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On the left, everything is violence, except violence against Jews, which is justified

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There is an old Jewish joke: Mort and Saul are shot and asked if they have any last requests. Saul says he would like a cigarette. Mort then reprimands him: “Why are you making trouble?

Well, it’s time to stir up trouble.

Here’s the good news: Some people are starting to think that the anti-Semitism evident since Hamas’s brutal attack on Israel on October 7 may be a little too much. Universities, businesses, politicians and even celebrities find themselves under justified pressure to address an alarming increase in attacks against Jews across the country. You’re starting to see the impact: the elites of our major institutions have clearly noticed and are taking steps to try to get on the right side. But they will try badly and we must not let them.

Here’s what you’re about to see: They will start by including people wearing kippahs on their recruiting webpage. They will publicly celebrate a Jewish holiday, one of the easiest, like Hannukah. They will issue empty statements denouncing anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in the same breath, and remind you that people don’t necessarily represent the actions of their government, so don’t hate Jews for the evil Israel does.

Above all, they will constantly attempt to drive a wedge between Jews and their homeland, because even though they agree that the Jewish people should not be attacked, they either believe or are afraid to oppose anti-Semitism and poisoned anti-Zionism. which led to the attacks in the first place.

They will try to do what they have always done, which is walk a fine line and appease as many camps as possible – those chanting for Jewish genocide, as well as their targets; those who spread misinformation about “colonialism” – and those who are attacked for being labeled as such.

Vehicles burned in Ashkelon following a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip into Israel on October 7, 2023. Barrages of rockets were fired into Israel from the blockaded Gaza Strip at dawn as activists from the Palestinian enclave were infiltrating Israel.
AHMAD GHARABLI/Getty Images

They will attempt to draw fragile parallels between those who spew anti-Semitic smears and those who wave an Israeli flag. Some may even try to appease by elevating the fringe voices of anti-Zionist Jews, who represent a tiny fraction of Jews and whose main goal is to serve as a fig leaf for anti-Semites.

In a way, we saw it coming, although none of us could have predicted his utter shamelessness. We should have known when Yasser Arafat became the It Girl of campus fashion that this was going to be trouble. For years we have witnessed anti-Israel incitement on campus and online, emanating from far-left ideology that embraces political Islamism, coupled with the narcissistic desire of young American activists to awkwardly place their own perceived struggle – whether it’s trans lives or climate justice. which adds to thousands of years of conflict in the Middle East.

With the rise of identity politics, progressivism, and social media, the Overton Window has changed so much that in some circles the right of a sovereign nation to exist and the lives of its people are actually up for debate. And now, as the hatred and violence engendered by anti-Zionist rhetoric increases, our elite institutions will take the easy way out, using meaningless gestures or sweeping statements that offend no one – that don’t offend no one. I’m not telling the truth.

This is how we got here: because no one thought that lying even a little bit about the humanity of the Jews and the legitimacy of Israel would lead to this.

Don’t let them pretend. Don’t let them lie. Demand that Zionist voices be heard, and yes, proudly reclaim the Z-word.

Demand opportunities to explain why Israel must defend itself.

silence is violence
A friend and relatives hold portraits of Israeli hostages Liri Albag (left) and Daniela Gilboa (center), kidnapped by Palestinian militants during the October 7 attack and currently detained in the Gaza Strip, during a rally calling for the release of hostages, in Tel Aviv on November 4, 2023. Israel says at least 242 hostages were captured by Hamas militants who left Gaza almost a month ago, killing 1,400 people – mostly civilians – in the deadliest assault on the nation since its founding in 1948.
AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP via Getty Images

Demand an end to incitement to hatred using calls for extermination that fit perfectly on a protest sign or hashtag.

Demand that the Israeli flag and its people not be erased – from classes, from cultural events, from discussions – because it is simply too “polarizing.”

Demand that words be restored to their meaning, words like genocide, war crimes, colonialism, Nazis – thrown at Jews without any evidence and without any impunity.

Demand that administrators not give in to intolerant and hateful voices simply because they shout the loudest about a perceived offense, while the rest of us – Jews and anyone with a modicum of common sense – must pay the price.

Whatever you do, don’t stoop to their level by whining, lying, and throwing tantrums to get what you want. They can criticize Israel all you want, but demand that those criticisms be based on facts and not simplistic TikTok videos. They can and should feel sadness for the Palestinians facing a crisis, but demand that they understand that Hamas bears responsibility, not you.

Feel free to reject anything that fails to create a safe environment. The worst thing that could happen has already happened. Remember, university administrators, DEI professionals, various celebrities and media figures have created this environment, and they are now being presented with a perfect opportunity to put these ideals to the test.

After all, they are the ones who told us that disinformation was dangerous, but who let lies about “ethnic cleansing” and “genocide” run wild.

They have created seminars on the harms of victim blaming, but do not hesitate to add “yes, but” to the events of October 7.

They told you to believe all women, but they will reject eyewitness accounts (and videos and confessions!) of brutal rapes of Israeli women by Hamas.

They celebrate intersectionality, but find the murders of 1,400 Jews, Arabs, Druze, Muslims and Christians too controversial to condemn.

They explained to you how words are violence, while protecting those who pass by your houses chanting “Intifada”.

They post their pronouns in an effort to be inclusive of those they consider marginalized, but remember, a poster of a kidnapped 86-year-old woman might offend someone.

They will encourage you to speak up if you hear a microaggression, but won’t raise your voice for babies locked in closets for hours with the bodies of their murdered parents.

It turns out that everything is violence except actual violence.

Jews have suffered so much this month that it shouldn’t be too difficult to have the courage to call meaningless actions bullshit. October 7 was probably the most black and white moral choice since World War II; so many people in our lives have failed – not just us but humanity.

We’ve seen friends reject the slaughter of our people, co-workers question whether we have a right to live, and our favorite celebrities share propaganda that an Israeli 5th grader with a map could refute. When given the chance to live by the ideals they claim to uphold – compassion, peace, empathy – many have chosen to simply change their ideals.

Hopefully, more Americans will also come to see what many Jews are beginning to see now: None of this ever made sense.

Yael Bar tur is an Israeli social media consultant based in New York and a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.