How many times have you replayed a conversation in your mind, knowing exactly what you should have said, but didn’t? Alternatively, you might fixate on what you did say and shouldn’t have. When I occasionally subbed for my husband on his radio show, and then when we co-hosted our Ancient Jewish Wisdom TV show, it was clear that I did a lot more replaying of dialogue than he did. I’m not sure if this was a male-female difference or just our individual personalities, but that is how it played out.
I am extremely grateful to Carrie Abbott, a staunch Happy Warrior and courageous spokeswoman for Godly values, for inviting me to be a guest on her Seattle-based radio show. She gave me the opportunity to share some of what we are seeing in Israel today. Yet…yet…there was so much more to say, and I would like to tell you about one idea that I’ve not been able to get out of my head.
All sorts of people do all sorts of terrible things to other people. In 1994, Houthis massacred Tutsis in Rwanda leaving somewhere in the vicinity of 500,000 to a million people butchered. Pol Pot murdered millions of Cambodians. Stalin and Mao Zedong extinguished the lives of tens of millions of Russians and Chinese respectively. Stop and contemplate those numbers for a moment. Looking back through history, there is no shortage of heinous examples of humans behaving inhumanely.
We all tend to view our own tragedies more emotionally than anyone else’s and I know that in God’s eyes, all life is sacred, but in the quiet of the night, I ask myself whether perhaps the world pays a higher price when in generation after generation, Jews are murdered.
Although numbering under a quarter of one percent of the world’s population, those of Jewish descent do have an outsize impact on world events. Tragically, this has sometimes caused great harm, as when Freud and Marx’s ideas took hold. Yet, more often, it is for the good. Jews contribute disproportionately by innovating in many areas including medicine and technology. So many of today’s treatments for diabetes and cancer, for purifying contaminated water and improving lives, stem not only from Jews but from laboratories in Israel.
How many actual or budding doctors and scientists were wiped out over the years, during the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, multiple pogroms, and the Holocaust? On September 9, 2003, Dr. David Applebaum, a man on the cutting edge of emergency trauma treatment, had just returned to Israel from the United States where he had shared his hard-won knowledge with first responders. His techniques and teachings have saved lives around the world, and he was a relatively young man with decades more of wisdom to gather and offer. Dr. Applebaum took his daughter, Nava, out for some precious father-daughter time on the night preceding her wedding. Nava planned to study chemistry or genetics with the goal of finding a cure for cancer. Considering the home she came from, her own intellect, and Israel’s groundbreaking medical technology scene, the world should have wished her well. Instead, she and her father were murdered by an Islamist who blew up the Jerusalem cafe where they sat; about two hundred yards from where I sit writing these words.
It does not seem far-fetched to me that, had Jewish lives been valued more, we all might have more life-saving cures. Is it absurd to ask ourselves, when faced with a relative with Alzheimer’s, a loved one battling cancer, or a friend suffering from a chronic condition, whether our pain might be due partially to the constant flowing of Jewish blood? I don’t know. Maybe I am just still reeling in shock at what was done to us twelve days ago.
Islamists like Hamas are willing for people to suffer for them to achieve their Sharia-dominating dreams. That so much of the world goes along with them might be a bigger tragedy than we acknowledge.
Bonus: How do we get through days filled with scary and bad news? How do we help our children cope? Read Rebecca (Lapin) Masinter’s post, How to Live in Times Like This.
What do you think? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this Susan’s Musings post.
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Clash of Destiny
The events in Israel make it absolutely clear that we are witnessing the latest in a long line of bloody battles between barbarism and civilization. If you have not listened to Clash of Destiny: Decoding the Secrets of Israel and Islam, we suggest that you do. This fight is not new and the Bible, from Genesis through the Book of Esther, sheds light on what is happening.