This is cross-posted from the blog, West Bank to West End. (This piece was written by a participant at the pro-Israel counter demonstration outside the Ahava store in London on 9/11. See our cross post of Richard Millett’s account of the event, here.)
I had the privilege and honour of being part of the spontaneous singing and dancing as caught on camera here.
Now I don’t mean to gloat but my point mentioned here is further strengthened. Just look at the life in those Israeli tourists! They would have sung and danced all day if the police would have permitted! So would I! I absolutely loved it!
But not only is my point strengthened but it has confirmed my suspicions about the enemies of Israel particularly the rent-a-cause-lets-bully-a-Jewish-business-called-Ahava (Don’t even get me started on the pathetic campaigns they peddle, that’s for another post)
It would seem that it’s not our handing out of powerful fact based leaflets to counter their lies that infuriates them. Nor is it us speaking to the public. Nor do they get too excited about us going into the shop to purchase the goods (this will elicit a mere “shame on you” chanting in order to intimidate). Nor is it our chanting of anything. Nor is it when our numbers of counter protestors are substantial. Sure all of the above annoys them any triumphs on our part spoils their hate campaign but the smugness, arrogance and nasty chanting never subsides.
What gets them, what really kills them and makes the fire burn in their soul and causes their eyes to darken is a group of Jews singing and dancing about love and radiating joy and peace. This it would seem, is too much to bear. Funny old world isn’t it folks?
I’m a regular at these counter-demos. I have never ever ever seen the other side appear so lost and angry about anything. For example go to the second clip on the link from Richard Millets blog. The girl who shouts “Israel terrorist state” has always been so smiley and charming. She is always very cordial and polite to the public and pretty good at engaging them. I have spoken to her before and whilst we ignore each other now she never seems the aggressive type and compared to some is fairly moderate. However look how she loses it, look at the venom being spat out of her mouth and then she looks at the floor with a face like she is going to cry (I thought I saw a tear? )
I have been told by many wise people before that the way to counter hate is with love and lots of it. I believe that is what we witnessed yesterday. Kill em with some love. Ahava is after all, the Hebrew word for love.
Those tourists were fantastic. Israelis at their best! They exported some of that “life” I was telling you about in Israel and brought it to the streets of London right when we needed it. They sang it, they danced it, they radiated it and showed the other side that in Israel we sing songs of love, peace and joy and do not stoop to chanting corny cheap hate filled blahs.
What a stark contrast eh?
Just like the state of Israel shines a little too brightly for the liking of the countries in the region almost blinding them, looks like we shone too brightly for the forces of darkness on the other side. They’d do well to bring dark UV filtered sunglasses next time to protect themselves.
Am Yisrael Chai (sing that part)
(Oh and in case anyone is wondering, we sang the Tikva at the end for good measure)