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Posted in: Anti-Semitism, Israel

Published on Mar 09, 2010 by Phyllis Chesler

Written for Pajamas Media

Waltzing at the Waldorf: Israeli Solders Face Another Kind of War


As I write this, the forces of darkness are gathering to battle the forces of light. It's happening two miles away from where I'm sitting, right here in Old New Yawk.

The Waldorf-Astoria has hosted debutante balls, grand parties, weddings, crowned heads and heads of state, the idle rich and the world's hardest working celebrities. Tonight, the Israeli Defense Force is being honored there. The IDF Chief of Staff, Gabi Ashkenazi, is the keynote speaker.

Of course, as part of the sixth Israeli Apartheid Week, the infamous International Solidarity Movement (ISM)—the very group responsible for the death, martyrdom, and exploitation of Rachel Corrie–is staging a protest. Thirteen groups will participate, including National Lawyers Guild—NY chapter (always a left-wing group), Adalah-NY, Jewish Voice for Peace, Jews Say No! Code Pink, Women in Black-Union Square, and Women of a Certain Age (them I do not know). Of course, the ISM website accuses Israel of having committed war crimes in Gaza.

This is a Big Fat Lie.

But it makes me sick that Israelis should have to be faced with such hatred wherever they go—and spewed by the slickest and most cunning of homicidal liars; by those who insist the "Islamophobia" is the real problem, even as Muslims persecute and slaughter Christians, Hindus, and Jews.

Israel has the legal, moral, and human right to defend herself and that is precisely what she has done. From the moment impoverished, persecuted Jews sought to return to their ancient homeland, the Arabs, most of whom were Muslims, hated and opposed them because they were Jews. In addition, the Arabs also envied and tried to copy Jewish ideas about nationalism.

Israel has never been a "colonial, apartheid" state. Please read an excellent article, recently published by Dr. Irwin J. Mansdorf, which carefully and brilliantly addresses the question of whether Israel is a "colonial state."

I am glad that the Friends of the IDF have decided to hold this event right now at an upscale location. And, I am very glad that pro-Israel groups have already gathered there. These groups include: Americans For a Safe Israel/AFSI, Get Out The Facts, Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam, National Council of Young Israel, Shalom International, Stand With Us, World Committee for the Land of Israel, and the Zionist Organization of America/ZOA.

I have troops on the ground. They will be calling me with reports, photos, videos, interviews. Stay tuned for their fine work.

Live At the Waldorf:

Journalist Fern Sidman has just called in her first report. (Much thanks Fern!)

She says there are approximately 300 loud, angry, well choreographed anti-Israeli protesters (and the usual contingent of Marxists and Maoists) waving large Palestinian flags and chanting "Free Palestine." Here is a sampling of their inflammatory signs:

"Nuremberg Justice For Israeli War Criminals;" "Free Palestine From the River to the Sea;" "Israeli War Crimes Feast at the Waldorf;" "Boycott Zionism;" "Jail Askenazi the Butcher of Gaza"; "Israeli Forces Shot at Women and Children Holding White Flags;" "Israeli Soldiers: Arrogant, Sadistic, and Cruel."

I can assure you that Israeli soldiers are the most moral on earth. Please read what I wrote about the non-massacre that never took place in Jenin and about the twenty three young Israeli soldiers who died–because they were sent into Jenin on foot; at the time, Israel did not want to further offend a dangerously Jew-hating world and instead, was forced to sacrifice their young, their finest, to armed and bloody terrorists who were hiding among Palestinian civilians.

Sidman tried to interview some Maoists who absolutely refused to talk to her ("Yes," one finally said, "I'm an anti-Semite and I won't talk to you.") A Palestinian supporter told her, matter-of-factly that "The U.S. Government is ruled by Zionists," "that we can never have peace in the Middle East because of the Israeli Occupation;" "The Jewish state is inherently racist in nature."

Now, 20-30 members of the Iranian-funded Neturai Karta (disguised as Hasidic Jews) have just joined the pro-Palestinian side. Al Jazeera is filming, as are student filmmakers. Some members of a Jewish Voice for Peace are wearing kipahs. They are the only ones moving back and forth between the pro-Israel side and the pro-Palestinian side. They are carrying carefully printed signs which read: "Palestinians Hunger for Justice" and 'Stop Israeli War Crimes."

The forces of darkness (so to speak) have an excellent sound system. Their followers know how to chant. And to keep chanting. One wonders from whence their funding flows…can it be the Saudi Lobby? The European Union?

And now, the stalwart Sidman tells me, the pro-Palestinian side has doubled, even tripled and comprise 500-600 people. Joining them is the Green Party of New Jersey and the Islamic Thinkers Society. Members of the National Lawyers Guild are wearing baseball caps which read: "Legal Observer." Their task? To monitor possible police harassment of the Palestinians.

By now, the 125 pro-Israel supporters have left. It was a miracle that they ever came.

Allow me a deep, deep sigh. The pro-Israel troops were valorous, heroic, committed–and smart, really smart–but they were far, far fewer in number, lacked a sound system, (the police would not allow the pro-Israeli side to have a sound system). They lacked the knack of leftist chanting and urban street theatre. Their signs were good and read: "Suicide Bombing is Mass Murder;" "Hamas Targets Civilians, Israel Targets Terrorists;" "The IDF Protects Jews, Christians, Muslims, Ba'hai." A sign of an injured Israeli child reads: "Sderot Boy, Hamas Victim." "Remember our Six Million. Never Again." One is a sign for peace in 20 languages.

Dear friends who were there did not want me to mention this. Look: At least I'm mentioning this last.

The pro-Israel supporters marched right alongside the never-stopping pro-Palestinian marchers.

The pro-Palestinians all wore black. They were told to do so. They followed orders. They had marshals keeping them in line. Is it important to be able to do good fascist-style or 60s style demonstrations? Is one obligated to react to this expected farce, this Nazi show of blood lust? Tell me what you think. Stay tuned.

Fern Sidman: You are a hero. Kudos to you.

Kudos to Marvin Belsky of HRCARI who also called in a first report.


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