|I just finished reading Right to Exist: A Moral Defense of Israel's Wars by Ya'acov Lozowick|
With that background, the book is a passionate, eloquent and deeply moral defense of Israel's right to exist and its right to defend its existence using appropriate force. The books takes the reader through Israel's history, specifically the history of Arab insistence to nullify the existence of any Jewish homeland.
Much of the book is concerned with the fallacy of Oslo and its inevitable collapse, the ensuing Palestinian violence and the complicity of those in the west who encourage the terrorists. The essence of the conclusion that summarizes the underlying and recurring themes:
Oslo demonstrated what we should never have forgotten: that the will to murder Jews was never the result of oppression and cannot be resolved by removing it. The fact that a sincere offer of peace sent the Palestinians into a paroxysm of violence can be explained only by their fear of its finality, the obligation to relinquish their fantasies in favor of reality, and the inevitablity of becoming responsible for their own destiny within the limits of the possible rather than in their irresponsible dreams.and
The collapse of Oslo focused our minds on fundamental facts: this is not a war for settlements or an attempt to deprive Palestinians of their own state; it is a war for the right of Jews to self-determination, in a world that is quite willing to live without them.Especially helpful for those of us who follow the media closely is the chapter titled "Immoral Decisions: The Bad Faith of Israel's Detractors", which gives the "eight rules by which journalists operate, six of which often give false results". e.g,
Third rule: Foreign languages are unimportant and a dedicated journalist can find out what is going on without them. This aspect of the journalistic mind reflects a combination of arrogance and laziness. Only rarely does a foreign journalist posted to the Middle East know either Arabic or Hebrew and certainly not both.and
Sixth rule: Good journalists know better than natives, whose antics they observe with cool detachment. The natives, being totally submerged in their subjective perspectives, cannot pull themselves out of their dramas by their own shoelaces, but we the reporters, and you our readers, know better. This superior knowledge allows us to preach to the natives, even though they will not listen.As we say in the blogosphere, read the whole thing. Or buy it as a holiday gift for those who are interested in the Middle East, whether sympathetic to Israel or the Palestinians or questioning both sides. The style is engaging and the book is nuanced, realistic and persuasive; passionate without being polemical and moral without being preachy. Only the most dyed-in-the-wool opponents of Israel will come away from this book without a clearer sense of the situation and what is at stake. Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at December 02, 2003 12:10 PM