Saturday, July 09, 2005


Long time ago I was acquainted with the work of a Jewish writer called Isaac Deutscher. That is a man who may not be very popular with some of my friends being a socialist and all that, nevertheless he was quite a great man. What reminded me of him is my anger against the Arabs which was expressed in my previous post. I mean for his “Un-Jewish Jew” am I not the “Un-Arab Arab”?

I wish, however, to apologize beforehand to any Jewish reader of mine for what I am going to say; assuring him that far from harboring any prejudice, I have the greatest respect and reverence for a people who have given human civilization so much and who were the original monotheists and the first Abrahamites; and that the recent troubles and tragedies of the twentieth century should not obscure and overshadow the thousands of years of glorious history. And you know, the real ethnic Jew and the real ethnic Arab definitely have a common ancestry; this so-called Semitic race, though this does not seem to have resulted in any particular love between the twain. And more; we know for certain from our own knowledge of ourselves, that there are certain traits of character that are quite common to both. You see, the true Semitic character is very passionate and intense and tends to be very, very obstinate. The Jews are a particular race of Semites steeled and distilled by many centuries of struggle for survival in hostile environments, who have managed by shear obstinacy to preserve their religious and cultural identity despite tremendous odds and extreme persecution, for thousands of years.

What has reminded me of this right now in the present situation is a sentence of Isaac Deutscher which I can never forget. It goes something like this: “God help those whom the Jews take it into their head to be their enemies!! “ What is so striking about this sentence is that it applies precisely to the Arabs as well. You may draw your own inferences from this which may throw some light on the madness that is going on in these days.

It has struck me suddenly, that perhaps one of the main mystic keys to defusing the whole thing is to bring about a real historic reconciliation between these two surviving branches of the Semitic race, and I don’t mean just solving the Israeli-Palestinian problem, but something far more profound than that. Is this not the real challenge for the non-Semitic western broker, for his own peace and safety, if not for anything else?

Salaam, Shalom


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