Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Letter to the Editor in UK paper: never in the US press

"While Jonathan Freedland's evident horror at Israel's shift to the right is welcome (Comment, 5 January), his explanations fail to account for the country's steady drift to the right since its inception and the ineluctable logic of imposing a Jewish state in someone else's country. The internal contradictions of a state in which the rights of Jewish and Palestinian citizens were supposedly "separate but equal" could only be resolved by the transformation of the state into one of genuine equality, ie a secular democracy, or by the rising hegemony of those who celebrated separateness and inequality.
That religious extremism and rightwing anti-egalitarians have become dominant in Israel is inextricably linked to the theocratic underpinning of the state. Like most other European Jews, I lost family in the Holocaust and I have experienced racism in the country of my birth, but my survival as an English Jew does not depend on the existence of the state of Israel and my right to "return" to a country to which I have never been. It depends on my being treated as a human being with the same rights and needs as everyone else. The same rights that everyone born in Israel or Palestine or anywhere else in the world should have.
Keith Lichman