Today I speak to you as an American and a Jew, not as a Congressional candidate.
When my daughter was in 5th grade, her social studies class studied what we all used to call “ancient civilizations.” However, lest anyone imply that some cultures were more civilized than others, my daughter was forbidden by the school to use the term “civilization.”
This memory resurfaced as I watched the heart-wrenching events in Israel over the past several days. What we are witnessing this week—the worst Jewish slaughter since the Holocaust—is not a clash between two equal and just societies, but an existential fight between civilization and uncivilized barbarism.
There is no civilized society known to man that engages in, sponsors, or condones the mass slaughter of innocent partygoers, the brutal rape of young women, the abduction of elderly women and children, the beheading of babies, or the trophy-parading of mutilated dead bodies. These are atrocities that are incomprehensible to any human with the most basic sense of right and wrong.
A great many of us here in South Florida have family and friends in Israel. We may have relatives called up to the IDF, and we may personally know some of the missing and the dead. But regardless of whether we are Jewish or have a personal connection to Israel, we all feel the rawest of emotions. We pray for the return of the hostages, we ache for the grieving families, and yes, we yearn for appropriate justice.
And just as we are repulsed and angered by the images from Israel, we are equally repulsed and angered by what we see in our own country.
We are appalled by the Democratic Socialists of America, which includes members of Congress, who have glorified the murder of “hipster” Israelis by “resistance fighters” on hang gliders.
We are sickened by the student organizations at Harvard University and other elite schools who have issued statements calling out Israel as “entirely responsible for all unfolding violence” and we are shocked by the silence and cowardice of the administrations of those schools.
We are disgusted at signs from pro-Palestinian rallies across the country saying that Palestine must be liberated “from the river to the sea,” a euphemism for wiping the state of Israel—and Jews—off the face of the Earth.
In the face of such horror and sadness, it is also natural to feel helpless. We are not. Our voice matters, and we must use it.
The Israeli military now faces the daunting task of brutal urban warfare against an enemy without morals and with nothing to lose. In the past, and in such situations, our own American government has kept Israel handcuffed, on a leash, and on a stopwatch. This time must be different.
Israel must destroy Hamas once and for all, and Israel must send a message to the other Islamic Jihadist terrorist groups hellbent on the destruction of Israel that they will face the same consequences. This can only happen with the full and unwavering support of the United States.
America must ensure that Israel has sufficient munitions and sufficient time to do what must be done. America must steadfastly defend Israel in the media, at the U.N., and in the face of whatever worldwide pressure may come.
This will only happen if we—Americans—keep up our own steadfast pressure on our government.
The ongoing tragedy in Israel must serve as a wake-up call for all of us, not only for Jews and friends of Israel, but to all freedom-loving Americans.
Israel is now on the front line of the fight to save Western civilization. This is a fight that they—and we—cannot lose.