A friend recently sent me this link, to a strongly pro-Israel article on an American political website. It's a gratifying read (even if she's got a few of her numbers wrong), but that's not the point, since if you know where to go looking, you can always find people who are even more hawkishly pro-Israel than many Israelis. (Hint: most American outlets who don't define themselves as stridently liberal). The point of the story was the person who sent me the link, a moderate woman who doesn't deal much with politics, with whom I've had past discussions from the left. In recent times, however, the amount of blatantly irrational invective being directed at Israel is so outlandish, that she's seeking comfort from wherever she can find it, even from folks who are not her natural allies.
This irrationality is becoming one of the main stories of our time, and probably deserves closer scrutiny than I'm giving it.
Which is why Thomas Friedman's column about Turkey is important. Not because he's right - I fear he's significantly understating the case - but because he's got the basic dynamic right. The deterioration in Turkey's relationship with Israel is mostly not Israel's doing, and its slower deteriorating relations with Europe and the US are also not Israel's fault. Actually, the possibility that they might be, the mere idea that Israel be blamed for sovereign Turks doing what sovereign Turks choose to do, shows how bad things are getting, how deep the rot of irrationality is reaching. It's a glum day when we need to pat ourselves on the back that the top NYT columnist on international affairs is being rational, but that's where we've arrived. So at least enjoy it, because this also may yet change.