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Some Pieces I've Been Reading...
...with clarifying perspectives about the senseless war in Israel and Palestine. A short reading list.
*Please do NOT share this on social media. Everyone is too reactive on all the platforms right now, and I am feeling too raw to engage with that.*
Since posting the other day (and even before) I’ve been reading voraciously about the escalating war between Israel and Palestine. My aim has been to clarify my feelings and better educate myself, with an eye toward eventually growing emboldened enough to speak out.
Here’s a short reading list—the pieces that have spoken to me the most:
“I Don’t Have to Post About My Outrage. Neither Do You.” - this opinion piece byin The New York Times really resonates with what I wrote in last weekend’s post about some people on both sides insisting you “unfriend” them if you don’t speak out, and in a way that perfectly echoes their posts. “As I scrolled through my timeline, I saw lots of random citizens being told that if they didn’t speak out, they, too, would have blood on their hands,” Spiers writes. I could highlight every line of this piece, but I’ll just put a screenshot here of one of the passages that really captured how I also feel.
“A Textbook Case of Genocide” - in Jewish Currents, Raz Segal takes a sobering look at Israel’s bombing, starving, and displacing Gazans and calls it what it is. In another piece I could easily just quote in full, Segal writes, “The UN Genocide Convention lists five acts that fall under its definition. Israel is currently perpetrating three of these in Gaza: “1. Killing members of the group. 2. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group. 3. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”
“Explanations are Not Excuses” - In Intelligencer/NYMag,writes about having to reckon with and fight against her programming as an American Jew, something I also talked a bit about in last weekend’s post. Schulman writes, “As a Jew and an American who has gone through the complex, painful, and transforming process of facing the injustice against Palestinians committed in my name and with my tax dollars, I have had to change my self-concept. I have had to deprogram myself from the idea that Jews continued to be victims when, in some cases, we had become perpetrators.”
“Have We Learned Nothing?” - in n+1, David Klion takes on the much circulated notion that Hamas’ attack two weekends ago amounted to “Israel’s 9/11,” and cautions the Western world against the kinds of post-9/11 errors that led to mass death. Klion writes, “It wasn’t that American elites were unaware that the United States had committed injustices around the world, or that 9/11 could plausibly be construed as blowback; it was that 9/11 had given them permission not to care. US support for Israeli apartheid, Saudi theocracy, and Pakistani covert operations across the Khyber Pass might all have been hard to defend, but it was distasteful to bring any of that up while Lower Manhattan smoldered and the faces of the missing were posted on every corner.”
“I’m Going to War for Israel. Palestinians Are Not My Enemy.” - in The New York Times, reserve IDF major Nir Avishai Cohen writes another very quotable piece. In the interest of brevity, I’ll just go with this one: “…we cannot allow the massacre of innocent Israelis to result in the massacre of innocent Palestinians.” I couldn’t agree more.
This smart Instagram slideshow by comic actor Ilana Glazer, which I recommend clicking through:
Thanks as always for reading. Once again I’m keeping comments off. As I said in my last post, please do not email me in response if you’re looking for a fight, or to change my mind. Like so many others, I’m really struggling right now.
And, once more: *Please do NOT share this on social media.*