Marc Goldberg

What Israel means to me


I’ve been strongly critical of the Israeli government both during this current crisis and for a long time before. The reason for this is down to a fundamental belief that not only is it possible but absolutely necessary to change the dynamic of Israel/Palestine in order to ensure Israel’s continued, long term, survival.

We are the people who resurrected a language from the dead, we are the people who transformed ourselves from a wandering people into a nation with a state, we are the people who have created a country that is at the forefront of technological and scientific development. We willed our state from a dream into reality.

Yet when it comes to making peace with Palestinians the talk immediately turns to how it’s impossible, how the ball is in the Palestinians’ court and they aren’t interested.

But just like we made so many other things happen we can make peace happen too. We have to. in order to secure the future of our tiny state.

But our problem is that the very notion of what Israel is has become conflated with biblical ideas about the lands of our ancestors. Whereas once it was good enough to be in the general area now we have to be roaming around in the exact same fields as Abraham and the ancient Jewish people.

But Israel means more to me than mere fields and hills.

Israel is about freedom, it’s about Jewish sovereignty, it’s about having a voice among the United Nations of the world, it’s about having a Jewish army, navy and air force to protect us, it’s about living as part of a majority free from threat from our fellow citizens, free from intimidation and free from arbitrary arrest.

Israel is about not having to fear that the government will suddenly turn on us..

Israel is about having a place that any Jew can run to and be granted sanctuary.

Israel can be the light in the darkness.

It’s time to start working to make it that way.

About the Author
Marc Goldberg is the author of Beyond the Green Line, a story his service in the IDF fighting through the al Aqsa Intifada