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AP Interview: Author rattles US Jewish leaders

June 22, 2012 • Entertainment


U.S. author Peter Beinart speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Jerusalem, Thursday, June 21, 2012. Beinart considers himself a supporter of Israel. He attends synagogue and sends his children to a private Jewish school in New York City. But when it comes to Israel, the pundit and former journalist has emerged as an unconventional bad boy of sorts, rattling the American Jewish community with charges that its leadership’s blind support for Israel is helping the Jewish state self-destruct through misguided policies. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

JERUSALEM (AP) — Peter Beinart considers himself a supporter of Israel. He attends synagogue and sends his children to a private Jewish school in New York City. But when it comes to Israel, the pundit and former journalist has emerged as an unconventional bad boy of sorts, rattling the American Jewish community with charges that its leadership’s blind support for Israel is helping the Jewish state self-destruct through misguided policies.

“The American Jewish leadership … is most comfortable with a narrative that says Israel is embattled from without, from external threats, and that we need to focus on those threats and that brings us together,” Beinart said Thursday in an interview. “But I don’t think that we have a narrative in the American Jewish community, especially the organized Jewish community, to talk about the internal threats to Israel’s democratic character.”

Chief among those threats, he says, is Israel’s control over millions of Palestinians in the occupied territories.

Most experts believe that if Israel does not disengage from the Palestinian territories, the number of Arabs living under Israeli control will soon outnumber the number of Login to read more

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