Sunday, December 1, 2013

Another Anniversary

This blog is marking two events this week. The first is an anniversary of sorts. I began at the start of the Annapolis Conference, in November of 2007. Since then, the blog has seen six years, 529 posts (if this one counts), and 109,803 unique visitors (though not all at once, to be sure). It is humbling to think about so much connection--also about the privilege of living at a time when desktop technology magically enables it. Writers like to pretend that they expect to be paid attention to. I still find this wonderful.

The second event is the closing of Open Zion, to which I have devoted most of my incidental writing and surplus attention for the past couple of years (and my gratitude to Peter Beinart for his tireless work and crack leadership).
Some of us considered trying to keep that site going; but I've decided to return my attention to this space, which feels more intimate and allows for shorter takes and greater eclecticism. I shall be, again, asking guest writers to contribute, especially from Jerusalem, to which I return in a couple of weeks. I shall also be posting most political commentaries simultaneously on Talking Points Memo's "TPM Cafe," which Josh Marshall has just revived with the steady hand that's made TPM the default home for undogmatic Democratic liberals.

So if you've been a subscriber to this blog in the past, but have given it up because my posts seemed redundant to Open Zion, I invite you to try it again--and share this invitation with anyone you feel would be interested in it, too. 


Richard Witty said...

I was very disappointed, more than disappointed, that Open Zion closed.

There are now only disparate and radical sites critical of current Israeli policy.

Y. Ben-David said...

Richard, I think that you are going to have to face the fact that so-called "Liberal Zionism" is dying, just like liberal American Judaism and Jewry is. The relatively moderate political Left in Israel which represents a "liberal Zionist" approach has imploded and is ideologically bankrupt. The Labor Party, which once was the flagship movement of the Zionist left just dumped a leader who was in for only a short time, but who had some original ideas, in favor of a corrupt political hack who got his position due to his family connections and his control of the political machine that controls the party and which has been out of touch with Israeli society for decades.

Liberal Jews like yourself are just going to have to face the fact that in the modern "progressive" world, which opposes "particularism", nationalism and "primitive religious rites" and any sort of distinctions between people simply has no room for Jews as a distinct people with national rights and Judaism as a religion. Liberal American Jewry and liberal Zionists are trying to square the circle in attempting to reconcile their "liberal-progressive" beliefs with a continued committment to Zionism, Jewish peoplehood and Judaism. You are going to have to face the fact that you are going to have to choose sides....are you going to maintain your "progressive" attachments or are you going to be a Jewish Jew, and say you are not going to be intimidated by the "politically correct progressives"?

Y. Ben-David said...

I want to thank Dr Avishai for posting the very interesting article by Adam Shatz about Juliano Mer-Khamis. It is certainly illuminating about the nature of Palestinian society and its political system in additioin to the radical anti-Israel Left in Israel and the West. I wonder what Dr Avishai makes of it, because he told us some time ago here at this blog that it was only a matter of time until the "Palestinian entrepeneurial class will 'push aside' the armed militias and then make peace with Israel". I frankly don't see this happening, especially after reading this article. Sure, people want money, but the "armed militias" don't need to be pushed aside in order to clear the way for the entrepeneurs to get on the gravy train, they can use their weapons to do it for them, as we see in this piece.

Potter said...

BA. I am so glad you are keeping on, keeping on here.

Thanks (from Japan!)