The Importance of Israel

In recent years, there are many voices against the existence of the State of Israel. Some people go to great length to “logically” explain why Israel should not exist. For me, a descendant of holocaust survivors such question does not exist. The State of Israel is essential for every Jew in the world. Even those who do not see themselves as such need it.

When I first came to the US over 30 years ago, an old jewish physicist took me in his office, and explained what the establishment of Israel did to American Jewery. Until Israel, he said, we were very shy about being Jewish. Once Israel came into existence we became proud. All of the sudden we were part of a nation. We may choose to never even visit Israel, but Israel is there. It is our second home, our refuge.

In western and northern Europe today anti-semitism is raising its ugly head. In most of Western Europe a Jew has to hide his Judaism to be safe. Being an eternal optimist, I believe that it will pass. However, being a realist I KNOW that it will develop in other places. In the US and in South Africa it is already developing. Hungary, Poland, and the rest of Eastern Europe are not far behind. In other words, there is always going to be somewhere in the world where Jews are persecuted.

I cannot imagine being a Jew in France today without the knowledge that I could always seek shelter in Israel. Without the State of Israel the jews in France would be desperate.

One might say: “I am not really Jewish. I will go to Poland, merry a Polish spouse and live as Polish national.” History proved repeatedly that while one may not consider himself jewish, anti-semitism always finds a way of locating him. It is impossible to escape your heritage.

For all the “Post Zionists”, and “Anti-Zionists” who are Jews or Israelis, the message is clear: you are cutting the brunch you are sitting on, and you reducing your own survival potential.

Israel has had good government and bad governments. Morally, we do not always have the upper hand. However, we are here to stay. We are here not only for ourselves, but for every Jew in the world. It is our right, but more, it is our duty.

This is not a political statement about right or left, or about the Palestinian people and their rights.

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