Saturday, 22 December 2012

Dear R

When we last met, about a month ago, you were very angry, very very angry with me for having asked in my blog  whether Israel had the moral right to wage its [November] war in Gaza. Whatever we think, you said, we should not criticise Israel abroad.

You have now sent me an email, in which you agree with many of my arguments adding that Israel’s internal as well as foreign policy puts a fright on every thinking person. You also write that the general mood in Israel is seriously depressed. Not only Netanyahu/Liberman policies but also the fact that we are stuck like a bone in the Arab throat make you doubt that there is a future for your children’s generation in Israel.

And yet, you ask me to stop spreading my criticism – which you refer to as hatred - in the world. External pressure and isolating Israel will not change Israel’s way, you say. On the other hand, spreading such criticism, leading to external pressure will, according to you, bring about even more of the already rising anti-Semitism.

I agree, we should change from within. We would all be happier and prouder if we would become better people without external pressure. But, Israel’s demographic makeup is such that this is unlikely to happen. Israel’s population permits the current leadership not only to cause terrible injustice to others but also to kill what the founders of the state have established. This must be stopped. 

Israel is in a terrible downward spiral and it may be that only trauma will bring about the necessary change. In this case, I prefer the trauma of serious external pressure - which to be effective would have to hurt politically and economically - to the trauma of war with many casualties. Without the one, we may get the other.

As to the harmful impact of my writing, I do not think you need to worry. I wrote this about two years ago. As you can see, dear R, the world did not listen to me then and I am unlikely to have too much of an impact now.

Best etc…

PS: How do you propose to prevent the Israeli press, such as Haaretz, from publishing its often very sharp criticism in their English editions? 

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