Somewhere Over The Rainbow: Living In The Land Of Oz

UPDATE (6:00 pm Sunday): The Israel Supreme Court has just announced that it has rejected the ‘Migron compromise’. In doing so, it has emboldened delegitimizers of Israel on every front–and guaranteed increased violence against Jewish community members in Judea and Samaria.


Your humble servant spent last evening in the company of friends watching “The Little Traitor”, a movie based on a novel by Israeli author Amos Oz.  Set in 1947-8 Palestine, the movie rather benignly documents the coming of age of the son of Polish Holocaust survivors–as he dreams of killing British soldiers for the Irgun and lusts after an older neighborhood girl that he spies on with his binoculars.

"Proffy" and his British soldier friend

But after being caught out after curfew one evening by a kindly British soldier, he quickly learns in befriending that soldier that not all British soldiers are evil. In fact, we never see the British doing anything evil at all, and along the way, we learn that all of the Arabs who populate the boy’s world are polite, friendly, and peaceful.

In fact, the only evil people in the movie turn out to be Proffy’s young Jewish friends who turn him into the local Jewish authorities because of his supposed consorting with the British soldier (hence the movie’s name).

I don’t know if Amos Oz’s novel was in anyway autobiographical, but I was struck this morning by how little Oz’s world has changed: the internationalists and Arabs are still the ‘good guys’, and Oz’s fellow Israeli Jews are still the ‘bad guys’.

Delivering this message before the infamous J Street convention yesterday, Oz blathered that “there is more than one way to be a Zionist and more than one way to love Israel.” He proceeded with a newly minted Oz platitude for the J Streeters: “compromise is the basis for life and where there is compromise there is life.”

He concluded by saying that if Israel makes compromises for peace (and if Israel achieves ‘social solidarity’–a new Oz embracement), Israel would be “heaven on earth.”

Oz’s world and J Street’s world are much the same:

It is a world devoid of Zionism and peopled by evil Israelis who are nothing but obstacles to peace.

It is a world in which the Palestinians are not asked to make any compromises for peace because they are the victims of an evil Israeli occupation.

It is a world in which the numerous past Israeli offers of peace and the subsequent rejections of those offers by the Palestinians never actually existed.

It is a world in which Palestinian terrorists are magically transformed into Palestinian ‘civilians’ (as in the latest instance when the terrorist rocket launchers who were killed as they were launching missiles were called Palestinian civilians by J Street).

It is a world in which people like Ehud Olmert (who is delivering the closing address at J Street) are suddenly acclaimed heroes because of their willingness to make Jerusalem the capital of “Palestine” and hand over the city to an international consortium.

It is an Oz world, not unlike that of the famed song from the Wizard of Oz:

Somewhere over the rainbow
Skies are blue,
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true.

Someday I’ll wish upon a star
And wake up where the clouds are far
Behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops
Away above the chimney tops
That’s where you’ll find me.

Imagine that Dorothy is Amos Oz--and all the munchkins are J Streeters.

But no matter how much we Israelis dare to dream, the Palestinians will never accept a Jewish state of Israel.  And no matter how much we dare to dream, the 200,000 rockets and missiles now pointed at us will never melt away like lemon drops.

But still, above the gritty chimney tops of real life in Israel in which people are bombed and terrorized everyday, that’s where you will find Amos Oz and his friends.

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