A Sign of the Apocalypse

By Jeffrey Goldberg

The Israeli government is going after a bookseller:

Leading Israeli authors Amos Oz and David Grossman have added their support to efforts to head off the deportation of an East Jerusalem bookstore owner whose shop at the American Colony Hotel specializes in works about the Arab-Israeli conflict and has been a major destination over the years for diplomats and foreign journalists.

As reported a week ago in Haaretz, the bookshop owner, Munther Fahmi, who was born in East Jerusalem, became subject to deportation after his status as an Israeli resident ended because he had spent about 20 years living in the United States and received American citizenship. Fahmi has filed a request with the inter-ministerial committee authorized to grant exceptions to the denial of residency rights.

I'm wondering if anyone in the current Israeli government understands just how ridiculous this looks? A Jewish country trying to deport a person who sells books? A person who was born in the city in which he keeps his shop?

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2011/03/a-sign-of-the-apocalypse/73158/