Pardon the Onion-esque title to this post - I have no idea if anyone is actually laughing (and I Googled about desperately to find something, anything - I guess it just isn't funny) - but the "social justice" movement has an obvious problem. And, of course, the Israeli left is split over this problem.
Uriel Sinai/Getty Image from Guardion.co.uk
I don't know how anyone could report this without even a note of irony:
About 430,000 people took part in marches and rallies across the country, according to police. The biggest march was in Tel Aviv, where up to 300,000 took part. There was an unprecedented 50,000-strong protest in Jerusalem, and 40,000 marched in Haifa. There were smaller protests in dozens of other towns and cities.Go ahead, read the whole thing. Not a single mention of the troubling "situation" of the Palestinian people, pro nor con, nor even to note it. Not to beat it into the ground, but I simply cannot comprehend how any serious journalist can compartmentalize like this.
As IsrealiNationalNews.com notes, Social Justice May Boomerang at the Polls:
A new poll shows that the reaction at the polls could be a slap in the face to center-left Kadima and the left-wing Labor party...Indeed. Politics is messy, isn't it? Better to stay out of it... when it's not going your way.
Voice of Israel, which along with center-left newspapers has been promoting the social justice movement and providing day-to-day and sometimes hour-to-hour coverage of minor activities at demonstrations, did not post the results of the poll on its website, an indication that the findings were not according to its desires and expectations.
"Social justice" movements by their very definition have to be inclusive of all people, otherwise they have no moral weight whatsoever. And moral weight is the only weapon the people have against power. Regardless of your opinion on the "Palestinian question," this is simply a fact. One cannot simultaneously advocate for a nationalist position and for justice.
Even leaving aside the problems in the Middle East, this fact has repercussions for the left in the United States as well. Think "nationalist" in its generic sense.
Apropos this observation, there is an understandable and unavoidable split in the Israeli left. Many - probably most - of the protesters are self-aware enough to be this inclusive. This Al Jazeera video, below, shows (as reported by theREALnews.com) protesters chanting "Jews and Arabs refuse to be enemies," much to the consternation of others who are concerned with the conflation of "domestic" issues with Palestinian ones, for obvious political reasons (starting about 2 minutes in):
I salute those "radicals."