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Palestinians and the Disastrous Politics of Rage – Joshua Berman (TOI via Daily Alert)

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Feb. 27, 2019

Palestinians and the Disastrous Politics of Rage – Joshua Berman (Times of Israel)

Palestinian victimhood knows no reconciliation with Israel because central to identity politics is the conviction that permanent victim status must be maintained.

Palestinian identity politics hamstrings Palestinian aspirations for a better life. Grassroots criticism of the Palestinian leadership is disallowed because it threatens the collective Palestinian identity.

Failing to establish the institutions of a functioning state, Palestinian leaders turn to globetrotting in a look-busy-while-doing-nothing action plan of self-righteousness. They insist the world must come and save them.

Palestinians pluck the chords of European colonial guilt in order to receive generous aid, discouraging Palestinian self-agency and personal responsibility.

Palestinians routinely call for “days of rage,” where the rage is an end in itself that fuels an identity predicated on victimhood.

The narrative of victimization loosens moral standards. When a Palestinian murders a Jew, it is explained and excused as “a natural outcome of the occupation.” Ironically, Palestinians ignore just how racist their own narrative of victimization really is.

To maintain that any Israeli Jew is a fair target for murder simply because he is an Israeli Jew – is racist. To maintain that any Palestinian has license to murder simply because he is Palestinian – is racist.

Palestinian leaders will “keep the conversation going” about reconciliation interminably because of the capital they accrue with world leaders by doing so.

  • The writer is a professor of Bible at Bar-Ilan University and at Shalem College and a fellow at the Herzl Institute, Jerusalem.
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