Know hope:

Even as a child I found the rhetoric didn't add up. How could this somehow "all-powerful" country so successfully "let the Arab nations sink into lethargy", as the official speeches would have us believe? And why, at the same time, were they so confident that the "small state of Zionist gangs" would inevitably "disappear from the map"? I never found a convincing answer...

The sustained absence of economic recovery, the drop in education levels, the spread of fundamentalist ideology are all linked with a lack of democracy and the corrupt ruling families, with their pompousness and contempt for their peoples – not with Israel.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.