The greatest obstacle to peace remains our neighbors’ refusal to recognize the right of the Jewish people to a state in our historic homeland.
Ron Prosor is the Israeli ambassador in London. He got wide publicity on his letter of opinion in the UK newspaper The Guardian. This is what he wrote:
«Western leaders are constantly urged to press Israel to make concessions. Suggestions of how the Arab world could advance the cause of peace are thinner. Arab leaderships must be persuaded to recognize not only the existence of Israel but the realities of who we are»
«Israel is not a temporary inconvenience to be demonized, destroyed or wished away, but the independent, legitimate and permanent nation-state of the Jewish people«.
History demonstrated that Jews could not survive, let alone flourish, at the whims of majority cultures. This is not merely an academic argument but a lesson lived, learned and branded into Israel’s DNA.
Israel’s raison d’etre is to be the «state for the Jews». Yet the historical rationale of our quest for self-determination is often misunderstood as a religious aspiration. In 1896 the Austrian Jewish journalist Theodor Herzl wrote Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State). Herzl, an assimilated secular Jew, concluded that Jews could only achieve freedom, dignity and human rights with a state of their own.
Jewish individuals had enjoyed success before 1948. But through the State of Israel, for the first time in 2,000 years Jewishness was not an obstacle to be overcome, or a glass ceiling to be smashed, but a basic fact of life. Jewish identity is the essence of our national character. It is also a central issue to be resolved with the Arab and Muslim worlds that surround us. The greatest obstacle to peace remains our neighbors’ refusal to recognize the right of the Jewish people to a state in our historic homeland.
Jews have been indigenous to Israel for 3,000 years. Before 1948 the only independent sovereign state there had been the ancient Jewish kingdoms. It is fitting that as the colonial era drew to a close, Israel’s original inhabitants restored their independence.
Link to the article in The Guardian: