Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Mutual Responsibility

When Israeli Police beat religious kids in the town of Amona, it was only another example of the extreme brutality that these forces display. When they badly beat orthodox demonstrators against the construction of highway 6, it was again displayed. There are many cases that should result in jail sentences, but instead result in promotions.

The latest occured today, when police set loose like a pack of dogs attacked a group of university students protesting a tuition increase. One student said, "My pants are soaked with the blood of a friend whose head was split open" by Israeli policemen.

As Jews, we are known as merciful people whose heritage is compassion. How is it, then, that when law enforcement, in our own country, takes up batons and fists and steel-toed boots against our own people, we do not rise in public outcries of abhorrence, demanding the heads of these police-thugs? Where is our defense of the downtrodden?

When a Jew was pounced during anti-expulsion demonstrations, his nose ripped away from his face by an Israeli officer of the law, where were the students? When Rabbi Meir Kahane was hounded by the security forces and branded an extremist, where were the Religious Zionist leaders? When religious kids are beaten, or charedi men trounced, where are the secular humanists of the land? It seems that when we do not protest injustice, we may be the next victim. And he who came before us, he whom we did not defend, will not be around to defend us.

It may be that some people need to experience first-hand the agony of a ripped face, or a billy club to the belly, in order to protest police brutality. But enough is enough. We must rise in one voice, and demand that civil rights be upheld in Israel! These cops must pay for their crimes. When we return to the values of our Torah, we will deserve a police force that knows its limits, not the police force of some third world country.

No more Israeli police brutality.