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August 27, 2014 / 1 Elul, 5774
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Resisting War, Terrorism, And Genocide (Second of Three Parts)


Beres-Louis-Rene

In Washington, President Obama is consciously shaping these particular codifications, not with any ill will, to be sure, but rather with all of the usual diplomatic substitutions of rhetoric for authentic intellectual understanding. Had he been replaced by Mitt Romney, nothing would have changed – absolutely nothing.

U.S. policies will continue, as always, on a flimsy foundation of hackneyed jargon and empty witticism.

Human freedom is an ongoing theme in Judaism, but this sacred freedom can never countenance a “right” of collective disintegration. Individually and nationally, there is always a binding Jewish obligation to choose life. Faced with the “blessing and the curse,” both the solitary Jew and the ingathered Jewish state must always favor the former.

Today, after Ariel Sharon’s “disengagement,” Ehud Olmert’s “realignment,” and Benjamin Netanyahu’s vain hopes for “Palestinian demilitarization,” Israel awaits a potentially tragic fate. Yet, at least for the moment, the dramatic genre portraying this challenging destiny can be better described as “pathos.” Resembling the stark and minimalist poetics of Samuel Beckett, the entire “play” is profoundly meaningful, but it is also starkly preposterous.

True tragedy contains calamity, but it must also reveal greatness in trying to overcome misfortune.

(Continued Next Week)

About the Author: Louis René Beres, strategic and military affairs columnist for The Jewish Press, is professor of Political Science at Purdue University. Educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971), he lectures and publishes widely on international relations and international law and is the author of ten major books in the field. In Israel, Professor Beres was chair of Project Daniel.


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