Feminism is a highly detrimental ideology that hoodwinks young women to develop their “careers” during their 20s. When they seek a marriage partner in their mid-30s, they have lost their looks and all the good men have married. I saw this process in London, UK where about half of Jewish women over 40 are still single. Israeli women are much more mature – by age 25 they are all actively looking for a marriage partner.

          Reply to Comment
    3. i_like_ike52

      I think I can speak for Naftali Bennet in saying you are completely wrong when you think that he believes that you, as a “proud feminist Jewish woman of color” should not exist, even if you also believe in BDS and that you “stand with Palestine”. That is because, for us in Israel, the adjectives “feminist woman of color” are completely irrelevant, for the reason that you are a Jew, PERIOD.
      Regarding “standing for Palestine”, the policy of Bennet and his party is to do the maximum to improve the economic and political condition of the Palestinians, and as Economics Minister he worked for this (unfortunately the political situation is stagnant due to the corruption and extremism of the FATAH/PA and HAMAS/Gaza regimes in power).

      The problem is your identification with JVP and BDS. Not only will opening up Hillel to those organizations end up destroying Hillel because all those who oppose BDS and JVP will end up being driven out of Hillel and thus Hillel will become irrelevant, but mainly because we in Israel view JVP as an extremist anti-Israel organization that is working to dismantle Israel (the 1-state faction which is powerful in JVP) and that JVP ends up actively or passively supporting Arab terror against Israel, as reflected in their inviting a terrorist murderer like Rasmiah Odeh to their conference. You have to understand that all decisions regarding Israel’s future relations with the Palestinians will be made by ISRAELIS and not by people making a lot of noise in the US. JVP and BDS supporters have made themselves irrelevant to the vast majority of the Israeli public because of their extremist actions and policies, so I would suggest that you come here to Israel to learn the TRUE situation and not depend on deceivers like Brant Rosen or Electronic Intifada for your sources of information.

      Reply to Comment
    4. Firentis

      As you are working for the destruction of Israel, Bennett and most Israeli Jews see you as a traitor that has placed herself outside of the communal tent. This is because you have aligned yourself with organizations that treat as heroes people that have murdered Jewish civilians. As you have placed yourself in the tent of our enemies you are very much disposable and irrelevant. You have nothing to say about a constructive Jewish future since all you promote is Jewish destruction.

      I have no reason to sit at the Seder table with someone that will applaud my murderer.

      Reply to Comment
      • Bruce Gould

        @Firentis: I actually believe that Israeli policies harm U.S. interests, as James Mattis, U.S. Secretary of Defense apparently believes. Is that a valid reason for opposing U.S. military aid to Israel?

        https://www.juancole.com/2016/12/occupation-apartheid-blackballing.html

        “I paid a military security price every day as a commander of CENTCOM because the Americans were seen as biased in support of Israel, and [because of this] moderate Arabs couldn’t be with us because they couldn’t publicly support those who don’t show respect for Arab Palestinians.”

        Reply to Comment
        • Firentis

          of course. i think the underlying logic is flawed but it is a legitimate position.

          Reply to Comment
        • JeffB

          @Bruce

          Opposing USA military aide to Israel and supporting BDS are totally different positions. Mattis is a good example of this. Mattis essentially supports increased aggression likely leading to a USA war against Iran. BDS supporters opposes a strong stance against Iran and blame American Zionists for the hostility to Iran. Guys like Mattis may dislike some Israeli actions but they have the same attitude towards Israeli actions that undermine the interests of the Marines that they have towards Spanish, Italian or New Zealand actions that undermine the interests of the Marines. They don’t see Israel as anything special and treat it like a normal country.

          BDS supporters conversely buy into the idea that what Jews do is of cosmic importance. They refuse to treat Israel like any other country. I mean here in the USA, obviously in Israel or among Palestinians or Jews there are good reasons to have a particular focus on Israel.

          There is nothing wrong with supporting an end to American military aide to Israel, heck I’m a solid Zionist and would definitely be open to discussing this. I think the majority of Americans believe that Israeli aide is too high, but there is nothing unusual about most of those Americans dislike almost all USA foreign aide. BDS isn’t criticism of Israeli actions or a desire to reform foreign policy like one would have with any normal country. There is no reason to conflate this with objective criticisms that exist within the normal range of political opinion.

          Reply to Comment
          • i_like_ike52

            I think it would be in Israel’s interest to end the military aid. Almost all the money is spent in the US, the US receives the advanced technology that comes out of it and it ties Israel to the US economy in unhealthy ways….e.g. forcing El Al Israel Airlines to buy Boeing aircraft even though Airbus made a better offer. Israeli leaders like Sharon found it advantageous to his political goals to destroy Gush Katif to have a perception of Israeli dependence on the US.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            The United States has now or recently has had sanctions of various kinds against Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Burma, Syria, Sudan, etc. And against specific people and organizations in the Balkans, Belarus, Congo, Iraq, Liberia, Sudan, Zimbabwe, etc. So how is it that sanctions against Israel would be treating it not like any other normal country?

            In various statements on this page I read a kind of blanket demonization of anybody talking about principled economic boycott of Israel for any reasons. Not just brand name “BDS” but anyone who entertains the concept of economic boycott as a form of free speech and legitimate political protest. I don’t think Ally Fernandez or the students of Open Hillel hate Judaism, Jews or Israel. One bit. I think Ally Fernandez acts out of love not hate.

            Reply to Comment
          • Firentis

            Except as she stated she is a JVP leader, an organization that has the terrorists who murder Jewish civilians as headline speakers. But I am sure they murder out of love.

            She is a member and leader of organizations with a visceral hatred of Israel. Your claim to the contrary is just plainly stupid.

            Reply to Comment
          • JeffB

            @Ben

            So how is it that sanctions against Israel would be treating it not like any other normal country?

            If the debate the United States were a sort of far off self interested measured debate involving USA interests and depersonalized it would be treating Israel like a normal country. Sanctioning Israel in theory isn’t a problem. The problem is the context in which this debate is occurring.

            For one thing I’ve never heard of the USA advocating the population of a country be replaced with a foreign hostile population. Certainly we are regularly involved in regime changes all over the planet. But we don’t tend to get involved in wholesale population replacement operations (often it does happen like Hawaii) and I’ve never heard of us sanctioning a country till they agree to submit to such an operation. So BDS demands in that respect, are completely out of line with USA policies.

            Moreover in practice when countries that are cooperative to the United States are mean to other countries that aren’t cooperative we don’t tend to sanction them. Similarly with internal ethnic minorities we don’t tend to care much. So for example the Turks are miserable to their kurdish population and have been for quite a while. The USA sided against the kurds prior to Turkey picking an Islamist government and even with the kurds fully supporting us in Iraq we are still quite reluctant to even inadvertently advance Kurdish independence in Turkey. So if I’m thinking of this strictly as an American, I don’t see how it is the USA’s interest one way or another whether the West Bankers have an independent country or live in Israel, are oppressed or are treasured. Why would we care?

            But more than all that the whole debate doesn’t feel like a typical sanctions debate. There are USA sanctions we have I’m opposed to (I agreed with Putin on Crimea for example). There are sanctions I favor (the Russian sanctions for running an intelligence op against our country for example). Those debates happen regularly without all the ferocious emotion that Israel / Palestine engenders. The only time I’ve ever had a debate on sanctions other than I/P where there was name calling and other things was during the 1990s with respect to Serbia and that was once. The South Africa debate, which BDSers so love to compare themselves too, happened without all this passion. People who favored constructive engagement were able to talk to people who favored BDS without either side doubting the other’s integrity. It is my hope that before I die college students are able to treat Israel like a normal foreign country with ignorance and disinterest being the dominant emotion.

            I don’t think Ally Fernandez or the students of Open Hillel hate Judaism, Jews or Israel. One bit. I think Ally Fernandez acts out of love not hate.

            And your evidence for this is what? She’s a self proclaimed Jewish SJPer. If she wanted to be in a group that advocates against the occupation but is still coming from a place of love, INN or JStreetU exist. Why would she pick SJP and ally herself with Israel’s enemies? We have this post where she talks about wanting to expel large numbers of rightwing Jews from Hillel. We have advocacy for liberal causes that have nothing to do with Judaism. So other than your bias that everyone on the hard left is a great person who spouts wisdom where do you have any evidence for benign motives? Principled motives perhaps, Americans who join anti-American groups like Al Qaeda or ISIS are principled, emotionally disturbed or both. But a place of love?

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            There is a strong argument that the United state’s image and reputation for supporting the oppression of the Palestinians, via its pretty much unconditional backing of Israel right or wrong, does hurt the United State’s interests in the world.

            I think the BDS movement’s extremist and unsavory elements within have tainted it and unfortunately allowed Israel to successfully tar ALL efforts to put pressure on Israel by a principled and directed anti-occupation boycott of Israel–seen by many as an intervention saving Israel from itself (tough love).

            I think that all your comparisons of how boycott efforts and organizations such as JVP are uniquely emotional and fierce fails to take into account the 50-year length of the occupation and the suffering it causes, or Israel’s unstinting frustration of all other means to a solution over those years (I know you disagree but it is a widely held perception), or of the sense that time is running out after fifty years to save the situation from disaster, in other words the sense of urgency at this point in the evolution of this conflict.

            Reply to Comment
          • JeffB

            @Ben

            There is a strong argument that the United state’s image and reputation for supporting the oppression of the Palestinians, via its pretty much unconditional backing of Israel right or wrong, does hurt the United State’s interests in the world.

            True and the USA has pulled back from governments or organizations it sees as damaging its reputation. Latin America for example after Reagan we stopped supporting the Death Squads. But pulling back we didn’t however try an micromanage the crisis we just sort of let it play out. Generally those were governments that would fall without USA support. In the cases where the government is strong and bad on human rights.

            I think the BDS movement’s extremist and unsavory elements within have tainted it and unfortunately allowed Israel to successfully tar ALL efforts to put pressure on Israel by a principled and directed anti-occupation boycott of Israel–seen by many as an intervention saving Israel from itself (tough love).

            I would agree as did most of the left when BDS started becoming popular. Arguably the strategy Israel used with Fatah/Hamas with respect to armed resistance is the same strategy that they using diplomatically with anti-occupation/BDS and diplomatic pressure. The 3 BDS demands have made anti-occupation campaigns more complex. Groups can no longer claim solidarity with Palestinian demands and be simply anti-occupation. INN may have found a way to thread the needle but few other groups have.

            I think that all your comparisons of how boycott efforts and organizations such as JVP are uniquely emotional and fierce fails to take into account the 50-year length of the occupation and the suffering it causes,

            I’m American. We have campaigns involving every country on the planet many of whom are far worse. The Palestinian suffering pales in comparison to say the Congo, Sudan or Myanmar. You all aren’t breaking into the top 20. The degree of suffering doesn’t justify the passion. As for the 50 years there are all sorts of problems that have been much longer. Roma (of which we have 1m in America now) has been many centuries. The Irish debate where there are 40m Americans whose are here because of the suffering never had this degree of rudeness (though you did have direct American support for terrorism, which is another way to let off steam).

            Israel’s unstinting frustration of all other means to a solution over those years (I know you disagree but it is a widely held perception),

            I get that. But that sort of one sidedness is part of the problem. It is the norm to have people try and present overly simplistic pictures, it is not the norm for them to defend them when others introduce complexity. Generally they welcome a discussion where the problem even gets talked about. A debate on specifics is for most of these groups a good thing.

            or of the sense that time is running out after fifty years to save the situation from disaster, in other words the sense of urgency at this point in the evolution of this conflict.

            You wouldn’t pick a sanctions movement if it was urgent. You would aim for direct USA military intervention or at the very least CIA support (support for insurgents, terrorism…). Some of these situations involve ongoing genocides or mass starvation. Objectively it isn’t more urgent.

            ___

            You see what I mean. All of the excuses for the passion don’t add up. BTW thank you for being polite and measured in this post. It is nice that on this one you weren’t being overly passionate.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ben

            Not sure what you are saying but I would not call $38 billion over the next ten years or whatever “pulling back.”

            It is not for you to say Palestinian suffering pales in comparison. That displays to me a kind of contempt and a presumption that you know the suffering or that a world scale of suffering here is the point or a kind of excuse. It’s funny. You begrudge these activists’ passion and insinuate it must be pathological but AIPAC’s and assorted right wing American Jews’ fierce passion for the opposite case is entirely normal to you. The right tries incessantly to pathologize the left but it is hypocrisy. The other thing about this conflict is that its battle lines and its issues and the geography of it are much clearer and more sharply drawn and vivid and graspable and decidable and closer to Americans and Europeans than these murky oases of chaos in Congo, Sudan and Myanmar. Or Syria (out of which Ike52, by ignoring this, is always trying to make hay.) Same with the Roma. The Irish Troubles are a (another) facile analogy. I think you search for excusing analogies and they never really work. And sometimes in the case of Huguenots and Belorussians are much more problematic and more offensive. You thank me for being “polite” but you seem not to notice that although you went on another facile analogy trip here, you did not go the whole hog with telling me brutal persecution and forced hollowing out is a nifty problem-solving model. You will get my dander up every time you do that sort of thing. It gets me riled. With good reason.

            I think the perception that Israel has unstintingly frustrated real solutions in favor of a totally unnecessary Greater Israel land-grab is basically accurate. It is not “one-sided.” You are sliding into the time worn “even-handed” ruse. Your account of norms for tolerating complexity is completely belied by the recent US presidential election and again wants to make Israel the special victim it is not.

            It is not for you to judge suffering or urgency on a cold scale of your own making. To the feudal lord, the peasants’ hunger is never urgent. I read in this an ignorance or an indifference to what Israeli troops and settlers actually do to Palestinians. But plenty of awake and alert Israelis see the issue as at least as urgent as I do, and from the point of view of their own self-interest.

            Direct US military intervention? Excuse me but WHAT are you talking about? No one has ever thought the United States would calculate it in its interests to force a military solution in a harebrained crusading invasion of the Holy Land. Even GWB was not THAT stupid. And a US politician to the right of Bernie Sanders can’t even breathe the word “occupation” without having to crawl on his hands and knees and prostrate himself and abjectly beg forgiveness from a vulgar Las Vegas Casino magnate in his palace. And you want to talk about invading the Holy Land? Nor is the urgency I am talking about that kind of a direct US security issue. No CIA support for terrorism is needed or wanted. Simply withdrawing the UN veto and uniting with constructive Europeans and not giving Israel the special pass it gets would be more than enough. But that gets us back to the unhealthy relationship between Israel and the United States at which these US Jews advocating boycott are taking aim. They know the score.

            Where you see excuses for inappropriate passion I see such things as Israeli smugness, entitlement, self-righteousness, arrogance, obtuseness, and occupier’s logic – Gideon Levy is an expert on this. I just posted his “heartfelt apology” two or three times here—you might read it.

            Reply to Comment
          • JeffB

            @Ben

            Not sure what you are saying but I would not call $38 billion over the next ten years or whatever “pulling back.”

            I wouldn’t either. The point was that when the USA became angered at the humans rights PR damage that client states are causing they usually pull back, not micromanage. Which is different than how Israel is treated. Israel is still a client state.

            It is not for you to say Palestinian suffering pales in comparison.

            Of course it is. As an American I have to weigh all these many competing groups that demand changes in policy due to human rights concerns and decide if I take them seriously enough to want a change in American disposition. If you are going to argue that the Palestinian situation is uniquely horrible then it gets compared by objective criteria to all the other situations in the world, and is found wanting.

            but AIPAC’s and assorted right wing American Jews’ fierce passion for the opposite case is entirely normal to you.

            Yes. We have all sorts of partisan causes here. I grew up watching Americans support the IRA because their families hated Queen Victoria. I watched the congressional black caucus fierce work against South Africa. Our politics in Florida is completely warped by Cuban American’s hatred of the Castro regime. etc… There is nothing abnormal about AIPAC. American Jews love their home country and wish to support her.

            Direct US military intervention? Excuse me but WHAT are you talking about?

            I’m talking about how the USA handles urgent human rights issues it considers serious enough to intervene in. We don’t impose mild sanctions. We either ignore or fix urgent problems. The fact you are reacting the way you are shows the Palestine situation isn’t really urgent. I’ll be having more or less the same silly debates in 5 years time.

            Gideon Levy is an expert on this. I just posted his “heartfelt apology” two or three times here—you might read it.

            I did. It is another contradictory rant. Besides it is off topic to how Americans should respond. Levy is an Israeli. He isn’t confronted with hundreds of country’s problems, he only has to deal with a handful. If we are talking (non-Jewish, non-Palestinian) Americans then Palestine doesn’t start as anything more than just one of the many.

            And a US politician to the right of Bernie Sanders can’t even breathe the word “occupation” without having to crawl on his hands and knees and prostrate himself and abjectly beg forgiveness from a vulgar Las Vegas Casino magnate in his palace.

            Total nonsense. Obama and Kerry both used the word plenty.

            Your account of norms for tolerating complexity is completely belied by the recent US presidential election

            No it isn’t. The people who voted for Trump generally aren’t involved in foreign policy debates. The don’t attend the Brookings Institute, Center for American Progress, … events and take part in the debate. Trump is an exceptional disaster where our non-college educated population voted en masse for a particular candidate and thus tilted a mostly balanced scale, which I hope is a one time failure of the system. But at least currently he is not norm for how these debates are handled.

            Reply to Comment
    5. Andrew

      The organization the writer supports, Jewish Voice for Peace just recently honored and celebrated a terrorist murderer of two innocents. Notwithstanding the writer’s enormous sense of self righteousness, she is working toward the elimination of Israel and the creation of another Judenrein Arab/Islamic state where Jews are not allowed to live, women are oppressed, gays are murdered and religious minorities persecuted or killed. The writer of this article should not be allowed to visit a country she wants to destroy.

      Reply to Comment
      • JeffB

        @Andrew

        Worse than merely JVP she’s SJP. At least for American Jews on college campus trying to avoid harassment and intimidation: JVP is merely allied with the enemy while SJP is the enemy.

        Reply to Comment
    6. carmen

      The indignation and moralizing expressed by zionists wrt ‘Arab/Islamic state where Jews are not allowed to live, women are oppressed, gays are murdered and religious minorities persecuted or killed’ while at the same time defending and lobbying for continuation of the apartheid state of israel is hysterical and shows zionists have no sense of irony or are masters of it. Attempting to conflate very serious discussion and critique of the zionist enterprise with wanting to destroy it is ludicrous. The end of zionism isn’t the end of the jewish people, only the end of a racist, xenophobic, ethnoreligious state that represents the antithesis of judaism, to this young woman and many others. The end of zionism would free not only the victims of zionism but the zionists themselves and jews all over the world. Of course the zionist state sees this as their destruction; so did white south africans and yet they are living in a more just country than before. Everyone isn’t happy, but the majority are. Zionists need to embrace being just like everyone else and that’s going to be tough pill to swallow but the end will justify the means and a democratic secular state with equal rights for all is the only future possible because the current situation is not only immoral but untenable as well. I am not interested in the arguments – it’s nothing more than wash, rinse, repeat, the same tired hasbara that hasn’t changed significantly over 70 years. This is 2017 people. The Palestinians had nothing to do with the holocaust and the holocaust has nothing to do with 2017.

      Reply to Comment
      • Itshak Gordin Halevy

        Carmen,
        You do not understand anything in the Judaism and the Zionism. Zionism and Israel are the biggest and the only success of the 20th century. And we are at the beginning only.

        Reply to Comment
        • carmen

          “Zionism and Israel are the biggest and the only success of the 20th century.”

          I take it you’ve never driven a car, been vaccinated, needed antibiotics, watched television or listened to the radio. Greatest achievements of the 20th century | CJOnline.com
          cjonline.com/stories/121299/mcc_achievements.shtml

          Reminder to me: https://pics.me.me/arguing-with-idiots-is-sun-gazing-com-like-playing-chess-with-a-7743622.png

          Reply to Comment
          • Itshak Gordin Halevy

            Yes, absolutely. Israel is a huge success. It is in the top twenty countries in the world for its economy. A pride to all real Jews. When we look to Arab-Muslims countries we do not know if we have to laugh or to cry..

            Reply to Comment
    7. JeffB

      Can someone check the moderation queue. I had written a response to Ally, I then reposted. You can delete this message after those get through.

      Reply to Comment
      • carmen

        You might get better service if you say ‘supersize me and extra cheez’.

        Reply to Comment
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