[Hpn] Fwd: 'Jewish Opinion': B'ruch ha'ba, Arik

elijah huffman hobo_poet@hotmail.com
Wed, 07 Feb 2001 05:21:33 -0500

Hey Folks, This isn't exactly about homelessness, But it is about strife.I 
think it is well worth reading, and thinking over

>From: "kenny freman" <kennyfreeman99@hotmail.com>
>To: jpf@forusa.org
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>Subject: 'Jewish Opinion':  B'ruch ha'ba, Arik
>Date: Wed, 07 Feb 2001 06:14:29
>                                        Jewish Opinion
>                                    a news messenger for peace
>                                                                 2/6/01
>                                        B’ruch ha’ba, Arik!
>Everyone knows the truth in their hearts, and they know it is true because 
>of it’s simplicity, that the only way to have peace is to share what you 
>have with everyone else, till no one feels left out.
>People who’ve tried know that you make peace by drinking lots of little 
>cups of coffee with the other guy, for a very long time.  And you do it by 
>eating together at a fellafel stand, and by getting to know shopkeepers, 
>and then getting to know their families.
>And this kind of real peace-making need never be beyond family to family.  
>It is the Jewish style, the Arab style, the style of the shtetl and of the 
>desert. It is the way we humans have always done it, though few with the 
>formalized warmth of the Arabs, or the tenacity of the Jews.
>Gandhi teaches that the critical thing is not really the goals, since 
>whether we achieve them is not up to us; but the means used to get there.  
>“As the means, so the ends.”  So while we can argue over goals, we have no 
>disagreement over means:  they must be nonviolent, as both sides wish to 
>stop losing their children; they must involve an immediate recognition on 
>the part of both peoples that their role in history, their role in the 
>modern world, their attachment to the Land, is too similar to be 
>coincidental.  Jacob and Esau must acknowledge their brotherhood.
>When the Palestinians claim to be the ‘Jews of the Middle-East,’ they are 
>right; beyond the experiences of Holocaust and ‘The Catastrophe,’ of 
>dispossession and being refugees, the similarities in culture, in ways of 
>eating, raising children, these are paramount.  How much difference is 
>there between shopkeepers, Jewish or Arab, taxi drivers, Jewish or Arab?  
>Further, no one wants Jews.  No one wants Palestinians.
>Israel planted 200,000 Jews in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.  And the Arabs 
>have been throwing rocks, ambushing settlers, ever since.  Now it’s open 
>warfare.   But what if we’d also settled 200,000 Palestinian refugees from 
>Lebanon, opposite the Jewish Settlements, outside Ramallah and Nablus, what 
>if we’d allowed them to develop as cities, given them equal land, 
>apartments, infrastructure, industrial incentives, etc., along with “Jewish 
>settlements.”  Would the Palestinians still be opposing ‘Israeli 
>expansionism,’ or would they be cheering it?  Throwing rocks, or forming 
>internet startups?  We sowed the wind…
>So what do we have to do?  You, me, the Jewish People, the Palestinian 
>People.  What is the bitter pill?
>First, all killing must stop.  The settlers in Gaza should be joined by a 
>new group of Jews, Nonviolent Redemption Workers, Israel’s answer to 
>suicide-bombers, Jews who have come to Gaza to say “I’m here to help the 
>widow and orphan, as the LORD commanded me.” to say, “You are my brother, 
>and whatever we call it, we live in a Holy Land,” and “I’ve got as much 
>guts as any suicide bomber, but I’m for peace and love, not killing.  And 
>that is what Judaism IS.”
>And then the IDF retreats far out of the range of any Palestinians with 
>guns, and Jews stop shooting.  And the Gaza Jews can go over to Sheba 
>hospital and offer to help the overwhelmed trauma staff there, and can day 
>after day make a pilgrimage to the home of every person killed by the IDF, 
>to find out who they were, what they left behind, to absorb the pain, to be 
>a witness.  For to be a true witness is the Beginning of Justice.
>And sadly, some Jews should sit in front of the shuk in Gaza in sackcloth 
>and ashes, in mourning, in repentance, but primarily out of Fear of the 
>LORD.  Day after day, doing what Jonah told us, what Ezekiel told us, if 
>it’s Redemption we seek.
>And if this was tried, and if the Arabs didn’t kill all the Jewish 
>volunteers, then it would be the beginning of Jews living in Gaza.  Not in 
>a settlement, not protected by guns and soldiers, but accepted by the 
>people.  If Jews wanted to live in Gaza, it had to start that way, all 
>And what is true for Gaza is equally true for the West Bank, for Judea and 
>Samaria.  The Jews in the center of Hebron should be augmented by a group 
>of Jewish volunteers, just as dedicated, just as fanatic, just as Jewish 
>and Zionist, but people who recognize what the situation is:  Jews moved 
>into these towns and were bad neighbors, and the towns have suffered 
>because of the Jewish presence, and if Jews are going to remain, these 
>volunteers have to be very creative, and very inspired, and very full of 
>love for humanity. Hebron, Nablus, Ramallah, all these cities are full of 
>people in crisis, people in mourning, people injured and trying to recover, 
>  civil order has broken down, there are severe shortages, hardships, so 
>many things that help is needed for.
>Israel needs Jews willing to give their lives for what they believe in.  We 
>have soldiers;  now we need Nonviolent Seekers after Redemption.  Let the 
>Jewish volunteers in Hebron and Ramallah walk around with no guns, no 
>radios, nothing in their hearts but willingness to try and make things 
>better—and Palestinians will respect them, because they respect the courage 
>of people who go on suicide missions, it is part of their culture that they 
>have used against us, and that we now can use to reach them.
>Where do you get these volunteers?  One person goes first, and others 
>watch, see what happens, and some come and join, and then others, and 
>perhaps you could get fifty in Gaza, fifty in the West Bank, and it would 
>make such a difference.   But the first step always has to be the first 
>person.  Gandhi refused to get off the train in South Africa.  Rosa Parks 
>didn’t get off the bus in America.
>And behind them have to be the resources of the Jewish People.  The ability 
>to make the changes in Gaza and the West Bank that have to be:  equality, 
>of environment, of infrastructure, of opportunities, and of Participation 
>in the Future.
>Because nothing will work if we all don’t realize that the goals of all 
>‘freedom fighters’ have to be met; that we have to give Everybody freedom.
>Just as the British forced the Jews into a ‘freedom fight,’ so Israel has 
>forced the Palestinians into a ‘freedom fight.’  And it doesn’t take two 
>countries to have freedom.  It takes one Free Country.  One democratic 
>country that is built on Faith.  Faith in the brotherhood of man, faith in 
>the unknowable future, faith that if we treat each other as best we can, 
>things will get better, faith that this is the Holy Land, the Promised 
>Land, the Light unto the Nations, this is where we will sit under our vines 
>and fig-trees, and none will make us afraid.
>This was a separation, not a divorce, we still are family, we still are 
>brothers and sisters, we still are the children of Abraham.  If we don’t 
>learn to live together under the same tent, there will be no Redemption, 
>and then Judaism, and Islam, and Christianity, and humanity itself, will no 
>longer matter.
>But if Israel was founded in War, it was founded on Dreams too, and if War 
>persists, so can Dreams.
>It would appear that the illusion of a false-peace, based on a ‘Palestinian 
>State,’ did for a while make the dream of Redemption, based on the 
>unification of the Land of Israel, seem very far in the future;  and that 
>the level of violence in this ‘war,’ terrible as it is, does revive the 
>possibility of unification, of freedom for two peoples in one country, of 
>reconciliation instead of separation, of the possibility of Redemption.
>And from the Jewish people, some have to go to Gaza, and the West Bank, and 
>show the Arabs that we believe in Kiddush HaShem, martyrdom for the 
>Sanctification of His Name, just as strongly as they believe in the Rewards 
>of the Suicide-Bomber. That not only are our faiths equally strong, but 
>that we seek the same goals: to live in a Holy Land, a place where the next 
>stage in evolution, the brotherhood-of-man, the recognition of the Oneness 
>of Living Things, is demonstrated in the love shared between the Arabs and 
>the Jews,
>G-d willing.
>An historical note:  Jewish Opinion was first started in 1978;  it was 
>subtitled “A Newsletter for Peace,” and was named after Gandhi’s first 
>newsletter, which he started in South Africa, called Indian Opinion.  
>Publication ceased during 1982-85, when we were in Israel,  and started 
>again in 1986.  Years ago we visited I.F. Stone, who told us that an 
>individual newsletter without advertising could not overcome postal costs, 
>and of course he was right, and we ceased publishing in June 1992.
>But two things happened:  the situation in Israel has become so desperate 
>that it is no longer possible to ‘reserve an opinion;’  and the Internet 
>has overcome the cost factor.  If you think these ideas are at least worth 
>thinking about, send them on to friends.
>If there are future issues, and you don’t want to receive them, please 
>e-mail us at:
>                 kennyfreeman99@hotmail.com

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