Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

War and the Swing to Conservatism

What happened? What happened to turn the passionately committed anti-apartheid children and youth that I was part of into fearful, hating racists who want all Arabs dead?

This new flare-up of war between Israel and the Palestinians has once again brought into sharp focus the disease that has swept through Jews in South Africa and many of my old classmates, and I do not understand it one bit.

I went to King David High School in the late 70s and early 80s. Yes, I was always considered to be an outspoken rebel, but my thoughts about apartheid were shared by all of my friends and many more who weren’t. Some of us went on to be even more outspoken, committed and involved in the struggle once we went to ‘varsity. We all knew that apartheid was evil and wrong, and even though we were white and had moments of fear about the future, the fear was never enough to turn us away from what we knew was the absolute truth. I certainly remember thinking how I couldn’t imagine what it was like to be black, disenfranchised, without power, without access and absolutely oppressed. We all did.

And now, these same friends have turned into paranoid, hysterical, ranting racists and Arab haters who believe, from South Africa (FFS), that their people are threatened and that Palestinians; refugees contained in virtual prisons, are what threaten Israel’s existence. How? How did this happen to those people I knew?

I am devastated by this. I know it isn’t everybody. I have friends and family in Israel who are deeply opposed to the war and are desperate (and vocal) protestors for peace. Just like we were in those days. But I am scared and shocked by how few of us there are, and that most of those old friends have turned into the oppressors we feared and hated and fought against.

 

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7 Comments

  1. Rudy

    Put generals and religious zealots together (both sides) and you get this mishmash of messianic drivel and rabid violence. In addition, this is an “election war”, done for public consumption before the Jan 2013 elections in Israel. Lastly – it is high time mothers on both sides threw their testosterone-laden males away and took over — long live Lysistrata! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysistrata)

  2. megan

    I agree Rudy. I am not even going near the reasons for this war, or any of the complicated stuff. I am just deeply depressed by the South African Jewish response. Not surprised. Deeply depressed.

  3. I pray for peace

  4. Megan, everyone is so hysterical on both sides. I try to eductae myself about the situation because I dont agree that critisism of Irael amounts to anti semitism, but the whole situation makes my head hurt. I wont, will not wish death or pain on arabs, palestians or any other peole on eath ( except the rhino murderers), but I cant make sense of an of it. I have people on my fb page that are passionately pro israel and other that are vehemently anto Israel, I read both sides and am no the wiser. My best wish is that for just one day, just one day, we can see each others others as human beans, regardless of flavour, religion , language, gender……just one moment when we can actaully see tha we all have more in common with each other than we dont. Oh yes, and I hope that alll the weapons everywhere in the whole wide world just vapourise and we lose the recipes to remake them. wouldnt be nice if we could solve border disputes with a jolly old pillow fight

  5. Beilla Gans

    How come you are not devastated by the 38,000 Sunnis and Shiites killed in the past 18 months of civil war in Syria because of their inexplicable hatred of each other? That’s Okay?

    But Jews can’t defend themselves? What would you do if your neigbour was raining rockets into your property every day? You would just turn the other cheek and say, please do it again? I am just an “onnosele ou Jood” Please!!!! Tante B

  6. megan

    Tante B you miss my point. And I think the ‘raining of rockets’ is a leetle bit of a stretch!

  7. Beilla Gans

    Okay – no “raining” of Rockets – only every now and then – only one rocket is a killer if it hits a target . Over 900 rockets – I see, that is raining sunbeams?
    ??
    Just how do you reconcile your attitude. Never mind. forget it. It goes to deep. Love Tante B

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