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Ambiguous Relationship To Power Complicates Jewish Support

Reader comment on item: Does Israel Need U.S. Jewish Support?

Submitted by Dave (United States), Apr 24, 2016 at 07:48

Before Israel, for two millenia, the Jews had no state of their own. While this situation often made them vulnerable to abuse, but it also had the moral advantage of exempting them from the role of abuser. With the advent of Israel, Jews now have to face the inevitable moral hazards of statehood, an especially acute challenge given the violent opposition to Zionism, and many Jews are very uncomfortable about it. Some resolve the dilemma by being anti-Zionist, but more commonly, Jews want the impossible: to make the sort of generous, compromise solutions which could somehow allow Israel to exist without having to resort to force. Of course, these inclinations find their resonance in liberal-left politics: Bernie Sanders is Exhibit A. This effort, so seemingly reasonable and appealing, has led to dangerous misjudgements like the Oslo Accords, or to disastrous unilateral land giveaways.

Unfortunately, force is the sine qua non of state power in the region - there are no Costa Ricas in the Mideast. The Ghandi approach may have worked for India - Hindus also had to cope with powerlessness - but it will not work with militant Islam.

It is far better for Israel to rely on support from people, like conservative Christians, who are less conflicted in their feelings about power.

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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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