Former MK Dr. Einat Wilf used to Chair the Knesset Education, Culture and Sports committee and the subcommittee on Israel’s ties with the Jewish nation, and was member of the Foreign and Defense committee. She was one of the five unlucky—nearsighted, really—MKs who left the Labor party to follow Ehud Barak into his cockamamie Independence party, and they all lost their Knesset seats last January.
But she remains a solid member in good standing of Israel’s leftist elite, which makes her following Facebook post so bittersweet:
Several weeks ago I was approached by Peace Now to speak at their annual conference on a panel discussing whether international pressure on Israel is necessary to promote peace. I was specifically told that my point of view (which opposes such pressure and certainly the domestic efforts to invite it) would be very appreciated in this discussion.
Yesterday, I received a call from the head of Peace Now disinviting me. Even though [Peace Now top honcho] Yariv Oppenheimer noted that he personally did not want to disinvite me, he was outnumbered within his own organization. The reason, he explained, was due to the fact I am a member of the International Advisory Council of NGO Monitor (along with other “human rights offenders” such as Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel and Alan Dershowitz).
Putting aside the way in which dogmatic thinking seems to blind people to the importance of good manners, and the inability of those who preach tolerance to hear a point of view that is not their own, I am issuing the following response:
“If the Israeli Left has no place for those who support a two-state solution and who also wage battle against those who seek to delegitimize Israel, it will not return to lead the country. Leadership is not built through self-flagellation. Defending Israel and Zionism can and should be part of supporting peace and a two state solution. Israel is under attack for its very legitimacy and the human-rights discourse serves various groups to undermine the foundational idea of Zionism that the Jewish People have a right to a sovereign state in their ancestral homeland. If people, whose work for human rights is indisputable such as Elie Wiesel and Alan Dershowitz, find it proper to fight against the demonization of Israel, then I am proud to wage this battle with them.”
We shouldn’t delude ourselves into thinking that Dr. Wilf is our ally on the Left, but it’s possible that in another intifada or two, she, too, will come around to realize our Arab neighbors don’t hate Jews because of Israel, rather they hate Israel because it’s Jewish.
As to Peace Now and Oppenheimer, I believe Israel must insist that any treaty with the Palestinians must include a paragraph about exporting him to Ramallah.