Ehud Barak has seceded from the once-mighty, but now long-beleaguered, Israeli Labor Party so that he can continue to serve under Netanyahu, and alongside Avigdor Lieberman and the followers of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.
This is yet another nail in the coffin of the Ashkenazi secular nationalist project that goes by the name of Zionism. No wonder that its remaining adherents in Israel are reduced to voting for Lieberman, while those elsewhere are so angry and touchy, knowing that the dream in which they have invested such emotional energy, if nothing else, is not so much ending as ended.
And it has not even come to a dramatic end. It has ended with little more than a damp squib, accompanied by such unseemly spectacles as that of Barak’s choice of Likud, Yisrael Beiteinu and Shas over Labor. Are there still any left-wing Zionists out there? If so, then why? You must know that that particular game is up. What has to happen before you will acknowledge this reality?
Muhammad is now the single most common name for newborn boys within Israel’s pre-1967 borders. About 14,000 Jews left Israel annually between 1990 and 2005. Half of Israelis aged between 14 and 18 express the desire to live elsewhere. A huge percentage of Israelis holds, or plans to inquire about obtaining, foreign nationality. The Berlin synagogue has 12,000 members, and there are now perhaps 55,000 Jews in Poland, many of whom are immigrants from Israel. Curzon was right when he bemoaned the Balfour Declaration on the grounds that the “advanced and intellectual” Jews would have no desire to live in the Middle East. They cannot wait to go home.
Desperately, Israel is instead flying in Russians who refuse to eat kosher food and who insist on taking their Israeli Defence Force oaths on the New Testament alone, Russian Nazis, East Africans who have invented a religion based on the Old Testament brought by Christian missionaries, Peruvian Indians, absolutely anyone at all. Such Jewish births as there still are, are largely and increasingly to ultra-Orthodox who so disdain the Zionist State that they will use physical force against its teenage conscripts of both sexes.
If Israel does not want to become a haven for Russian Nazis, then she needs to repeal the Law of Return, declaring that she is now a settled culture and society in her own right, and precluding any wildly impracticable demand for a corresponding right on the part of Palestinian refugees or their descendants. The people who will do anything for Israel except live there, and who throw their weight around in demanding policies that suit their prejudices expressed from comfortable berths thousands of miles away, can thus be told where to go, or not to bother trying to go.