Why I haven’t written about Israel

I’ll confess to cowardice and the frustrating paralysis I sometimes put myself in.

The cowardice comes from approx 20+ years online prior to this blog in which I engaged with the issue more deeply. When I say ‘more deeply’ regular readers may be familiar with the extent to which I will research a topic. So, I have opinions on the current situation that are deeply informed and I assume regular readers know where my sympathies lie and they aren’t with the only government in the region.

Anyway, a bit of personal history. I completely disengaged from politics and online political discussion in 2010. A series of arguments in multiple spaces had begun to take an emotional/psychological toll on me and I identified it as a genuine problem that was leaking out into meat space. So I stopped.

When I decided to weigh back into internet street-brawling in 2015 I set a limit on topics for my own personal mental health and I think people might be able to guess from the shape of the absence of specific topics that ‘Israel’ is one of them. The problem was two-fold:

  1. Finding myself in a situation where a Nazi endorsed something I said.
  2. A coordinated harassment campaign that leaked into physical existence (i.e. being contacted by physical mail by a person who was an avowed supporter of a particular country in the middle-east as well as quasi-doxxing threats)

So, I’ll put my hands up to cowardice. Both those points are minor compared to what large numbers of people experience both as everyday oppression and repeated acts of state violence. It’s cowardice in that I really have let bullies silence my opinions. Those bullies come into flavours but the nature of the bullies is fundamentally the same and rest upon the capacity to identify classes of people who the bullies believe can be treated as subhuman.

I wish I could be stronger.

11 thoughts on “Why I haven’t written about Israel

  1. I used to run a blog centered on peace questions, not seldom regarding the Middle-East. I had one person calling for my death, just to the next week being used as an expert in our largest morning paper. I had a jewish settler who created fake nazi accounts to post comments with, forcing me to moderate all incoming comments. I got kind of jaded after awhile.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Need to get that Jewish homeland sorted, before the Rapture can come, to take all the Good Christians bodily into Heaven, after all.

        My understanding is that’s where a lot of the US religious enthusiasm for Israel actually comes from.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. @Ingvar – I think that’s somewhat true, but not as much as it used to be. From what I’ve seen in the past couple decades, Islamophobia has surpassed millennialism as the primary reason anti-semites vehemently support Israel. I think it was always a large factor, remembering back to how the people around me during my childhood spoke about eg. the Six Day War, referencing Arabs and/or Muslims as if they were basically rabid animals.

        Like

  2. I have absolutely no problem with people choosing to prioritise their own wellbeing, especially emotionally/mentally. The oxygen mask principle is always at play – you can’t help anyone else if you are not safe first.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Totally understand, take all the time or space that you need. Whatever you choose to write about, I’ve enjoyed reading it.

    Like

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