Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Side Effects

The most interesting part of writing this site are the side effects that come into my life. Besides for having emails that thank me and Twitter follows (Follow me @SOurIsrael), I have gone to more events that are Pro-Israel than I ever have.

Several nights ago, I went to a memorial service for the Fogel family in Far Rockaway. The turn out was truly incredible and the speakers used the pulpit in a way that would have made anyone proud. As proud as I was with the event, I felt a bit defeated. Why do we have to mourn for the Fogels? I'm not referring to the seeming failures int he security system, which there were, nor am I referring to the plea for monetary assistance to help fill the gaps in the failing security systems.

What I do mean is the gap of personal opinion. In America, the UK everywhere, its extremely difficult to be Zionistic. Its very difficult to not feel for the poor Palestinians. I admit, for a time in college, I even thought that Israel was in the wrong. I have, since then, repented. We are inundated with horrifying stories of brutality, of torture, of cruelty from Israel and its citizens.

Yesterday, I had the distinct pleasure of speaking with the founder of the Israel Longhorn Project. This wonderful project is helping bring cattle to the farmers and ranchers in the North of Israel. Why exactly do they need cattle you may ask? Arabs, in NON-contested areas of Israel (I don't believe there are any contested areas of Israel, Yesha and Gaza are Israel, but for the sake of my writing, I will use the terms Contested and Non-Contested areas to help understanding the political side of things,) are mutilating, killing, stealing cattle from the Farmers and Ranchers. It's like a bad dream. People in their own country, trying to make their own money and be able to feed their families are being chased out of their businesses. The government, from what I understand, shrugs their shoulders and says "What can we do?"

We don't see this type of news in America or Europe, and I am sure there are plenty more stories like this all over Israel. One specifically that comes to mind, is the story of Mr. Yitzchak Herskovitz, who bought a house some 20 years ago. Legally. Only recently did he move in. Not because he wasn't ready to move, but because of an Arab family of squatters. This is the reality of Israeli life.

In the media, we don't see how Israelis are affected by Arabs negatively. We don't see how Israelis are doing positive things with Arabs and with other countries of the world. Concession after concession is made for naught.

I have been in contact with so many organizations that are all working together to try and boost the positive opinions. I am proud to be involved in a world of people that want nothing more than to be proud Jews, proud Israelis, proud Zionists.

How has this affected me though? Besides for being away from my family a lot more, with the consent of my beautiful wife and daughter, I have seen positive. I have seen good. I've seen the citizens of Israel start taking notice and actually doing something about it. It makes me want to be better and do more.

We all can do more. Whether its to take part in a BUYcott or to actually do business with Israeli companies. Take a trip to Israel or making Aliyah, it seems to me that we are all trying to do our best. But more needs to be done.

I have many ideas floating in my mind. Some have been put onto this blog, some I have been discussing with friends within this circle of do-gooders. Some are being implemented and some I am keeping to make money for myself. If you have any ideas and would like to get involved. Contact me. Contact One Israel Fund. Contact anyone who will listen and start.

To make Israel strong as a country, we have to make Israel strong economically. That means bring business into Israel. That means funding start-ups there. That means developing Real Estate there. That means supporting the Non Profits operating their to keep Israel safe, both from its neighbors in an unruly neighborhood and medically.

I titled this piece Side Effects for this reason; I became involved just to sit in on a memorial. I became involved after the murder of the Fogel family in Itamar. I was frustrated and a bit listless. I couldn't understand why there was so little coverage in the media. I started this blog. I started bringing positive, proactive solutions to help Israel in my own personal way. Now, I am being contacted daily to help projects, to help develop business, to help Israel.

So my blessing to all who read this and to all who are just sitting on the fence is that because of this blog or whatever else you read, you should have the same type of Side Effects that I have had. It gives a sense of purpose. It gives a sense of pride. I definitely walk a little taller knowing that I am starting off on a journey that helps my brothers and sisters on the Land of my ancestors.

Please help. Get involved. Buy merchandise (Obstacle to Peace) and proudly wear it. Give charity to wherever you like, but please try to give it to Israel. One Israel Fund helps bring security to the "settlements". The Israel Longhorn Project brings cattle to ranchers to help with their livelihood. Ateret Cohanim is reclaiming and rebuilding a Jewish Jerusalem. All of these things are so important. Do what you can.

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