Ari Shavit’s ‘Doomed’ Israel

0319-obama-mideast-trip-israel-public_full_600I haven’t read My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel, the new New York Times bestseller by Israeli left-of-center journalist Ari Shavit. In my book-reviewing days I read more than my fill of “Israel is losing its soul” books. I have a lot of resistance to subjecting myself to another, along with other priorities.

Shavit, of course, is not just another Israel-basher. Among left-wing Israeli commentators he’s distinguished by having admitted he was wrong about “peace” with Syria, relating to Binyamin Netanyahu as a human being instead of a demon, and being intensely concerned about the Iranian threat—that is, capable of acknowledging that Israel still faces threats that it did not create itself.

Some commentators I respect clearly like My Promised Land. However, a review by another of my esteemed authors and commentators, Ruth Wisse, makes me all the more leery of putting any time into the book.

“[E]verywhere in My Promised Land,” Wisse writes, “the techniques of literary foreshadowing are deployed to telegraph impending doom.” And yet, “according to Shavit himself, his fears arise less from what Arab and Muslim leaders intend to do to Israel than from what Israel has done to them.”

Israel, in other words, as a doomed country—as comeuppance for its own sins. Sounds all too familiar.

Perhaps, if I read the book myself, I would get a different impression of its import. It seems unlikely, though, in light of some quotations Wisse offers.

Such as some sentences of Shavit’s about a concert by the great violinist Jascha Heifetz at Kibbutz Ein Harod in 1926—that is, in prestate, pioneering Israel, twenty-two years before statehood. As Shavit imagines this event:

I think of that great fire in the belly, a fire without which the valley could not have been cultivated, the land could not have been conquered, the state of the Jews could not have been founded. But I know the fire will blaze out of control. It will burn the valley’s Palestinians and it will consume itself, too. Its smoldering remains will eventually turn Ein Harod’s exclamation point into a question mark.

“…burn the valley’s Palestinians,” no less. Here you can see a map of the 1947 UN Partition Plan. The blue part was supposed to be Israel, the orange part Palestine (Jerusalem belongs to neither, an internationally administered city). Everything from Beersheba southward is desert; the Jews, whose connection to the land goes back over three thousand years and who have been assiduously building it up since the 1880s, get the Negev Desert, a strip along the coast, and eastern Galilee. The Palestinians get the rest.

As Ari Shavit knows, the Jews accepted this plan; the Palestinian and Arab side rejected it out of hand and instead launched a war to annihilate Israel. Shavit also knows that in 1994 Israel created the Palestinian Authority; that in 2000-01 it turned the historical clock back by offering the Palestinians a state that they—again—rejected; ditto for 2008; that meanwhile in 2005 Israel withdrew totally from Gaza; and that in 2009 Netanyahu, with his right-of-center background, pronounced himself in favor of a two-state solution.

Apparently, though, for Shavit, none of this is enough to expiate the primal sin he feels hovering over himself, over his country.

And then there’s this statement of Shavit’s, as quoted by David Brooks:

If Israel does not retreat from the West Bank, it will be politically and morally doomed, but if it does retreat, it might face an Iranian-backed and Islamic Brotherhood-inspired West Bank regime whose missiles could endanger Israel’s security. The need to end occupation is greater than ever, but so are the risks.

“Doom” again. Many reasons can be given for why, if the current, John Kerry-impelled Israeli-Palestinian talks do not—as most people expect—lead to an agreement, Israel will not be doomed as a result.

There is the fact that, since Israel’s conquest of the West Bank in 1967, it has experienced remarkable demographic and economic growth. And on the moral side of the ledger, since 1967 Israel has become a much more vibrant, genuinely pluralist democracy compared to the previous one-party Mapai rule with its attendant nepotism and cronyism.

There is the fact that, as journalist David Rosenberg observed last week in Shavit’s paper Haaretz, the anti-Israeli boycott movement—despite a few symbolic successes—has basically been losing:

[Last] week four major port operators, including three European companies, bid to operate marine terminals in Israel. Israel was admitted to the European nuclear research consortium CERN as its first non-European full member. The Irish company Covidien offered to buy the Israeli medical device company Given Imaging. Apple bought PrimeSense, an Israeli high-tech startup. Carefusion, a San Diego company, bought 40% of Caesarea Medical Electronics.

Foreign direct investment in Israel stood at $9.4 billion in the first 10 months of the year, matching the total for all of 2012, and is likely to exceed 2011’s $10.8 billion.

Yes, West Bank “occupation” and all. Doesn’t sound like a “doomed” country.

And there is the fact that, amid the horrific bloodletting in Syria and Iraq, the strife and brutality in Egypt, Lebanon, and Yemen, the savage persecution of Christians throughout the region, the poverty and corruption, one can fairly ask whether Israel—or anyone—has a moral obligation to create another Arab state; one, as Shavit acknowledges, capable of “endangering Israel’s security” to put it mildly.

These points seem so obvious that one surmises there is something other than “occupation of the West Bank” that is souring Shavit and other Israeli left-wingers on the Israeli endeavor. Perhaps a more primordial guilt over the reassertion of Jewish nationhood. Perhaps—one might say ironically—an aversion to enhanced Israeli democracy with its greater role for religious, Mizrahi, and Russian-immigrant Jews. Perhaps an inability to cope with Western elites’ disapproval of Israel, no matter how unwarranted and ill-informed.

In any case, that even a more thoughtful, nuanced left-winger like Shavit feels compelled to write about his country in terms of “tragedy” and “doom,” and that so many people are now getting this warped message, is really something to lament.

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  • Hank Rearden

    On Wall Street there is a saying that the negative case always sounds more intelligent than the positive case.

  • mackykam

    Of course, were Shavit to read his bible, it states bluntly,
    ” You shall go up into the land I have given you, and make war against it inhabitants and inherit the land promised to your forefathers…flowing with milk and honey…each shall sit under his fig tree in peace…and treat the stranger that dwells in peace amongst you righteously.
    But one has to believe in the bible. Leftists do not. They see doom, same as 10 of the 12 sent to spy out the land did.
    See, history does repeat itself.

    • Consider

      Arguments like this one make the case for Israel laughing stock, appart that they represent a logical fallacy.

      • mackykam

        What part is laughingstock, what part fallacy?
        Name me one other people, some 15 million in a sea of 6 billion, that has retained its identity and survived against all murderous obstacles outside its own country for 2 thousand years; has returned to its homeland; resurrected its language; and benefits the world with its accomplishments, all in outsized proportion to its numbers? Just consider that 25% of all Nobel prize winners are Jews while constituting a fraction of a percent in world population. Some laughingstock, heh?

        • Consider

          Laughing stock is the part where fairy tales (like the Bible) are invoked as arguments.
          The fallacy aspect (in this case called ‘petitio principii’ or begging the question) is when one attempts to prove one contentious thesis using another contentious thesis.
          You must first prove that God exist (which is, hm, difficult, to put it mildly) and only then deal with his alleged promises.
          Israel can be defended with better arguments.

          • UCSPanther

            Religion nothing. Only cowards lay down their arms and let their enemies devour them.

          • Consider

            Who said anything about laying down arms?
            I only drew attention to the fact that arguments of the ‘God promised us this or that’ type, make supporters of Israel look ridiculous.
            Those 25% Nobel prize winners notwithstanding.

          • mackykam

            If you consider the bible’s moral instructions fairy tales you can have no sense of right and wrong.
            But I think a day will come when you’ll quote the cowardly lion of “The Wizard of Oz’ by blubbering,
            “I do believe, I do believe, I do, I do, I do.”
            God exists for me; my people exist because of Him. If not for Him His people would long ago have disappeared.
            He may not exist for you but I hardly believe that matters to Him.

          • Consider

            I often ask myself is my feeling of satisfaction a sick one when mauling a ” Bible (or religion) as the moral compass” proponent.
            Whatever it might be, I cannot resist to quote this time two ‘moral instructions’ from the bible that are supposed to insert in me the ‘sense of right and wrong':

            “Let a woman learn in silence with full submission. I permit no woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she is to keep silent.” [1 Timothy, chapter 2]

            “When you buy a male Hebrew slave, he shall serve for six years, but in the seventh he shall go out a free person, without debt. ” [Exodus, chapter 21]

            I must admitt that I let all my Hebrew slaves go after six years and some even earlier.
            If they behave well.
            Slaves of other races I keep longer.

          • defcon 4

            An islam0nazi complaining about slavery that was practiced by Jews some 3000 years ago while ignoring the ongoing legalised slavery being practiced by muslimes in the islamic states of Mauritania and the Sudan in the here and now is good for a hypocritical laugh or two.

          • Consider

            While’ ‘promises’ of land, ‘given’ (or ‘recorded’) some 3000 or more years ago, don’t incite you to laugh?

            Furthermore, we have here again a logical fallacy called ‘Ignoratio elenchi’ , also known as irrelevant conclusion:
            The informal fallacy of presenting an argument that may or may not be logically valid, but fails nonetheless to address the issue in question.

          • mackykam

            If the Bible’s truths are valid then its validity is eternal. So are its promises.

          • Consider

            Therefore the instructions regarding slavery are also valid, not subject to historical relativism.
            I then treat my slaves correctly, by the book.

          • defcon 4

            It’s hypocrisy for a muslime to condemn Jews for slavery practiced 3000 years ago while muslimes are enslaving people today. That’s my argument Ahmed. There’s no fallacy of argumentation there.

          • Consider

            Yes there is!
            Because we were talking about the Bible as a source of ‘moral instructions’, not about the history of slavery.
            A person with an average IQ should have understood this.
            BTW neither am I a “muslime” nor my name is Ahmed.

          • Consider

            There is a fallacy, since the status of the Bible as the source of morality was discussed, not who kept slaves when.
            To people with average IQ this shloud be crystal clear.
            BTW, neither I am a “muslime”, nor my name is Ahmed.

          • mackykam

            1. Timothy is not the bible: it is the new testament.
            2. Upon freeing the Hebrew slave after 6 years one is to supply him with anything he needs to start his free life.
            Mr. Smugness: At the time it was not uncommon to sell oneself into slavery because of life’s conditions, Even in ancient Greece some 90 percent of the population were slaves, and nearly as high during the roman period. However, as you aren’t a Hebrew your period of slavery would be indefinite. But would not include your descendants. That was an American invention.

          • Consider

            1.”Timothy is not the bible”!!!?

            What to say other than ha,ha,ha…!

            2. Apart that your tirade is again an ‘irrelevant conclusion’ (see below) because you said that the Bible supply the sense of right and wrong (apparently regardless of the era when it was written, it’s “timeless”), various details of slavery mangement are irrelevant to our discussion but one: slavery is accepted as ‘good’ or at least, incontrovertible.

          • mackykam

            I reiterate, that means I am restating: Timothy is not the Bible. It is the New Testament. As a Jew I only recognize The Testament. It isn’t old, it isn’t new; it is the one and only. It was handed to Moses on Mt. Sinai who then handed it to the Jewish people.
            Calling the Bible the Old Testament implies it has a sell by date, a Christian conceit and designed to imply God has forsaken and chosen a new people. Since the New Testament was not given in ‘revelation’ it has no value to Jews. Its only virtue is its restating of valid Jewish moral principles. Even the 10 commandments are a bone of contention between Catholic and Protestant denominations as to which commandment is what number.
            The validity of the New Testament lies in its Jewish message given a universal transmittal. That is why so much of the Bible has no relevance to non-Jews, especially all the laws concerning the Temple in Jerusalem, circumcision, dietary laws and Sabbath/holiday practices. Which really leaves just the Ten Commandments, a recipe for moral living.

          • defcon 4

            I’ve heard an argument that the CC rewrote the ten commandments WRT not worshiping graven images or idols.

          • Consider

            Well, having met before people who try to get away with claims that they don’t recognize either the NT or the OT, I included ‘moral instructions’ from both.
            I could easily find quite a lot of horrendous quotations from the OT ( or, as you call them, ‘moral instructions’), but since my time is limited i shall add only one more:

            If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall be put to death; their blood is upon them. [Leviticus, chapter 20]

          • mackykam

            So your opinion takes precedence over God’s Word?
            Well then, suck away. Just remember to floss afterwards.

          • Consider

            I assume that you are a Yeshiva student that dodge the IDF draft, but expect to be protected, fed and clothed at the expence of the socialists and secularists, while giving in exchange the profound knowledge of the Torah, from which all shall benefit.

          • mackykam

            You are a schmuck. I’m an American. I didn’t dodge the draft when I registered for it at the height of the Vietnam war. 1967.

          • fungu

            Wasn’t the Bible a rewrite of the Essenians and their philosophies?

          • mackykam

            The short answer is NO. The long answer is NO.
            The proof is the requirement to read the bible from beginning to end every 3 1/2 years so the populace is reminded of religious requirements and proper behavior. The Essenes showed up 1000 years after this requirement was instituted. Today Jews complete the reading of the Bible , beginning to end, every year.
            The Essenes philosophy tends to be closer to Christian doctrines.

          • defcon 4

            Yeah the Israelis should all just give up and become slaves and dhimmis to the islam0nazi Arabs.


        The laughing stock are the self proclaimed “progressives” who back “progressive” people who

        – hang gays
        – stone women to death
        – dehumanize people – comparing them to pigs and dogs
        – purposely murder children
        – brainwash children to aspire to die in jihad
        – force women to dress in black sacks where only their eyes are visible

        What is “progressive” about siding with the most REGRESSIVE people on the planet today?

        • Seek

          To the hard Left, Muslims — Arab ones, anyway — are “people of color,” exploited by the West. It’s much more about race than religion.

    • wildjew

      I am listening to Shavit’s book on audio; I am approximately three quarters (or more) the way through this twenty plus hour book. Shavit interviews lots of successful and prominent Israelis, peace activists, entrepreneurs, economists, former military and security folks, etc., and argues with several. He’s yet to interview any Jews or Jewish “settlers” in Israel who believe the Jews have a divine or Biblical right to this land. I’m not through. We’ll see..

      • mackykam

        Relax: you won’t find any.

        • wildjew

          You are probably right. I will let you know when I finish.

    • teq

      What scriptural verse are you quoting? Deuteronomy 7: 1-5 says something quite different.
      ‘1.When the LORD your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations–the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites, seven nations larger and stronger than you– 2 and when the LORD your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. 3 Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, 4 for they will turn your sons away from following me to serve other gods, and the LORD’s anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you. 5 This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire. 6 For you are a people holyto the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.’

      The price of being God’s treasured possession is that Israel must be prepared to stand alone against the world with God alone protecting them. He’s protected the Jews for 3,000 years and He will go on doing it provided they don’t break the Covenant by making treaties and alliances with other nations. He is a jealous God, as He often says in the Bible and He wants Israel all for Himself.

      • wildjew

        It seems clear, these self-professed Palestinians, like the ancient Canaanites, are not the strangers and sojourners Moses / God had in mind. There will be no peace with these peoples.

        • teq

          Yes, the verse, “Be kind to the stranger among you”, is clearly referring to individual travelers to the Israelite Confederacy, not to the mass of indigenous Canaanites, Hivites, etc, who God told Joshua to drive out and not make any treaties with.
          Does that mean the Oslo Accord was a violation against God’s command to make no treaties with the natives?
          As for their adopted name, I wonder if the Pals realize that Palestine is the Latinized form of Philistine and the Philistines were from Crete. Do the Arabs in Samria believe they are descended from Greeks?

          • wildjew

            I believe the Oslo Accords violate Moses (God’s) commandment to not make a covenant with the inhabitants living in the land. It had murderous consequences.

          • Texas Patriot

            Why make a covenant with anyone who has no intention of keeping it?

          • wildjew

            Churchill might have asked your question during the Chamberlain years.

          • mackykam

            They just like to ‘do it’ greek style.

      • mackykam

        And you couldn’t detect the compilation in my statement? My compilation also includes paraphrasing of Numbers and Joshua.

  • Rivkah F.

    There is a similarity between those who see only the faults, mistakes, and meanness of the U.S. and of the West and those who diss Israel and only focus on bad things or have a skewed version of American history and of the history of Israel. Much of it is based on ignorance & ideological blindness. For example, feminists often speak of the “glass ceiling” or a “women’s gallery” in an Orthodox synagogue as the worst kind of discrimination — and don’t mention “honor killings”, arranged marriages of girls & wife-beating which occur mainly in Islamic societies that are much more anti-women than the “glass ceiling.” Israel faces violence & destruction from Iran, terror from Palestinians and mendacious propaganda from Arabs & Europeans. It is subject to double standards & must be perfect, therefore it must apologize for its existence & grovel before its enemies. Some would like the U.S. to do the same. Shavit can’t stand a Jewish state and America-bashers can’t handle a genuine liberal democracy.

  • Dyer’s Eve

    The common demoninator of every leftie is jealousy. If envy is a sin, then every card-carrying commie is going to burn in Hell. And deservedly so! Islamofascists are envious of Israel because they KNOW Israel is better than they ever could be. That’s what fuels their hatred. Hatred, which started with an illiterate, miserable, pissweak excuse for a man 1400 years ago.

  • David Neunuebel

    Unfortunately you get an “F” for your book report, a grade any teacher would give for not actually reading the book.

    Sure there may be lots of business Israel is still doing with the world, just think of the billions of dollars of arms deals and nuclear weapons deals, and other business Israel did with Apartheid South Africa during a period when Apartheid South Africa was doomed.

    Israel has a lot of good traits and offers a lot of research and culture. We’re just working for the day that when someone thinks of Israel they think of these things and not its Apartheid.

    It’s not about Jews it’s about Justice.

    Anti-Apartheid is NOT anti-semitic.

    • Gee

      Considering that Israel has not one single law that is remotely close to apartheid, nor is there any vestige of apartheid in the entire history of Israel – you are the one that gets the “F” for Frigging Idiot.

      That is something that not one single Islamic regime can claim – they are in fact worse than South Africa ever was.

      And yes you are Israelphobic and that is anti-Semitic

    • iluvisrael

      Those who single out the one Jewish state for demonization are, in deed, Jew haters.

    • Mladen_Andrijasevic

      Apartheid in Israel? This is such a display of ignorance and malice . Probably a third of the pharmacists, including my own, in Be’er Sheva , are Arab , and the maternity ward of the Soroka hospital is filled with Bedouin women giving birth. Four colleagues at the hi-tech company I work in are Israeli Arabs.

      On the other hand, why don’t you check Article 7 of the Hamas Charter which reads:

      “The hour of judgment shall not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and kill them, so that the Jews hide behind trees and stones, and each tree and stone will say: ‘Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a
      Jew behind me, come and kill him,’ except for the Gharqad tree, for it is the tree of the Jews.”

      Article 7 is taken from Hadith Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177 and quotes the Prophet Muhammad:

      Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah’s Apostle said, “The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. “O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.”


      FAKE “Anti-Apartheid”, like FAKE “anti-war” are red herrings.

      The most apartheid societies in the world today are islamist and socialist.

      How many black people live in China, Russia?
      How many Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists live in Saudi Arabia, Fascist Iran?

      Why does the left support islamist regimes where are the most regressive societies in the world?


      david neunuebel, you are a FASCIST.

      And like all fascists, you will be defeated.

    • Glenn Partridge

      Africa was an apartheid state; I got that and then you use that to somehow strengthen your inference people have that opinion of Israel, that non sequitur shows your lack of evidence and integrity.
      Of course you’re not anti-Semitic…. are you?

    • Moa

      > “Anti-Apartheid is NOT anti-semitic.”
      Why mention apartheid here? you *want* to bring it up to tarnish Israel.

      *Lots* of countries dealt with South Africa because they thought of several things:
      1) they separate politics from trade (Chinese are particularly practiced at this),
      2) stopping trade with South Africa hurts poor people more than it helped the goals of the violent and thoroughly corrupt communist ANC (which is who you really wanted to support, right?)

      Hell, my country (New Zealand) played rugby with South Africa because (confession) we’re both rugby mad and we divorced sport from politics.

      Please note that Kenneth Meshoe (South African Member of Parliament) believes that your subtle comparison of Israel to apartheid is *wrong* for several reasons:
      1) it demonstrates ignorance of what apartheid is (his words)

      2) the Palestinians do not face anything remotely like what the African tribes did under apartheid (and it can be argued that what they do face is a result of jihadis).

      3) by trying to link the situation in Israel with the real Apartheid system you are minimizing the suffering of the real Apartheid. Stop doing this!

      4) when he was sick he was treated *exactly* the same as an Israeli citizen, and was lying in a ward room with a Palestinian on one side and Israeli Jew on the other – all treated *equally*. Several weeks ago the granddaughter of a very prominent Hamas leader was treated in Israel with the best care the Israels could muster. Similarly, an anti-Israeli activist in Gaza fell ill and was treated to the best ability of the Israelis. That’s because Israeli philosophy is to love Life (more than their jihadi enemies love death – as the jihadis repeatedly remind us). Thousands of Syrian citizens and fighters are being treated right now by Israel – despite the Syrian citizens chanting for decades to destory Israel and commit genoicide against all the Jews (as commanded in Islamic hadith Sahih Muslim 6985).

      So, your attempted comparison of Israel is not only totally wrong, it is slanderous given the fact that Israel actually treats its genocide-seeking enemies as humanely as it can – without resorting to the delusional jihadi appeasement and suicidal policies of the West (because the West has lost its way and is corrupted by Cultural Marxism – which quite possibly you agree with).

      Here are some videos to help you understand why your attempted slander of Israel with the false meme of “Israeli Apartheid” is wrong. Please stop slandering Israel by singling it out for trading with South Africa when almost every non-Communist country conducted trade. It is the singling out while ignoring other countries that makes you an immoral anti-Semite.

      Is Israel An Apartheid State?

      Is Israel and Apartheid State?

      Kenneth Meshoe – South Arfican Member of Parliament

    • TheOrdinaryMan

      How is Israel apartheid?! By allowing thousands of Ethiopians and Somalis into the country?! There are more mosques and churches in Israel than synagogues. By allowing Palestinians with life-threatening diseases to be at the head of the line in Israel’s hospitals?! By creating economic opportunity that thousands of West Bank residents–Jew and Muslim alike–take advantage of?! Since there’s NO apartheid in Israel, anti-apartheid criticism of Israel cannot have any other motive than anti-Semitism. No Israel, no justice. Got that, troll?

  • Mladen_Andrijasevic

    Ari Shavit is one of the most reasonable journalists of Ha’aretz, yet even he failed to interview scholars of Islam like Bernard Lewis and Raphael Israeli in the series of interviews he did on Iran last year. The reason for this is just pure ignorance
    of Islam. This is why the West and Israel are always being bamboozled in their dealings with Iran and the Palestinians

    Iranians: Geneva is ‘Treaty of Hudaybiyyah’

  • carpe diem 36

    i do not know why Mr. Hornik wastes time not reading this book. i did not read the whole article, half of it was enough to show that the author is not sane and writes nonsense. his whole theory is based on bad ideas and bad knowledge of history. do not read him.

  • Texas Patriot

    The only thing that is necessarily “doomed” about Israel is the idea that it will be able to live in peace and harmony with its neighbors at any time during the immediately foreseeable future. Unless and until Israel’s neighbors reject and renounce the mandates of conquest and submission of non-Muslims as found in the teachings and life example of Muhammad, there is no question that a state of perpetual war will exist between Israel and its neighbors. Whether there will ever be peace among them is not within Israel’s direct power to determine. The “land for peace” formula advocated by virtually every American president since Jimmy Carter has not worked. On the contrary, it has been regarded as a sign of weakness and submission which in turn has only whetted the appetite of Israel’s neighbors for more land. Under these circumstances, all Israel can do is prepare for an indefinite future of defending itself vigorously and decisively, as every other nation has had to do since the beginning of time.

    • Jane

      That was beautifully said.

  • Daniel

    Criticizing Shavit for his feeling of impending doom is easy for an outsider. I am an Israeli living in Israel, and we all share this at one time or another, along with the deep shamefulness of the “occupation”. It might be argued that Judea and Samaria rightly belong to the Jewish people, but these areas are still populated with Arabs that live under a military regime not of their own choosing. They are not being persecuted or murdered wholesale of course, but I do remember the petty harassment they were subjected to in the days of the first intifada. The worst part of it, believe me, was doing it. I remember taking my reserve unit commander aside and explaining him why the son of my Holocaust survivor father could not be tasked to making arrests of PLO activists with the GSS, in the middle of the night. He did not agree nor disagree with me, but he gave me other missions, and I kept my mouth shut about this matter.

    • E. G. Marsch

      “Criticizing Shavit for his feeling of impending doom is easy for an outsider.” If the reference is to Hornik, actually he has been living in Israel a long time, served in the army for years, and was never demoralized by it.

      • teq

        People who don’t believe in anything or Anyone greater than themselves can feel overwhelmed by circumstances. Living in Israel today must feel like being perched on the ledge of a burning building. A country the size of Rhode Island full of people from almost every culture in the world, plus a few million Arabs. And surrounded by angry hateful enemies who want to destroy you. Only faith in Someone or something Transcendent will enable you to reject despair and feeling of doom.
        The atheists can laugh all they want at the “crazy religious-right”. When the chips are down we can move purposefully while they descend into panic and “a feeling of doom.”

    • 11bravo

      You opinion seems to come from personal weakness, and not based in the reality that all the muslims want you dead.
      Did you poll the people who did not choose the force which would be occupying them? Those “regular” palistinians want you dead! And driven into the sea.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      Feelings are one thing, actions another. And your feelings should be led by your thinking, which should be led by logic, reasoning and evidence.

  • steven L

    The lefties of the world are perpetually involved in the promotion of a lie. In many ways they do not differ from the Muslimists.

  • Aterg

    Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, surrounded. By enemies that want and wish for its demise, They are wrong, it will never happen. The western civilized societies will do their outmost to help., in spite of antisemitism is showing its ugly head, There always will be writers who think they write
    something new and shocking to get a five minute fame . They are usually miserable, losers, pessimistic and complainers. Their glass is always empty, They are afraid to look into the mirror because they see the truth. I will read the book , but not sure if I can finish it, just because of what I heard about it.

  • Nhóm Đào Tạo

    That is something that not one single Islamic regime can claim – they are in fact worse than South Africa ever was.

    vé máy bay di Italia
    vé máy bay di Thụy Si

  • marvin boggs

    I suggest that the area be partitioned rationally,allowing for Israel’s defense,and if some Israeli settlements fall behind Palestinian borders,then those residents must decide whether to become “Palestinians” or relocate into Israel to remain Israeli citizens,and the same for “Palestinians” that reside in Israeli areas,to become Israeli citizens,as those in present Israel have done,with full political representation and rights. Jerusalem remains Israeli land,the Arabs have shown that will not administer it fairly,without persecuting Jews. Actually,Jordan was supposed to be Palestine for the muslims-Arabs. Lastly,the “Palestinians” must not be permitted to ethnically cleanse their land,no “Juden-frei” nonsense.

    • defcon 4

      Why should Israel give up any more land “for peace”, when such deals have proven to be nothing but muslime lies in the past and the leaders of paleswine (and other muslime states) are fond of making genocidal threats against Israel?

    • defcon 4

      “partitioned rationally”. Bring on the unicorns, elves and rainbows.

  • Ken Kelso

    I hear Hamas will be naming Ari Shavit’s book, book of the year….

  • Joe

    I am a gentile living in l.a. My daughter has married a Jewish man whose father list many of his family. My interest is seeing Israel, of the Tikkun Olam,brand, survive as a light unto nations. But that’s can not be accomplished when the heavy Israeli boot is on the neck of the Palestinians. The comments I read here are delusional rationalizations for your murderous behavior and tortuous rationalizations. The facts of the Nakba are becoming known and BDS us gaining momentum. There is still time for the Jewish community to come together to demand that their government make peace with its neighbors, become one state for all the people, and abandon the pipe dream of having a “Jewish State”. Otherwise, I see destruction ahead for the pariah which is currently call led Israel

    • Bert

      Well fools like you are the real enemy of the so-called Palestinians. It is the anti-Israeli hatemongers who employ the Palestinian Arabs as cannon fodder in their goal to exterminate Israel. U.S. taxpayers are funding Arab schools which teach them to hate Jews and that good Muslims must fight the Jews until the end. Remember two things. You yourself are living on stolen Indian land where the U.S committed mass murder and the Indians still suffer to this day. Secondly, look at the map of the entire region. See all the land that the followers of Mohammed conquered while slaughtering and subjugating the populations in dozens of countries with their land grab of ten million square miles. These bloody Muslim mobs invaded the land of Israel in 638, 1,600 years AFTER King David ruled over a sovereign Jewish nation from Jerusalem. Fools like you with your ignorance and self righteous arrogance are the real enemy of those indoctrinated Arabs.

      • Jane

        Muslims don’t need US Tax money to teach their children to hate Israel and the Jewish people, it’s in their DNA and so called holy books that have zero holiness in them.
        They will go on teaching for the termination of the Jews forever, unless they suddenly realise that Islam’s Quaran is just a war mongers how to do it book.

    • defcon 4

      Um, who is firing rockets and mortar rounds into whose territory without cause or provocation again Ahmed?

    • Hass

      Sorry Joe, but your preposterous opinion tells me you have no grasp of reality for what’s going on over there.

      “And to become a one state for all the people, abandon the pipe dream of having a Jewish State?”

      Yeah right! Actually, I think you are totally clueless.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “But that’s can not be accomplished when the heavy Israeli boot is on the neck of the Palestinians.”

      Stop the lying.

    • freedomfrind

      Israel is NOT a colonialist state. For complete explanation link here. Let’s not be played for fools by the left, Jewish left or otherwise. Opening paragraphs are here.

      The Myth of Israel as a Colonialist Entity:
      An Instrument of Political Warfare to Delegitimize the Jewish State
      Dore Gold
      While modern Israel was born in the aftermath of the British Mandate for Palestine, which called for a Jewish national home, its roots preceded the arrival of the British to the Middle East. In that sense Britain was not Israel’s mother-country, like France was for Algeria. Indeed, the Jews were already re-establishing their presence independently in their land well before the British and French dismantled the Ottoman Empire.
      As time went on, it became clear that the British Empire was not the handmaiden of Israel’s re-birth, but rather its main obstacle. The accusation that Israel has colonialist roots because of its connection to the British Mandate is ironic, since most of the Arab states owe their origins to the entry and domination of the European powers.
      The argument that Israel is a colonialist entity is often marshaled to undermine the Jewish state’s very legitimacy. It lays at the head of Edward Said’s polemical treatment of the Arab-Israel conflict, entitled The Question of Palestine, which was published in 1992. The theme has certainly permeated Western academia, almost uncritically. For decades, it has been employed against Israel in one international forum after another.
      For example, in 1973, the UN General Assembly gave initial momentum to this idea when it condemned the “unholy alliance between Portuguese colonialism, South African racism, Zionism, and Israeli imperialism.” Two years later the Organization of African Unity adopted a resolution at its meeting of heads of state saying that “the racist regime in occupied Palestine and the racist regime in Zimbabwe and South Africa have a common imperialist origin.”
      That association of Israel with colonialist regimes set the stage in 1975 for the most insidious resolution ever adopted in the General Assembly against Israel, which stated that Zionism was a form of racism. It helped cement the Afro-Asian bloc behind the resolution and provided momentum for the beginnings of the movement to delegitimize Israel. Even when, in 1991, the General Assembly finally overturned the resolution, comparisons between Zionism and colonialism persisted, arguably becoming even more strident.
      The Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Information published a book in 2012 entitled Terminology in Media, Culture and Politics which stresses that Palestinians should use the term “colonialism” as part of their verbal arsenal in dealing with Israel. The book warns that using the political lexicon of Israel “turns the essence of the Zionist endeavor from a racist, colonialist endeavor into an endeavor of self-definition and independence for the Jewish people.”1
      The Palestinian Authority text specifically instructs its Palestinian readers never to use the name of “Israel” by itself, but rather the term “Israeli colonialism.” In short, the charge of Israel being a “colonialist state” has evolved in recent years into an instrument of political warfare to be used by Palestinians who seek to employ language that they hope will undercut the legitimacy of the Jewish state.
      Unlike the charges of apartheid and racism, the tag “colonialist” cannot be refuted simply by looking around modern Israel, where courts, hospitals, and universities serve both Arabs and Jews. It is a historical charge about how Israel came to exist: in effect, it amounts to the claim that Israel was established as an outpost of another distant power imposing itself by grafting an “alien” Jewish population on the territory and its native inhabitants.

  • friv

    I simply wanted to develop a small comment to say thank you to some lovely solutions you are sharing on this article

  • freedomfrind

    Dear Mr. Hornick. Hope you help Front Page Magazine to debunk the myth of Israel as a colonialist state. Dore Gold wrote a very thorough paper on the subject. Hope you will summarize for Front Page Magazine readers. We all have some willfully blind friends who believe the Lying Left. The Lying Left’s lies need to be shown for what they are one at a time. Thank you.

    Israel is NOT a colonialist state. For complete explanation link here. Let’s not be played for fools by the left, Jewish left or otherwise. Opening paragraphs are here.

    The Myth of Israel as a Colonialist Entity:
    An Instrument of Political Warfare to Delegitimize the Jewish State
    Dore Gold