Words of the Week, III

Again, current events compel me to share with you another batch of essential reading. (And if you’ve missed them, you might also wish to check the first two installments I shared this week.)

From Jeffrey Goldberg:
“Israel, then, is faced with three enormous and difficult tasks. It must do a much better job of minimizing Palestinian casualties as it fights Hamas, because this is a moral necessity and a strategic imperative. It must also do something it hasn’t done well at all, which is to create an alternate reality on the West Bank, one that shows Palestinians a different and brighter sort of future than the one promised by Hamas. And — and this is its main task at the moment — it must ensure that its citizens aren’t kidnapped and murdered by a group that seeks not an equitable two-state solution but the annihilation of their country.”

From Talya Toledano Davidovich:
“I have worked as a physician in several major Israeli hospitals during outbreaks of violence. I treated terrorists right alongside the victims whose legs they blew off, whose eyes they singed, whose lives they ruined. I was under strict instructions by my Israeli supervisors to treat all human beings who walked into our emergency room alike. I did as I was told – I examined, calmed, diagnosed, and helped heal people who were singlehandedly responsible for the maiming and killing of others. Don’t you dare bark at ME that Israel doesn’t want peace.”

From Gary Rosenblatt:
“Mainstream media should be putting this conflict in context, explaining that while Israel seeks to defend its citizens against regular rocket attacks from Hamas, that terror group (as designated by the U.S. and Western nations) is committed in its core to wiping out Israel and Jews. What, then, is there for Israel to negotiate other than the details of its suicide?”

From Liel Leibovitz:
“[E]ager to compete in the digital landscape, the [New York] Times stacked its site with blogs it imagined as more platforms to deliver its readers with necessary and evocative journalism. Then it handed one of the most visible to Mackey. In other words, instead of letting actual reporters frame big, complicated stories, it settled for deliciously cheaper snide armchair analysis, and appointed one of its least competent practitioners for the job. The occasional bias we can survive; a thorough misunderstanding of what journalism ought to look like in the age of the Internet is a much harder blow.”

From Joseph Strich, in The Jerusalem Post
“The [French] prime minister [Manuel Valls] condemned the use of anti-Zionist rhetoric as a cover up of anti-Semitic opinions, and condemned ‘an anti-Semite who hides his hatred of the Jew behind an appearance of anti-Zionism and the hatred of Israel.'”

From Fania Oz-Salzberger:
“Make me strong enough to keep calm about stupid statuses, provocative posts, trolling talkbacks and troubling tweets. Give me the wisdom to talk respectfully and rationally with my friends, interlocutors, fellow-citizens of the republic of web-roamers, and total strangers I come across in the vast expanses of your virtual universe.”