Hold the champagne

M.J. Rosenberg, Israel Policy Forum, December 7:

Good news. Some of the more conservative American Jewish institutions are coming around to acceptance of the two-state solution, ending the occupation, and sharing Jerusalem.

It’s about time. The overwhelming majority of Israelis and Jewish Americans favor those positions and eventually the more status quo-oriented organizations had to catch up—especially now that the Israeli government asserts that it finally has a genuine Palestinian partner.

Today’s New York Jewish Week provides tangible evidence of a seismic shift. The Jewish Week is the largest circulation Jewish paper in the United States. It is the official voice of the New York Jewish community.

Its publisher, Gary Rosenblatt, is an important figure in New York. A respected journalist, and a right-of-center Orthodox Jew, he is a key member of the New York Jewish establishment.

Accordingly, I can’t overstate the significance of an editorial he published in this week’s paper in which he tells Jews to essentially “get real” about Israel, its borders, the future of Jerusalem, the occupation, and the Palestinians.

Rosenblatt writes:

“Now is a good time for diaspora Jews to start thinking about the differences between the ideal Israel and the real Israel. The ideal Israel may indeed have the holy city of Jerusalem as its eternal and undivided capital. But if there is to be a peace agreement—at the end of next year or at the end of this century—it may well call for formalizing the kind of division within Jerusalem that we have seen for decades, with much of East Jerusalem under the sovereignty of a Palestinian government. . . .”

“And we diaspora Jews who have listened so long to Israeli leaders tell us about the state’s absolute red lines must realize that the rhetoric and realities are changing. Otherwise we will be of little help in supporting our brothers and sisters in Israel, the majority of whom have come to believe that an end to wars and bloodshed is worth real sacrifice. They will have to decide if the risks are worthwhile because they already live in the real Israel.”… 

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