Why are Jewish Americans so angry?
Last week, Karl Vick’s article (see shortened version here) was published in Time magazine. It explains that average Israelis have become intrinsically indifferent to the peace process and, in essence, have begun moving on with their lives– the “good life,” as Vick calls it. The article is not an offensive one, nor is it an erroneous one.
What Vick has written is not explicitly or implicitly anti-Israel. He doesn’t try to illustrate an Israel that is actively avoiding the peace process or one that is violent in its nature. It is a factual, investigative piece that strives to put together pieces of the very convoluted Middle East puzzle.
Vick writes (quoting Israeli political scientist Tamar Hermann) that Israelis have “no sense of urgency” about peace with the Palestinians. My opinion? Frankly, who can blame them? The modern State of Israel has been around for more than sixty-two years and it is still facing similar problems to what it was facing at its origin: enemies from all sides, a flailing media war, and an opinionated group of people who — despite much rhetoric — is still attacking on an almost daily basis. No matter how many times the leaders of all parties meet at the White House, the prospect of a full ceasefire and an exhaustive peace will always be bleak. Israelis are justified in moving on with their lives.
The article is warranted.
So, why are Jewish Americans so angry?
Because of the cover (“Why Israel Doesn’t Care About Peace”).
Time magazine is a for-profit organization. They are in business to sell magazines. Whenever I write an essay for school, my dad, a journalist, tells me to start by writing the body of the essay. Then, he says, write a catchy beginning that will bring in the reader. Then, write the title.
Are you more likely to read the story with the headline ‘Scientists Believe that Pollution is Harming Environment and May Eventually Lead to Detrimental Effects’ or ‘The World is Going to End’? My guess is the latter.
It’s not irresponsible or insolent of Time to put such a controversial statement on its cover. In fact, because the article is so pertinent and informative of Israeli culture, I applaud Time for its business acumen, and I hope more Americans read the article and grasp a fuller understanding of the current Israeli mindset.