Words such as “occupation” and “settlements” and “West Bank” have taken on negative connotations. These are words the international media has accepted and use regularly in its coverage of the Middle East. Arab rebranding has successfully turned good into evil. False narratives are now widely accepted as truths.
In Paris, nations of the world gathered to talk about the so-called “Palestinian people” from the long-lost country of “Palestine.” The truth is, during the Jordanian occupation of Jerusalem from 1948-1967, all Jews were exiled from their homes, their synagogues destroyed, and the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives was desecrated.
However, the biggest lie of all, which is accepted and reported by every news agency, radio station and newspaper, including those considered pro-Israel, is never mentioned. Whether a rocket attack, false red alert, or failed stabbing attempt, when there are no deaths involved, the media reports, “No injuries.”
I cringe every time I see and hear those words, “no injures.” It is not true. With every terror attempt, successful or not, there are injuries. Each and every time. With every siren, there is emotional and psychological damage. The young, and not so young, toughen up and carry on after each anxiety provoking episode. With each attack, a tiny bit of innocence, of security, of soul, is lost.
Saying no injuries has bothered me for a long time, but recently I viewed an exhibition of drawings in Mishkenot Sha’ananim. The Jerusalem Press Club and the Israeli Comics Museum in Holon opened a competition for Israeli high-school students to submit cartoons dealing with critical, current issues around the world. “Cartoon*Criticism*Care” was the title of this competition. However, it was more cynicism than care that viewers saw exhibited in the posted cartoons drawn by young Israelis from all over Israel.
For example, the first along the gallery wall of winning art projects was from Tal, a 17 year-old from Kibbutz Tirat Zvi.
His cartoon description stated, “in the cartoon I drew the Angel of Death and his son standing next to the bodies of a soldier and a terrorist. Through the figure of the Angel of Death, I wish to convey my opinion about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to demonstrate that if we look at the conflict and its consequences from a broader perspective, we see the need to solve and end it, especially in view of the victims it takes on both sides.”
The Angel of Death! Israeli teens are exposed over and over to death. Israeli youth have been injured, psychologically injured. It may show up later, in various forms, but it is time to stop saying, “no injuries.” Clearly there are injuries to the psyche of every child in Israel, with these drawings illustrating one small example.
Every time a young child bends to light a memorial candle, as this boy did at the scene of a deadly terror attack, a little bit of his soul is scarred. We each find a way to get back up and get ourselves going again, but are injured in some small way.
Next time, oh we do, expect a next time for terror with Obama’s financial bonus to PA on way out the door. There may not be any deaths. But there will again be injuries, even if they cannot be seen by the naked eye, or under a medical microscope.