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Friday, June 14, 2013

A teachable moment for American Jews

You will recall that I reported on Thursday that the 'Palestinians' are objecting to reconfiguring the area around the Kotel (Western Wall) to allow for an 'egalitarian' prayer area. Evelyn Gordon has a great idea to make this a teachable moment for American Jews.
[I]deally, I’d like every Reform or Conservative congregation in America to discuss this question with its membership–for two reasons.
One is that the new egalitarian section seems to matter more to American Jews than to Israelis, since Israel’s Reform and Conservative movements are so much smaller (about 7 percent of all Israeli Jews). Therefore, it’s only fair to get their input before making any decision. The more important reason, however, is that this could provide a genuine teachable moment in the kind of trade-offs Israelis face every day in dealing with the Palestinians, to which liberal American Jews–i.e. the majority of the American Jewish community–have lately grown increasingly unsympathetic.
Most liberal American Jews have two main demands of Israel: They want it to recognize the non-Orthodox denominations, and they want it to make peace with the Palestinians, right now. The latter demand isn’t confined to fringe anti-Israel activists; it’s routinely voiced by long-time Israel supporters like Rabbi Eric Yoffie or Leon Wieseltier. So I’d like all these Jews to seriously consider this question: When these two primary demands conflict, what do you do–capitulate to the PA in the interests of “peace” and give up on being able to pray at the Western Wall in your own fashion, or insist on your rights at the Wall at the cost of further antagonizing the Palestinians, for whom modifications of the Western Wall Plaza are no less objectionable than new outposts in the heart of the West Bank?
Dilemmas no less wrenching confront Israel every day in dealing with the Palestinians, but because they don’t affect American Jews directly, the latter are often too quick to accuse Israel of being intransigent over a trivial point it should just concede in the name of peace. They deplore Israel’s refusal to agree to a border roughly along the 1967 lines, not understanding the enormous security risks this creates; they deplore Israel’s refusal to release murderers to woo the Palestinians to the negotiating table, not understanding the major role freed prisoners have repeatedly played in fomenting new terrorism; they deplore Israel’s reluctance to redivide Jerusalem, not understanding how unlikely it is that the city would remain open afterward, or how devastating a repartition would therefore be.
Read the whole thing. She's spot-on.

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At 6:14 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Wieselter, for the many years I read the TNR, sorta portrayed himself as an Ortho lib. I have now learnt that he is just a lib cohabitating with a gentlile.
He has as little street cred as HaRavhaGoan haPosek Yofie .

At 6:08 AM, Blogger Captain.H said...

Hmmm...it seems that Israel's most reliable allies in America, those who "get it" on the nature of Israel's enemies, are evangelical Christians.

Going even further, it's the difference between those who are brainwashed with the 'truths', the false reality, of liberalism versus those objective non-liberals intellectually able to see the world as it really is. Or as Reagan put it, "The problem with liberals is that they know so much that isn't so."


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