Wiesel Calls on Obama to 'Condemn Hamas' Use of Children as Human Shields'
Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel has launched an ad campaign through his foundation in which he personally urges President Obama "to condemn Hamas' use of children as human shields."
The ad, appearing in newspapers in major cities, notes that "Jews rejected child sacrifice 3,500 years ago," which a reference to Abraham and the binding of Isaac. "Now it's Hamas' turn."
"In my own lifetime, I have seen Jewish children thrown into the fire. And now I have seen Muslim children used as human shields, in both cases, by worshippers of death cults indistinguishable from that of the Molochites," Wiesel writes.
"What we are suffering through today is not a battle of Jew versus Arab or Israeli versus Palestinian. Rather, it is a battle between those who celebrate life and those who champion death. It is a battle of civilization versus barbarism."
Wiesel stressed that "before sleepless mothers in both Gaza City and Tel Aviv can rest, before diplomats can begin in earnest the crucial business of rebuilding dialogue... the Hamas death cult must be confronted for what it is."
"Moderate men and women of faith, whether that faith is in God or man, must shift their criticism
from the Israeli soldiers – whose terrible choice is to fire and risk harming human shields, or hold their fire and risk the death of their loved ones – to the terrorists who have taken away all choice from the Palestinian children of Gaza," the Holocaust survivor continued.
"I call upon the Palestinian people to find true Muslims to represent them, Muslims who would never voluntarily place a child in danger. I call upon President Obama and the leaders of the world to condemn Hamas’ use of children as human shields. And I enjoin the American public to stand firmly with the people of Israel who are in yet another struggle for survival, and with the suffering people of Gaza who reject terror and embrace peace," Wiesel wrote.
"Let us return child sacrifice to the darkest corner of history, and work towards a brighter future with those who choose life, Arabs and Jews alike, all of us Abraham’s children."
Wiesel and Obama were together in May at a USC Shoah Foundation dinner in Los Angeles, where the president reminisced about touring Buchenwald, the camp in which Wiesel's father was killed weeks before liberation.
"As most of you know, he who had endured that camp as a teenager. And we walked among the guard towers and the barbed wire. We saw the ovens and the crematorium. We saw the memorial to the prisoners, a steel plate heated to the temperature of the human body, as a reminder of our common humanity," Obama said. "And at the end of our visit, as we stood outside the place where his father and so many other souls had perished, Elie spoke these words -- he said: 'Memory has become a sacred duty of all people of goodwill.' Memory has become a sacred duty of all people of goodwill."
Yesterday, the State Department issued a statement saying it was "appalled" by Israel's "disgraceful" shelling outside an UNRWA school in Rafah.
"The coordinates of the school, like all UN facilities in Gaza, have been repeatedly communicated to the Israeli Defense Forces. We once again stress that Israel must do more to meet its own standards and avoid civilian casualties. UN facilities, especially those sheltering civilians, must be protected, and must not be used as bases from which to launch attacks," spokeswoman Jen Psaki said. "The suspicion that militants are operating nearby does not justify strikes that put at risk the lives of so many innocent civilians. We call for a full and prompt investigation of this incident as well as the recent shelling of other UNRWA schools."