Monday, March 2, 2009

Developmentally Disabled Arabs in a Jewish School : Jewish Mercy and G-d's Mercy

My daughter in law grew up in a religious Yemenite family in Israel. Her brothers served in the army and she did Sherut Leumi, which translates as "National Service." Her assignment for her two years of service was to work with the developmentally disabled. She used to work in a school that served children and adults with Down's syndrome. She had fond recollections of the children, both Arab and Jewish and their mothers who would come regularly to the kindergarten to drop off and pick up their children.

In America, random ethnic mixes are expected in early intervention programs . Israel is supposed to be a racist state. After listening to my daughter in law many questions occurred to me. How often are Arab children served in Jewish programs? How freely would a Jewish family be able to send their children to Nablus or Ramallah?

Arab education demonises Jews. From a young age Arab children are exposed to Nazi style propaganda. Israel has with G-d's help fought four major wars in its sixty year history. It did not prepare for war by demonising the enemy. My daughter in law was not pumped full of hate propaganda against the Arabs. Neither was her family so indoctrinated. Many Jews in Israel speak as natives Arabic, Farsi and other languages of Israel's sworn enemies.

It is remarkable to me that the wars Israel fought effectively with G-d's help were not waged with demonisation as a propaganda strategy. I can not give any coherent reason for this. I can think of only two rational explanations. One reason is that we are not like our enemies. We do not rely on hatred for a sense of self. The second reason is that we can not afford to lose a war. When Syria and Egypt lost wars against us, they lost territory. They knew that we would treat prisoners and captured citizens humanely. If we lose a war, we cease to exist as a country. The fate of the captured would be too grim to contemplate.

The only other explanation is the most plausible. Our survival is by grace of G-d a miracle. Our G-d rewards mercy with mercy. The kindness and affection for Arab children in the hearts of Jewish girls who care for them awakens mercy from G-d. It is our kindness that is our shield. I speak not of the false compassion when terrorists are released but the pure mercy shown to the helpless and the innocent.

We will never get credit from the EU the UN or the New York Times. G-d keeps score. And that is all that matters..


The video above shows comparisons between Arab and Nazi propaganda it is narrated by a former leader in the Hitler Youth Sphere: Related Content

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