I haven’t see this till now; apparently it’s been up on Vimeo for three months, a trailer for a documentary-in-progress on Jews escaping the blinders of Zionism, by Bruce Robbins and Jeff Boyar. Initial Development Trailer: “Some of My Best Friends Are Zionists.” I want to believe scholar Robbins is a tipping-point figure. Has he held forth against Zionism before?
The trailer features Judith Butler, Alisa Solomon, Tony Kushner, James Schamus, and Jerry Koenig of the Forward. Also Columbia’s Robbins, and Alan Sokal who I gather was once a star in the neoconstellation. Now I wonder why Koenig’s common-sense awareness in my headline, quoted below, is not reflected in the Forward every week?
Bruce Robbins of Columbia: going to Israel was worse than he had imagined; he saw the wall encircling the Palestinians and thought of the Warsaw Ghetto. Robbins focuses on the water supply, and the horrifying fact that all the Palestinian buildings have water tanks, because the Palestinians in occupation have no control over their water.
Schamus: Ideologies are malleable. Yes he grew up with Zionism, but the whole deal with an ideology is that you get to abandon it or move on…
“Something’s terribly wrong here and Israel has much to account for in this…” says Tony Kushner. And the accusation that by saying as much you are going to destroy Israel– “This is bullshit.”
“It’s gone so far afield now, I don’t know… we’ve made decisions not to visit the country because it would be so uncomfortable” — Jerry Koenig, the advertising director for the Forward.
Butler: You cannot produce a state based on the rights of some refugees and create, in 1948, another 750,000. So: honor the rights of all refugees.