Hayom Harat Olam

As my last post for the Jewish year, I can only focus my reflections on today’s Rosh Hashana “gift” bestowed upon the nation of Israel by the nations of the world.

Whilst not unanticipated, the Goldstone Report has delivered a travesty of justice to the Jewish people. Both the virtues of justice and practicalities of a justice system itself were established and gifted to civilisation by the Jewish people. It is not the first time, and sadly not the last time, that justice itself has been abused and thrown back at the Jewish people in the form of a falsified libel.

You can read all 575 pages of the initial report here, but have your blood pressure pills handy.

I won’t attempt to dissect the report, but do encourage you to visit the Elder of Zion who has already started to analyse why the entire process has led to such a flawed and objectionable outcome.

As many will understand, Rosh Hashana is the anniversary day of the creation of the world. God created humankind in his image, and gave us the gift of free choice. Our ability both individually and collectively to exercise this gift is a matter that is within the domain of our own control. We are judged accordingly, and create our own future on the basis of the quality of our decisions.

Whilst many of us may be able to claim we have it right individually, we often fail collectively. There is no greater example than this abuse of process, abuse of representation, and abuse of morality called the Goldstone Report. Israel is now charged as being as indistinguishable from Hamas, of the same moral equivalent standing, and guilty of crimes against humanity.

It was very clear to all during the Gaza war that Israel had endured more than a tolerable level of violence, bombardment, intimidation, threat and fear. Thousands of missiles in Sderot alone. It did not want war, but the necessity of removing the daily rain of missiles meant that war was necessary. So Israel, with the utmost level of care and caution targeted the threat. There is ample evidence and support that civilian targets were avoided as much as possible, even when confronted by terrorists hiding behind a “human shield”.

The official statements of the Government of Israel show that war was not desired, and all would be done to avoid civilian casualty. On the other hand Hamas retains a charter that explicitly calls for Israel’s destruction and assures the believers that “Islam will destroy Israel. As a matter of record, Fatah too still operates under a founding document (never officially revoked) that constitutes the destruction of Israel as an aim.

Israel’s deeds, actions and intent remain focussed on peaceful coexistence. The Palestinian movements sadly have an uncompromising and inherent position that does not provide for the existence of any Jewish State. This is clear both within and beyond the rhetoric.

The United Nations has done much to malign and abuse Israel. Once again a huge red line of tolerance and righteousness has been crossed by this body, to the detriment of global security and human liberty. Collective Security failed its previous experiments. The failings of the League of Nations led the world into two world wars. We have not learnt the lessons of history, and we are failing once again to exercise our collective responsibility to govern under the ethical standards upon which our world was created.

Whatever happens as a consequence of this, if I can borrow an Obama term, jackass decision to charge Israel as guilty, like a beaten housewife responsible for her own victimisation, I’m not sure. However I do know that Israel and her supporters stand on the right side of history, and that our appeal this weekend to the highest spiritual court will see the omniscient judgement of our creator deliver the ultimate verdict.

This morning we read words in our slichot prayer that translate as follows:

Your name is “Jealous G-d”. Why do you seem to sleep?
For year after year the vine your right hand planted is hard pressed and tormented,
Sold by one nation, and bought by another.
We are called the “humbled nation”, although we are not so humbled.
Your judgements are proper: no verdict without sin as just cause,
But at least avenge for the faithful Torah given by your right hand
And in it is written: “Who has counted the dust of Yaacov
But now he is counted like sheep to the slaughter
My Rock, please awake and raze Edom’s daughter to her foundation
Uproot her kingdom, G-d my strength, hear my voice at dawn.

I wish all Jewgle readers a Shana Tovah, a year ahead of blessing and prosperity, of security and peace for Am Yisrael, and of progress for all of humanity.  May we work together to grow and understand the simple difference between right and wrong, and may true justice prevail.