Tear Down the wall says Roger Waters, former band member of Pink Floyd. Mr Waters visited Israel in 2006 and played a single concert to a sold out makeshift open air stadium of 50,000 (paying) Israeli Jews. He also found time on his whirlwind visit to hop over the fence (or over the big bad wall, as he would put it) and spray paint some graffiti on the Palestinian side.
Three years later, at 65, Roger Waters is ambivalent about his having visited Israel (and taking in millions of dollars spent by adoring Israeli fans). Mr Waters thinks that the wall is actually a colonialist action by Israel. Never mind that this wall was put up to help prevent terror attacks and bus bombings of innocent civilians. Never mind that the wall has essentially stopped terrorism from the areas in where it was erected. Never mind that the US has a longer and bigger wall with it’s Mexican border in several high-trafficked areas (and Mexico is not at war with the USA!).
What would I say to him if I had the chance to sit him down and explain the whole thing. Would I tell him how the wall has given Jewish families in Neve Yaakov and Gush Etziyon, to name a few, the chance to leave for work in the morning without wondering if their kids would be burying them that night? How much Jewish blood can be spilled for Mr. Waters to acquiesce to Israel attempting to prevent further savage acts. How many children living in the southern Jerusalem neighbourhood of Gilo should be forsaken?
These questions may remain unsolved to many, but to me it’s pretty clear. As Israel’s government spokesman, Mark Regev put it ever so bluntly, “We don’t need no education about suicide bombers coming into Israel and murdering innocent people, and how the security barrier has prevented that by more than 95 percent”.