samedi 26 mars 2016

ALIYAH TO AMERICA.. thoughts after Brussels massacre

From a personal point of view, these past few days have not been the best of days.
I had a most wonderful time in the past few weeks: American Indians, Cuba, Cochin and Kuala Lumpur. And I was looking forward to London, despite having a completely unbalanced inner clock.
Constant travelling can upset ones sense of equilibrium but the friendliness of the people you meet on the road balances that. I have been on the road constantly since March 1993, so this lack of place has not created chaos in my life.
As my late mentor Dr Cecil Helman one said: You seem to be devoid of great conflicts, you go around people who have problems that you cannot help or get involved with them. I know that you get closer to people and sometimes the trains take different directions and one departs without bitterness. One thing is for sure, those who departed my life have left for ever, and that I don’t make any attempt to see them, there is no point, because in my opinion, broken pots cannot be put together as well as the new.
As long as you are at peace with the world, not anxious about the past or the future, content with yourself and what you are doing, being grateful and compassionate, life rewards you with the best, day after day.
On this trip of two weeks: Malaysia and London, I made so many new acquaintances. I give their histories a meaning and in return am satisfied with simple interactions of a purer nature. It was nice to receive notes from Flight Attendants to say how much they enjoyed our conversations during the flight!
I am also a Jew. Not in the religious sense of the word but fiercely faithful to the idea of a Jewish Culture and Jewish People. It was not a problem being Jewish in Australia or England or America, but being Jewish in Europe at the moment is rather polemic.
At a party I met a group of young French diplomats who were so blatantly anti-Semitic and welcoming of the Arabs (this was in 2006), it set a tone for my distaste for France. Obviously they don’t say that any more, after what has been happening. In conversations, they defended that the French would never profile any of “their” citizens and that most of the 5 million Moslems in France are good French citizens. This kind of naiveté has led them into deep trouble.
The new antisemitism of the educated hides itself in anti-Israel rhetoric.
So each time something anti-Jewish happens in Europe, my heart bleeds. When a criminal Moslem murdered innocent Jewish children in Toulouse, it was a wakeup call for the French Jewish community but I don’t remember the French rising up against that. Even Charlie Hebdo, mostly Jewish victims, didn’t bring a softening of the anti-Jewish sentiment.
Now that they are being indiscriminately killed, last November in Paris and this week in Brussels, a lot of noise being heard.
It may be already too late for the Jews of Europe, especially from France and Belgium.
It is certainly too late for this Jew.
I am psychologically severing myself from Europe (of course UK is not included in this madness, London is absolutely my favourite city in the European Union).
Symbolically, I am making an Aliyah to America.
I have always enjoyed my work in America and its proximity to Cuba and that is where you would find me. Yes, I would be traveling as always but there would not be many itineraries to Europe, unless it is to London, Barcelona or Lisboa!