Monday, June 13, 2011

Desperately in Need of Tikun

In reading JJ Goldberg article “As Bibi Slouches Toward September” this past week (Forward, June 3, 2011) I was struck at the visceral hate oozing out of his words; daggers aimed at the heart of Israel and its political establishment. Goldberg, like many American Jewish liberals can’t tolerate the fact that there are leaders in Israel with a clear vision for Israel’s future, unwilling to compromise with the core values that are essential for survival. It so happens that it is those leaders who hold a majority through coalition building and therefore speak for the majority of Israelis. One would think that a liberal like Goldberg would respect the political will of the people. Nor could Goldberg accept with magnanimity Benjamin Netanyahu acceptance and warm welcome by Congress not as a politician but as statesman addressing them as an equal offering his vision for peace and Israel’s future.

Instead Goldberg writes that “Bibi slouches toward September”, the negative imagery of a tired man, bent dragging himself to the inevitable defeat that September will bring at the United Nations. According to Goldberg, Bibi won the battle, but he lost the war because of his arrogance. Because of his unyielding position based on what he considers principles and core values essential for a future where Israel can flourish, Goldberg has portrayed Bibi as a megalomaniac. Goldberg can hardly wait for September to arrive. He’s chomping at the bit, salivating like a ravenous dog, restrained only by a choker from a slab of red meat, straining to pounce on it:
Now when the roof falls in on Israel in September, he can be the tough guy who told them to bring it on…And make no mistake, the roof will fall in. The Palestinians will overwhelmingly win recognition as an independent state in the United Nations General Assembly…”

The venomous language of Goldberg when he says, “he can be the tough guy who told them to bring it on” is intended to remind us of George Bush so reviled by the left and cleverly applied here. Goldberg writes of the terrible times facing Israel: economic sanctions, boycotting, divestment and where it will be difficult for Israel to get fuel or spare parts for their military juggernaut. He writes as though he were a prophet of old, sagacious, but with the unfortunate distinction that he writes with glee rather than sorrow in his heart.

If that doesn’t work the Palestinians, according to Goldberg will take their case to the World Court, the international Criminal Court, the European Credit Markets and universities, while tens of thousands of Palestinians march on the borders was Israeli troops machine gun them down in cold blood.

These are the scenarios of JJ Goldberg, editor of the Forward. What a lovely liberal, but unfortunately a miscreant, a Jew desperately in need of “tikun”, whose allegiance isn’t to his people but to the Socialist International. Goldberg, the galus Jew is worried that Israel’s position might cause tension within the State Department and the CIA spilling over into the media and causing people to ask why is America involved in the Israel/Palestinian conflict? He’s afraid of the discomfort it might cause him and his liberal friends. Tsk.Tsk.Tsk. It appears as though Goldberg is more concerned with Goldberg than he is with Israel!

Criticism over Israel’s policies is legitimate and in taking a position inconsistent with Israel’s policies is in the spirit of democratic values and the exchange of ideas. But Goldberg’s tone and nuance crossed the line from helpful and instructive to malevolent and self-indulging. Over the years I could never understand why Goldberg obsessed over Israel’s position vis a vis peace. Then it dawned on me after reading this article: global human rights trumps Israel’s right to exist. Nothing would make Goldberg happier than to see Israel’s security edge sacrificed on the altar of global human rights.