Here’s Gary Ackerman, congressman from Long Island, in the Jerusalem Post, professing his Zionism. A lot of excerpts because this is so crazy. The Jews are a “separate” people, Jewish legislators from around the world must represent Israel, Palestinian statehood initiative is devastating…
While many differences exist among Jewish parliamentarians, the concept of ahavat Yisrael – literally, “love of Israel” – is common to us all. It is for this reason that 55 Jewish parliamentarians from 22 countries have assembled in Jerusalem under the auspices of the World Jewish Congress….
I don’t believe that increasing attacks on Israel’s right to exist and efforts to label its acts of self-defense “war-crimes” or even “crimes against humanity” are actually rooted in a belief in international law, or a principled evaluation of Israeli military operations.
What I believe is really driving most of these claims is a deep-seated and stubborn refusal to see Jews as a people. This conceptual failure – whether rooted in anti-Semitism (which it is) or ignorance (which it is) – leads to a refusal to accept Israel as a Jewish state, or to accept that it, like every state, has a fundamental right to self-defense.
Only Israel, the one and only Jewish state, is subjected to the humiliation of having its right to exist routinely questioned, and the right of its people to be free from violence openly rejected. Only Israel is the permanent whipping boy of the United Nations.
So we are faced with a paradox: While the anti-Semitism and discrimination Jews have historically faced (and in some places rightfully continue to fear) are based on the view of Jews as a people apart, the ongoing assault on Israel’s legitimacy is built upon the idea that the Jews are not a separate people at all, and are thus not entitled to self-determination…
THE PALESTINIAN plan to take their case for statehood to the UN General Assembly poses great danger for Israel. If this initiative were to succeed– or worse, to slip out of control, – the results could be devastating. Israel could be exposed to sanctions and pressures beyond the wildest hopes of its worst enemies.
But in addition to these external challenges, we face a more intimate one that we share with the entire Jewish people. How do those of us who are representatives from all over the world and every part of the political spectrum come together to protect and advance our common interests?