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Evolution needed?

Reader comment on item: Zionism's Bleak Present

Submitted by Archimedes2 (Canada), Oct 11, 2007 at 01:37

Indulge me in developing the following parallel (whether or not you agree with my "theory"):

I've always felt the union movement required aggressive beligerent action in its early days as it was under siege and trying to establsh itself as a force to be reckoned with---but that, over the decades, unions have progressed from collectives of marginalized, even in some cases oppressed workers, into one of our society's power elites, the role of beligerence has changed from a matter of survival against external forces to one of protection against internal ones and "battle fatigue".

Unions today (in broad generalization, not universally) act aggressively mainly to justify their existence to their own membership. If there is no conflict with management, the union begins to look irrelevant and even to be an expensive (in terms of union dues) redundancy. Thus the need to continually either stir up conflict or to spin the relations with management in order to give the appearance of need for the union as stalwart protector of the vulnerable worker.

I'll concede that the above is a naive analysis, but submit that it contains a grain of truth. My point is that to some limited extent, Zionism is in the same place: reluctant to morph from the heroic defender of the dream of a homeland in Zion into a less beligerent homeland support and strength for the nation that exists. Possibly even, to some extend, modern Zionism works harder to magnify the perception of threat to that homeland than to actually do anything proactive about that threat.

I realise this is a harsh assessment and, like the union model above, it is naive and only partly accurate. A sympathetic outsider to this movement, it strickes me that Zionism is far too defensive. I am not at all unaware of the serious external threats to Israel's existence, but as long as Zionism exists in its current posture it seems to me that there is a faint unspoken concession that "Israel doesn't fully exist, yet". Zionists need to stop dreaming about the homeland and start building the homeland that exists, nourishing its health, working proactively to make the Israel that has existed now for 50 years a true player on the world stage, instead of "that disputed place" -- that label that keeps trying to stick and may yet succeed, if Israelis themselves, and their supporters, keep giving in to characterizing the place as a home of perpetual conflict. Israel itself has to evolve beyond being a problem everyone else tries to solve, and the Zionist movement has to detach itself from the role of interminably lobbying everyone else to take action to solve this problem.

On a completely different tangent, I'll suggest that Zionists in the West are too integrated. Well, that's not exactly what I mean: they are not distinctive enough culturally. Like it or not, our culture is dominated by multiculturalism and self-hatred: Become too much part of the "mainstream" white Euro core and you have no advantage, no benefit of the doubt, and you will be expected to shoulder part of the "white man's burden", the blame for every evil that inflicts on "the other" in our world -- everything that is not white, or of European origin.

But if you maintain your cultural distinctives -- the food, the clothes, the music, the dancing, the particular mindset, you are more likely to have a sympathetic hearing here. That is, after all, what the Islamists are energetically taking advantage of as we speak. The more they look like "us", the less sympathy they receive. They realise they have to emphasize their special needs, their differences, etc. and the west suddenly becomes the goose that laid the golden egg for them. Throw big festivals in every major city, invite the world to taste your food and sing your songs. And the west will be in the palm of your hands.


Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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Reader comments (113) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
How far they go [229 words]J. SteinNov 3, 2009 18:31164017
Burg praises pseudo-historical book by Shlomo Sand [112 words]JasonNov 1, 2009 18:04163937
Zionism [65 words]David GueirosNov 7, 2007 15:10113352
Israel shares the same conundrum as the rest of the west. [584 words]HomefrontOct 22, 2007 20:54112161
There won't be an Islamic world government. [321 words]KateyOct 26, 2007 15:04112161
I would never postulate an Islamic world government [168 words]HomefrontOct 27, 2007 05:11112161
Maybe not. [175 words]KatteyOct 27, 2007 21:00112161
Let Arabs prove ancient existence in Israel. [298 words]Kattey WagarOct 22, 2007 12:53112137
Kattey don't bother [423 words]HomefrontOct 22, 2007 21:32112137
Another example of Islamic Historical revisionist nonsense [44 words]HomefrontOct 22, 2007 21:59112137
A Note of Thanks: Very Interesting [438 words]YnnatchkahOct 23, 2007 05:34112137
I agree -- Israel should fight the archaeology issue hard [132 words]Charles MartelOct 23, 2007 12:52112137
Religious beliefs of Muslims. [392 words]Kate WagarOct 25, 2007 18:28112137
Delightful news indeed [46 words]YnnatchkahOct 26, 2007 01:10112137
MPD [206 words]donvanOct 26, 2007 12:35112137
Israel's Sacrifice: Should Stop Right Away [179 words]skmillerOct 19, 2007 11:14111916
Duty of Christians [106 words]Phil GreendOct 18, 2007 22:40111881
The Islamic war on Christianity has been giong on for some time [37 words]Dr RJPOct 22, 2007 12:35111881
1Bush's "Two State Solution" [402 words]Dr. Howard D. GarberOct 18, 2007 04:55111775
Iraqi MP Iyad Jamal Al-Din Video Clips - Backwards Arabs Use Israel as a Pretext - Bless America - On Terrorism - On Secularism - On Democracy [918 words]Sofa SogoodOct 17, 2007 19:26111726
a ray of hope - everyone should see this! [54 words]jennifer solisOct 20, 2007 15:18111726
Good Idea - Requested Fox to Show the Clips -- Would Columbia U Have Invited and Given Him the World Stage for Free Speech? [78 words]Sofa SogoodOct 21, 2007 10:41111726
I don't think so [71 words]jennifer solisOct 24, 2007 14:51111726
Friends that will stick closer than a brother. [346 words]Susan BrowneOct 17, 2007 12:56111698
Friends that will stick closer than a brother [233 words]Harvey LondonOct 18, 2007 13:27111698
We need your encouragement [349 words]Susan BrowneOct 19, 2007 11:19111698
Biblical Christianity and Israel [30 words]Clifford ishiiOct 16, 2007 20:05111654
israel defenceless [13 words]skydiverOct 16, 2007 14:06111611
Israel will survive and Israelis have all the right to live in peace [139 words]Egyptian ChristianOct 15, 2007 12:59111513
ONLY SOLUTION TO PALI-ISRAELI CONFLICT [106 words]Bruce SterlingOct 15, 2007 16:55111513
Bruce Sterling [349 words]shaynaOct 16, 2007 17:00111513
How the palestinians overcome their racism, cultural imperialism and religious intolerance. [87 words]Egyptian ChristianOct 18, 2007 10:53111513
DON'T DESPAIR [79 words]Bruce SterlingOct 15, 2007 08:35111504
A modest proposal [134 words]BobOct 15, 2007 02:24111497
"MEDIA WAR AGAINST ISRAEL: FROM INVERSION OF THE TRUTH TO INVERSION OF REALITY" [1592 words]Sofa SogoodOct 14, 2007 17:17111475
Don't worry about Israel, Dr Pipes ! [232 words]Anne-Marie DelcambreOct 14, 2007 13:47111458
Not just Israel at risk [184 words]lee baileyOct 14, 2007 11:12111439
Why all the fuss about Jewish nationalism ? [507 words]Anne-Marie DelcambreOct 14, 2007 06:55111427
Dhimmitude [162 words]yuval Brandstetter MDOct 16, 2007 01:32111427
Famous Oxford Union Debating Society - Hosting One-Sided "Death to Israel" Debate Starring David Irving, Holocaust Denier and Other Notorious Anti-Semites [184 words]Sofa SogoodOct 13, 2007 20:49111403
Zionist responsibility [114 words]Gene C. SproulOct 13, 2007 18:10111399
Mr. Sproul: maybe your friend should be outraged at what Palestinians have been doing. [733 words]Dr RJPOct 15, 2007 22:45111399
Inconvenient "truths" [392 words]Gene C. SproulOct 16, 2007 18:58111399
"Inconvenient lies? [739 words]Dr RJPOct 18, 2007 14:32111399
Mr Sproul and the inconvenient truths [328 words]HarveyOct 19, 2007 12:33111399
Palestinian Refugees and the "Right of Return [640 words]Gene C. SproulOct 19, 2007 18:23111399
Conservatives see Carter as a coo-coo, too. Want the real scoop? Read Joan Peters [405 words]Dr RJPOct 21, 2007 00:58111399
Harvey: we're on the same page [388 words]Dr RJPOct 22, 2007 12:31111399
"Jerusalem" is mentioned in the Koran....once [170 words]jennifer solisOct 27, 2007 17:33111399
Thank you, Jennifer. Everything you said is true, except... [141 words]Dr RJPOct 29, 2007 14:19111399
Thank you for the correction [140 words]jennifer solisOct 29, 2007 19:45111399
There were NO palestinians in Israel and they're not even "Palestinians" [60 words]marleneMar 14, 2008 04:47111399
A solution [206 words]Paul M. NevilleOct 13, 2007 17:44111397
Add to the bleaker picture - US economy. [411 words]Syed KasimOct 12, 2007 17:09111296
syed [251 words]shaynaOct 13, 2007 18:30111296
Islamic tolerance? Really? [305 words]dhimmi no moreOct 14, 2007 10:55111296
Can you say Entrepreneur [735 words]SSOct 16, 2007 02:19111296
Ayat a sayf and ayat al jzya [49 words]HarryOct 23, 2007 11:59111296
Only solution rule of law, minority and women rights and West to sober up [236 words]Mohamed EljahmiOct 12, 2007 14:56111275
Postpartum Depression [130 words]GnarlodiousOct 12, 2007 11:40111258
If Israelis don't wake up now, there will not be 2025 for them [72 words]BenzionOct 12, 2007 08:52111241
Leading Israeli intellectuals sign petition calling for negotiations with Hamas [461 words]Mladen AndrijasevicOct 12, 2007 03:24111217
Add to the bleaker picture - US economy. [254 words]Syed KasimOct 12, 2007 02:34111215
Live and let live [111 words]Syed KasimOct 12, 2007 01:56111214
Fight fire with fire: make "Islamic fascist" a household word. [448 words]Dr RJPOct 12, 2007 01:22111209
ISRAEL IS A RECOGNIZED SOVEREIGN COUNTRY!!! [415 words]jennifer solisOct 12, 2007 00:22111206
Alas, poor Zionism [102 words]Bob MillerOct 11, 2007 23:52111205
our strenghs and weaknesses [51 words]Dan, AustraliaOct 11, 2007 23:01111202
Zionism's Story a Wonderful Ending [359 words]InfidelOct 11, 2007 22:42111201
like Kosovo [352 words]obilicOct 11, 2007 21:54111196
obilic [468 words]shaynaOct 13, 2007 17:37111196
The problem of Zionism [60 words]Richard D. WittrupOct 11, 2007 19:20111186
Dutch lack of identity, unique Palestinian identity, and Zionism [182 words]Joe MorganOct 11, 2007 18:09111177
you may be surprised [498 words]Yuval Brandstetter MDOct 11, 2007 17:06111172
Don't be such a downer [73 words]Deborah BlumenthalOct 11, 2007 15:57111163
Deborah, dont just talk, do something [43 words]yuval brandstetter MDOct 12, 2007 04:43111163
where Israel went wrong [148 words]Irish SavantOct 11, 2007 15:26111159
regurgitate partisan platitudes much? [193 words]bosOct 11, 2007 19:13111159
I do not agree. Where Israel really went wrong- When it Returned the Sinai to Rely on Big Daddy USA [232 words]James BurkeOct 12, 2007 06:43111159
in re Submitted by Irish Savant (United States), Oct 11, 2007 at 15:26 [243 words]argawargaOct 12, 2007 09:35111159
Women who stand with Zionism [129 words]JeaneneOct 11, 2007 15:04111154
Jeanene [427 words]shaynaOct 13, 2007 18:01111154
Zionism's Bleak Present [124 words]Suren SukhtankarOct 11, 2007 14:43111153
Wide acclaim? [108 words]SyarikatOct 11, 2007 11:28111135
I'm afraid existential ennui isn't Israel's main problem [331 words]Charles MartelOct 11, 2007 11:13111134
Defense of Zion [463 words]M. ToveyOct 11, 2007 11:04111133
the tragedy of it all [476 words]jennifer solisOct 12, 2007 16:40111133
Who gets the blame [54 words]David W. LincolnOct 11, 2007 10:51111131
Israel forever [298 words]Rebecca MouldsOct 11, 2007 10:41111129
bless you [49 words]marleneMar 14, 2008 04:30111129
Israel will survive [206 words]SFC, Donald Grant CheesmanOct 11, 2007 09:43111123
Even more pessimism [53 words]roslyn estherOct 11, 2007 08:55111118
I understand how you feel [611 words]Ken BesigOct 11, 2007 08:45111117
Alarmed [114 words]AtillaOct 11, 2007 05:37111088
National Identity [97 words]Edward HalperOct 11, 2007 03:07111081
Zionism's Bleak Present [194 words]SharonOct 11, 2007 02:36111080
Our history should give you some hope! [382 words]Gershon SeifOct 11, 2007 02:22111079
Evolution needed? [651 words]Archimedes2Oct 11, 2007 01:37111075
disagree [250 words]housam jarrarOct 11, 2007 01:28111074
Zionism's Bleak Future [135 words]Talia ZentaraOct 11, 2007 00:52111071
IS THIS OUR FATE? [525 words]Geno M.Oct 11, 2007 00:31111070
3The lights are going out all over europe tonight [1658 words]Antonia GilliganJan 26, 2008 01:00111070
If not now, when? [40 words]Carl SesarOct 11, 2007 00:25111069
If not now, when? [23 words]SHDNov 19, 2009 23:58111069
bleak is as bleak does [304 words]John W. McGinleyOct 10, 2007 23:12111059
Liberalism [51 words]YnnatchkahOct 10, 2007 22:01111050
Lack of knowledge [79 words]Lana FaymanOct 10, 2007 21:12111042
Zionism [139 words]Donald W. BalesOct 10, 2007 21:06111040
ZIONISM BLEAK PRESENT [471 words]JACQUES HADIDAOct 10, 2007 21:00111039
Not them too... [65 words]DianaOct 10, 2007 20:30111037
ONLY SOLUTION: GAZA TO EGYPT; PARTS OF WEST BANK LINKED TO JORDAN [164 words]G. MarcusOct 10, 2007 20:28111035
Agree with Marcus, but I'm afraid Arabs too smart for that [167 words]Charles MartelOct 12, 2007 12:37111035
It's always darkest... [80 words]LDCOct 10, 2007 20:25111034

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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