Written by Richard Stellar, Award-Winning Blogger for ‘The Wrap’ and Co-founder of ‘The Bestemming Project’ with Emmy Award-winning Sharon Farber
Dear Friends —
I was fortunate to see a screening of an eye-opening documentary that I recommend unconditionally: Beneath The Helmet.
Having recently returned from my first soiree to Israel, I was shocked at the level of diversity. Before I left, I was warned by many that I was ‘entering an apartheid state’, and ‘why are you giving your money to the oppressors’.
On my second day in Israel, I swam in the Mediterranean with Russians, smoked an authentic Cuban cigar on the beach while drinking a Cappuccino served by an American student. We then walked down the beach and had lunch in an Arab-owned fish house where a Jordanian and Ethiopian was on the deck, sharing a Hookah while eyeing a couple of Egyptian beauties sunning themselves.
If this is apartheid, give me more. The notion that Israel is an ‘apartheid-state’ stems from the current mindset that hating Israel is in and of itself a fashion statement, and a fad that is being sold to our high school and college/university students via a concerted media effort that is years in the making.
That’s why I loved “Beneath The Helmet”. It takes the stories of 5 young people and follows them through their stint – and if seen by young people in America, it will change some minds about Israel. Instead of going on about it, please read my Hollyblog on The Wrap here. If you could leave comments, that would be great.
We need to promote Israel’s right to not only survive, but thrive. Through the non-profit that I co-founded with Emmy-nominated film, television and concert music composer, Sharon Farber, we fight anti-Semitism through music and the arts. If you are in receipt of this letter, then I consider you ‘one-of-us’, or a part of our team, or someone faintly interested in fighting anti-Semitism. Please forward this letter with the link to my blog on “Beneath The Helmet” to your contacts, and let’s raise awareness on Israel’s diversity, and the role that the IDF plays in the lives of young Israelis. We need to do a better job in combating the negative press and media content that is infecting our youth, and turning them against Israel and promoting anti-Semitism.
I would not hesitate to say that we may owe all of our lives to the IDF, but that’s for another post.