12 thoughts on “Goldberg-Gorenberg Lib-Zionist Love Fest Featured in NY Times Book Review – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Tom Segev reviewed Benny Morris’s last book for the Times? The link you provided shows that he reviewed it for Ha’aretz in Hebrew. Did he review it for the NY Times as well in English? If so, do you have a link to that review? Is it available online?

  2. Richard brings up a fundamental question as he concludes his post with,

    “As I’ve written many times, there is nothing wrong with Israel being a state in which Jews are a majority. There is nothing wrong with Israel being a state in which Jews practice their religion, speak their language, learn their heritage, and engage with their Diaspora brethren. In other words, Israel must be a place in which religious traditions are respected. But it may not be a place that rewards one religion over another. That is where I fundamentally part company with Goldberg and Gorenberg.”

    The question is whether the root of Zionism, no matter by a liberal or conservative, a political or cultural, interpretation, that guarantees a permanent majority of ‘Jews’ can be a true democracy that will guarantee civil and human rights to the non-Jewish minority. Even if Richard gets his way and Israel becomes a humane society where people of all religious persuations have free access to practice their faith and are assured civil and human rights; will the legally mandated Jewish majority choose to continue to respect the wishes of civil and human rights of the minority.

    Maybe, maybe not. Israel is in a candy store and now has a chance to divide the candy only amongst Jews; so why should the majority Jews give any to the non-Jews?

    This is the problem of Zionism.

    1. I didn’t mean to say Jews should always have a guaranteed majority. You really can’t guarantee this unless you want to engage in artificial political gerrymandering. What must be guaranteed are rights of majority & minorities so they’ll be respected no matter who is the majority & who the minority.

  3. RE: “Israel isn’t a fascist state, but it certainly is rapidly becoming an authoritarian one, as anyone reading the list of Knesset bills up for consideration knows.” ~ R.S.

    ALSO SEE: Israeli Democracy Fades Toward Black ~ by Lawrence Davidson, Consortiumnews, 11/20/11
    America’s Founders understood that creating a nation that favored one religion over others was a recipe for repression. Israel’s founders rejected that wisdom and sought a Jewish state with democratic ideals. But it is turning out that America’s Founders were right, as Lawrence Davidson explains.
    LINK – http://consortiumnews.com/2011/11/20/israeli-democracy-fades-toward-black/

    1. P.S. RE: “Israeli Democracy Fades Toward Black” ~ Lawrence Davidson


      “…Flirting with this disaster became me
      It named me as the fool who only aimed to be
      Almost blue
      It’s almost touching, it will almost do
      There’s a part of me that’s always true…always
      Not all good things come to an end now, it is only a chosen few…”

      Diana Krall: Almost Blue (VIDEO, 04:00) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_z7X8fbNIkI

  4. I would not automatically dismiss the theory of powerless majority.

    Konrad Lorentz described a series of experiments on animals showing various patterns of group behavior. Many types of fish swim in “schools”, they abhor swimming alone. There is a particular spot in the brain responsible for such inhibition. A fish was removed from the tank, operated and put back. Afterwards, all other fish were following the “sociopathic” fish.

    Clearly, humans do not need surgery to exhibit sociopathic behavior. But some aspects of Zionist ideology impose “school behavior”. Basically, settlers are super-Zionists. So the dialog is roughly: “you guys are too super” “shut up” “oh well, never mind”.

  5. First — thank you for a well-written essay reflecting your views. I think you are very right about most of it and that Israel must expiate its sins perhaps by “sharing the candy” among non-Jews, making amends somehow or face disaster in the form of civil war or international intervention eventually. The state has careened beyond the boundaries of justifiability and decency and no offsetting commensurate force is pushing back.

    The settlers remind me — allow me one little odd analogy — of the genteel old American south, the planter ruling class which was an equally self-righteous and self-justifying minority oppressing others. They, too, were bible-thumpers of the first order. And we know how that ended.

    There are many of us who ardently wish to somehow collectively present the countervailing force to Israel but the s* gets deeper everyday: Yesterday, there was the announcement of accomodating “natural growth” of the (apparently overlooked) settlements. The entire world knows that it is Israel’s policy (unstated) to destroy every vestige of Palestinian life, period, and does not intervene forcefully. But I intend to keep on keeping on.

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