If not for Bobby Brown (my long-time friend, former advisor to the Prime Minister of Israel, happy Father and Grandfather living in the area called by some the “occupied territories”, which I call Judea and Samaria), I would have most likely missed this story.
Here it is: in the city of Wuppertal, three Palestinian Arabs – now German citizens – threw Molotov cocktails at the local synagogue. It was not the first time the synagogue in Wuppertal was set aflame – the previous one ceased to exist as a result of the Kristallnacht.
The German judge sentenced the perpetrators to 200 hours of community service and gave them suspended sentences. The explanatory memorandum stated that their act was not anti-Semitic in character but that it was only “an attempt to draw attention to the conflict in Gaza.”
Such judgment terrified me.
I think, moreover, that it terrified me far more than first similar judgments that German Jews heard in the thirties. After all, the synagogue in Wuppertal was not set on fire as a result of anti-Semitic riots at the time. It was only the people’s “protest against usury and profiteering.”
I think that it pained the German Jews to hear such judgment, but they had faith that judge’s madness would quickly be fixed. They were, after all, good citizens, they had fought for Germany in the First World War. They paid their taxes. They did not know that the Holocaust was coming. They did not know that about half of the participants of the Wansee conference would have the title of Doctor of Laws.
I do know all those things – and this is why the judgment terrifies.
I did not learn about it from mainstream media, as it was only mentioned in the Jewish press. Also surprising is the silence of the German media. The absurdity of the judge’s decision should be noticed and remonstrated by everyone – and it does not matter that the courts are independent. Not in this case.
I always wondered when was it that the German Jews realized that it was time to flee. It seems to me that it was not until they realized that they could not count on fair judges – the same for which we pray in 18 benedictions.
Does the Wuppertal judgment mean it is now time for the Jews to pack suitcases?