I’ve been a philo-Semite since I was a teenager (you can read about in it my memoir, Unchosen) but I didn’t go to Israel until I was in my 40s. To say it lived up to my expectations is an understatement — the people, culture and climate have basically ruined me for every other country. Especially the people — no country ever boasted such a rainbow of beauty. Not for nothing did my gay mate Chas refer to his first trip there — just short of a week — as The Six-Day Phwoar.
But of course Israel’s achievement goes far beyond the physical and the fiscal — in proportion to its population, it has the largest number of startup companies in the world. It is a beacon of enlightened light in a frankly wretched region which has a real problem with such outrageous concepts as equal rights for women and homosexuals. I believe that Islamofascism is the biggest threat to progress and pleasure since the Nazis stalked the earth and Israel fights it on the frontline for all of us. And regrettably, as antisemitism — “fresh’n’funky antisemitism” as I once called the new Left-wing, right-on brand — rises in Europe, Israel will be needed more than ever by the diaspora.
In fact, there’s only one thing wrong with Israel — it’s not big enough. Never mind — next year in Samaria.