Agree on Omar, disagree on Israel
I commend your editorial on Rep. Ilhan Omar (“Ilhan Omar is a blight on the Democratic Party,” July 9). Her hateful and insulting remarks about Jews and Israel deserve the same treatment the Republicans gave Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Steve King of Iowa. She should not get a pass because her success “is a testament to the American dream,” being part of “the Squad” or anything else. Identity does not bestow immunity; bigotry must have consequences for the bigot.
Regarding the article by Karen Adler and Ada Horwich (“For Democrats, it’s OK to agree to disagree on Israel,” July 9) they confuse being against Israeli policies with opposition to its existence. When someone opposes Zionism, they say that Israel itself is a mistake, should never have been reestablished and must disappear to be replaced by who knows what; that Jews as a people have no national rights and galut is and must be our historic fate forever. An exception are those anti-Zionist Jews who believe we should wait for the Messiah to return us to the Promised Land.
Moreover, opposition to Zionism and to a Palestinian state is not the same thing. There is one Jewish state, where Hebrew is the national language and Jewish culture is dominant. There are numerous Arab and Muslim nations where Islam is the state religion and Arabic the national language. Were Palestinian Arabs to be granted citizenship and integrated into local society rather than kept in refugee camps, they would not have to be constantly living in fear of being kicked out.
Nevertheless, it is vaguely possible (count me skeptical) that a Palestinian state could conceivably lead to peace with Israel. But whether or not that political decision will be made at some future date, we are not now compelled to agree with the anti-Zionist claim that the 20th century Palestinian Arab national movement supersedes the 3,000-year connection of the Jewish people to Israel.