The question stunned David Friedman, former U.S. ambassador to Israel.
Nearly two weeks ago, as the war between Israel and Hamas was just getting started, he saw the joy of his family visiting turn to horror with the sound and danger of exploding rockets and the need to take refuge in a bomb shelter.
That's when his 12-year-old granddaughter asked him, "Why do they want to kill us?"
"That's not something you want to explain to your grandchild, ever," Friedman tells Charisma News during a recent interview relaying the events currently in Israel. "But early on in the battle, there [were] a lot of sirens in Jerusalem. It was very hard for me because I had some of my children and grandchildren visiting.
"I had to explain to my granddaughter—as I ushered her into a bomb shelter—about what was happening," he says. "She wanted to know why, why are we doing this?" I had to explain that there are people not far away who want to kill us because we're Jewish. They've never met us; they've never met a single Jew. No in the Gaza Strip has met a Jew in the Gaza Strip because there are no Jews in the Gaza Strip. So people they haven't met, they don't know.
"But nonetheless, they want to kill us, and they don't care," he says. "If one of their rockets hits any family, you know, they've nothing against us personally; they just want to kill us. This is a message that's not really appropriate for somebody at that age. And that's the reality of living in Israel within this these times. I mean, I had to explain it ... I couldn't just rush into a shelter, with sirens going off without explaining why to this bright little girl. But it's a shame. I thought that we were past this point in our history. But we're not."
Indeed. As Jonathan Cahn calls, "Jew hatred," or antisemitism, continues to spread throughout the world, including on top college campuses in America like Harvard. Anti-Israel protests, combined with the silence of major universities like the University of Pennsylvania, have caused an uproar in the Unites States educational community and prompted some prominent donors to withdraw their money from these institutions.
"From looking at all of these protests at all these college campuses, one would have thought reasonably intelligent kids would do this," Friedman says. "But antisemitism is at a level the likes of which we haven't seen in decades."
Many accused Elon Musk of being antisemitic and said antisemitism was cruel. But when Israel began to defend itself against Hamas and its brutality over the past couple of weeks, the same people have become blatantly antisemitic and pro-terrorism. Along with antisemitism, hypocrisy is rearing its ugly head in this world. As Charisma Media interviewer John Matarazzo says, it has become Orwellian.
"It's stunning," Friedman says in their interview. "I went to undergrad to Columbia University, and then I went to law school at NYU. And these two places over the last weeks have been so shameful. I mean, [there are] professors who have glorified the attack. They've glorified it. They said this was an incredible, awesome, attack by Hamas. That was at Columbia and NYU. The student Bar Association put out something the first day—like before Israel even responded—that all of this is Israel's fault.
"So, imagine the pain on the parents of their people, their parents now have children who died, their parents have daughters, who have been who have been sexually abused, over and over again by these animals and then taken over into Gaza and held them hostage," he says. "And what these, for lack of a better word, idiot college students and law students are saying is that she had it coming to her because she lives in Israel. It's her fault, we can't imagine that.
"The parents are not suffering enough without seeing that the insanity that has become of the world?" Friedman asks. "So yeah, I have to tell you ... Israel, with all its problems, I mean, Jerusalem, we're in a war zone here. But it's almost easier to be here, because at least we're living in a place where, you know, my neighbors to the right and the left and all the other people I know who are politically to the right and the left, in the center ... at least here, everybody agrees that these are barbarians who have to be defeated. At least we're not finding a war of communications in Israel."
But it's communication that Friedman would rather not partake in, especially with his preteen granddaughter.
Shawn A. Akers is the online editor at Charisma Media.
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