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Judt: ‘de-legitimization issue is a fraud’

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The Forward has a pretty darn good piece on the delegitimization issue by Natan Guttman that alas quotes only Jews. I thought Palestinians and other non-Jews were in on this one too! But at least Guttman quotes some of the critics, not just the inevitable Reut Institute:

“To be frank, the ‘de-legitimization’ issue is a fraud,” historian Tony Judt, director of New York University’s Remarque Institute, wrote in an e-mail to the Forward. Judt, a harsh critic of Israel, said: “I know no one in the professional world of political commentary, however angry about Israel’s behavior, who thinks that the country has no right to exist…. ‘De-legitimization’ is just another way to invoke antisemitism as a silencer, but sounds better because [it’s] less exploitative of emotional pain.”

…Nancy Kricorian of CODEPINK, a women’s anti-war group,… coordinates CODEPINK’s boycott campaign against Ahava cosmetic products because the products are manufactured on a Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank. But she rejected the thought that she was seeking to delegitimize the state.

“This is only a way of changing the subject,” said Kricorian. “All we want is [for] Israel to respect human rights and international law. I don’t see how that delegitimizes Israel….

As a country in “a difficult relationship” with its neighbors, Israel should be allowed a “certain margin of behavior,” Judt acknowledged in his email. But Israel’s relative strength compared to other regional nations gives it “even less excuse for criminality, law-breaking or violence than they do,” he said.

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