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Tuesday, September 07, 2010

The most anti-Semitic essay evah?

Victor Davis Hanson calls Karl Vick's Time Magazine essay on why Israel doesn't care about peace the most anti-Semitic essay he has ever read in a mainstream publication (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).
You see, Vick has discovered that the rather worldly Israelis, after stealing their land from Arabs, don’t much care for the hard negotiations that the Obama administration is now engaged in (“big elemental thoughts”), not when it is a matter of — yes, making money: “With souls a trifle weary of having to handle big elemental thoughts, the Israeli public prefers to explore such satisfactions as might be available from the private sphere, in a land first imagined as a utopia.”

And this near-suicidal, clueless Jewish preoccupation with money-grubbing has got Vick pretty upset: “But wait. Deep down (you can almost hear the outside world ask), don’t Israelis know that finding peace with the Palestinians is the only way to guarantee their happiness and prosperity? Well, not exactly.”

Finally, at the end of Vick’s piece, we discover why this is all so. Jews, we are told by interviewee “Eli,” can’t help it; it’s in their DNA. They like making money at the expense of everything else, from peace to justice: ”Another whack for the desk. ‘The people,’ Heli says, ‘don’t believe.’ Eli searches for a word. ‘People in Israel are indifferent,’ he decides. ‘They don’t care if there’s going to be war. They don’t care if there’s going to be peace. They don’t care. They live in the day.’”
Yes, I can see why Hanson (and Phyllis Chesler before him) have branded Vick's essay anti-Semitic. I'm not sure it is. As I understood what Vick wanted to say, his point was that Israelis have given up on the 'peace process' and are willing to make do with the current status quo. If pointing out that a false peace is not our top priority is anti-Semitic, then yes, Vick's essay is anti-Semitic.

Have we reached the point where it's forbidden for Israelis to say that we're not interested in talking to the Arabs unless and until they get their act together and decide that they're going to compromise and live with us in peace? Is it forbidden for us to be satisfied with our status quo (which includes a robust economy) rather than seeking a 'peace process'? If not, why is it wrong to point out that we're doing those things?


At 5:24 PM, Blogger mariagmartinc said...

It's not wrong to point out that Israelis are fine with the status quo. But it's made to blame Israelis for the eventual failure of the talks (they just don't care), and to make jews look imperialistic and selfish. They're living the good life in the lands they took from those poor arabs (Tel Aviv). It helps perpetuate the idea that the only ones who are suffering from the conflict are those oppressed, impoverished, overcrowded arabs in Gaza and the West Bank who have no option but to resort to terrorism to make themselves heard. Throw rocks at IDF tanks.
It might reflect reality, but it's almost saying Israelis should suffer more. That's what makes it anti-semitic.


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