Supporting Palestinians combat COVID-19 helps Israel too
May 1, 2020
In the 17 April 2020 edition of the Heritage Florida Jewish News in the article by Stephen M. Flatow (“J Street’s line: Virus, shmirus; let’s focus on the Palestinians”) he takes J Street to task for advocating help to the Palestinians to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. While I certainly recognize that Mr. Flatow has many issues with certain policies of J Street, it is short sighted to complain about asking support to help the Palestinians avoid or at least minimize the effect of COVID-19. He implies that J Street is asking that the U.S. supply funds to Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, when in fact they are asking for funds for helping individual Palestinians.
The COVID-19 virus does not recognize borders or check points. It would be virtually impossible to keep an outbreak of COVID-19 confined to the areas where the Palestinians live. Thus if there were an outbreak of COVID-19 in either Gaza or the territories or both, we can be sure that it would most likely also spread into Israel, making the current situation in Israel even worse. Thus supporting the Palestinians to combat COVID-19, is also by default helping Israel and its citizens in the fight against this dreadful pandemic.
Edward E. A. Bromberg
Please note that these comments represent my point of view and are not necessarily those of organizations that I am associated with.