A writer tells of two Israel-related protests, one for and one against.
Even the darkness could not completely disguise the hatred that emanated from the anti-Israel protestors who were on the way to join the protest and passed by us. We stood just near the crosswalk, so people faced our “We Stand with Israel” signs and the American Flag we held.
I thought to myself, “What an eloquent statement, an appropriate way to greet!” One protestor could not hold back and repeated “SHAME, SHAME.” Another joined in chanting “Children Murderers, Occupiers.” The first continued “Shame, Shame.” How ironic from those who condone using babies as human shields.
Slightly later, another woman became furious. She warned me, lest I was confused, “USA IS NOT ISRAEL.” She, too, like the man who repeated SHAME earlier, chanted her anti-Israel mantra with a practiced ease time after time. I imagine my smile irritated her as much or more than the flag and sign I carried. Just being there was all it took.
Having just returned from a mission to Israel, I still felt the remnants of jetlag. I could not fathom the reason for their vitriolic protest, or even why it was being held on this particular Monday afternoon when most people are not even in Los Angeles. A fellow reporter stopped to ask me why do we stand here. I replied that Israel is the last fortress standing in the way of radical Islam’s expansion to conquer the world, so for our own sake, we must support her.
The region is reaching a boiling point, I said, and the rattles we now feel are just precursors to an imminent major explosion. Iran’s evil tentacles have already spread via Iraq, Syria and parts of Israel to either side of the Mediterranean, like claws holding the sea from North and South. If Israel falls, the USA is next in line. For the sake of both, I said, we must stand strong together. For America’s sake, we must make our position clear and visible.
I can’t claim to understand the hatred that many in the middle east feel towards Israel; I can’t even fathom that sort of hatred, no matter how I try to explain to myself the problems in the region and that the people are looking desperately for a scapegoat. But I know, regardless of what I do and don’t understand, that there is nothing acceptable about the attitudes displayed by the anti-Semitic side.