I started publishing this blog on Blogspot (mostlyonisrael.blogspot.com). I moved to WordPress after having a good experience with it on my Hebrew blog, and finding some deficiencies with the Blogspot platform.
I don’t write that much in English, mainly because I am already consumed by writing about ancient Hebrew texts in English, that I have little patience to writing about Israeli politics in English, which compels me to find the correct equivalents to terms that are widespread in Hebrew discourse. I wish I could write more.
This blog deals mainly with Israel because I am Israeli, which means I am acquainted with its politics, its problems and challenges more than I am with any other country. It also means I am most concerned about it. My criticisms of Israel are offered from this standpoint. I do not imply that Israel is the only party responsible for the conflict, nor do I contend that Israel can unilaterally change the condition of the conflict. When I believe that the Israeli government can and should do something it does not do, I write about that. This does not mean that other governments are lacking of things they can and should do. I do not know enough about them to speak it. I would like to see more people who are politically involved, engaging in telling their own governments what they should do, instead of telling other governments what they should do. This does not prevent me from voicing any views concerning others. I definitely speak of American, European and Arab leaders, but not as much as I speak and criticize Israeli leaders.
For those who lack the patience to read through the blog, I provide a summary of my views here:
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: I believe that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict cannot be ended easily, by a single agreement or a specific moment in time. Instead, I support an ongoing endeavor to propagate coexistence, acknowledging the connection of both peoples (Israeli and Palestinian) to all the area that was known as the British Mandate of Palestine (roughly). I consider the best paradigm for such action to be a bi-national state, that will secure the cultural, national and linguistic distinctions of each of the peoples, but will facilitate cooperation on all means of living and administration. I do not oppose a two-state solution, but consider its faults to be greater than its merits, in responding to all elements of the conflict, and especially reject the notion of separationism it advances, a notion which will not enhance far-future prospects of peace. I should further stress that I do not consider a bi-national solution to be achievable / feasible / viable in any foreseeable future, but I think that as a working framework for talking and thinking of all the components of the conflict which need to be addressed it is much more helpful than the two-state model.
Israeli-Syria Conflict: While peace is always better than war, I do not detect any willingness for peace on the Syrian side, and am very apprehensive of Israeli left-wing notions who contend that the main obstacle is the question of borders, and specifically the Golan. I see no reason that the Syrians would have much use for the Golan, but also see no great harm in futile negotiation rounds that end with nothing. They are far better than war. I would not oppose a retreat from the Golan, if that would secure peace, but as I said, I see no reason that this should be the case. Finally, there is a grave difference between the pressing Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with the millions who are disenfranchised under Israeli occupation, and the Israeli-Syrian conflict which does not have such a toll.
Church and State. I believe in full separation of church and state. Contra to the situation today, I think the Israeli government must not fund any school that has a religious affinity, any religious institution (such as the Miqvaot, the religious councils, etc.), and should also legislate and facilitate non-religious marriage registrations and burial arrangements for those interested. No roads should be closed for religious reasons, and no-one should be exempt from his or her duties to the state because of religious beliefs. In a democracy, I believe, when religious law and state law are in conflict, the state law must always prevail. This is an essential qualification of the freedom of religion in any democracy.
Socio-Economics. I think that economy should serve humanity, not vice versa. As such, the economic accommodations should be made to promote health-care, welfare and education, just as the economic provisions are made for defense and security. There is a big question as to how to reach this goal, and I am not sure I have all the answers. In this terse statement I have obviously sided with social-democrats, but I do so hesitantly, and advisedly so.