Following up on my post below, I wanted to call your attention to this piece in The Atlantic by Jeff Goldberg, discussing the current round of violence in and around Jerusalem but coming to a very different conclusion, at least a different emphasis. By all means, read the piece because there's only so fully I can capture his argument. But the gist is this: This violence isn't driven by settlements or really any of Israel's current policies. It goes back at least a century and is in essence one of Muslim supremacism and secondarily Palestinian-Arab supremacism, mixed with various obscurantist and paranoid ideas about Israeli intentions. As Jeff correctly notes, there were similar incidents almost a century ago, long before Israel was a state, let alone before the Israeli army conquered the West Bank in 1967. Let me say simply that Jeff is right. Indeed, right-wingers (which Jeff is not) constantly go on about why there were wars before 1967 if the Occupation of the West Bank is the cause of the conflict. That's a more clownish version of the argument Jeff is making. And as I've said, Jeff is right. But his explanation is incomplete and inert and that's what makes it such a flawed way of understanding the current situation.
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