How do you plead?

By Geoffrey Paul
January 19, 2010

Three IDF rescue teams and an IDF field hospital have been working around the clock seeking for survivors and digging out the dead from the rubble of Port du Prince. International observers have praised their tireless efforts. Perhaps, suggests my friend Martin Green, someone in the UK would like to seek warrants for their arrest as war criminals....


Jonathan Hoffman

Tue, 01/19/2010 - 18:47

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Daniel Machover is on the case as we speak

moshetzarfati2 (not verified)

Tue, 01/19/2010 - 19:30

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But consider what Gershon Baskin wrote in the Jerusalem Post in Israel - a leader among the community of nations

The sight of the El Al jet laden with medical aid and almost 200 IDF and civilian personnel brought pride to each and every Israeli and to Jews all over the world.Israel is on the ground in the heart of the disaster and we are making a difference. Our experience and capabilities in providing the world's best humanitarian aid in times of real crisis is something that we can certainly be proud of.

Unfortunately our skills and expertise were gained in having to rescue the casualties of terrorism in our own streets and homes. But from that need and from the darkness of those experiences, we spread our goodwill to thousands of innocent victims of nature's mysteries in lands far away where we have no military, strategic or economic interest.

This is truly tikkun olam in its purest form. We are there because we are Jews, we are there because we are human beings and we are there because we are a responsible member of the community of nations.

But what about the humanitarian disaster in our own backyard caused in a large part by our own doing? What about Gaza? More than 1.5 million people are living in total poverty, without sanitary drinking water, under an economic and physical siege, locked in what could easily be called the world's largest prison. While we ask to see in all of the gory details, all of the destruction including hundreds of corpses on the streets of Port-au-Prince, we wish to see none of the humansuffering of our Palestinian neighbors in Gaza where we literally hold the keys to the end of their suffering.

Not only don't we see their suffering, we simply don't care. Doesn't the concept of tikkun olam extend to our enemies? (Not all of Gaza's 1.5 million people are enemies; many of them, perhaps even most of them would like to live in peace with us.)

Perhaps a little less forceful than Akiva Eldar's piece in Haaretz, but it makes the same point nonetheless.

Jonathan Hoffman

Wed, 01/20/2010 - 00:43

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Yes they couldn't resist a cheap shot and who can blame them ...

It's so much easier a way of writing 600 words than going out and finding a story, after all!


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