Monday, December 02, 2013

Beinart Brought Low But Mor Could Have Done More

If you read this powerful, amazing and cogent takedown of Peter Beinart by Shany Mor, a writer living in Paris and a former director for foreign policy on the Israeli National Security Council who for the last year has been working with as a senior research associate with Bicom, you will discover something else.

That the very same criticism he voices contra Beinart are employed against another target: Israel's continued project since its creation as a people to live in, develop and build up its historical national homeland, the Land of Israel.

He includes these phrases

Israel’s hopeless misadventure in the territories

I generally find myself agreeing both with his [previous youthful hawkish] defense 
of Israel’s existence and his critique of the Israeli settlement project in the West Bank.

Yes, we have sword thrusts like this to destroy Beinart:

Beinart seems genuine about his belief that a boycott of Israeli organizations is a recent phenomenon of the past few years, fueled by “interactions” with Israel in the territories. He says the same thing about “anti-normalization” campaigns. But this is to miss both the depth of the hostility to Israel and its much older roots. The Arab Boycott began in 1945 (before the occupation, before the "nakba") and was explicitly directed at “Jewish” rather than “Israeli” interests, as there was yet no State of Israel. “Anti-normalization” has been the rallying cry ever since the first peace overtures were made in the 1970s. The resistance to having any contact or cultural exchange with Israel or Israelis is why so many Palestinians (all the Palestinians Beinart has ever met, according to his own writing) can credibly believe that Zionism is a colonialist movement. An actual dialogue might be able to puncture this with the questions that the total lack of self-criticism mutes: If they were colonists, who was the mother country that sent them? And didn’t their elites flee back there when war started the same way Palestinian elites did in 1947?

but Mor's piece lacks all the rigorous research and argumentation and comparison examples he flogs Beinart for not providing.

I found that odd.

And disingenuous.

And not playing fair.


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