Chasm on the Left: Blame Israel vs. Blame Both

israel_palestine.jpg
Vosizneias

Many leftists "unfriended" each other this summer over the Gaza War, and Myriam Miedzian gives background on the conflict abroad and at home. (Eds.)

By Myriam Miedzian

It's that time again when I am careful not to utter the words “Israel, Palestinians, Gaza” to a certain number of my leftwing friends and acquaintances. We agree on just about everything going as far back as the Vietnam war, which we all vehemently opposed — as we did the Iraq war. We supported equal rights for blacks, women, and gays, rooted for single-payer, universal healthcare, support living wages for all Americans and access to college education for all, etc.

So why are we so at odds when it comes to this one issue? Well, we do agree on one thing — we all reject AIPAC’s “Israel Can Do No Wrong” perspective.

But that still leave us with a chasm. On one side there is the Blame Israel (B.I.) group — represented by Jewish Voice for Peace and Code Pink, among others — and on the other side the Blame Both (B.B.) group, represented by Americans for Peace Now and J Street, among others.

Like most categorizations, this one simplifies — the lines are not always entirely clear cut; there are disagreements within each group and people on the fringes of both. Nevertheless the rift is striking. Frustrated by it, I have spent  hours visiting websites on both sides, gone back to key books — Noam Chomsky, Benny Morris, etc. — and gleaned key, underlying, opposing assumptions, perspectives, interpretations, and historical understandings from these documents. I have also relied on lectures and conferences I have attended, as well as conversations with friends and acquaintances.

What follows is first an outline of some divisive underlying issues, and then links to a few of the books, articles, and blogs which have influenced my understanding of what divides the two groups.

 To read more, click here.


Individually signed posts do not necessarily reflect the views of DSA as an organization or its leadership.

The DSA position on the current conflict is here.

 Democratic Left blog post submission guidelines can be found here.

New Member Call, June 24

June 24, 2018

9pm ET/8 CT/7 MT/6 PT

Click to RSVP

You've joined DSA - Great! Now register for this New Member Orientation call and find out more about our politics and our vision. And, most importantly, how you can become involved.

Questions or Comments? Contact: 

Sam M


Click to RSVP

**Note: this page originally had the wrong date listed. The Correct date is Sunday the 24th**

M4A Chapter Activist Training Call: How to Pass a Medicare for All City Council Resolution

June 30, 2018

Saturday June 30th at 4pm ET/3pm CT/2pm MT/1pm PST

Click Here to RSVP

In March, Philadelphia DSA members showed up in droves with healthcare workers, community members, and elected leaders to pass a Philadelphia city-wide resolution supporting the Medicare for All Act of 2017 and affirming universal access to healthcare as a human right. This victory showed that in a city where the poverty rate is over 26%, city council leaders learned where to stand when it comes to universal healthcare. To move a national campaign to win Medicare for All, we need to build support from a broad range of cities and municipalities across the country. With some research, planning, and lobbying, you could work with city council members to pass a resolution of support in your city too!

Click Here to RSVP