Yossi Sarid
Haaretz (Opinion)
September 19, 2011 - 12:00am

What follows is an emotional and perhaps late appeal to Israel's friends in America, particularly the Jews among them, who see themselves as people looking out for own welfare. Don't bring us ill instead of good. Don't let Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman deceive you.

This appeal is being directed to those friends who can still think for themselves and demonstrate responsibility when it comes to us. Don't submerge yourselves in the flood of nationalist-religious history that is currently washing over us. Don't confuse governments that come and go with the state, which must always remain.

The Jews of New York's 9th Congressional district certainly thought they were doing a good thing for us when they voted in a new Republican congressman to replace Democrat Anthony Weiner. In the process, the voters also sent a blunt message to the White House: Beware, Barack Hussein Obama, of our retribution.

And in his fright, the president is already prepared to restrain himself when it comes to continued West Bank Jewish settlement construction. This is not necessarily a matter of turning a blind eye, but rather of doing it with eyes wide open.

Netanyahu is mounting a rearguard action, the catastrophic results of which are known in advance, and there is no good reason to join ranks with him. He is returning this week to the site of his past glory days at the United Nations, to renew those days of yore. Those days, however, are history, much like his past glory.

You, Jews who are both warm and hot under the collar, are working against Israel's interests as well as against the interests of America, your homeland, which is now seen in its full isolation and hypocrisy: All of the people in our region are accorded the democratic right to rise up against tyranny, everyone except the Palestinians, who have suffered not from a home-grown tyrant, but from a foreign occupier, and the end of the occupation is not in sight after 44 years.

All rulers have been accorded a right of refusal in the face of arbitrary American dictates. It's reserved first of all to Netanyahu, but not to that forlorn Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, whose ways are ways of dialogue.

Of all people, it is he who is denounced for his justifiable opposition to preconditions, and there are no conditions more prior than facts on the ground. It has always been argued that the American-Israeli alliance is based on "mutual interests." What those interests are is no longer totally clear.

Even the Center for Strategic and International Studies, which is one of the most important think tanks in the United States, recently called for a reexamination of Washington's thrall to Jerusalem's every whim.

The think tank says there should be an effort to make Israel a more "equal partner." Since when does the tail wag the dog, and how much longer will this continue?

Where are the values the United States and Israel supposedly share, which have long waned? That same think tank is critical of Israel's policy toward the Palestinians, its treatment of minorities and discrimination against Reform and Conservative streams of Judaism.

"Israel's Jewish population is more nationalistic, religiously conservative, and hawkish on foreign policy and security affairs than that of even a generation ago, and it would be unrecognizable to Israel's founders," a report by the center says.

So the secret is out. Everyone now knows Israel is not what it once was. It is therefore not interests or values but political survival at all costs that Obama and Netanyahu have in common. But it remains to be seen which is more off-the-wall, our parliament or their Congress.

None of them will pay the full price of the recklessness and craziness. Not Obama. Not Hillary Clinton. Not Dennis Ross or AIPAC or Chabad in Brooklyn. When the price in blood has to be paid, and it will come soon, it is only we who will pay, as always. So we are telling it straight. Don't be more patriotic than we are. Don't do us any favors. It's our blood we're talking about.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017