People say, with increasing frequency, “Why should there be a Jewish state? Isn’t that kind of racist — undemocratic?” There are 57 members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference — almost 60 states that identify themselves specifically as Muslim. The world has no problem with them: only with the tiny, dusty sliver that identifies itself as Jewish. The Jews were storm-tossed, homeless, for 2,000 years — dependent on the goodwill of host nations, dependent on the kindness of strangers. And yet the world begrudges their one dinky state.
We have no problem with Thais in Thailand; we have no problem with Senegalese in Senegal; we have a problem with Jews in Israel — never mind the 1.5 million Arabs who live there, enjoying rights that are unknown to most Arabs elsewhere.
If the world lets Israel go under, a mere two or three generations after the Holocaust, we will have learned a sick, sick thing about the world. Time magazine, I think it was, once had a very dramatic, hard-to-forget cover: “Thinking the Unthinkable.” It was about nuclear armageddon. (Remember when people worried about that stuff? Then Reagan came . . .) Events large and small — Iran’s nuclear drive, the Helen Thomas outburst — have led me to think about the unthinkable: the loss of Israel. They won’t go without a fight, I feel sure. And I know which side I’m on.