As Israel continues to invade Gaza (Why didn’t Israel just close the tunnels from the Israeli side? And exactly who is sending weapons into Gaza from Israel?), we might review our support. We give Israel $3.5 billion every year for armaments. That’s $10 of federal tax for every man, woman and child in the U.S. For Thurston County, that works out to about $2 million a year.
Meanwhile, Anthony Lerman, the former director of The Institute for Jewish Policy Research, says about his homeland: “Self-appointed arbiters of what’s Jewish in the Jewish state — extreme religious Zionists and the strictly Orthodox, aided and abetted by Jewish racists in the Knesset like Ayelet Shaked, a Jewish Home Party member who recently called for the mothers of Palestinian “snakes” to be killed —and on the streets are trashing democracy more each day. Particularly shocking are the mass arrests, nearly 500 since the beginning of July, of Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel for peacefully protesting, and the sanctions against Arab students at universities for posting pro-Gaza messages on social media.
Now more than ever we must support those Israelis who cry out for social justice in their own country. For too long we have supported and funded the Israel right-wing’s racist ambitions. We would never allow this in our own country. Besides, we could use that $2 million per year here at home, where our county budget was recently cut by $6 million.
John Van Eenwyk
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