Monday, October 18, 2010

Getting Testy

Jeff Jacoby writes:
...Today, half the planet’s Jews live in that state, many of them refugees from anti-Semitic repression and violence elsewhere. In a world with more than 20 Arab states and 55 Muslim countries, the existence of a single small Jewish state should be unobjectionable. “Israel is a sovereign state, and the historic homeland of the Jewish people,’’ President Barack Obama told the UN General Assembly last month. By now that should be a truism, no more controversial than calling Italy the sovereign homeland of the Italian people.

And yet to Israel’s enemies, Jewish sovereignty is as intolerable today as it was in 1948, when five Arab armies invaded the newborn Jewish state, vowing “a war of extermination and a momentous massacre.’’ Endless rounds of talks and countless invocations of the “peace process’’ have not changed the underlying reality of the Arab-Israeli conflict, which is not about settlements or borders or Jerusalem or the rights of Palestinians.

The root of the hostility is the refusal to recognize the immutable right of the Jewish people to a sovereign state in its historic homeland. Until that changes, no lasting peace is possible.

That is why the Israeli government is correct to insist that the Palestinian Authority publicly recognize Israel as the Jewish state. It is the critical litmus test...
I say why bother giving people a test you know they're going to fail? Israel's Jewishness is obvious. It is something that is so whether or not Israel's Islamic supremacist enemies are willing to recognize it--which, trust me, they never will. Our legitimacy doesn't come from Arabs/Muslims giving us their "hechsher": We don't need them to validate us. Our legitimacy comes from the Torah, the Jewish scripture that long predates the arrival on the scene of Islam's founder, even though as Muslims understand it their holy book came (comes) first.

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