There are a lot of people in Iceland who have a wrong perception of Israel.
Let me tell you something about Israel.
Over 1.6 million Muslims live peacefully with Jews in Israel. In Israel, Muslims and Jews are neighbors. They are work colleagues, teachers, lawyers, judges, politicians, policewomen, firemen, soldiers, cooks, sexual partners and much, much more. They laugh, live, eat, cry and argue with each other. They share the same country. They are connected to the trees, rivers, mountains, seas, lakes, towns, villages and deserts of their homeland, which they often include in their prayers. They are one family! Some are distant relatives, others trusted friends.
Israel is the only country in the Middle East where Jews, Muslims and Christians live safely in a democracy that allows them to be gay or lesbian and perform any kind of consesual sex practice involving bondage, discipline, sadomasochism, dominance and submission. Every citizen has the same rights, regardless of gender or skin color. Israel is the only country in the Middle East where citizens can elect and, above all, change their government. The Israeli government is therefore the only government in the Middle East which is democratically elected by Muslims and Arabs.
Israel may not be perfect, but there is no country in the world that has performed better under similar circumstances.
The founding charter of Hamas demands the annihilation of the entire Jewish people (Article 7) and the destruction of Israel (Article 13). In mosques and on television Hamas ministers call Jews bacteria which should be exterminated and vermin whose throats should be cut and whose families should be murdered. Thousands of rockets were fired against Israel in the last years. Some countries don’t allow Jews or Israelis to live within their borders.
Criticism of Israel and Judaism is certainly allowed. Much criticism of the Israeli government comes from within Israel itself. In many countries Israel is certainly the most criticized nation, be it from free or unfree countries, be it from Germany or Iran. The United Nations has criticized Israel more often than all the other countries combined: from North Korea to America, from Russia to Afghanistan.
Only 0.1% of the total world population consists of Israelis. In these 0.1% the United Nations sees a people that must be given special attention. The other 99.9% of the world are basically given clemency. So either Israel is a state more vicious than North Korea, Russia, China, Venezuela, Germany, Hungary, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Iran, the USA and all other countries of the world combined or the United Nations has a problem with the Jew among nations.
If anything is superfluous, then even more criticism in the direction of Israel. What needs more attention are those regimes where criticism can be and is punished with violence and death.
There’s already enough criticism of Israel which is merely repetitive. However, there is a lack of criticism of the behavior and actions of Israel’s enemies. Indeed, that criticism can result in violence and even death in some parts of the world.
I am for Israel, not because I believe that somebody first set his foot in the sand somewhere, or because some God invited some bearded man for a coffee to discuss dividing up the world, but because Israel is the only country in the Middle East in which women and men have equal rights; homosexuality is recognized by the state; opinion, art, sexual preferences and science are free; no religion is discriminated against, and Jews neither have to be better nor worse than all other people.
Every square meter in the Middle East that takes Israel as an example is one square meter of humanity gained.
Gerd Buurmann, Cologne, Germany