Lerner has come some distance but like many other "progressive" Jews, he
wants to determine what a Palestinian state would look like. By
insisting that whatever Palestinian state that might emerge be
demilitarized while not calling for the halting (not suspending) of all
military aid to Israel and a significant disarming of what is the fourth
or fifth largest military in the world, Lerner is essentially calling
for the establishment of a Palestinian Bantustan. In truth, as long as
enough Israelis see their country as the big bully of the region, the
prospect of their initiating a global war is not unlikely.
Memory doesn't serve you that well. While the refusal of more than 2,000
reservists of Yesh G'vul to go or return to the front in the Lebanon war
did have an impact on the Israeli government policy in Lebanon, it was
the emergence of a skilled guerilla organization, Hizbollah, that was
ultimately responsible for forcing Israel to retreat. (This far, the
reserve officers of Seruv, their organization, have not had the effect
that Yesh G'vul had 20 years earlier. Since that time the country has
become both more religious and more right-wing, the two being closely connected.)
In the two and a half months I spent in Lebanon in October and November
of 1983, Hizbollah attacks had so intimidated the Israeli troops that
they no longer were willing to walk foot patrols, and to avoid ambushes
of their vehicles, they cleared huge areas on both sides of the road in
which the Hizbollah fighters might hide. They also did what one Israeli
soldier described as "reconnaissance by fire" in which they emptied
their M-16s into anything that moved or made a noise. It wasn't enough.
Despite their repeated use of collective punishment (for which Israel,
to its everlasting discredit, has been one modern history's foremost
practitioners) against the Lebanese civilian population, the Israelis
were eventually outsmarted and defeated.
The notion that Hizbollah is a terrorist organization is as valid as
calling the French and Italian partisans terrorists which, of course, is
exactly what Israel's Third Reich predecessors did.
Date: Sat, 11 May 2002 23:08:01 -0400
> From: nagy <email@example.com>
> Subject: RE: FWD: [sixties-l] Rabb Michael Lerner
> I'm not sure if Rabbi Lerner was at the huge demonstration, but he and Prof.
> Cornel West of Harvard led a demonstration against the injustice of U.S.
> foreign policy with it's blank check for man of "Peace" Sharon in front of the
> State Department a week before the primary demonstration. I am impressed by
> Lerner's backing for the 455 IDF reservists who have made public their refusal
> of orders to go to the Occupied Territories. If memory serves, it was similar
> reservists and their supporters who finally ended Sharon's war in Lebanon in
> the early 1980s.
> Tom Nagy
> member, International Association of Genocide Scholars
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