Friday, September 22, 2006

Dave for Justice for Dave

Aaro in the Jewish Chronicle (with a massive, albeit credited, lift from Normblog), saying reasonably true things in an irritating manner. If you were to boil this article down to bullet points then it would say that communalism is a bad thing and that we should all live according to general principles of human rights which are not specific to any one national or ethnic group. But if you read it, there's a hell of a lot of bashing of "Jews for Justice for Palestinians" for implicitly claiming that their religion gives them a privileged point of view on the Middle East, and much less and milder criticism for the rather stronger political tendency to claim everyone Jewish as a supporter of a particularly strange, violent and right wing politics which is not actually particularly good for the State of Israel, would probably lose an election if it stood for office there, but none the less has the trademark on the designation "pro-Israel".

The thing is, as Dave knows, whether or not you care about the dialectic, the dialectic cares about you. In an ideal world, JfJfP would have no need to stand up and do the whole "not in my name" bit, but in the world we have, there is a medium-sized media industry dedicated to manufacturing the general belief that the default position for Jewish people (and people with Jewish names, for that matter) is support for the fringiest bit of the Likud Party.

It is not as if Dave hasn't had this one rubbed in his face a few times, as the famous Barbecue Sooliloquy and its followup[1]. It so happens that Dave did in fact take the very looniest and nastiest position possible with respect to Lebanon, and although I think his motives for doing so were Decentist rather than ethnic, he did see fit to mention that the person he was discussing the matter with at the Hampstead barbecue was Jewish. Dave at that time recommended Peace Now to his pal, which is an odd thing to do since that's a specifically Israeli pacifist group.

I suppose the dialectic can be resolved by assuming that the JC subeditors "corrected" something which they thought was an error but was actually a crucial part of the argument:

In the more virtuous part of the spectrum, the justification for all this is that there are unique Jewish values that Israel often offends. You know, nice ones, decent ones, about justice and, er, treating people properly.

Capital "D" on "Decent", please.

[1]I note in passing that one of Dave's very biggest worries at that barbecue, noted at the foot of the piece, was a remote likelihood that Hezbollah might get the means to attack Israel with cluster bombs. Irony, you cruel jade.


Post a Comment

<< Home