Saturday, March 28, 2015
Prime Minister Netanyahu's clarifying intractability against a two state solution between Palestinians and the Jewish state showed clearly to me what his minions of the ultra-orthodox, orthodox, and one-state advocates are all about. In short, they are not about me. Netanyahu's bait-and-switch selling and his racist warnings of "Arabs voting in droves" on the day of his election finally gave me permission to reject what in my heart I knew was immoral and wrong.
His political expedience and the orgasmic Republican delight hearing his speech along with his ugly racist words on the eve of his election Netanyahu forced me and many other Jews I know to turn our backs on his version of Israeli non-peace with the Palestinian people. When some Republicans with their sidecar of a Fox News echo chamber opined in minor key mourning that they wished Netanyahu were our president it made my stomach turn. I then reversed my political course.
Now, finally, I could without guilt commit to a two state policy that I know in my heart is morally right. It is easy now to reject the barbarism of what was done in places like Gaza and in the West Bank bulldozing settlements. No longer am I compelled to make rationalizations and excuses for the inexcusable. No longer do I have the angel of guilt sitting on my shoulder commanding me to look the other way lest Israel suffer an existential life or death fate. I have had talks with several Jewish friends agreeing with me that Netanyahu's political expediency gave us a permission slip for what we wanted to do all along and what we felt guilty about doing at any other time – waxing critical of the State of Israel.
How dare Mr. Netanyahu kick dirt in the face of my president and how dare he threaten the nuclear ever-so-important talks between the US and Iran. I am old enough to ask if there is no peace now when will there be peace and will I ever be around to see it?
In truth, I still worry about both orthodox fanatical Judaism and I surely worry about those Palestinians who, too, will remain uncompromising and extreme. I do not want Jews to commit suicide BUT I cannot account for every crack in the building of an edifice of peace. I must account for my own humanitarian views and promulgate them no matter what the what ifs are as I can only account for myself. The only power I have is my written and oral word BUT I can, through our vast technological devices, be an advocate for humane policies with empathy toward those who have little hope.
I may not know what it is like not to have the kind of hope that Palestinians do not have but I know what it is like when life takes a sour turn and the lack of hope seems to be one's constant companion. I am an empathetic human being first and I cannot stand to see the innocent bludgeoned. Thank you, Mr. Netanyahu, for showing me a return to the moral center compass of a path I honed many decades ago!