Monday, May 13, 2024

  • Monday, May 13, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

Every year for the past 23 years, even before I started this blog, I've written an essay for Yom HaAtzmaut entitled "Proud to Be a Zionist."  Here is the latest edition for 5784.

It is an understatement to say that this was a difficult year. 

The big problems from 12 months ago - when judicial reform seemed to be splitting the Jewish state - suddenly, in October, became very small problems. 

Now, Israel is in the midst of a seven front war.

Now, the main disagreement among Israelis is whether to prioritize a deal for hostages or to destroy Hamas. 

Now, even some of Israel's friends have faltered. 

Nevertheless, there is perhaps more to be proud of this year than any other. 

Once you filter out the propaganda and lies, it becomes readily apparent that Israel's conduct in the war has not just been moral - it has been exemplary. The large civilian death toll is awful, but it is entirely - and I mean entirely - because of Hamas using dead civilians as their major military strategy.  

Israel has succeeded far better than the best Western military experts predicted in October. Israel has innovated new techniques in tunnel warfare that other Western countries will be studying. Hamas fully expected that the IDF would leave them alone in their tunnels because the risk was too high - and Israel proved that it is possible to fight and prevail in even the most difficult combat conditions anyone ever imagined. 

That is because of Israeli creativity, Israeli genius and Israeli motivation to do what needs to be done to win.

As far as I can tell, every military expert who has given an opinion finds Israel's conduct in this war to be beyond anything they had seen before in terms of protecting civilian lives as well as in effectively fighting in an urban battlefield. I'll listen to them over "human rights" NGOs an day of the week.

Although I am not an Israeli, I am damned proud of the IDF and how it has fought this war.

The world sees an Israel filtered through the eyes of the media,  so-called "human rights" NGOs, Palestinian and other Arab antisemites, and "progressive" anti-Israel organizations on college campuses. 

The real Israel has no resemblance to the Israel one sees in the media or on campus placards.

The real Israel is messy and beautiful. It has diametrically opposed viewpoints and surprising amounts of consensus. It has passion and cynicism, the heights of joy and the depths of sadness, incredibly serious decisions that affect people's lives and black humor. And the morality that Judaism gave to the world is entrenched in everything most Israelis do. 

I am a proud Zionist and I embrace all of these. 

While Israel must never discriminate against its non-Jewish minorities, it is and must remain a Jewish state. That is what makes it special. It is the only place in the world where a Jew can be him or herself without apologetics, without explanation, without fear. I am still tickled when I visit and see so many tiny examples of living in a Jewish state - Talmudic expressions in graffiti, quotes from Tanach on the side of a delivery truck, buses whose electronic signs with everyone a happy holiday in Hebrew, the automatic "Shabbat Shalom" said by cashiers  and in emails on Fridays and "Shavua Tov" Israelis say on Saturday night. 

There is a reason that the expression "Shver tsu zayn a yid" (It is hard to be a Jew) is in Yiddish and not Hebrew. Because for all the problems in Israel, it is much easier to be a Jew in Hebrew-speaking Israel - even during wartime - than it ever was anywhere in the Diaspora. 

After a pause of a few decades, antisemitism is becoming mainstream again, often disguised as "progressivism" or "human rights" or whatever else is popular. This year that trend accelerated, powered by, of all things, a horrendous terror attack against Jews. And I am glad to know that no matter what happens elsewhere in the world, Israel is there and will welcome me. 

Israel is wonderful. Israel is maddening. Israel is glorious. Israel is frustrating. The real Israel is filled with Jews who want to do the right thing, and disagree strongly and passionately on what that is. The reason they can be so earnest, so loud and so argumentative is because they are all family - and people are more comfortable raising their voices at their own family members than at strangers. When a soldier falls, every Israeli mourns. 

Right now Israelis are fighting together - Mizrahi with Ashkenazi, Druze with Jews, religious with secular, women with men. The unity in the field will hopefully transition to peacetime. 

May we have a complete victory and may it bring in a real peace. 

Am Yisrael Chai!

Buy the EoZ book, PROTOCOLS: Exposing Modern Antisemitism  today at Amazon!

Or order from your favorite bookseller, using ISBN 9798985708424. 

Read all about it here!




EoZ Book:"Protocols: Exposing Modern Antisemitism"


EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz





For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts in recent years


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 19 years and 40,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!

Interesting Blogs

Blog Archive