Norman Mehl’s letter (“Jews are cleaner and smarter than Arabs,” Feb. 12) reminded me of experiences in Israel. A bank teller said, “I hope you wash your own dishes,” in response to my staying with Arabs. A woman, pointing to a statue, told her 7-year-old daughter, “That is a great man, he killed lots of Arabs.”
Israelis imprison Palestinians within walled ghettos. Nazis, assuredly, made remarks similar to Mehl’s about Jews in Warsaw ghettos. Those Jews suffered from improper sanitation and malnutrition, just as 1.5 million “dirty” prisoners of Gaza suffer.
Since the 1948 Red House plan to expel Palestinians, Israeli policy has been the elimination of Palestinians from Israel. Jews had owned six percent of Palestine, the rest was forcibly taken. Now, 7 million—70 percent—of Palestinians are refugees.
Palestinians commit acts of violent resistance. Call this terrorism but also name Israeli violence terrorism, too. There are tens to hundreds of Palestinian deaths (mostly civilian) for each Israeli death (majority military). Palestinian children suffer worst: Hundreds of them were murdered last month, 30 were murdered a few months prior; thousands were maimed, many thousands are without parents, brothers, sisters.
The Israeli defense is “militants hide behind civilians.” Last month, Israel directed civilians to a U.N. shelter, then bombed it. Several U.N.-run schools/shelters, and a U.N. storehouse were targeted. The U.N. provided GPS coordinates of the facilities to the Israelis. The U.N. confirmed no militant activity prompted attacks.
It is a sad irony that one of the world’s historically most violently oppressed peoples have become one of the world’s most violent oppressors. Americans support this violence with $3 billion per year.