There's an interesting Bloggingheads debate between Peter Beinart and Eli Lake, in which they debate a few aspects of Israel-U.S. relations. I found two parts of it particularly compelling. First, they discuss the growing gulf between American Jews, especially young ones, and Israel. Beinart recently wrote an excellent article on the subject in the New York Review of Books, where he explains that young liberal Jewish Americans don't see Israel as a liberal country and so don't identify with it, while most of the young people in the States who still feel a strong connection with the Jewish State are illiberal Orthodox Jews. He says that part of the problem is that the major Jewish organizations support anything Israel does, and so young Jews don't see that they can be both liberal and Zionist at the same time. I think his analysis of the situation is spot on.
The other part I found interesting was the question of whether Israel is becoming more and more illiberal and undemocratic. Here, again, I think Beinart is right that there are alarming signs, but I also believe Israeli democracy is still strong.
Eli Lake keeps saying to Beinart that he (Beinart) just isn't capable of reading Israeli politics. First of all, it is kind of rude to dismiss these arguments by basically saying "you're an idiot". Secondly, I'm an Israeli, meaning I'm probably better at understanding Israeli politics than Lake himself, and I agree with most of what Beinart says. Lake seems like such a douchebag (I love that word).
On a related note, French philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy agrees with me about our democracy. He thinks our main problem is "small politicians".
The Obama Doctrine, R.I.P.
2 weeks ago