As someone who quite obviously likes to talk about Israel, and who thinks about Israel more than is healthy, or necessary, I am probably not one to criticize other people for talking about Israel too much. But, really, if neither presidential candidate, or vice-presidential candidate, mentioned Israel between now and the election, I wouldn't mind at all. Neither would Shmuel Rosner, who wrote in Slate this week:
Barely can a presidential debate go by without the mentioning of this tiny country in a distant region. Last week in the vice-presidential debate, Israel's name was mentioned 17 times. China was mentioned twice, Europe just once. Russia didn't come up at all. Nor Britain, France, or Germany. The only two countries to get more attention were Iraq and Afghanistan--the countries in which U.S. forces are fighting wars.
The goal of Zionism is normalcy, Jewish normalcy. This, of course, is an oxymoron, but we can still hope. The cause is not helped when presidential candidates, well-meaning though they might be, constantly invoke the existential dangers to Israel when arguing for a) getting out of Iraq; b) staying in Iraq; c) talking to Iran; or d) bombing Iran. Not everything is about Israel (I'm talking to you, Walt and/or Mearsheimer). America faces complicated challenges in the Middle East, only some of which involve Israel, and it would useful to hear this truth once in a while.
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