A Jewish army trainee was assaulted at a Georgia army base:
SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) – In a letter home, a Jewish soldier in basic training at Fort Benning complained of religious discrimination and wrote that a friend overheard platoon members saying they wanted to beat him up.
Days later, Pvt. Michael Handman was beaten so badly he had to be treated at a hospital, and his father believes the attack stemmed from an investigation of Handman’s claims that instructors had harassed him and used anti-Semitic slurs.
“I have just never been so discriminated against/humiliated about my religion,” Handman wrote to his parents. “I just feel like I’m always looking over my shoulder. Like my battle buddy heard some of the guys in my platoon talking about how they wanted to beat the (expletive) out of me tonight while I’m sleeping.”
“He kept hitting the side of my face, back of my head and temples for about 10-15 more seconds that I can remember,” Handman wrote. “After that I was knocked out. Next thing I remember is tasting blood and 2 pvts. (privates) standing over me calling my name.”
Israel plans to purchase as many as 75 fighter jets from the US. In the documentary Young, Jewish and Left (full review coming soon), one of the interviewees points out that, when you look at net gains, Israel actually hasn’t benefited all that much from the occupation of Palestine. Rather, it’s the military industrial complex that appears to have the most at stake. As I’ve said before, the US – and its economic interests – is exerting influence over Israel, not the other way around.
Arguing over semantics is an unaffordable luxury for a 41-year-old occupation. The reality of millions of individuals whose human rights are violated day in and day out is morally unacceptable.
Has Israel’s unjust treatment of Palestinians in the West Bank reached a point where it merits being labeled “apartheid”? Is Israel truly comparable to pre-1993 South Africa? The argument over this issue has been heating up, but perhaps all of that energy is going in the wrong direction.
Here’s a thought: Call it what you will, just do what you can to end it.