One of the biggest falsehoods in history is the reductionist framing of the war in the Middle East as an Israeli-Palestinian or Arab-Israeli conflict when its really a far-reaching battle between Israel (the economic miracle, inclusive democracy and modernizer) versus dozens of Islamic states and their Jihadi accomplices who intoxicate Muslims with an extremist religion that blackmails the civilized world and tries to annihilate Jews and undercut US imperialism just as Soviet communists and Nazi fascists tried to do before them but catastrophically failed and prompted their own demise.
As a proud gay, atheist, feminist and secular humanist belonging to two freedom-fighting nationalities (Afghan & American), I support the existence and expansion of Greater Israel as a sanctuary for people who desire a Promised Land here on Earth. The Israel that I imagine is one that absorbs law-abiding Palestinians to become part of the Zionist dream. I hope that my beloved homeland, Afghanistan, will soon be rich and united like Israel. Everything Afghans need to know about how to create a progressive nation can be learned by emulating the Israeli way.
By admiring Israel as a civil rights haven and beacon of light in a region surrounded by darkness, I’m not turning a blind eye to the collective suffering of Palestinians. Civilians in Gaza caught in the crossfires between Israeli Defense Forces and Hamas, who are unable to escape due to Israel and Egypt sealing off their borders, is a tragedy for which all involved parties are to blame.
But many moderate Muslims tacitly support Hamas and only put pressure on Israel. Where is the outrage against Hamas escalating war against Israel during Ramadan to fundraise and accumulate “zakat” donations, their use of Palestinians as human shields to protect themselves and their hiding of weapons in homes, schools, mosques, ambulances before it is fired, in the thousands, into Israel? Deaths caused by Israel’s retaliation, numbering in the hundreds, are fiercely protested but the world remains silent as Islamists continue genocide in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Mali, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and other hot spots in the Islamic World.
Hamas is a source of evil as they rule like the Taliban by restricting the rights of women, prohibiting gender mixing, encouraging “honor” killings and letting murderers go unpunished; criminalizing LGBTI as blasphemous traitors; and making conditions for Christians, Shia Muslims and nonbelievers so intolerable that they are forced into exile. And when Hamas and other Muslim heterosexist bigots are criticized for beating up their wives, stoning their daughters, hanging homosexuals, looting and torching non-Muslim places of worship and dehumanizing infidels, they blame Israel or US policy.
The Islamic model of waging an indefinite war within and another against outsiders with no tangible human progress has proven time and again to be barbaric and unsustainable. But that hasn’t stopped Islamists from escalating the violence to stay in power. If Israel is a war criminal for violating humanitarian law in an armed conflict then why not also expose Hamas’s atrocities and the structural violence of Islamic regimes that commit ethnic cleansing, harbor terrorists and infringe upon on the rights of gender, religious and sexual minorities?
As a reformist, I’ve experienced the wrath of Islam and know about the deplorable tactics Muslim rulers use to oppress their own population to remain desperate, disenfranchised and disempowered while they engage in industrial-scale corruption, fraud and plagiarism and violently suppress empirical knowledge from being the foundation of society.
Until people recognize that Islam is a fatal cancer that endangers everyone, there will be no justice or peace anywhere. In the fight between Israel and Islam, I stand in solidarity with Israel (and Palestinian civilians) and trust you will do the same.