Tuesday, March 22, 2011

On Liberals and Israel

I was asked by my son yesterday why liberals tend not to like Israel very much. This was a very difficult question for me, as I don't really understand the liberal animosity towards Israel and I don't want to unfairly represent the liberal position. After a bit I suggested he ask a friend of his who proudly claims to be a communist.

The young communist answer was that Israel was a militaristic country and that liberals don't like war, though he acknowledged that Israel was living among hostile neighbors.

I thought this was an interesting answer. Granted, it was provided by a ninth grade communist, but I don't think he was off the mark in portraying a liberal take on the issue. The problem with this view, if accurate, is that it unfairly focusses on the militarism of Israel, without which it would certainly be wiped off the map.

If Israel were to adopt the liberal position, that is, disarm and hope for peace, it would certainly be wiped off the map. This is eerily similar to the dreams and aspirations of so many of Israel's hostile neighbors.

Now I don't think for a minute that liberals want Israel wiped off the map. Rather, I think they refuse to see the world as it is. It is a dangerous place, especially for Israel. The preferred method of resolving grievances - negotiation, diplomacy etc...- simply can't work if one party to the dispute wants the other party to be dead.

Liberal fantasies don't help much in this situation.


Anonymous said...

"The preferred method of resolving grievances - negotiation, diplomacy etc...- simply can't work if one party to the dispute wants the other party to be dead."

That statement is eerily applicable to what is going on right now in Madison, as well as across the state. Why bother to respect the result of elections, the rule of law, and legislative rules put into place to foster civility - if you don't like the results and prefer the not-so-subtle efficiency of mob rule? Fleeing senators? Legal challenges at every step? Yeah, they want us dead! At least impotent with our voices drown out. It's sad, but those are the brass knuckles of the compassionate liberals you are seeing.

Sean Cranley said...

Wow, a simplistic analysis of the thoughts of millions of people, including Jews, based on the the thoughts and experience of a 9th grader who has decided he's communist, with pathetic results followed by ridiculus analogies from Ano. Well SHAZAM!

Denis Navratil said...

Sean, this is a blog. I am not pretending as though a young communist has provided the definitive perspective on liberal thought. However, I have observed over the years that liberals tend to have a negative view of Israel, certainly when compared to views held by conservatives. Am I wrong on this Sean? Why not offer your own brief take on Israel and we can take it from there?

Nemo said...

Does anyone else see the irony in the liberals general feelings toward Israel and their use of all that is Hitler on their protest signs? Denis, you are living dangerously over at kay's (much to my amusement though).

Sean Cranley said...

I would argue that liberal's generally view Israel with more objective balance, both positive and negative and that it is conservatives who unflaggingly support Israel as though they wear the white hats and the Palestinians the black hats.

Simplistic dualistic black and white thinking, good/bad, friend/foe, it's what cons do.

The notion that we think Israel should unilaterally disarm is just plain simplistic and silly.

Denis Navratil said...

Sean, why not offer your objective, balanced, and nuanced view of Israel and allow us to marvel at your brilliance? I didn't ask for your caricature of the conservative position.