In 2006 Richard Cohen of The Washington Post wrote a column arguing “[t]he greatest mistake Israel could make at the moment is to forget that Israel itself is a mistake.”
The argument, that Israel should not have been created as a Jewish state because the Muslim Arabs never would accept it, now is echoed by Andrew Sullivan in The Atlantic:
It is tone-deaf to create a Jewish state in the middle of the Middle East and then behave as if it had been there for ever.”
It is, in essence, the argument made by Helen Thomas when she stated that Jews should “get the hell out of Palestine,” and go back to Europe.
And it all plays into and is a byproduct of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s strategy to portray the end of Israel as a natural progression to correct a historical mistake:
As Iran’s leadership prepares to dispatch a Red Crescent flotilla to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza, its propaganda organs are spreading one message throughout the Muslim world: the Jewish state, branded by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as “the Zionist stain of shame”, is heading for its inevitable destruction.
But the argument is based on a series of falsehoods.
Half of all Israelis are refugees or descendants of refugees from Muslim lands, a fact glossed over in the portrayal of Israel as a European implant.
This fight is not about Europe versus the Middle East. It is about Jew haters against Jews, as witnessed by the recent statement by the Syrian representative to the U.N. Human Rights Council:
“Israel…is a state that is built on hatred…Let me quote a song that a group of children on a school bus in Israel sing merrily as they go to school and I quote ‘With my teeth I will rip your flesh. With my mouth I will suck your blood.'”
Cohen and Sullivan can dress it up all they want, and claim that they simply are being realistic as to the current state of affairs, not delegitimizing Israel. But the bottom line is that they are engaging in historical denial every bit as bad as that for which they blame supporters of Israel.
The Palestinians did not exist as an identifiable national group until a few decades ago, and the land now claimed for Palestinians never was controlled by Palestinians prior to the creation of Israel. There has been a Jewish majority in Jerusalem for centuries. And so on and so on.
The falsehoods are not only national, but also personal.
I have documented how a prominent Palestinian-American law professor, and advocate for the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state, has created an exaggerated narrative of the loss of his ancestral home in Jerusalem. In fact, his ancestors were not indigenous to Jerusalem or any part of what now is Israel, lived in Jerusalem for only a short period of time, and left voluntarily for business reasons before the Israeli War of Independence. Yet this law professor’s family narrative forms the emotional basis for his cottage industry of articles about the loss of Palestine to the Israelis, which are posted and re-posted on the blogs of “peace groups” of the type which organized the Gaza flotilla.
Jordan was created out of whole cloth. Almost all borders in the Middle East were artificial creations of European colonial empires, and ethnic minorities rule numerous countries, such as Jordan and Syria.
In this region of artificial national boundaries, of nations run by ethnic minorities, of displaced Muslims and Jews, why is it that only the Jewish state run by the Jewish majority is the mistake?
Because that is how it’s being done in the Salons and Atlantics of the world, among columnists and bloggers who are so worn down by the unrelenting hatred of the Jews in the Middle East that they now blame the victim.
Taylor Marsh wrote in response to Sullivan’s post, the Israelis “brought it on themselves” by being too aggressive in self-defense.
It is so much easier to ask Israel to yield, to pull back, to give in and give up, than it is to face up to the premeditated, unrelenting war against the Jews.
That is what is has come to.
Update: Rick Moran, Israel’s Critics and Hollow Lies:
What is it you would have the Israeli government do to protect itself?
Indeed, what marks the critic of Israeli policy is a disconnect between the perilous reality of Israel’s exposed position vis-a-vis the Palestinians and those nations that support them. They hold a pie-in-the-sky belief that if Israel would only remove the irritants the Palestinians suffer on a daily basis, that the animosity felt by Israel’s enemies would magically disappear.