January 28, 2009

J Street as Likud

Jonathan Chait has a great, great piece in TNR about how J Street, the new dovish Jewish lobby, isn't so different from the right-wing Likudniks it claims to oppose:

J Street's own rhetoric, though, pulls off an analogous trick. It calls itself the "pro-peace, pro-Israel lobby." Well, who opposes peace? Everybody has their own iteration of peace, from Hamas (all Jews decide to leave the Middle East or submit to Islamic rule) to the Israeli settler movement (Palestinians decide to move to Jordan or submit to perpetual Israeli occupation) to more reasonable compromises in between. Among advocates of a two-state solution, the debate focuses on whether Palestinian or Israeli intransigence is the major impediment...

There is, to say the least, a delicate balancing act involved in declaring your love for a country while deeming it the moral equal of a terrorist death cult. At some point you begin to sound like the Saturday Night Live version of Joe Biden. ("I love John McCain, he's one of my dearest friends, but at the same time, he's also dangerously unbalanced.")

Posted by Stephen Silver at January 28, 2009 11:04 AM
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