Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Dam Has Broken, By Uri Avnery

Translated by Uri Horesh from the original:

It happens to me sometimes: I dream of something, both in writing and in my mind. And when the dream comes true, I'm surprised more than anyone else. For several years I have been dreaming about a new movement to fill the huge void created on the left side of the political spectrum. I have also tried to define the necessary features for such a movement: It must not be a continuation of the old left, which has gone bankrupt. It must not be affiliated with any of the existing parties. It must not use the old symbols, the old language, the old slogans. Its leaders must not be the old leaders, the old politicians, the old ideologues. Those include myself as well.

Conversely, it must be created from scratch. It should come from below, from among the younger generation. They should be the source of the leadership and the leaders. It must create a new political language, coin new slogans, adopt new symbols. It must create a new comprehensive approach, and present a model of a completely different Israel. I like to call it “the second Israeli republic."

It has to integrate all of the components of such a new Israel, and to do so naturally and gradually. It should create a new social treaty, one that will significantly minimize the gap between the richest of the rich and the poorest of the poor; it should save democracy, so that it will include equality to all citizens, regardless of gender, race, language, religion (and lack thereof), sexual orientation and political views. It should contain and unite all of the struggles for social justice, democracy and peace. "All Inclusive".

Last Saturday night it seemed that this dream was beginning to come true. A new generation has risen, the required enthusiasm has been forming, the crowds shouted "RE-VO-LU-TION!" Many of the demonstrators want to concentrate on one point: affordable housing. There is nothing wrong with that focus. It may actually be quite welcome. It will inevitably lead to a broader concept: for there will be no money for public housing, if fortunes are invested in the settlements. The gap will expand, as long as the close connection between the tycoons and the politicians remains intact. Only peace will free Israel from the need to spend astronomical sums of money on the war machine, at the expense of health, education and welfare. No need to force the young demonstrators into acceleration. They will come to this conclusion on their own. Will the revolution will be realized? It is too soon to know. But the dam has broken, and we can no longer reverse the course.

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