My New Think Again column is called, “And they Call it Democracy,” and it’s here.
The Israel Palestine issue has got to be the most annoying issue in the history of humankind. I take a lot of crap from right-wingers for my “What Liberal Media?” related arguments and I get a fair bit of abuse from Nader-style lefties who accuse me of being in the pocket of the Democratic Establishment, but nothing compares to the personal abuse and vitriol I receive from both sides whenever I write about the Middle East. Last week’s column appeared only to inspire pro-Palestinian jerks, though I get the “pro-Israel” types on my case just as often. Two examples
1) The first Pro-Palestinian Jerk, writing on the Nation Institute sponsored website Mondoweiss, explains, I kid you not, that there is no appreciable difference between my views and those of Martin Peretz. Don’t believe me? See here
2) The second is a pleasant fellow who wrote me saying his name is “Dean Chancery,” though if I were this stupid, I wouldn’t be giving my real name, and sent this:
There once was a progressive named Eric. Had a face that resembled a ferret. When he spoke of Zion, he was always lyin’. A feckless, pusillanimous hack…who in essence was an AIPAC and JINSA flack. A typical parvenu Jew who often cried "boo-hoo". At The Nation—he causes nothing but aggravation. Soon he will whine: "There’s a poem in my ‘zine", and when denied a raise…he’ll twaddle off in a craze, and maybe they’ll do the right thing and ship his four-eyed, meretricious punk ass back to Haifa.
What’s so funny (but also sad) about the idiocy on display above is the column was merely descriptive before it came to its prescription. Nowhere in it did I comment on the alleged justice or injustice of the situation. But there are plenty of people on both sides—and in the cases above, the Palestinian side—who really couldn’t care less about actually doing the Palestinians any good. What they want is the same feeling of moral superiority that Peretz, Foxman and the settlers evince when speaking about Arabs and Palestinians. It’s a sad truth of this conflict that the Palestinians have been as much the victims of their “friends” as their enemies. Israel, too, to some degree, but it’s a much nicer place to live. (As Edward Said used to like to say, “It’s like crossing a border from Bangladesh to Southern California.”