Really striking, and beautifully written, with lots to think about. But I wonder about how far the vengeance explanation goes. On the one hand, yes, and for instance, Abba Kovner: Lithuanian poet, partisan, member of the postwar group Nakam, which planned to poison German prisoners and, if possible, six million German civilians. In Israel, as a Givati morale officer, he was famous and notorious for his fascist "Battle Sheets," which gloried in the reality and the prospect of dead Egyptian soldiers.
But on the other hand, Tom Segev's The Seventh Million, which shows the grave indifference of the Yishuv to European Jews before and during the war, and to the "human dust" that survived--this was a phrase applied not just to Palestinian refugees and Mizrahi emigrants, but to Ashkenazi Holocaust survivors. The motive of this group--David Ben Gurion et al--was not so much vengeance as a calculating colonial nationalism and capitalism.
Still, it's true that the most horrifying imaginable response to a Jewish child shot down in a Warsaw street in 1942 is a Palestinian child shot down at the Gaza fence in 2018.
I wrote Professor Loeffler this. No response yet.
Dear Professor Loeffler:
UN Resolution 3379 wasn't exactly a "horrible meme that went viral: 'Zionism is Racism.'” Rather, it was a formal resolution that declared "that Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination." A little reductive, yes, in larger historical perspective, but the binational Zionism of Ahad Ha'am was not exactly thriving in 1975. Do you think this claim was true, or false? It appears to me that Zionism did and does discriminate on ethno-sectarian grounds.
So many of the "memes" regarding the ethnic cleansing of Palestine turn out to be a little tendentious, I find. For instance, Nasser's declaration that he would drive Israel into the sea, which he never said. But it's a useful little meme, which provides cover for the fact that Zionists (racist or non-racist, I don't know) literally drove Palestinians into the sea in Haifa and Jaffa.
No doubt your human rights activists did believe in two states for two peoples, and it is interesting to read about them and their evident belief that human rights are compatible with one group of nations carving up a colony for the benefit of a favored minority. But perhaps those peoples should themselves have been allowed to have a say in the decision of one state or two? This is a rather important human right, and is enshrined in Article I, Section 2 of the United Nations Charter.
"Across that nonborder, however, the Israeli occupation presents an ongoing challenge to Jewish democracy." Isn't the prior challenge to life, well-being, and human rights of the occupied Palestinians? I'm reminded of antebellum arguments that slavery was just so damaging to the democracy and morality of the white South.
Professor of English
It's a little early to be writing Bernie off. After all, every victory that Trump gains underlines the fact that Bernie can win against him, Hillary can't. Remember to tell all your moderate Democratic friends that, of course, we all want a DLC Wall-Street kissing interventionist thug who cackles at the sight of Qaddhafi being raped to death--but to hold off Trump, they will have to hold their noses and vote for the Democratic Socialist! (i.e., the actual New Deal liberal, as Chomsky said, but that's not nothing). All of this "Hillary is Inevitable" rhetoric sounds like Paul Krugman. And yes, Bernie is cowardly and a trimmer in all kinds of ways, but he probably has a better chance than anyone of being able to cut off the Jewish and Democratic State.