A Letter to Jon Voight about Gaza and the History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

The Zionist movement was not an innocent victim of Arab fanaticism and antipathy to Jews. It was an active participant and initiator of an intercommunal conflict which resulted in the expulsion of a million Palestinians in 1948 and then 1967, which has produced a brutal and illegal occupation that continues and even intensifies to this day. Do you think this is fair, Mr. Voight?

Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel

If we act from a loving and generous place, seeking to overcome behaviors that were previously perceived as disrespectful and humiliating, then the icebergs of anger and hate (some of which our behavior helped to create) can melt away and people’s hearts can once again turn toward love and justice for all.

From Anti-Zionism to Settler Post-Zionism: What do the Settler Movement and Neturei Karta Have in Common?

There are arguably no two movements in Israel as disparate as the Settler Movement (known as Yesha) and Neturei Karta. Yesha represents the community of Israelis who live in the West Bank. It does not support a two-state solution and remains wed to a Greater Israel ideology that claims all of historic Erez Israel belongs to the Jews. Members of Neturei Karta are what we might call premillenialists. They are against a Jewish State in the Land of Israel claiming that tradition dictates that the messiah will come solely by divine fiat and the job of the Jews is to perform mitzvot and passively await his arrival.

Has Judaism Been Stolen by Right-Wingers?

Temperatures have been increasing every decade since the 1970s, producing increasingly severe storms, floods, wildfires, areas of drought, and other signs of climate change. Yet, an alarming percentage of Jews, especially among the Orthodox, still believe that climate change is nothing more than “liberal politics.”

Poisoning Arafat

For me, there was no surprise. From the very first day, I was convinced that Yasser Arafat had been poisoned by Ariel Sharon. I even wrote about it several times.

Boycotting Equality Forum’s Israeli Sponsorship

Palestinian gays and lesbians have urged the gay community in the United States to become more aware of how we have become an unwitting partner in Israel’s efforts to improve its much-criticized human rights record—especially with respect to the Palestinians. Through a policy that some have called “pinkwashing,” Israel has self-consciously sought to rebrand itself as less religious, less militaristic and less hostile, and in so doing wants to deflect attention from the International Court of Justice and UN Human Rights Council’s findings that many of Israel’s policies with respect to the Palestinians violate international law.

Setting the Record Straight: The Arabs, Zionism, and the Holocaust

There is, on the face of it, no more need for a book on the Arabs and the Holocaust than for a book on the Africans or the Australians and the Holocaust. But Israel was created in the Arab world, and Israelis and Arabs have long been fighting a bitter war about both the nature of Israel and that of Arab opposition to Zionism.

A Zionism of Fear

Israel’s expansionism relies on the Zionism of Desire. Indeed, the building of settlements—and worse, the continued expansion and building of settlements in Palestinian territory in light of the current situation—is essentially unimaginable without it. A Zionism of Fear is a political philosophy that takes as its point of departure the credible threat of cruelty against individual Jews because of their Jewishness. It is the Zionism of Desire that fuels Hamas and Hezbollah—but is it also the reality of Hamas and Hezbollah that fuels a more palatable Zionism of Fear.

Why Safe-Haven Zionism Is Incompatible with Jewish Cosmopolitanism

The social-emotional-intellectual conundrum of reconciling universalist allegiances and Jewish safety leads to a sequence of challenges to safe-haven political Zionism that our intellectual and moral integrity require us to consider. Fear is an appropriate response to danger. But what lack of imagination would permit us as a progressive American Jewish polity to be driven solely by our fears, to limit ourselves to solutions that destroy the agency of non-Jews and the self-determination of a non-Jewish nation, in order to protect ourselves from possible danger?

The Arab Awakening and the Israeli-Palestinian Connection

The stunning failure of the international commentariat to foresee the seismic shifts that are engulfing the Arab world today is reason enough to be guarded about what they are telling us now about the causes and meaning of the uprisings. Until events proved otherwise, many self-appointed experts confidently—sometimes arrogantly—explained that the global movement toward democracy had been spurned by the Arab world simply because liberty and equality were “not part of the Arab makeup.” So it must have come as quite a shock to them that the Arab people turned out to be not so different from the rest of the human race! So while caution is strongly advised, there are certain tentative deductions that I believe we can risk making even now.