Thursday, November 15, 2012

Open letter to Israel`s PM

Sent through the contact form at the website.


I am writing this with deep sorrow. Here we go again, another round of violence. 

For the record: my background is Dutch, with a father whose mother was Jewish. I grew up with love and admiration for Israel. Hearing HaTikvah  gives me goosebumps. 

I am mentioning this because criticism of Israel is often dismissed as a manifestation of anti-Semitism. And indeed, that old scourge is thriving in certain circles under the PC guise of anti-Zionism. One sees it on forums: one moment the talk is about the evils of international capitalism, next thing everything is blamed on the Rothschild family, ergo blame the Jews. Around and around we go.

The present situation will no doubt provoke the usual posturing of innocent  little Israel, besieged by evil terrorists, bravely defending itself. 

I am sorry, but I don't buy it anymore. In many ways today's Palestinians are victimized like yesterday's Jews. There can be no security without peace, and no peace without justice. 

I am well aware that there has been intransigence aggravated by religious fervor on both sides. But with ongoing targeted assassinations, incursions into Gaza and continued so-called settlements in the West bank Israel has plenty to answer for.

In civil society we do not allow a child abuser to go unpunished because he was victimized as a child.

In the same spirit, Israel cannot keep referring to the all-too real Holocaust to justify its behaviour as an oppressive occupying force.

I wish you wisdom and strength in the coming days. But I warn you that you are rapidly losing international goodwill, even among people who would love to be your supporters. 


Ien van Houten-van der Hout, 
grand daughter of Esther van der Hout-Rood, great-grand daughter of Moses Marcus Rood and Esther Frank.


Ien van Houten said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Piper's Pal said...

In 1967 I was a naive 19 year old and was totally pro-Israel in its war with the Arabs. I had been brainwashed into believing that: Israel good; Arabs bad.

Over the ensuing years I have simply learned and observed too much to maintain that one-sided view. Facts and evidence trump propaganda and/or ideology every time with this cowboy.

Now, I get right tempted to call down a plague on both their houses, or at least those belonging to the leaders who refuse to make peace and get on with life. Both sides are guilty as hell in my view.

By the way I don't consider The Holocaust to be reason to give a "get out of jail free" card to either Israel or Jews in general.

Ien van Houten said...

" Facts and evidence trump propaganda and/or ideology every time with this cowboy." AMEN.
Ideology of any kind is deadly to any effort to create a better world.

Same here. In 1967 I gave blood to Israel, and was cheering them on. I got my first glimpse of the other side when a fellow student of my husband told me his sympathies were with the Arabs. He mentioned some things I had never known. I was alerted to the fact that I could not necessarily trust the mainstream media to present the whole picture.

Karyn said...

WOW....loved this post and if you allow I may steal a few sentences to use in study sessions and meetings. Hell I will use them even without your permission. They are sound thoughts. ....a plague on both their houses my favorite but I also will use a sentence that could apply to First Nations too, about the excuses..... Thanks and Blessings on you and those you love. I like your photo too, as it makes you look sweet peaceful.

Ien van Houten said...

Karyn, I'd be honoured if you used this! But I just changed a few sentences, please use the updated version, thanks.

troutbirder said...

My dyslectic fingers goofed. I'll try again... Wonderful blog. Concuring with your views and analysis about 95% of the time...:)

mel said...

Very interesting and well written. You didn't write anything that's not reality

Catherine said...

Well written and so valid in this situation. Thanks for sharing!