Text size

Attaining a permanent settlement with the Palestinians appears to be about as likely as the opening of an Iranian embassy in "united" Jerusalem. Almost no day goes by without some other country recognizing a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders. According to the WikiLeaks documents, even the Germans, Israel's steadfast supporters in Europe, have lost their faith in the peaceful intentions of Benjamin Netanyahu's government. Even loyal partner Ehud Barak and Nobel Peace laureate Shimon Peres have ceased to praise the "new Bibi."

There is even the hope that the Labor ministers - who constitute the shriveled fig leaf of the prime minister - have discovered the emotion called shame and the option called opposition.

And then, just when it seemed that the deterioration in Israel's international standing and the cracks at home would open the eyes of the Israeli public, the Jewish-American Superman soars in the skies over the Capital Hill.

He shows the Jewish-Israelis that there is no need to be frightened by the U.S. president, that there is no need to be unnerved by the Europeans and that the United Nations remains insignificant.

The Superman (or woman) strikes a winning blow against the claim of the "defeatists" that it is impossible to conduct negotiations over a piece of land while building on it at the same time. This figure proves that Israel can block U.S. efforts to advance negotiations toward the establishment of a Palestinian state, and then block the efforts of the international community to recognize such state. Our current Superman sells the illusion that the Jewish and Democratic state can exists indefinitely in the Middle East without bringing the violent conflict to an end.

This Superman is the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Howard Berman. This Jewish Democrat from California - with the help of Jewish Representatives Garry Ackerman, Eliot Engel and Shelley Berkley - got a resolution passed late last week, which demands that the administration veto any proposal at the UN Security Council to recognize a Palestinian state that is not the result of an agreement with Israel.

The resolution, cobbled together at the offices of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), reproaches the Palestinians for their refusal to return to negotiations and demands that they cease efforts to gain recognition from other countries. There is not a single word about Israel's refusal to freeze the settlements during the negotiations. And nothing about Netanyahu's evasiveness in putting forward his position on the issue of permanent borders.

The initiative in the House does not stem from ideological motives or a political worldview. These are not members of the messianic right wing, who believe that the entire Land of Israel belongs only to the nation of Israel, and who support the expansion of settlements.

Last January, Berman accepted an invitation to speak before the forum of Friends of Peace Now in the United States, and praised the reliable information on the settlements that the organization has provided him. The veteran Congressman warned at the time that if Israel continues to usurp territory, it will lose its Jewish image or cease being a democracy.

The dominant view among the centrist group of the Jewish community - that "we support every Israeli government, right or wrong" - reminds one of a situation in which a parent finds out that his child is addicted to drugs and hands him his credit card.

The activists of Peace Now and the moderate group J Street, are called "self-hating Jews" by members of the Jewish establishment. People at AIPAC and their allies in Congress are, on the other hand, "self-loving Jews." Indeed, they love themselves. Especially themselves.

Jews who truly love Israel go to synagogues in New York and tell people that if Jerusalem will not be the capital of two nations, it will never be recognized as Israel's capital.

Jews who love themselves may know there is no two state solution without dividing Jerusalem, but they prefer to receive enthusiastic applause when making the empty declaration that "a unified Jerusalem is Israel's capital forever."

Furthermore, Jews (and not only Jews ) who love Israel sign a petition in favor of lifting the futile blockade on the Gaza Strip. Jewish who love themselves assail the "self-hating" Jew, Richard Goldstone, who dared to point out the folly of Operation Cast Lead.

A Jew who loves himself deeply does not harm the Jewish state. A Jew who truly loves himself does everything possible in order to save Israel from itself.