The International Court of Justice has delivered its interim judgment on the South African government’s “genocide” charge against Israel. Even this political body appointed by the UN General Assembly couldn’t bring itself to order Israel to accept a ceasefire in its war against Hamas.
But we should not be grateful for that. The ICJ had no moral right to order Israel to cease its just war of self-defense in the first place.
This is not 1938. It is 2024. The Jewish people do not have to go on their knees to beg for the right to defend themselves against those who seek to exterminate us. With G-d’s blessing, we have a sovereign Jewish state for the first time in almost 2,000 years, protected by a powerful army that ensures Jewish blood is not spilled with impunity.
G-d has given us another blessing. While around half the Jewish world lives in the sovereign State of Israel, around 95% of the other half lives in free democracies, with the capacity to support and defend the interests of the State of Israel and the Jewish people in this just war of self-defense.
And unlike 1938, we are not alone. We have allies around the world: Fair-minded, decent citizens and free democratic governments who are fully behind Israel and the Jewish people at this moment of crisis. Our allies can see clearly the justice of Israel’s cause. Unlike the ICJ, they know who are the real genocidal forces.
We have seen this support manifest itself in many different ways. There is rock-solid support from the United States, United Kingdom, European Union and Indian governments, as well as from African countries including Kenya, Ghana, Rwanda and Zambia. Other democracies around the world have joined them. Germany heroically pledged to stand by Israel in the dock at the ICJ proceedings. Moreover, the historic Abraham Accords with important Arab countries have weathered the storm of the Gaza war. Except for a handful of signatories, not one Arab nation sanctioned or joined the ICJ proceedings.
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The Jewish world is strong and we have allies in the fight against genocidal movements, who threaten not only us but the civilized world, exactly as the Nazis did.
We are not the Jews of 1938, the Roman expulsion or the Spanish Inquisition. We are not the Jews who were massacred in the pogroms of Europe. When confronted with fearsome enemies, Jews of previous generations had no choice but to take flight. This generation can and will fight. We will fight back with every measure possible — with dignity, strength, self-belief and a sense of justice for our cause.
In 1938, vulnerable and fearful, with nowhere to run and no allies in the world, we were sent to our slaughter. Today, with G-d’s blessings, we have risen from the ashes of the Holocaust.
We are a proud, great people with a long history that began when we were born at the foot of Mount Sinai 3,300 years ago. We have a presence stretching across the globe with an independent Jewish state in our biblical homeland, incredible resources and loyal allies.
G-d has blessed us. We need to believe in ourselves and send the message to all of our enemies that we will not be cowed, we will not be pushed around, we will not be slaughtered with impunity.
This is a moral charge. We will defend the survival of our people and, indeed, the free world, from the forces of barbarism.