Disclosure: I’ve been impressed by Jonathan Miller‘s intelligence and leadership for 25 years, since the long-ago Shabbat when, as a pre-freshman, I visited Harvard Hillel for the first time and met him at the Reform minyan service. At the time, Jonathan was a sophomore, but, with the NFTY presidency behind him, he was already chairing the full Hillel community–while also gearing up to run the national “Students for Gore” effort. I’ve expected great things from him ever since, and his new e-book, The Liberal Case for Israel: Debunking Eight Crazy Lies About the Jewish State, meets (if not exceeds) those high expectations.
Moreover, the text provides a clear and documented guide for those of us who want to join in this effort, those of us who are so frequently frustrated and infuriated by those “crazy lies” about Israel that we see so often in the media (and, for those of us in literary and/or academic communities, among our colleagues). You can review all eight of the “crazy lies” if you take up Amazon‘s “Look Inside” offer. For now, I’ll simply cite the first two: “Imperialist” and “Apartheid.” (You can also read about another one, “Pinkwashing,” in an excerpt from the book that appeared on The Huffington Post this week.)
Time prevents me from writing an in-depth review of Jonathan’s e-book, and I hope I’ll be forgiven for not giving The Liberal Case for Israel the detail it deserves. But I’m so eager to let others know about it. I’ve made no secret of my own wish to be able to do pretty much precisely what Jonathan has done here. I am most grateful–though, given what I recall about him, utterly unsurprised–that Jonathan got there first.