Je Suis Charlie
Western civilization, as practiced in most of Western Europe and North America, affords freedoms and opportunities not readily available in much of the rest of the world. That’s why so many wish to emigrate from wherever they are to North America and alternatively to Western Europe. An immigrant living in a slum in the United States or in Western Europe is guaranteed more freedoms and has more opportunity than they would have in less developed and less democratic countries.
Nations which agree with the religious and political loyalties of such individuals in Western democracies, and in any way shape or form support them, should be considered enemies and treated accordingly by the civilized nations of Europe and North America, regardless of whatever economic or political reasons have justified our having relations with them up to now. And this includes nations from whom we purchase petroleum! If they support terrorism in any form, they are our enemies.
Although I may be offended by some of what Charlie Hebdo publishes, its right to do so must be protected along with my right to express myself however I may choose to do, and therefore, JE SUIS CHARLIE.
Here are a few of the gentler cartoons, including an anti-Semitic one, from Charlie Hebdo, accompanied by my translation. They are pretty nasty ... but worth killing for in civilized countries? No way.
Love is stronger than hatred. 100 lashes if you don't die laughing first.
Slaughter in Egypt" The Koran is made of shit and can't stop bullets.
Untouchables: You can't make fun of Muslims nor Jews
Anti-Semitism is Not Dead
The terrorist who, in attempting to help the criminals who murdered much of the staff of Charlie Hebdo, chose to seize a kosher supermarket, killed four male customers and proceeded with a hostage-taking scenario. A Muslim, he chose his target because as a Muslim, he had an antipathy toward Jews, primarily based on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and considered all Jews to be fair game. This is despite the fact that Arabs in Israel have more freedoms than Arabs in Muslim nations and a Palestinian state, once it fully recognizes Israel and ceases attacking it, would probably also offer freedoms other Muslim nations do not. Anti-Semitism has long existed in France (Dreyfus incident, cooperation with Nazi occupiers during WW2, tolerance of extreme right-wing anti-semitic political groups and a myopic readiness to condemn Israeli acts of self-defense as aggression) and unfortunately, there are Frenchmen today who were not unhappy with the terrorists choice of a target for his hostage-taking. Therefore it is not surprising that despite the show of unity among all groups and nations in reaction to the events of last week, many French Jews are uncomfortable living there and are considering leaving the country, primarily for the State of Israel.
Albert Dreyfus, accused of treason in the late 19th Century
Maimonides left Spain for North Africa when discrimination started there
It has been said that American Jews are fortunate in that they live in a country where their freedoms are strongly guaranteed. But for centuries, Jews living in the Diaspora have felt that way about temporary homelands. Eventually they were proven wrong. This was true for Jews living in Spain, in North Africa (Moroccan Jews are satisfied with their status there at present) and in European countries. It was inconceivable that the Holocaust could have occurred in a civilized European nation ... but it did. The atmosphere in France cannot be ignored.
Therefore, beyond proclaiming support for freedom of expression (Je Suis Charlie), Jews throughout the world should take the events of last week as further reason to support the State of Israel, as a place where all Jews will always be welcome.
A Short Story