Only way to stop delegitimation is to ‘sustain personal relationships with the elite’ (like Friedman and Arianna)

Israel/Palestine

Israeli Gidi Grinstein says below that it’s essential for Israel to cultivate elites; and god knows he does. He is one of Arianna Huffington’s friends, a dinner partner on her recent trip to Israel. Tom Friedman is also a fan. Grinstein is the President and founder of the Reut Institute, which provides strategic support to the Government of Israel. "In April 2007, Reut was described as Israel’s Premier Strategy Group by Thomas Friedman."

Now read Grinstein in Haaretz, on Israel’s delegitimation. Notions embedded in this article are so skewed from reality, it is amazing. The delegitimation has nothing to do with Gaza. It’s all about antisemitism. Critics of Israel are in cahoots with Iran and should be living in Berkeley.

Turning Israel into a pariah state is central to its adversaries’ efforts. Israel is a geopolitical island. Its survival and prosperity depend on its relations with the world in trade, science, arts and culture – all of which rely on its legitimacy. When the latter is compromised, the former may be severed, with harsh political, social and economic consequences.

The transformative change taking place stems from an unholy alliance with some European elites. The radical, brutal, sometimes-fascist Islamic states and organizations that reject Israel share aims with Europeans that deny the right of Jews to self-determination..

the delegitimization effort would continue even if Israel were to sign a comprehensive peace treaty with the PLO: Indeed, the forces that drive this effort are not Palestinian moderates, but rather people who oppose Israel’s very existence. An agreement would only fuel their campaign to converge around the next outstanding issue that comes up between Israel and the Arab world.

Israel’s delegitimacy is propagated in a few global metropolises – such as London, Madrid and the Bay Area – that are hubs of international NGOs, media outlets, academia and multinational corporations. Therefore, an extraordinary effort is required to respond to and isolate Israel’s delegitimizers. We must play offense and not just defense.

The most effective barrier to fundamental delegitimization is personal relationships. In every major country, Israel and its supporters must develop and sustain personal connections with the entire elite in business, politics, arts and culture, science and academia.

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