The ambassador is right on all counts. Jews, who should know better, say to me that as Hamas will never agree to a two-state solution, the only possibility for peace is one state. When I explain that this would mean that Jews will no longer be in the majority, and so it would cease to be Israel, and that furthermore Jewish Israelis would leave their country en masse in fear for their lives, the response is, “Well, then there will never be a solution!” They look at me in disbelief when I explain to them that not finding a solution to this conflict is better than self-destruction.
However, I find it embarrassing that when the Israeli ambassador is outspoken about the prejudice against Israel in Britain, the leadership of British Jewry remains silent. It is not that they don’t agree with him – they do. Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks has written eloquently and passionately on the demonisation of Israel. As long ago as February 2002, while dismissing the claim that all criticism of Israel is anti-semitism, he created a fictional scenario that is worth quoting in full:
“Suppose someone were to claim that there is a form of prejudice called anti-Kiwism, an irrational hatred of New Zealanders,” the Chief Rabbi wrote. “What might convince us he was right? Criticism of the New Zealand government? No. A denial of New Zealand’s right to exist? Maybe. Seven thousand terrorist attacks on New Zealand’s citizens in the past year? Possibly. A series of claims at the UN Conference Against Racism in Durban that New Zealand, because of its treatment of the Maori, is uniquely guilty of apartheid, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity, accompanied by grotesque Nazi-style posters? Perhaps. A call to murder all those with New Zealand loyalties although they were born and live elsewhere? A suggestion that New Zealanders control the world’s economy? That they are responsible for Aids and poisoning water supplies? That they arranged the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center? That they are a satanic force of evil against whom a holy war must be fought?”
The Chief Rabbi tells us then to “delete ‘New Zealand’ and insert ‘Israel’ and ‘Jews’, and all these things have happened in the past year. “What more has to happen before an impartial observer concludes that anti-semitism is alive and well and dangerous?” A lot more has happened since. What Rabbi Sacks was describing then was attributed to Islamic extremism. But today it is the British chattering classes, the intellectuals of the Left in particular, who have bought into this vile propaganda, agreeing that Israel is comparable to apartheid South Africa and even Nazi Germany.
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