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Despite dissatisfaction, U.S. Jews won’t be abandoning Israel that soon

It is true that many in the U.S. Jewish community are not happy with current Israeli policies. But in the face of countervailing trends, it is not clear this will change the community’s overall levels of attachment and support.

By Brent E. Sasley

In a recent op-ed in Haaretz, Bradley Burston argues that U.S. Jews are moving away from Israel because of the government’s illiberal domestic politics and intransigent foreign policies. He believes that by 2013 they may just “secede” altogether from a country doing things they don’t want done in their name.

There are certainly signs pointing in that direction. Peter Beinart identified these trends in 2010, and in 2001 Steven Rosenthal wrote a (not very good) book about it, Irreconcilable Differences?

But there are other factors militating against such an outcome, or at least slowing down the process far more than liberals and progressives think.

First, although Burston correctly notes that most of the American community is composed of liberal-leaning Jews, the emerging role of Orthodox and (politically) conservative Jews within U.S. politics on Israel is mitigating their influence. The growing Orthodox community in the U.S. is far more conservative on social and economic issues than the rest of the Reform-dominated community.

The Orthodox are therefore more likely to tie themselves to Republicans who, according to the Pew Research Center, are themselves more likely to express strong support for Israel than Democrats. The results of the New York 9th Congressional District election in September 2011 underline this: the Orthodox Jewish constituents of the heavily Democratic electorate in that district voted for Republican Bob Turner despite the fact that the Democratic candidate was himself an Orthodox Jew.

Second, Jewish hawks, who are primarily Republican, are increasingly shaping the public debate on Israel in the U.S. These groups (such as the Emergency Committee for Israel) and individuals, by contrast to the big organizations like AIPAC, the JCPA, and the AJC who are more measured, have adopted a very vocal and aggressive tone about Israel, and a political agenda closely identified with the Republican Party.

The public defense of Israel by these outspoken groups has two further effects: it strengthens the aforementioned groups by contributing to general institutional efforts on behalf of Israel, and it raises the bar for these organizations, causing them to adopt more explicitly public and assertive language.

Third, developments within the Middle East as they impact Israel can re-direct U.S. Jewish attitudes about Israel. The establishment of Israel in 1948 followed by its victory in 1967 changed forever the nature of Jewish attachment to Israel. American Jews began to identify far more closely with the Jewish state and became more active in politics to express their support for it.

Soon after Rosenthal’s book questioning whether U.S. Jews would tolerate an increasingly right wing Israel came out, the Second Intifada erupted. In the wake of large-scale violence against Israeli civilians, U.S Jewish support for Israel increased: donations were up, and there were indications of high levels of identification with Israel.

2013 is likely to see some type of confrontation with Iran, Hamas, or Hezbollah in one way or another. The historical pattern indicates this will lead to an increase or intensification of U.S. Jewish support for Israel. At the same time, as Michael Koplow has pointed out, Israel enjoys broad support in the American electorate; in the case of hostilities, this is also likely to increase.

Burston is certainly right that many in the U.S. Jewish community are dissatisfied with current Israeli policy. But in the face of countervailing trends, it’s not clear this will change the community’s overall levels of attachment and support.

If Jewish attachment to Israel won’t decline, there is considerable evidence that American Jews are redefining what it means to support Israel. This is best represented by the increasingly heated debate among institutions of the Jewish community about what it means to be “pro-Israel.”

More broadly, Birthright programs are popular, and there is some evidence that it leads to a “bump” of increased attachment to Israel. Other research indicates U.S. Jews are supporting Israel in new ways. Theodore Sasson, for instance, contends that new partisan groups, direct philanthropy, non-denominational organized trips to Israel, and U.S. Jewish consumption of Israeli culture and media are facilitating less obvious but no less important attachments.

For those concerned about Israel’s current direction, this presents both a challenge and an opportunity. There is still a big challenge in forming a critical mass to support change in Israel, as the shifting nature of support can lead to less direct concern with the policies of any given Israeli government. But the opportunity is that—contrary to Burston’s argument—there will still be significant numbers of Jews interested in and attached enough to Israel that they can be mobilized.

Brent E. Sasleyteaches Israel and Middle East politics at the University of Texas at Arlington. He blogs on Israel and Jewish identity at Mideast Matrix and Open Zion. Follow him on Twitter.

For additional original analysis and breaking news, visit +972 Magazine's Facebook page or follow us on Twitter. Our newsletter features a comprehensive round-up of the week's events. Sign up here.

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  • COMMENTS

    1. Arieh

      This must be devastating news for many commenters here. To them: Please accept my (in)sincere condolences.

      Reply to Comment
    2. David

      This American Jew reflects the sentiments (I suspect) of many others. I support the right of the Jewish people to a homeland. I support the concept of a two-state solution. I am unequivocally opposed to the occupation. In the past I tended to distribute fault equally for failure to achieve peace. Presently I think it is evident that the Israelis are the obstructionists. Israelis seem to have become comfortable as colonial occupiers. I support the boycott and divestment campaign. If i was eligible to vote i would opt for either meretz or hadash? Does that make me and others similarly inclined Israeli supporters?

      Reply to Comment
      • Kolumn9

        No, it doesn’t, since the goal of the boycott and divestment campaign is to destroy Israel.

        Reply to Comment
      • The Trespasser

        >If i was eligible to vote i would opt for either meretz or hadash? Does that make me and others similarly inclined Israeli supporters?

        Voting for commies definitely does not make you supporter of any state. Hater rather.

        Reply to Comment
        • David

          It’s remarkable that in the year 2013 there are still red baiters. But to accuse me of being a socialist; I plead my proud guilt. It appears to me that only hadash and meretz are willing to campaign on the premise that Palestinians are entitled to statehood as much as the Jews. (Parenthetically, it is refreshing to read 972. Not all hope for sanity has vanished. Thanks)

          Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “It’s remarkable that in the year 2013 there are still red baiters”

            Us red baiters? I would say you guys are Anti Israel baiters. Is there anything on this site that is not geared towards berating everything that Israel does and stands for?

            I mean anyone who gets their information ONLY from + 972 simply HAS to detest Israel and even Jews in general.

            Why do I say that? Because this site is totally unbalanced. Have you ever read anything here that puts ANY blame for ANYTHING on the Arabs rather than on Israel? Can such reporting possibly be REAL rather than plain old PROPAGANDA?

            But I must admit, I too would believe that the sun shines out of the behinds of Palestinians if I wouldn’t read anything else rather than +972 and similar publications.

            Reply to Comment
          • The reason 972 is so biased (or focused) is, I believe, a consequence of sitting in Israel proper. Many of the stories reported here are either under reported or reported with a quite different slant. 972 journalist bloggers are independent and voluntary, and that it itself selects for a specific viewpoint. Although I am guessing, I suspect if you asked these bloggers why they do what they do, they will say because their viewpoint meets hostile, stone silence.

            Would I like to see pieces of different subject if not slant? Yes. For example, I have no doubt that religious Jews in Israel experience many life hurtles, some involving descrimination. I suspect there are many life conflicts within the society irrespective of the left. But I have come to greatly respect the voices on this site, for they are taking true risk to their future careers though what they do. There was a time when American McCarthyism was mainstream, and speaking otherwise had costs. I do not know how Israel will change, but I think it will have to change. And I think 972 is a valuable voice for whatever future comes. They are not traitors to Israel. As much as you may dislike what they say, how they focus, they love the land as much as others. I can tell from many pieces on this site.

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            Since when it’s is bad to persecute communists? They’ve done hardly less damage to the human kind than nazis. You wouldn’t mind me persecuting nazis? Or would you?

            Meretz and Hadash are no socialist but communist parties, which makes you a commie.

            >Palestinians are entitled to statehood as much as the Jews.

            No. After denying statehood for four of five times they are not really entitled that much.

            Reply to Comment
          • aristeides

            I really want to put Trespasser in a cage and pull him down the street in the US to show people the real face of the Ugly Israeli.

            Reply to Comment
          • Piotr Berman

            Since when it’s is bad to persecute communists? They’ve done hardly less damage to the human kind than nazis. You wouldn’t mind me persecuting nazis?

            Wiki: “Persecution is the systematic mistreatment of an individual or group by another group.” Note the word “mistreatment”, by the dictionary definition persecution of ANY group is wrong. From inception of Communism, there was persecution, in places against them, in places by them. The murder of Rosa Luxemburg was an early case.

            [Freicorps] commander, Captain Waldemar Pabst (1880–1970), along with Lieutenant Horst von Pflugk-Harttung (1889-1967), questioned them violently and then gave the order to execute them. Luxemburg was knocked down with a rifle butt by soldier Otto Runge (1875–1945), then shot in the head, either by Lieutenant Kurt Vogel (1889-1967) or Lieutenant Hermann Souchon (1894–1982); her body was flung into Berlin’s Landwehr Canal.

            Note that it was done in the name of Freedom (Frei). Like journalists and cameramen recently killed in Gaza, Luxemburg was not a fighter but a journalist.

            One of the most horrific incidents of anti-Communists persecution in the name of Freedom was the series of massacres in Indonesia in 1965, with roughly 500,000 killed and a similar number sent to concentration camps.

            There is simply not such a thing like a good persecution. Because both fascists and Communists were on receiving end of persecutions, they typically advocate against it, but in Israel, new generation of fascists does not remember what “Likud princelings” went through were they were in opposition to Mapai, so we have a revival of “moral clarity”.

            Tresspasser here seems a relative moderate compared to comments you may read in Arutz Sheva. E.g. that Netanyahu should be exiled to Gaza together with Zoabi for his betrayal of the Jewish nations (most recently, for wobbling on E1 issue). Is there something wrong in the water (or some soft drinks) in Jerusalem?

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            I know history of communism fairly well.

            Strangely, your are only counting dead commies, not people killed by them everywhere they’ve got to power.

            Palestinians were displaced by Jewish and Soviet communists

            Ten of millions killed in Cambodia, China, Korea, USSR, Poland, Cuba and elsewhere.

            WWII became possible mostly because Nazi officers were trained in USSR.

            At times persecution is necessary. Bad people must be prevented doing bad things, and communists are bad. Very bad.

            Reply to Comment
    3. Kolumn9

      I don’t even understand how the alternative would be possible.

      Certainly there are people who think that being Jewish is an inherited genetic defect which they spend the rest of their life trying to either ignore or excise by taking contrarian positions on everything having to do with Judaism and Israel. You will often find the latter confusing Judaism and progressivism or demanding that Judaism be ‘modernized’ to not be so focused on, like, Jews or whatever. These people tend to disappear from the Jewish community over time and I have no clue why they are even considered in discussions of Judaism or Jews when they really have no interest in the continued survival of either.

      Then there are all the other Jews for whom the connection of Jews to the land of Israel and a desire to see their brethren thrive in the holy land are self-evident expressions of their Jewish identity. This is especially true when they are faced with people who deny the connection of Jews to Israel and who demand conditions that would lead to the destruction of Israel and the massacre or expulsion of its Jewish citizens.

      Reply to Comment
      • aristeides

        Unfortunately, Jews in the unholy land have never thrived but always been corrupted. “Israel isn’t good for the Jews.”

        Reply to Comment
        • Shmuel

          “Unfortunately, Jews in the unholy land have never thrived but always been corrupted. “Israel isn’t good for the Jews.”

          Unfortunately, you Ariste or Aristo or Aristocrat or whatever you really call yourself are not a good Judge of what is or isn’t good for Jews. To you and people like you, Arist, the only good thing for a Jew is to walk into gas chambers without resisting and be dead.

          Tell me that I misunderstand you aristo. Failing that, your silence will speak for itself.

          Reply to Comment
          • aristeides

            Read the prophets, Shmuel.

            Reply to Comment
          • Shmuel

            I have, Aristo. And they tell me that people like you will be judged by Israel when the Messiah comes. Be worried, just in case :)

            By the way, you have not answered my question. Very telling.

            Reply to Comment
          • aristeides

            Another thing that turns off most US Jews, who are mostly sane, is that sort of deranged reaction as a substitute for actually engaging with the issues.

            Sane people merely dismiss the raving and turn away. I suspect you get lots of this response.

            Reply to Comment
          • Shmuel

            “Another thing that turns off most US Jews, who are mostly sane, is that sort of deranged reaction”

            You mean a reaction to your statement: “Read the prophets, Shmuel”? That was not an insane statement by you Aristo?

            Reply to Comment
    4. I think it rather insulting and futile to think change in Israel will be forced from without. I cannot see Israel shifting until enough therein, especially the various elites, think it should or must. I think the outside can act only as a reservoir of possibility and, perhaps, links of solace. Precisely because I think the present direction of Israel unsustainable, I believe the risks of change, true risks, must be articulated from within. As the author of this piece notes, the suicide bombing campaign had tremendous impact within and outside of Israel. Can anyone really expect the outside to tell those who lived it what to become? They have to decide that. I read 972 because, like it or not, it is a voice from within. And that, in my eyes, is a most necessary thing.

      Reply to Comment
      • aristeides

        Yes, the voice from within is valuable. But as an American, I’m not so much concerned about change within Israel as change within the US. Every year, the Lobby comes closer to overreaching. Maybe the Hagel thing will finally be the tipping point. Or the election of an even more openly racist government in Israel. Eyes will open sooner or later.

        Reply to Comment
      • Arieh

        “I read 972 because, like it or not, it is a voice from within”

        The voice is from a very tiny portion of the population. Itsy, bitsy very tiny. The rest are as hostile to that tiny minority as I am. No, they are even more hostile than I am.

        The message is slanted and one sided.

        The agenda is naive to the extreme. And I am just being kind. I could be a lot nastier.

        The need for this kind of one sided unbalanced message is as “important” (sarcasm) as the voices of German Propaganda to the general allied population on the Radio (there was no internet then) by the Nazi propaganda machine, who used stooges, during World War 2.

        And if you doubt it then just check in with much of the Arab Street anywhere in the Arab world. They will truly tell you what they want to do to Israel and to Jews in general. Heck. Just talk to Hamas.

        They have been saying the same kind of message for nearly 100 years. Who are you and who is + 972 to tell them that … awwwww shucks …. They don’t really mean it?

        Reply to Comment
        • AYLA

          Arieh, I never understand when people come on to this site an accuse them of being bias or one-sided. I can’t speak for them, but they don’t purport to be an unbias news outlet. In fact, from what I can tell, they were born in part out of response to all of the (also) conservatively bias, one-sided news in this country that actually calls itself news (vs. editorial, which most pieces here are). They also talk a lot about how the Left is a small minority here; no one disagrees. And yet, what they report on here is true. Their analysis is subjective, but they provide true stories you don’t find in most Israeli news outlets. Can you really say: that house in Sheik Jarrah is not being demolished!? Can you really say: whatever law backs the plan applies equally to all citizen? Etc.

          Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            Ayla
            I repeat. They report stories without context. Their stories are unbalanced and one sided. I stand by everything that I said in my previous comment.

            It is possible to criticise. No I say, criticism is necessary. Constructive criticism that is. That is how things improve. But one sided unbalanced reporting to foreigners (not in Hebrew but in English) is not criticism. It aims to disrupt support for Israel externally while it is still surrounded by hostile enemies bent on its destruction. Any other people would take a much dimmer view of such activities during times of war. It is a testament to Israel’s democracy that it permits this to go on.

            Reply to Comment
          • This is about what McCarthyites said in the US. It is what Jim Crow whites said in the South (and elsewhere). It’s what the Communist Party of the USSR said about its dissidents. As to this site being in English; there is a huge propoganda/news campaign supported by the Israeli State, directed to English speakers. As to silencing in times of war, you are not in ongoing, actual war in any way which could be damaged by this site. You simply want them to be silenced because they break your code of acceptable thought. But their thought is always being broken by others; yet they still speak out. Find someone more powerful to kick–and see what happens.

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            > And yet, what they report on here is true.

            No.
            I’d say about 30%-40% of all stories reported here are false or inaccurate which I can prove by facts without leaving my chair.

            However I’ve noticed that posts which contain information which contradicts the article tend to disappear rather quickly.

            Total rate of inaccurate reports might be even higher – certainly I’m not aware of true circumstances of all events.

            Reply to Comment
        • sh

          “The voice is from a very tiny portion of the population. Itsy, bitsy very tiny. The rest are as hostile to that tiny minority as I am.”

          That’s exactly what the majority of Jewish Israelis used to say about the settlers and then about the Kahanists. And look where we are today, Arieh. Just look.

          Reply to Comment
          • AYLA

            what a strange, effective way to arouse optimism in us, sh. thanks!

            Reply to Comment
        • Piotr Berman

          Sure, people here are biased, meaning, their have their opinions, and they select the facts for reporting according to those opinions. For example, not a pip about a fascinating story of a high school teacher who also had a part-time job as masked hostess in a sado-masochistic sex club in Ashkelon http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4315789,00.html

          But there is no need to duplicate ynetnews where reporting is more general in scope (and thus I know where Ashkelon is and what some teachers do there, which may explain inspiration for some anime cartoons). And there is no need to inform us that Arutz Sheva has more readers than 972mag.

          Reply to Comment
    5. RudyM

      This American gentile increasingly thinks less of American Jews as a collective, thanks to their support for Israel.

      We will the pull the plug of Israel eventually. It will take some education of the American public. If knowing the truth about Zionist terror and ethnic cleansing doesn’t make a difference, perhaps a little Grant Smith (etc.) will.

      Reply to Comment
      • Kiwi

        “This American gentile …”

        As many as there are of you. There are plenty more who love Israel in the same way as this Kiwi does.

        Reply to Comment
    6. I tend to think Sasley is right that Burston was too optimistic on this, and that U.S. Jews are not about to pose a problem for Bibi’s Israel. More U.S. Jews will grow alienated and silent from Israel – but they won’t take sides against it, while the U.S. Jewish right will be louder in favor of it, which is a net gain for Bibi’s Israel. America is a major obstacle to peace – both because of the Israel lobby and the general antipathy toward Muslims.

      Reply to Comment
      • Shmuel

        “America is a major obstacle to peace”

        Oh I don’t know. I thought the Palestinians are not doing a bad job of being an obstacle.

        They rejected two major peace deals in the last 10 years. Clinton was very critical of them for it in 2001. They don’t want to negotiate without pre-conditions, no recognition of the Jewish nation state, demanding the right of return. One could go on and on …

        “… because of the Israel lobby”

        You mean you want ONLY the Saudi oil lobby to be active and make it’s case? But Jews should just shut up?

        Ok Larry, we understand where you are coming from.

        Reply to Comment
        • aristeides

          “The Jews” can keep yapping, Shmuel. And the Americans can start ignoring them. And that includes the majority of Jewish Americans who never elected those self-selected yappers to speak in their name.

          Reply to Comment
          • Shmuel

            And no doubt people like you will go on yapping for all the good that it will do you.

            Ever see a dog howling at the moon?

            Reply to Comment
      • Carl

        I’d agree that an upsurge of active opposition to the Israeli right is unlikely to happen any time soon amongst the American diaspora (Haaretz pay-wall prevents me from hearing Burston’s side of the argument), but it only really needs a disengagement by that diaspora rather than active opposition.

        If domestic Israeli concerns cease to be a major concern of US Jews, then the leverage of AIPAC et al in US elections will decline massively. That would allow the US government to stop actively supporting the Israeli government to such an extreme level, freeing them up to pursue other interests in the mid and far east.

        Reply to Comment
        • aristeides

          Carl, look again. iirc Burston’s article is on the free side of the wall.

          Reply to Comment
          • Carl

            Sadly not it seems.

            Reply to Comment
    7. Mikesailor

      I disagree somewhat with Sasley in that I think he misreads the American public, although being surrounded in Texas by ‘Christian Zionists’ would likely temper his observation of any change within the views of the American public. The Orthodox Jews really don’t matter to the political establishment. Why? Because they don’t have the money; they don’t donate to political causes; and they will remain on the sidelines, one borough or two notwithstanding. The last AIPAC promoted campaign to punish the Palestinians for their temerity in seeking UN status by removing the Palestinian offices from Washington did not receive a majority of the Democratic party’s vote in Congress. And with the Israeli government tieing themselves more and more closely with the Republican party, their popularity with Democratic leaning Jews will diminish. Also, the idea that Al-Jazeera might soon be on US cable channels where the filter of pro-Israel bias in the Mass media will not exist portends a change within the American body politic, and likewise the viewpoints of the Jewish population within the US.

      Like family members, watching an addicted, self-destructive family member destroy themselves and threaten to bring down everyone around them, American Jews, feeling that their non-interventionist strategy of moderating Israeli behavior from the outside, will protect themselves by cutting the miscreant loose. With the Israeli public moving more and more towarde outright fascism, the American Jew who would never move to Israel, will end the emotional and political support which has enabled Israel to become the disaster that it is.

      Reply to Comment
    8. AYLA

      my unscientific observations show that as @Larry Derfner points out, many American Jews will grow, and have grown, “silent and alienated” but they aren’t the ones who care enough about Israel to oppose Israel’s or the U.S.’s Right. There also certainly does seem to be a growing line-in-the-sand among american Israel supporters, who are much more out of reality than the average Israeli Bibi supporter (you won’t hear Israelis say there is no occupation, for example). What’s interesting to me is that the more people like Bradley Burston (whose work I love, and with whom I generally agree) say that american jews may secede, the more strongly the conservatives draw that line (it’s part of their argument that in ten years, most american jews won’t care about israel, which is why they must. Burston is probably making the argument to motivate Israel to keep those potential succeeders on board, but I think it backfires. And likewise, the more conservative israel becomes, the more some actually do secede, which I don’t’ think helps change things as much as those who make noise. (it’s like a non-vote). This is why, even though I’m far right of JStreet (whose voice seems completely irrelevant from where I’m sitting), I’m very grateful to them for existing. They provide a place for people americans who want to be, or appear, so-called ‘anti-israel’–many who don’t really have the confidence to believe that they know enough about the complicated situation to have a strong opposing voice–who want to maintain a stake in this place.

      Reply to Comment
      • AYLA

        correction: I’m far Left (not Right!) of Jstreet! This is why… I should proofread! gulp.

        Reply to Comment
        • AYLA

          i’m sorry, 972–really will proof next time. correction #2: “(JStreet) provide(s) a place for people americans who *DON’T* want to be, or appear, so-called ‘anti-israel’…

          Reply to Comment
          • Carl

            Too late Ayla, I’ve just bought you a lifetime subscription to the Emergency Committee for Israel. That’ll teach you to proof-read in future.

            Reply to Comment
          • AYLA

            :)

            Reply to Comment
    9. Richard Witty

      There is a shift in American Jewish opinion, a critical and obvious one.

      I am definitively a liberal Zionist. I believe in the formula of “live and let live”, both.

      As a liberal, I get in a lot of arguments with right-wing supporters who regard their duty as to support Israel trustingly, deferring personal judgment. And, I get into a lot of arguments with anti-Zionist left wing who fantasize about single-state and punishing Israel’s “colonial” existence.

      Ironically, in the small town newspaper where I live, there appeared three op-ed articles by anti-Zionist authors, describing Israel in common left-wing terminology, “colonial”, “imperial”, “racist”, etc.

      I drafted a response op-ed that described my support for the two-state approach, for sympathy for Israel’s refugee origination (rather than intentional “colonial”), and for the necessity to defend against military aggression (Gazan rockets).

      I decided not to submit the article, stating “so long as Israel does not take up the Arab League proposal and negotiate in earnest for peace, that I won’t personally defend the Israeli state publicly.”

      I distributed the intended article and personal reticence response to many Jews and others in my community that were offended by some of the careless and innaccurate descriptions by the leftist writers (most personal friends from other efforts).

      Of fifteen emails I sent, I got 8 responses, only one objected to my perspective. Most responded something like “I hear you”.

      That is a change from the past. It is entirely due to to the current Israeli administration going too far, in abandoning the “let live” from our fundamental credo of “LIVE and let live”.

      Jewish OR democratic, rather than Jewish majority (in Israel) AND democratic.

      Reply to Comment
    10. Arieh

      Richard

      I too believe in the concept of live and let live.

      Unfortunately where you and I probably disagree is whether the Palestinians as a people believe in it too. I think they don’t and never accepted the idea of a Jewish nation state. You probably don’t agree.

      But most Israelis feel the same way about it as I do. We learnt this through bitter experience.

      Will they change in the future? We certainly hope so. But we don’t know when. And in the meanwhile, we need to look out for ourselves. We cannot afford to undertake crazy experiments with an enemy that has a track record of taking advantage of every concession that we make and gives us nothing in return but more grief.

      Reply to Comment
      • Richard Witty

        Nevertheless, the reality in the states is that the Netanyahu coalition (moving further and further fanatically to the right) has gone too far.

        MANY of us have chose to abstain.

        Reply to Comment
        • Kolumn9

          That is ok, since none of you get to vote.

          Reply to Comment
    11. Ben

      OF COURSE this website has a bias. I can’t think of a single ME-related site that has a Solomonic approach to Israelis and Palestinians (and other Israeli-Arab issues). The reason 972 bores me is not that it takes a far-Left approach on these matters. The reason 972 bores me is that it presents tired, fact-sparse, non-reflective arguments that show for the umpteenth time that the Israeli Left has never acknowledged and dealt with the reasons that they are despised by most of the Israeli populace, and that those reasons are why candidates connected to them have gotten their asses kicked in elections for several years and counting.
      In the end, I suppose that 972 is like Haaretz: a staff of intelligent partisans who have small and rabid fan bases but are simply not engaging with reality to make arguments that will work outside of their Comments sections.

      Reply to Comment
    12. Both Israelis and Palestinians seem to be ignoring climate change and its threat to the human race as a whole–but climate change will also ignore them.
      Will they still be arguing over who owns it when it has become s desert, unfit to support human life? They both claim to love their land.

      Reply to Comment
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