Home  Principles & Statements  Positions of the ACJ  Articles  DonationsAbout Us  Contact Us  Links                                         

Thomas Friedman Says, "The Israel We Knew Is Gone."

Allan C. Brownfeld, Editor
Special Interest Report
December 2022

Writing in The New York Times (Nov. 5, 2022), Thomas Friedman headlined his  
column, “The Israel We Knew Is Gone.”  
Discussing the results of the Nov. 1 Israeli election, Friedman notes that, “…a  
fundamental question will roil synagogues in America and across the globe: ‘Do  
I support this Israel or not support it?’…It will stress those U.S. diplomats  
who reflexively defended Israel as a Jewish democracy that shares America’s  
values…and it will send friends of Israel in Congress fleeing from any reporter  
asking if America should be sending billions of dollars in aid to such a  
religious -extremist-inspired government.”  
Friedman cites the thinking of Moshe Habertal, a Hebrew University Jewish  
philosopher, who said that Israeli hawkishness toward Palestinians “is now  
morphing into something new—-a kind of general ultra-nationalism” that not only  
rejects any notion of a Palestinian state but also views every Israeli Arab, who  
make up about 21 per cent of Israel’s population, as a potential terrorist.  
In Habertal’s view, not only is the election about the future of Israel but  
“about the future of Judaism in Israel. The Torah stands for the equality of  
all people and the notion that we are all created in God’s image. Israelis of  
all people need to respect minority rights because we, as Jews, know what it is  
to be a minority—-with and without rights. This is a deep Jewish ethos, and it  
is now being challenged from within Israel itself.” **

< return to article list
© 2010 The American Council For Judaism.