Singer Regina Spektor voiced support for the right of the State of Israel to defend itself during Operation Breaking Dawn on Sunday.
"In Israel, sirens had been sounding, many evacuated to bomb shelters and the [Iron Dome] was activated above Tel Aviv," Spektor wrote on Twitter. "Hundreds of rockets had been launched at Israel, and the shield worked to protect the citizens."
Good evening✨I didn’t see much at all in my feed about this as I tuned in, so wanted to share. Shabbat has ended and Tisha B’Av has begun. It’s a fast day that commemorates the destruction of the two ancient temples in Jerusalem… Many people in Israel are fasting.— Regina Spektor (@respektor) August 7, 2022
Spektor said that she felt the need to speak on the issue because she felt that it had been ignored that Israel was fighting against "militant Jihadists," referring to the terrorist organization Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
"Quiet is my feed about these attacks, cause Israel doesn’t seem to be on the list of places that get support when attacked," said Spektor.
The Jewish American singer argued against the double standard of how the elimination of Islamic Jihad leaders was treated as a crime, while the elimination of another was celebrated. This was likely a reference to the assassination of Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri by the US on July 31. President Joe Biden's administration was widely praised in the US for the operation. Operation Breaking Dawn began with strikes on Islamic Jihad's northern command head Tayseer al-Jabari and anti-tank guided-missile section head Abdullah Kadoum.
"They were able to take out a very dangerous militant Jihadist leader, who was responsible for previous terror attacks," wrote Spektor. "This is an incredible accomplishment."
"I don’t think we should treat the elimination of certain militant Jihadists as a celebration (those who threaten/hurt close to home) while we treat the elimination of others as a crime," she continued.
"We should support the fight against all terrorism."Regina Spektor
Spektor also expressed concern about the Palestinian civilians endangered by misfired rockets launched by Gazan terrorist organizations. According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, around 1,100 rockets were fired at Israel by Palestinian Islamic Jihad and other groups, but 200 fell within Gaza. Social media was rife with videos of failed rocket launches striking within Gaza, including a video published by the IDF of the Saturday night incident in Jabaliya, which killed four children. Two other deadly incidents on Sunday were suspected of being the result of rocket misfires, another in Jabaliya that killed five, and one in al-Bureij that killed four, including three children.
"Hundreds of rockets launched at Israel never reached it," said Spektor. "One tragically fell on the people of Gaza. An attempt to blame Israel for deaths of children happened, but luckily there was video showing where it launched from how it crashed. Innocent Palestinian lives were lost."
Operation Breaking Dawn
Operation Breaking Dawn broke out following the arrest of Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist leader Bassem al-Saadi in Jenin on Tuesday. After days of tension on the Gaza border, Israel said that it struck preemptively against impending revenge attacks. During the fighting, around 14 Islamic Jihad operatives were killed, and 26 civilians. Of those, 15 were reported killed by Islamic Jihad. Rocket launches sent Israeli as far north as Tel Aviv into hiding in bomb shelters. The operation lasted for three days, ending with a tenuous ceasefire on Sunday, which was also the Jewish fast day of Tisha B'Av.
"On this holiday of mourning and fasting, and as Israel continues to defend itself, maybe more of us here can wish it well," said Spektor as the fighting was still underway. "To think of it the way we do about any country full of millions of civilians who are getting rockets launched at their homes and families. I’m sending love to Israel: to family, friends, as well as to all those I don’t know. I send love to the whole region. To the world. To our galaxy. And beyond. I hope everyone stays safe. I pray for peace."
Spektor received dozens of comments on the remarks, some dismayed by her opinions, labeling her a "Zionist" and believer of Israeli propaganda.
"I’m disappointed but not surprised by this take - will be selling my ticket," wrote one former fan.
However, Spektor also received backing for her opinions.
David Draiman, frontman for the band Disturbed, wrote to Spektor, "Thank you for your voice and your courage, Regina."