Op-Ed: Celebrate Israel Parade, an Expression of Zionist Pride
Ron JagerThe writer, a 25-year veteran of the I.D.F., served as a field mental health officer. Prior to retiring in 2005, served as the Commander of the Central Psychiatric Military Clinic for Reserve Soldiers at Tel-Hashomer. Since retiring from active duty, he provides consultancy services to NGO’s implementing Psycho trauma and Psycho education programs to communities in the North and South of Israel. He is currently a strategic advisor at the Office of the Chief Foreign Envoy of Judea and Samaria. To contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The preliminary goal of the de-legitimization and BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Boycott) movement is to isolate Israel, turning her into a pariah state in the International community. These efforts by NGO's in Israel, America, and Europe have fostered an international atmosphere that negates Israel's national and sovereign rights, rights that all nations of the world enjoy including the right to be heard.
Those very organizations that condone de-legitimization and BDS, whether knowingly or inadvertently, support the negation of Israel's national identity, the negation of Israel's history, and the negation of Israel's cultural heritage.
Let there be no doubt, the ultimate goal of these organizations is not national reconciliation, co-existence, nor peace but Politicide, which is defined as a gradual but systematic attempt to cause the annihilation of an independent political and social entity, in this case the State of Israel.
With this in mind, it seems somewhat suprising that the organizers of the Celebrate Israel Parade, scheduled for June 3, would allow organizations who have supported de-legitimization and BDS activities against the State of Israel to participate in the parade.
One doesn't have to scratch far below the surface to discover the total hypocrisy that these organizations preach at every opportunity. At a glance, they claim that they support Israel, but they rigorously advance the Arab historical myth.
Some of them view Israel as racist for affirmatively asserting her Jewish character, but fail to level the same criticism at the 22 Arab-Muslim states of the Middle East in which Jews either have no substantive rights or are not permitted to reside. They pontificate that Israel must recognize the dubious historical rights of the Palestinian Arabs, but do not insist with equal vigor on an Arab obligation to acknowledge Jewish historical claims. Moreover, they routinely equate Arab aggression and terror as morally equivalent to Israel's legitimate acts of self-defense.
Public hatred of Jews, the de-legitimization and demonization of Israel, anti-Semitism, and anti-Zionism have all become interchangeable and analogous terms. They have become acceptable politically correct superlatives in the international public discourse in recent years among Jewish organizations that claim to be pro-Israel and have been invited to participate in the Celebrate Israel Parade.
There are some things that cannot be condoned by those still claiming to be within the pro-Israel camp.
However, I would be the first to agree to the definition of the term pro-Israel, meaning, for example, that it does not require anyone to be a cheerleader for the "settlers". One need not be pro-settlements or anti-settlements or espouse any particular position that divides Israelis and American Jews.
But there are some things that cannot be condoned by those still claiming to be within the pro-Israel camp. One of them is to adopt rhetoric that apes the efforts of Israel-haters to delegitimize supporters of Israel and which adopts the classic themes of anti-Semitism. The other is to espouse neutrality about attempts to wage economic warfare on Israel via the BDS movement that calls for Americans to boycott, divest and sanction the Jewish state.
It is vital to acknowledge that the destruction of Israel itself has become the true goal of these organizations; not the settlers, not the occupation, and certainly not the supporters of Israel’s current government and the right of its people to have their democratic verdict respected abroad.
With all of this in mind, it seems astonishing that the organizers of the Celebrate Israel Parade have consistently ignored calls to prevent organizations that condone de-legitimization and BDS of Israel to continue and participate year after year.
A New York based organization called JCCWatch.org has taken the lead in efforts to persuade parade organizers to refrain from allowing these organizations from marching.
The New Israel Fund (NIF), a major funder of organizations that condone and at times even participate in de-legitimization and BDS activities in Israel and throughout the Western World. continues to participate in the parade.
This continues, despite their continuing funding of organizations such as Machsom Watch, Coalition of Women for Peace, Women Against Violence, Mossawa, B'Tselem, Partners for Progressive Israel and Rabbis for Human Rights. These organizations have in recent years appeared as if they represent the enemies of Israel., falsely and maliciously accusing the I.D.F. of conducting War Crimes, advocating the Palestinian Arab right of return, and calling Israel a "giant ghetto" for its Arab citizens - and this is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how Israel is daily defamed and maligned, leading to sanctions and boycotts.
Unfortunately, the JCC efforts have fallen on deaf ears, leaving no room for dialogue and no objective examination of the claims made by JCCWatch.com.
Professor Judea Pearl, President of the Daniel Pearl Foundations has stated that "Jews are a nation bonded by a common history and a common historical narrative. If we forget that narrative, gone is our Jewishness. Throughout our history, the driving engine of survival has been the hope for returning to sovereignty in the birthplace of our history—Eretz Israel. The State of Israel is the culmination of this dream, and also the crucible in which Jewish heritage attains its full expression and comes to life through the resuscitating touch of normalcy".
Those who do not see Israel as the central piece of Jewish life are not pro-Israel.
Allowing organizations that have disavowed the significance of 80 generations and the realization of a spiritual and cultural light that radiates to the nations of the world cannot be called pro-Israel.
One cannot be considered Pro-Israel and at the same time assist those harming and isolating Israel as she meets the challenges of tomorrow.
This should be the single criteria for participating in the Celebrate Israel Parade.