Objects to "Anti-Israel" Protests On Nantucket

Ross Silverstein •

To the editor: The anti-Israel protestors on Nantucket demonstrated that they don’t know what they’re talking about.

First, their use of the terms “genocide” and “apartheid state” reveals (i) their lack of
knowledge of Israel, its history, and the current situation, (ii) their ignorance regarding the definition, application, and historical significance and meaning of these words, and (iii) their intentional or clueless use of antisemitic tropes.

Second, while the protestors express their dismay over the many innocent
Palestinians who lost their lives in the current conflict (which most Jews agree is a terrible tragedy), they are silent (and hypocritical) regarding the vicious killing, burning, raping, dismembering and beheading of 1,400 innocent Israeli citizens – including women, children and entire families – and the taking of 240 innocent hostages (including toddlers and grandmothers). The protestors also fail to condemn Hamas, a recognized terrorist organization, for its role in the death of innocent Palestinians. While Israel strives to keep Palestinians from harm’s way in a challenging and densely populated environment, Hamas does the opposite. Hamas uses Palestinians as human shields and establishes military operations and weapons storage beneath hospitals, schools and mosques.

Third, while the protestors loudly call for a permanent ceasefire, they ignore the
reality that there WAS a ceasefire prior to October 7th. Hamas violated that ceasefire when it committed its atrocities against Israel. The protestors want Israel, after the Jewish people suffered their greatest massacre since the Holocaust on October 7th, to lay down their weapons when no other country would be expected or even asked to do so in the aftermath of such atrocities. Furthermore, because Hamas has pronounced repeatedly that its goals are the complete destruction of the Jewish state and death of Jews worldwide, Israel must defend its citizens and its very existence in light of this existential threat.

Fourth, the protestors condemn and call for the end of “the siege on Gaza.” This
statement epitomizes their ignorance. Hamas is committing the siege on Gaza, not Israel. To be clear, Israel completely withdrew from Gaza in 2005 and left it to the Palestinians for their self-rule. The Palestinian people then elected Hamas to govern them in 2006 and, since then, the recognized terrorist organization has ruled Gaza. Hamas is responsible for the plight of the Palestinian people in Gaza, not Israel.

The protestors, and their chants and statements, are misguided and uninformed. Sadly, they also are antisemitic.

Ross Silverstein

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