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An Open Letter to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Dear Ms. Ocasio-Cortez,

In response to your ill-informed statements on the current Gaza riots, a few words of advice.

I, too, was 28 once. And I, like many your age, thought I knew it all. I didn’t. And neither do you.

If you want to be an effective legislator, you will have to learn to read beyond the sensationalist headlines and actually learn about an issue before opening your mouth.

You want to know why the Democrats don’t speak up against Israel’s actions at the border? Why they are “silent,” as you say? It’s because on the other side of the border is Hamas. And Hamas is a designated terrorist organization. This border conflict is only the most recent in a string of terrorist-organized provocations that have plagued Israel relentlessly since its inception. Israel does not start conflicts, it defends against them, and only after being pushed to an edge that no other nation would possibly tolerate. Israel has the most humane defense forces in the history of warfare and, as such, support for the Jewish State is the ONLY issue in our tragically stratified nation that is, was, and always will be a truly bipartisan issue.

In your political naïveté, you actually compare the Gaza riots to a peaceful protest in Ferguson or the West Virginia Teacher strikes. At best, that is a tremendous insult to the American demonstrators. At worst, you are likening them to rabid terrorists. First of all, are you aware that the people of Gaza are not Israeli citizens? So, immediately, your analogy is not analogous at all.

Secondly, what is going on in Gaza right now are violent riots — not peaceful demonstrations — organized by none other than (you got it), your good friends at Hamas. The stated goal: to tear down the security barrier, force their way into Israel, and destroy as much land and kill as many Jews as possible. They are storming the security barrier, setting fire to acres and acres of Israeli land, rolling huge burning tires at the IDF, and shooting guns and missiles into Israel. You want to draw an accurate parallel? Think of tens of thousands of rioters at the US-Mexico or Canadian border threatening the same. How do you think the USA would respond?

Now, these “innocent victims of massacre” that you are so concerned about…you do know that — by Hamas’s own admission — no fewer than 52 of the 60 killed were, in fact, Hamas operatives, right? Further, it is documented that Hamas has lied about civilian casualties, as whenever a Gazan dies, the well-meaning but highly uninformed public (such as yourself) cries and bleeds in empathy. Gazans die, Hamas wins.

So, you insist that you are defending human rights by calling for “basic human dignity” at the Israel-Gaza border. What you are really defending is terrorists and their lies and propaganda. Do you know why the conditions in Gaza are so horrific? Because instead of spending their money on civilian infrastructure and improvements, Hamas spends it on terror tunnels and munitions. As a result, their people live in squalor and the 28-year-olds who know it all, blame it on Israel.

Hamas is in control of its people’s living conditions, their water and electricity, education and welfare. Not Israel.

You think you are the voice of the young generation and, sadly, maybe you are. It is a generation that does not know how to think for itself anymore, that is easily manipulated by the lies and propaganda of the media — and, yes, of terrorists. It is a generation that is growing up in an echo chamber that reassures them that no matter what they believe is the absolute truth.

One day, Alexandria, you will go to Israel and see a vibrant, multicultural, tolerant, thriving, egalitarian, peaceful nation. You will be embarrassed and ashamed of your rash and uninformed opinion of a reality you knew nothing about. And you will wake up and grow up and it’s okay. This is the process of becoming an adult and an informed citizen of the world, a seeker of justice and morality. One day, you will be ready to say that you, like essentially all members of Congress, stand with Israel.

Peace out,

Shana Meyerson

Los Angeles, CA

About the Author
Shana Meyerson is a proud member of the World Jewish Congress's Jewish Diplomatic Corps and AIPAC. Professionally, she is an internationally acclaimed yoga instructor, based out of Los Angeles, California.
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