Home on kibbutz Be'eri after massacre
Home on kibbutz Be'eri after massacreEdi Israel / Flash 90
Jewish history is really moving very fast.

In israel daily we wake up to soldiers being killed nearly every morning we see the faces and scan for names we know. More stories emerging daily of rape, of butchery. Of terrible things which our people have gone through.

ZAKA volunteer Simcha Greiniman recently gave a heart wrenching interview noting when he was working on cleaning up from the massacre at Kibbutz Beeri he found a birthday cake on a table.

As he said, A cake is supposed to be something happy. But we didn’t come to eat cake, we came to take care of bodies. My eyes went looking for pictures of the family who lived in that house and who should have been celebrating.” He then described a very strong smell of burnt flesh emanating from the house’s safe room. When he turned on his flashlight upon entering the pitch-dark room, he found charred remains. “Everything was connected, glued together. At the top, there were three adult-sized skulls and at the bottom two small skulls attached. They were burnt to death while hugging each other—it was extremely hard to take them apart.”

These were the skulls of two children, their parents and grandmother, who all lived in the house. The horror cannot be imagined. There are so many similar stories which were perpetrated upon us.

This is a Holocaust.

October 7, 2023, brought us a Holocaust which continues. The barbarity of it. We fight we fight, and this war is because we are Jewish. A war on the Jews in Israel. A war which sees us fighting for our existence in Israel and fighting all over the world just because we are Jews.

And in the United States it has become a dark time to be Jewish. From street protests to universities to day-to-day life, we see a hostile environment. In New York City, Hamas supporters shut down the streets calling for an intifada. We walk the streets, and we know what an intifada means and what an intifada is.

Business organizations like Young Presidents Organization, one of the world’s most powerful business organizations, shamefully refuse to condemn Hamas. Their concern for worldwide members leaves them unwilling to simply stand against child killers, rapists and murderers. It's simply not politically correct for YPO to condemn Hamas.

In NYC, they hold protests like this weeks’ “Flood JFK for Gaza” protest—using the same language, “flood,” as Hamas did on Oct. 7—releasing balloons floating above the airport, similar to how Hamas has launched incendiary balloons at Israel from Gaza. No arrests were made.

Jews do not feel safe in New York despite valiant political speeches.

It’s a tough time. At my daughter’s university, a major school in the Northeast, there are classes being taught on Palestinian Arab resistance and liberation. Before signing up for classes students need to be sure there aren’t anti-Semitic teachers teaching classes which have nothing to do with politics. This is life as a Jew in America. The diaspora is a dark place for Jews now.

18 year old Violet Affleck, Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck’s daughter, wore a sweatshirt depicting a watermelon symbol, and the sweatshirt erased the entire country of Israel. This shirt today effectively symbolizes support for Hamas, support for the rape and murder on October 7th.

From a public relations perspective, one wonders would Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck be quiet if their child publicly wore hateful clothing towards any other group of people? Where does Violet Affleck want the Jews to go? Where should we go if her dream of from the river to the sea is ever accomplished? What would be the response of the general public if she wore a shirt against any other ethnic community?

And yet this has come and passed with no controversy beyond a few posts. The lack of public response and a statement from Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner is simply shameful. Why is the community so silent on this issue? There is no nuance in calling for hostages who were kidnapped in their homes to be released. No nuance in saying that rape is wrong. Wearing a shirt depicting the end of the Jewish state is simply Anti-Semitic. Silence from public figures is not ok.

And across multiple fronts there are different ways to fight. Jewish communal activist, Rabbi Avi Weiss, often compares the Jewish community to a symphony orchestra, in which there are drummers, flautists, violinists, and so on. Similarly, many in the community play different roles so that it will function at its best. Each has his unique place in the orchestra. It’s important to remember this.

And yet for many American Jews, there remains such a political correctness. A refusal to fight and to scream and to yell. Nice behavior rules the day. Many of our kids simply lack the fighting spirit for a counter offensive to quell the hatred and prejudice around them...

Jews must remember heroes like Ze’ev Jabotinsky who taught us “We were not created in order to teach morals and manners to our enemies. Let them learn these things for themselves before they establish relations with us. We want to hit back at anybody who harms us. Whoever does not repay a blow by a blow is also incapable of repaying a good deed in kind. Only something who can hate his enemies can be a faithful friend to those who love him.”

We are in a war for our survival.

Ronn Torossian is an American-Israeli entrepreneur and executive.