Monday, March 16, 2009

Rockets and Perceptions of Them

Bradley Burston is noticeably further to the left than I. Yet I've often noticed that when such people get angry about the Palestinians, they often express positions to the right of mine. This is the case in his recent column, in which he takes a well-meaning ignorant American Jewish writer to task for totally not understanding what's going on. His thesis, in a sentence: Saddam's missiles in 1991 convinced Israelis they didn't need to control the West Bank; the Hamas ones since 2005 convinced Israelis never to relinquish any more territory to the Palestinians. It's an interesting column, and I recommend it (tho the copy-editing is horrendous. Haaretz is getting ever sloppier).

The American Jewish writer who sent him fuming, by the way, is Anne Roiphe, and an extract of her column is here. He has dealt well with her column, but I'd add a different observation. Let's assume, for sake of the argument, that half of Lieberman's voters grew up in the Soviet Union before coming here in the previous decade, and their appreciation of Ms. Roiphe's sentiments of liberalism and niceness are lacking. Given the choice between leaving them where they were to be lost to the Jewish people but with a "nicer" Israeli electorate, or have them here, rejoined to the Jews but will a lesser "nice" Israeli electorate, my preference is stark. There isn't any wriggle room. Especially as far too many of the "nice" Jews Ms. Roiphe probably prefers are ever less Jewish.

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