We Are Settlers: Plain and Simple
Those of us who are Orthodox Jews and live in Israel have another reason in addition to the others. We chose the place we live based on the religious commandment to settle the land of Israel. (yeah, that word isn’t an epithet, it is something to be proud of!) Those of us who live in Yehuda and the Shomron (Judea and Samaria) and those who used to live in Gush Katif chose to make their homes there because they thought they were taking this commandment to the next level – settling the parts of Israel that have been lost to Jews for centuries. It is hard to explain the deep emotional pain of losing this.Instead, here is a better idea: instead of ranting against the Israelis for building and expanding "settlements," how about restoring all the money and property confiscated and stolen outright by the Arab regimes which expelled the millions of Jews from their lands? How about the millions of Jewish refugees? Why has there not been a global outcry against that? I'll tell you why; because the Jews handled their refugees by themselves, without whining to the world (which didn't offer help nor could they care less) and expecting handouts; because the Jews pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and created a modern, thriving twentieth-century country in the middle of a backward region with mainly repressive at best, or barbaric at worst Arab cultures which are still back in the 11th century (ok, some might be 15th century).What, you don't believe the story of Jewish refugees? (I mean, who ever heard of a Jewish refugee? That would make the Jews as VICTIMS rather than the PERPETRATOR, and we can't have that, can we...) Then read this excerpt from a story by a former Jewish refugee from Iraq:
In discussions about refugees in the Middle East, a major piece of the narrative is routinely omitted, and my life is part of the tapestry of what's missing. I am a Jew, and I, too, am a refugee. Some of my childhood was spent in a refugee camp in Israel (yes, Israel). And I am far from being alone.This experience is shared by hundreds of thousands of other indigenous Jewish Middle Easterners who share a similar background to my own. However, unlike the Palestinian Arabs, our narrative is largely ignored by the world because our story -- that of some 900,000 Jewish refugees from Arab countries dispossessed by Arab governments -- is an inconvenience for those who seek to blame Israel for all the problems in the Middle EastYou can read the rest of her story here. There is also an advocacy website for the plight of the forgotten Jewish refugees, called Jimena.The time has come for the United States and the world to cut out the irresponsible tirade against Israel for continuing the "settlements," and allow--nay, support Israel in continuing to build a thriving, modern, free land of Israel--by supporting the expansion of existing settlements and the creation of new ones, to be the future Tel-Avivs in the JEWISH State.
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