Friday, July 14, 2006

Israel on my mind

Last night I found myself in an almost empty Jewish Museum on 5th avenue gazing at thousand year old menorahs, scrolls and, documents, what have you. It's really a wonderful permanent exhibit for those of you, like myself, who don't know crap about the history of Judaism. On the first floor was an exhibit dedicated to Eva Hesse who is a German Jewish immigrant in NY and persued her dream of becoming an artist. I wasn't really all that impressed by her sculptures made of cheese cloth and plaster which essentially looked like blow up egg cartons, but it was a nice contrast to all of the history I was focusing on upstairs. It was Thursday, which means there's usually live music and a festive atmosphere on the 2nd floor, but tonight it was a bit different. Due to a holiday, there was no music to be heard, and due to escalated violence in the Middle East, there were no happy faces to be found.

Earlier that day at work, I had spent the last few hours of the day frantically clicking on websites to get the latest news about the conflict in Israel. I listened to podcasts and tried to contact a friend living in Haifa. I felt anxious and upset and the more I read about it, the more anxious and upset I became. Luckily, I have a job where it's very possible to not talk to anyone the entire day, and this is precisely what I was hoping to do. After all, discussing middle east war and politics is a frustrating endeavor at my workplace. Either people have no idea what's going on in that area of the globe, think Israel is just as guilty as their Jew hating neighbors or just evade the topic and go on about how Bush is a cocksucker. However, I happen to run into a Canadian coworker as I was leaving and we briefly discussed the situation. After mentioning that his prime minister had some intelligent things to say about the situation, he responded by saying that Harper would be stupid to not side with Israel. After all, Jews control most of corporations in Canada. Wouldn't you support them? , he asked.

And so it goes, this is how some people justify supporting the Jews. I know there are people out there who are aware that Israel wants peace and that she can only be patient for so long when her neighbors are seeking to destroy her. When I hear support for Israel, I feel relieved that someone understands what this country is up against. But I fear too many people are supporting Israel for the wrong reasons.

I came home that night, talked to Petitedov, and instantly felt better to hear her voice and to bitch about the situation. I had just been seriously considering moving to Israel and now I have to rethink my entire plan. Ah well, I guess we just have to ride out the storm at this point.