END OF YEAR COMMENT
by Alan Simons
SEPTEMBER 28, 2011 – From “A” for Ahmadinejad, to “U” for the UN Human Rights Council, the year 5771 can best be summed up in the words of Winston Churchill. “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”
This past year, truth has had a particularly difficult time defending itself from all the Holocaust deniers, antisemitic activists, virulent Jew haters and despots of this world. In addition, as Jews we have spent so much of our energy defending our actions with each other, that we have lost sight of the big picture. As Melanie Phillips, British journalist and author has remarked on several ocassions, we “have been outclassed and outmaneuvered.”
To quote: “As we all know by now, Israel has lost the battle for public opinion in the west. Even the Israel government is now acknowledging this fact. Israel and its defenders have been outclassed and outmaneuvered in a war of the mind being waged on a battleground it never even acknowledged it was on.”
Perhaps, just perhaps, it will be different in 5772. One would think that a difference of some 4,340 years between us and the majority of our adversaries would give us some distinct advantage. By all accounts, it hasn’t! The so-called Arab Spring has literally enthused, nay mesmerized Jew haters, who now see it as their democratic right to denounce everything and everyone associated with Jews, as the evil, bloodthirsty Zionist aggressors of this world. Nowhere is this more apparent than on social media and internet sites, including You Tube.
Outclassed and outmaneuvered
Simply put, without eloquent and powerful leaders in Israel and in the diaspora to neutralize our opponents, we are now seen by enemies and friends alike as being lost in the wilderness. In the eyes of others, we have become vulnerable and complacent.
During 5771, while our foes mocked us, we suffered a wimp-like inability to communicate and act in a forthright manner. It’s been said that our words have lost their resonance and our style and tone has offended. We have asserted when we should have informed. We rejected when we should have interjected. We pushed our friends away when we should have pulled them in. We have yet to learn that non-Jews do not want to hear our complaints; they want to know our solutions. We have shied away from verbal altercation in preference to closed-door meetings with each other. We have lost the skill to effectively communicate to others, which in the past we took as a given.
For the most part today, it has been the language of two devoted Muslims, one living in Canada, the other in the USA, to which we should now earnestly listen. Tarek Fatah and Dr. Zuhdi Jasser are part of a new breed of communicators who are unashamedly forthright in their opposition to Islamic fundamentalism and to the despots whose mission it is to stir up hatred against us.
Earlier this year, a few days after five of the Fogel family were murdered in Israel, Hassan Nasrallah, Secretary General of Hezbollah was allegedly quoted as saying: “We have discovered how to hit the Jews where they are most vulnerable. The Jews love life, so that is what we will take from them. We are going to win, because they love life and we love death.”
There is an old Arab saying: “Every sun has to set.” In 5772, let us be unreservedly clear in making sure the sun sets for the last time on the Nasrallahs of this world.
Shana tova u’metuka. I wish you a year of good health, happiness, prosperity and yes, peace.