Israel (2)

I wasn’t sure that I was going to do another post about the politics of Israel, of which I have an increasingly much less confident understanding.   But I had a brief moment of illumination listening to an exposition of its history by Amos Schocken, the proprietor of the liberal Ha’aretz newspaper.   His grandfather, Salmon Schocken, was the owner of a chain of department stores, patron of Erich Mendelsohn, and moved to Palestine as was in 1934.   Schocken emphasised two things, both of which are obvious, but neither of which had I heard before.   The first was the interlinking of the foundation of the state of Israel to the experience of the holocaust (and the underlying fear of another holocaust to come).   The second was the problem of the settlements and the fact that the ideology of the settlers has been supported by subsequent governments and made a political and diplomatic solution to the occupied territories impossible.   Maybe I have oversimplified, but it was a speech made with gravitas.



3 thoughts on “Israel (2)

  1. Kate Woodhead says:

    Thank you Charles for your post. I remember reading years ago that Arabian and Jewish people had lived together amicably in the past but the people of Palestine were kept poor and disadvantaged, as a continuous sore and a political tool, to prevent peace in the region by their more prosperous neighbours.

    I have no Jewish background at all but I remember being so distraught by the plight of the people in Israel that I was prepared to go as a nurse during the six day war, even though I had young children, but it was over before I could do anything about it.

    • They certainly did live pretty amicably side by side up to 1948, and still do to an extent, given that 20% of the population are Arab Israelis, more amicably than probably appears in the international press. Charles

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