Rome Stands With Israel

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Israel continues to endure the fallout from the Mavi Marmara debacle; Israel gets blamed for defending herself even though Turkish hired assassins had come with the express purpose of assaulting and murdering Israeli soldiers.

In the teeth of this cruel public relations disaster, the indomitable Italian parliamentarian Fiamma Nirenstein, the chair of the International Council of Jewish Parliamentarians, asked me to write something that would be read at a massive pro-Israel rally that she, together with Giuliano Ferrara, the publisher of Il Foglio, helped organize.

The rally took place on October 7, 2010, in Rome. More than 3,000 people were present at the Temple of Hadrian. Among those present were Italy’s prime minister, the president of the Chamber of Deputies, president of the Senate, the mayor of Rome, the president of the Jewish community of Rome, the chief rabbi of Rome, and a former Prime Minister of Spain. Messages from Prime Minister Netanyahu and from a distinguished host of intellectuals and politicians were beamed in.

I am now holding a book that memorializes this event: Per La Verita, Per Israele: Mille voci al Tempio di Adriano (For The Truth, For Israel: A Thousand Voices at the Temple of Hadrian). Each contribution appears in both Italian and English. The pieces are passionate, sophisticated, and written by people from many countries, including Italy, Spain, France, Norway, Finland, Holland, the United States, and Israel, etc., including pieces by Iranian dissidents in exile, Iraqis in exile, apostates in Parliament (Magdi Cristiano Allam), the Association of Arab Women in Italy, and Nobel Laureate Rita Levi-Montalcini. My most excellent colleagues Bruce Bawer, Melanie Phillips, Benny Morris, and of course Giuilo Meotti, all appear in the book.

Italy has a long and sordid history of persecuting its Jews. The word “ghetto” comes from the district in Venice in which Jews were forced to live and where they were locked in after dark. I recently took a tour of Jewish Rome and, since I love Italy, was especially saddened by the stories of repeated massacres, pogroms, and ritual persecution that afflicted the Jews of every region.

And still, a remnant of Italian Jewry survived. Alas, so does anti-Semitism.

Given the ongoing events, i.e. the flotilla and flytilla that failed, the hostile mass “surges” into Jewish Israel, the sabotage of the gas lines from Egypt to Israel, and the upcoming UN vote on Palestinian statehood—all of which amounts to the Third Intifada—I hope that Nirenstein is ready to rally soon again.

The 2010 rally in Rome, and now the book that memorializes it, parts company with Italian history. It is an act of profound resistance which I applaud. Here is what I wrote, and what was read for me at this rally.


The War In Jerusalem Will Spare Nobody. After the Jews, It Will Be the Christians’ Turn.

Without doubt, Israel potentially faces extinction, possibly a Second Holocaust.

Indeed, many Europeans continue Hitler’s Holocaust by supporting fifty-seven Islamic apartheid nation states against the single Jewish democratic state.

The worldwide media has become totally “Palestinianized” and Stalinized. Palestinians—even the haters, terrorists, and torturers, are naught but noble, innocent victims. Israel has literally become Orwell’s 1984 “Goldstein,” whom propagandized mobs are taught to scapegoat for their every conceivable sorrow.

The ideological assault against Israel has escalated. Daily, hourly, in every language, the media repeats Big Lies. Israel is the “Nazi, apartheid” state, the “colonial” aggressor; neat trick, that. Bloody Muslim imperialism and Islamic religious and gender apartheid are thus denied and projected onto Israel.

Israel is essentially, existentially, “evil.”

In 2005, Ahmadinejad said that Israel must be “wiped off the map.” In 2006, he said that the Middle East would be better off “without the existence of the Zionist regime” and that Israel would “soon be wiped out.”

President Ahmadinejad denies the Holocaust, but really, he feels Hitler did not go far enough. Thus, he is taking up where Hitler left off—Amadinejad’s intention is a clearly stated genocidal one.

No one is stopping him.

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  • Anamah

    In the future the question may be asked with anguish and fury. How was this allowed to happens? … what were you doing?
    The shame will fall over our heads and go back into our desolate consciousness. I miss you Oriana please come back.

  • Anamah

    In the future the question may be asked with anguish and fury. How was this allowed to happens? … what were you doing?

  • Dispozovdaburka

    NWO needs a new world ideology/religion.

  • logdon

    Don't get over excited about Blair.

    He's the man who oversaw and encouraged the greatest influx of migrants Britain has ever witnessed. Most were Muslim and the bulk of those from Pakistan.

    As a result towns and cities are transformed into little Karachi's or in the case of Hammersmith in London the local coloquialism, Little Baghdad.

    Here's what happens as they demand and our supine politico's capitulate.

    Or even worse, this…….

    For the lowdown google Neather who was a whistleblower on the whole sorry saga.

  • Rahel

    Right on, Phyllis. Right on.

  • StephenD

    Ms. Chesler, a fantastic article this. I hope people of good conscience everywhere read this and are stirred to their souls. I agree with your assessment that first, the Jews, then…everyone else. Another Dark Ages is at the gate. We MUST resist.

    • peltaxx

      Yes, of course, but would you like to suggest how?
      Many excellent writers like Ms Chesler, say the same.
      But our politicians must take action and not be so what is called politically correct. But then it seems to me that every time a politician or a political party gets influence the so called liberals are persecuting them and even the judges – look to The Netherlands or to Denmark for examples.

  • Chezwick_mac

    Phylis is a beacon of rationality and moral courage. But instead of celebrating her, her feminist colleagues have tried to turn her into a non-person…to little avail. One hopes that history will remember her for what she is, not for what her ideological enemies presuppose she is.

    Meanwhile, the Jihadi imperative precludes a lasting peace between Israel and her Muslim neighbors…just as it precludes any real lasting peace between Darul Islam and Darul Harb. All the wishful thinking in the world by gullible and faint-hearted liberals will never change that.

    If history is any guide, the only peace that can exist between Muslims and non-Muslims is one that is imposed upon Muslims by infidels in a position to do so. If only liberals understood the lessons of history.

  • Lisa Richards

    Fabulous. Everyone twitter & Facebook this so all will read and understand this is vital to wake up to now.

  • stern

    That's because it doesn't exist. The other side is not rational. When they aren't wearing their rose-coloured glasses, they're trying to shout down anyone who disagrees with them.

  • LindaRivera

    A great speech by famous human rights activist, pro-America, pro-Israel Dr. Chesler! A heroine for ever for Israel, America and the free world!

    My deep concern about politicians; Tony Blair is just one example, and other well-known personalities and organizations who say nice words for Israel. is that some of these people appear to be for Israel, but in reality, they are not. They are actually for the so-called peace process which is a PHONY peace. They are for a two-state solution – which would bring about a Second Holocaust.

    The only way you can find out if someone is really for Israel is to ask them if they are for the peace process and the two-state solution. You may be shocked to discover their answer.

  • Kate

    Please publish ALL the names of the "artists" who have signed a petition against Israel and/or refuse to perform there. I am an visual artist and would gladly add my name to a list condemning them and making their anti-Semitism known. (Ahem, anti-Zionism…so much more acceptable, soooo much more "intellectual"!)
    Artists, in an effort to be taken seriously, often veer sharply anti just about anything but especially the cause-du-jour and especially if a "big" name is there to be seen to be aligned with. Their actions are informed less by intelligence than by the basic need to become better known by any means so that they can make more money. In other words, characterless stupidity. Lets face it, art/theater school never required much in the way of brain work. Although we all know the Jew hatred of that silly old tart Ed Asner, people need to know who the rest of them are in order to avoid anything they do are.

    • nina

      I do agree with you wholeheartedly. I would also like to know their names. One I know, is a great musician, but disgusting human being: Daniel Barenbaum. I am not going to his concerts anymore. Also, the old witch Vanessa Redgrave is a rabid anti-Israeli and old hand leftist. But these are old news.

  • tanstaafl

    Ms. Chesler is a pillar of Western Civilization.

  • Anne

    You will find the signatrories to the original letter at

    • nina

      I couldn't find them. Only a horrible internet place with Peace in its title. And a very long article about these "lovely" people, but no names.

  • sodacrackers2

    Destroying Israel and/or the United States is liking cutting off your nose to spite your face. It would not take very long for the rest of the world to fall into hell if either of those two things ever happened. Moral relativism, liberation theology, and fabian socialism are plagues on civilization.

  • PersonOfTheBook

    Sometimes I am at a loss for words in the endless task of reminding those who are lost which is the side of evil and which is the side of good.

    This article is a definite keeper, for her talking points can be reiterated in our own ways, whenever needed. It's important to have them at the ready, work on our own oratorial skills. Maybe we can make that one difference that can turn a brainwashed mind back to rationality.

    Also, we must try to engage youth in the conversation, to make them aware of the manipulation that they will encounter by the propagandists who need fresh recruits. Work with them!

  • g_jochnowitz

    In 1975, the first World Conference on Women was held in Mexico City. It voted for a Zionism-is-Racism resolution. The United Nations followed with a similar resolution a few months later.
    I often wonder whether God is an embittered anti-Semite. I explore the possibility in my poem:….

    • nina

      One would think so.

  • Amused

    G_D threw the dice with Free Will , and does not regret it .

  • Amused

    "Every new child born , brings the message ,that G_D is not yet discouraged of man "


  • Norman Simms

    Excellent, important, timely–but will it do any good? I wish so. Ernestly and desperately so. But the tide looks like it is still rising, like a tsunami, and the dikes won't hold. We may all need to do more than little Hans, that is, put our lives in the breach.

  • Flipside

    The check to the Desposyni must have cleared.