Response to JK Rowling

Varda Epstein,

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צילום: ערוץ 7
Varda Epstein
Varda Meyers Epstein is an expatriate, third-generation born Pittsburgher (on her mother"s mother"s side), having made Aliyah in 1979. A blogger with twin interests in Middle East politics and parenting education, Varda serves as a Communications Writer at Kars4Kids, a nonprofit organization that underwrites educational initiatives for children, and blogs at the Kars4Kids blog, an educational blog for parents. A mother of 12 children, Varda began her writing career after the birth of her youngest child in 2000. Her work can be seen on many websites including Arutz Sheva, Huffington Post, the Jerusalem Post, The Jewish Press, Kveller,, YNet, and Israellycool. She enjoys bragging to Pittsburghers (no one else understands) about her distinguished Pittsburgh lineage and writing legacy, as maternal niece of the late, great, one-of-a-kind Myron Cope, sports writer and color commentator for the Steelers....
JK Rowling

Featureflash /

Anti-Israel sentiment is so strong that when a major personality speaks up in favor of Israel, it is a big deal. Especially since that personality is likely to be inundated with nasty responses and may even take a hit financially. So Harry Potter lovers were overjoyed to discover that JK Rowling was among the signatories on a recent letter rejecting cultural boycotts of Israel.

Jews who love Israel were prepared to make JK Rowling their darling, even if like me, they aren't really into Harry Potter.

And then came the blow: the qualifying remarks which proved that, far from sympathetic, JK Rowling is a vicious Jew-hater who holds only one side's feet to the fire: those of the victims. In other words, it's Israel's fault, says Rowling, that Arabs are dying.

That Jews are dying in a current wave of Arab terror is meaningless to her. This is clear from the fact that she does not reference this in her apologia, a very long explanation as to why her signature on that letter is not to be mistaken as an ex‎pression of sympathy for Israel.

Au contraire.

Here is the meat of her reasoning:

"The Palestinian community has suffered untold injustice and brutality. I want to see the Israeli government held to account for that injustice and brutality. Boycotting Israel on every possible front has its allure. It satisfies the human urge to do something, anything, in the face of horrific human suffering.

What sits uncomfortably with me is that severing contact with Israel’s cultural and academic community means refusing to engage with some of the Israelis who are most pro-Palestinian, and most critical of Israel’s government. "

In other words, Rowling wants to encourage Jew-hating Jewish Israelis who damn their own people and ignore their suffering, thus strengthening the hand of Arab terror by giving the terrorists a pass for their brutal be‎havior.  Rowling wants to make Arab terror about something else: lack of hope, terrible treatment, humiliation, the usual lies. Instead of what it's really about: plain old, garden variety Jew-hatred.

Well, here is my response to Rowling, for what it's worth:

"This was a disappointing post because it is both one-sided and biased. This, in particular, is heartless in not understanding where the violence comes from, to whom it is directed toward, and where the responsibility lies: 'The Palestinian community has suffered untold injustice and brutality. I want to see the Israeli government held to account for that injustice and brutality.'

Why? There was no Israel in 1929, when Arabs were incited to murder Jews by the Mufti of Jerusalem, for supposedly attempting to take over the Al Aqsa Mosque. My husband's cousin Yaakov Wexler was among the many Jews murdered in that terror spree.

Who do you hold responsible for that? Is that Israel's fault, too? Even though the State had not yet been created?

Was it just when Arab terrorists murdered Eitam and Naama Henkin in front of their four small children? Who do you hold to account for that?

Was it just when Arabs went into a synagogue and axed to death several rabbis? Who do you hold to account for that? Whose brutality was that?

Was it just when an Arab terrorist drove over Rabbi Krichevsky in Jerusalem and then subsequently hacked at him with [an axe]? Was this brutal? Who bears responsibility for this attack?

The Israeli government bears no responsibility for Arab terror. People like you, absolutely do, as [public figures], giving terrorists a free pass to murder and maim Jews wherever they find them.

For some reason, people like you think that only Arabs are right and that Jews are always wrong. Else why would you blame the victims?

There is no excuse for wanton violence by Arabs against the Jews of Israel. A million times they could have sat and bargained for peace. A million times, Israel has given things up, has given up land, frozen settlements, thrown 11,000 Jews out of their homes.

And all we get is terror. And people like you who give them a pass and have the fame to make such statements stand.

You could have used your fame for good.

Too bad."