Counterpunch, April 3-5, 2009 - ....It was the January 2009 Israeli invasion of Gaza, however, that shifted the issue from intellectual to visceral. Whereas previous AIPAC moves had stirred discussion, its blind support of Israeli actions in Gaza spurred disgust. Not only did Israel destroy the meager remnants of its David versus Goliath mystique by using fighter bombers, tanks and helicopter gunships against a minor militia equipped only with small arms, it also surrendered forever what remained of its “good guy” image by intentionally leveling hospitals, clinics, schools and mosques.
The effect of this on American Jews was chilling. In recent decades, American Jews have comprised the core of the American liberal movement. They were a persistent voice of conscience through the civil rights era, Viet Nam, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Iraq 1 and 2, Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. They remain among the most passionate advocates for social justice in the world. That they were largely unable to apply that advocacy to Israeli excesses was a bitter, but often unspoken schism that separated the Holocaust generations from their activist children and grandchildren.
Now, the denial many American Jews have maintained around Israel’s immoral and illegal behaviors is evaporating. True change, after all, occurs when the inconsistencies between actual and desired realities become too great – when the resulting tension compels action. The Israeli mugging of Gaza, and AIPAC’s unexamined and unfettered support for it, has clashed with the Jewish ideal of tikkun olam – “repairing the world”....
John Goekler is a trainer and consultant specializing in applying emerging scientific understandings to organizational effectiveness, transformative policy and global security. He is the founder of Change Factors, in Santa Fe, New Mexico.