If you aren’t familiar with If Not Now, go to their website before you read this. I’m a believer in first hand information and I can’t find the words to explain who they are, or actually, who they think they are, which is not the same thing. It’s why I’m writing about them and Jews like them. Yes, my people, buckle up, because some of you are in for a bumpy ride.
The founders and followers of If Not Now discovered in 2014 that Israel won the Six Day War. Yeah I know, they’re young and weren’t around back in the day. But in 2014 they discovered the occupation which is a misleading word to use because it over simplifies a complex problem. They weren’t around for the disengagement either so I guess that’s why it’s not mentioned anywhere on their website. Best left out because how can you push the idea that all Israel has to do is give up land and voila, problem solved, when that elephant is in the room. They have no answer for the disengagement which gave us something, but it wasn’t peace. Shimon Peres z’’l once asked the Arab league about it and they had no answer either.
According to the website, the 2014 war between Israel and Hamas is what woke them. Actually there is no mention of Hamas. There is no mention of the lead up to the war either. No mention of three kidnapped and then murdered Israeli teens or the rockets fired by Hamas on Israeli civilians. They have a selectivity problem. Selective memory and selective outrage. Outrage because Israel defended itself. I am not a war monger because I know the price both sides pay. I’m also kind of fond of staying amongst the living and unfortunately Hamas does not feel the same way. Is that then the rub everyone keeps mentioning? I find the fact that they remove the context disturbing.
If Not Now claims that they care about both Palestinians and Israelis. I began to suspect they were being dishonest as I searched their twitter feed. Not one tweet about Ori Ansbacher, a 19 year old who was raped and murdered in the name of Palestinian nationalism. Nothing about the rocket fire on Tel Aviv. Only about Israel’s response, as if Israel’s response came out of the blue. No tweets about the two Israelis murdered in Sunday’s terror attack. I think they might be lying about caring about Israelis.Then again they don’t seem to care about Gazans except when it comes to Israel. Not one tweet about Hamas violence against Gazans who were protesting against Hamas rule.
If Not Now has taken a strong stand against the Birthright program. Birthright takes young Jews on a free very short trip to Israel to strengthen their Jewish identity and connection to Israel. If Not Now takes issue with the fact that this intense and intensely short trip is all about the Jews. They want the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians to be highlighted. They don’t want to create their own program and trip. They want to force Birthright to change the focus of their program to match what If Not Now wants.
Why can’t If Not Now be for two states without demonizing Israel? Why can’t they be for two states and recognize the complexity of the situation? I don’t have the answer. It’s a choice they made. Another choice they recently made was to ask American Jews to separate themselves from Israeli Jews. Despite abandoning their people, we in Israel will, if God forbid it’s needed due to the sharp rise of antisemitism worldwide including the US, open our doors to them because despite their actions we are one people.