The Israeli left is dead and buried

Yitzhak Laor in Haaretz:

The threats uttered against a possible Palestinian declaration of independence by our leaders Benjamin Netanyahu, Avigdor Lieberman and Ehud Barak let the Israeli sanctimony (usually tedious and belabored) drop to the floor for a moment, like a woman’s slip. It exposed the ugly skeleton of force that gives only us freedom of speech – we’re permitted, you’re forbidden. We are allowed to reiterate Israel’s Declaration of Independence over and over. You are not allowed to do so with yours.

The simplest explanation for our privileges, and one that is becoming increasingly significant, is the religious one – the land is ours, from God, not theirs, so we’re allowed to declare independence or harm civilians. The simplest explanation offered by secular people of those privileges is force – we’re strong. These two explanations are the axis of consensus. In the name of this consensus, the military rabbis and officers in the Israel Defense Forces, equipped with equal amounts of hysteria, set out to incite the units on their way to kill in Gaza.

And the left? In this spiritual context no left – which can only exist in a discourse of equality – can have air to breathe. So when the ethos “shut your mouth because we’ll punish you” rules everywhere, Peace Now was bound to disappear and be reduced to paid ads in the newspaper, with no foot soldiers. Meretz was bound to evaporate, and Labor’s doves were bound to crumble. This left insisted on clinging to the consensus, treating the conflict with the Palestinians as a war in defense of the state rather than as a massive policing of an occupied nation with tanks and F-16s.

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