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Wednesday, June 11, 2003

MUST-READ from Naomi Ragen

Friends,

I feel like a Jew in Berlin in 1938. They are trying to kill me, to kill my family. This is not figurative, but literal. I was in the Park Hotel Seder night. I was in the center of Jerusalem yesterday. I took a cab there but I took a bus home because I'm tired of being afraid. And when I walked through the door the phone was already ringing, my husband calling from Tel Aviv, anxious to know if I was all right. I hadn't even heard yet. I had just walked through the door. So I called my son, to see if he was all right. And the phone lines were busy. So I waited, and when I got through, he told me he'd gone to pick up his wife in the center of Jerusalem. That she'd been there when the bomb went off. A few streets away.

My son and daughter in law, who had walked through the rubble of the Park Hotel seder night, to safety. And now, once again....

They were on there way home, he told me. We founded the State of Israel so that we could stop our enemies from killing us. So that we could have an army, and air force, a government that would protect the lives of Jews, when people around the world looked on in indifference at their slaughter.

Instead, we have allowed our leadership to neutralize those forces, permitting the slaughter to continue. I don't expect anything from the world. The idiots in Europe who believed all Hitler wanted was "living space" when he took over neighboring countries; who believed that the Jews in Germany and the world had it coming, the way they now promote the idea that Jewish "settlers" have it coming. And every Jew in Israel is a settler. And every Jew in the world has it coming because they are Zionists,who support settlers. It's a page from Mein Kampf.

Our own media is just as sickening."After the attack on Rantisi, all the rules have changed" some idiot on Israeli tv news actually said about the bombing. Rantisi has said: "We will not stop until every man, woman and child in Israel is dead. When Palestine is wiped clean of the Jews." He's been saying this for years. What rules, idiot, are you talking about?

Our ineffectual, fumbling, mumbling government is just as bad. Just another Judenrat. And our people are so brave, so brave. I saw them in the streets of Jerusalem yesterday, and I thought, looking at the hustle and bustle: nothing can stop us. If there is another bomb, they will just clean it up, bury the dead, and go on." I thought this with pride. But now I don't know. Is it something to be proud of, or something to be ashamed of this willingness to bury and rebuild and go on in the same direction until the next bomb?

We are being targeted for slaughter, my family , the family of Israel in our homeland that we didn't take from anyone, that belongs to us, and only to us.The same way they targeted us in Europe when there was no Jewish state, no settlers. Only, this time, we have the ability to fight back, if only our leadership would have the courage to lead us not down the road mapped out by others, but by the map we drew for ourselves when we came back to Zion.

God save us from our enemies. God save us from our "friends." God save us from ourselves.

Every blessing,
Naomi