Sarid: Nothing in Israel to be proud of anymore


Yossi Sarid, the former Knesset member, writes about the violence overtaking Israel in a piece in Ha’aretz titled "Nothing in Israel to be proud of anymore":

You may not have noticed something while you slept: This country has become hell, into which not only sinners – but also the innocent – may be cast at any moment. This is not to say that Israelis are tarred and feathered more than the citizens of many other countries, but that Israel is insufferably violent and that there is no longer anything to be proud of; only to be ashamed, if not to despair.

I still remember my days at New York University. How we would lord it over the "locals" – in Israel that could not happen, we would say to our hosts as we looked, pained, at the daily, blood-curdling manifestations of violence. In Israel, we told them, little children can go around alone and nothing bad will happen to them. Meanwhile, things have gone the other way: Tel Aviv today is more like New York of yesterday, and even like pathological, legendary Chicago…

Sometimes one has the impression that violence in this county is also undergoing privatization. The state no longer has a monopoly over the use of force. We meet violence everywhere: in the army, schools, hospitals, publicly, privately, driving and parking. And when the state is deprived of its singular status as enforcer, it also becomes a victim; it loses the faith of its citizens and remains a hollow frame. What a country.

Full column here.

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