Yitzhak Laor is one of Israel's most prominent dissidents and poets, a latter-day Spinoza who helps keep alive the critical tradition within Jewish culture. In this work he fearlessly dissects the complex attitudes of Western European liberal Left intellectuals toward Israel, Zionism and the "Israeli peace camp." He argues that through a prism of famous writers like Amos Oz, David Grossman and A.B. Yehoshua, the peace camp has now adopted the European vision of "new Zionism," promoting the fierce Israeli desire to be accepted as part of the West and taking advantage of growing Islamophobia across Europe.
The backdrop to this uneasy relationship is the ever-present shadow of the Holocaust. Laor is merciless as he strips bare the hypocrisies and unarticulated fantasies that lie beneath the love-affair between "liberal Zionists" and their European supporters.
In the latest issue of New Left Review:
Lena Lavinas: 21st Century Welfare
Latin America as laboratory for conditional cash transfers, fast becoming the hegemonic social-protection paradigm for the Global South. In a comparative survey, Lena Lavinas reveals the CCT model as a strategy for the financialization—not abolition—of poverty.
Slavoj Žižek argues in the New Statesman for a binational state in Israel & Palestine - the "simplest and most obvious solution" to the conflict.
Highlighting some disturbing instances of racism (and sexism) in Israeli society (such as the 2007 poll that showed that over half of Israeli Jews believe intermarriage is akin to "national treason"), Žižek makes the key point that:
What makes these campaigns so depressing is that they are flourishing at a time of relative calm, at least in the West Bank. Any party interested in peace should welcome the socialising of Palestinian and Jewish youth.