Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Left vs. the New Left

Hadash released a great set of four election commercials today, which feature conversations between a supporter of Meretz and a supporter of Hadash, "The Left vs. the New Left." You can see the clips here.

My favorite is the one on the Gaza war, which you can watch here in Hebrew. The Leftie stutters throughout, recites slogans, is for the fighting but against the war, etc. At one point, the Leftie goes quiet ("we can't talk while the army is on an operation") and then receives permission -- from Amos Oz -- to speak again. By this time he is ready to move on to another subject

 

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

On the first hand - it is really entertaining. But then again we must realize that we have natural allies - and that's the Meretz voters, and we can't - and shouldn't - mock them. We must not let the very small fraction of Jewish left in Israel turn onto itself. If we want to achieve anything this is not the way. The target of attacks should be the nationalists and the so called center (the Avoda party, whose leader seems to think that a legitimate critique of a political opponent is noting the fact that the opponent never killed anyone).
While there are differences between Hadash and Meretz, and while clearly I'm in line with Hadash, there is more that binds them together. They should act together, not one against the other.

Y. Ben-David said...

What is interesting is how the Jewish "far Left" ends up morphing into the Palestinian "far Right". Avirama Golan, a "progressive" columnistsi in "progressive" Ha'aretz mentioned an interview with Dov Heinan (sp?) . She mentions that although she is in favor of Israel changing its national anthem and adopting the Naqba narrative of the Palestinians in order to get the Israeli Arabs to feel better about themselves, she is still uncomfortable with the "extreme (Arab) nationalism" your HADASH party seems to be pushing. She also is unhappy with Heinan's insistence that Israel accept an unrestricted form of the Palestinian "Right of Return" while acknowledging that not ALL of the refugees will be able to return. The problem for Golan is that she views this as a recipe for endless demands on Israel and a refusal to close out the dispute with a final agreement. The Palestinians and their Israeli friends like Yossi Beilin say that FIRST Israel must accept the "right of return" in principle, and then after that, negotiations will begin on implementation, which of course, will never be resolved because whatever Israel offers will never be enough to satisfy the Arabs,
and so the conflict will go on and on, just as the Arab side wants.

What I don't understand is how you can feel comfortable in a party like that? A party that openly supports and endless war against Israel.

Anonymous said...

15 years ago in England it was noticed by the real left that Tony Blair M.P. (later P.M.) was an anagram of "I'm Tory plan B".
In Israel there are today whole hives full of Arik plan bees.

Jerry Haber said...

Anonymous,

These are elections, and the day after the elections Meretz and Hadash will be working together. But Hadash sees that it can woo a part of the Meretz electorate. The right does it and the left does it. Nobody gets offended by it.

Have you ever heard Hadash and Meretz sniping at each other when it isn't election season? I haven't.

That doesn't mean that Hadash and Meretz couldn't do something together even during the election season, of course.

Hey, some of my best friends vote Meretz!

Jerry Haber said...

Y. Ben David, I wasn't sure what were your points and what were Golan's.

To call Hadash an extreme nationalist party is laughable. Maybe she was mixing it up with Balad?

The Palestinian right of return has nothing to do with extreme nationalism. On the contrary, it violates extreme nationalism because it asserts the right of Palestinians to becomes citizens of the State of Israel.

But enough of words. Here's the deal.

Many Palestinians (but not all; they have their rejectionists) say: let the refugees return to Israel, and we will recognize the legitimacy of the state founded in 1948. That does not mean that, as citizens of the state, we will not try to make it more democratic. But we will accept the ground rules of the Israeli system. We will be citizens of the state founded by Jews in 1948.

And Hamas says that under those circumstances it will accept a long term truce with its enemy.

Ultimately, the only hope for a two-state solution is to accept a significant number of Palestinian refugees as Israeli citizens -- with full rights and responsibilities. What is significant? That can be discussed. But I am talking about at least a half million people, which could occur over a period of ten years. Even from a liberal statist Zionist perspective, this would not significantly change the demographic balance. (That is not my perspective, but it is of Meretz.)

This is the heart of the conflict. Israel drove out the majority of Palestine's inhabitants, in utter conflict with its promises to the world before it declared independence. This is the original sin, and if there is to be a two state solution, doing teshuva for the sin will have to be high on Israel's agenda.

The good news for you, Hamas, and the one-state folks, is that it won't be on the agenda.

The only legitimate criticism of Palestinian nationalism can come from a post or non-nationalist position.

But this is not the place for a discussion of the right to return...

Dana said...

Great clips. Now, if we could only have such in the US - where it is just as relevant.

Imagine the scene with Hillary and Rahm Emanuel as the old left and glenn greenwald/david Sirota as the "New Left". Now where are our own jewish comedians when we need them?

PS I know the answer (as do a few million others).
PPS I still wish we could hire these guys here. Do I have a script for them....

Mad Zionist said...

Israel drove out the majority of Palestine's inhabitants, in utter conflict with its promises to the world before it declared independence. This is the original sin, and if there is to be a two state solution, doing teshuva for the sin will have to be high on Israel's agenda.

I cannot get over that some Jews consider the act of Jews fighting off attacking arabs an "original sin". I guess that goes back to the actual "original sin" of the Jews: Self-loathing.

Anonymous said...

In a previous post, you asked for a non-Israel, non neoconservative, expert who says Israel obeyed the laws of war in Gaza, and you wanted someone with a published analysis, not just a quote. Well, here's one. Feel free to apologize.

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3666995,00.html

Elli said...

Jerry, you have to find a new party.

According to Galei Tzahal today, voting Hadash is a "טרנד" and you seem anything but trendy (I mean that is a compliment).

Jerry Haber said...

Elli,

You have outed me as somebody dismally conventional, veritably bourgeois, indeed, a moderate. As I tell everybody, I am actually a centrist.

Well, you're right. (I mean, correct.)

But in my defense, I jumped on the Hadash bandwagon already in 1996. (For my generation the question was, "When did you come out against the war in Vietnam?")

Hey, I thought that I would make waves when I endorsed Bibi -- and now Gideon Levy has done the same!

Does he read the Magnes Zionist?

JR said...

Only liberals can back folks who send suicide bombers into school buses, shopping malls, and restaurants

Peter H said...

In a previous post, you asked for a non-Israel, non neoconservative, expert who says Israel obeyed the laws of war in Gaza, and you wanted someone with a published analysis, not just a quote. Well, here's one. Feel free to apologize.

Actually, the report Ynet mentions is by Anthony Cordesman, an expert in military & defense strategy, not the laws or war. And if you actually read Cordesman's report rather than justwhat YNet selectively quotes, you would see that its focus is on the strategic implications of the Gaza operation and barely touches on the rules of engagement.

http://www.csis.org/index.php?option=com_csis_pubs&task=view&id=5250

Also, Cordesman is not exactly a neocon, but, as a former advisor to John Mccain, certainly qualifies as a conservative.