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What's Wrong With This Picture?

I understand that it is Haaretz, Israel's far-left major newspaper, but seriously.... What is wrong with Bradley Burston?

I have been trying in the last few days to make clear to Israelis the enormity of the meaning of the presidential election in the United States.

Only one thing works.

"Imagine," I tell them, "that Israel elected an Arab prime minister."

At first there is, without exception, a stunned silence. Then something dawns. Something unformed. And, in general - even with leftists - something deep inside that seems unable to wrap the head around the thought.

One should hope not, at least.

In Israel, when one thinks of an Arab, the image first to mind is of a suicide bomber or a Qassam-launching terrorist, or an Arab elsewhere in the region that supports such. It may not be a fair image to some, but it is not unreasonably arrived at by those living in a state under siege since its founding. Which is the whole point of Burston's analogy to begin with, fair or unfair.

"Imagine," I tell Mr. Burston, "that Americans do not think of African-Americans as combatant enemies or the supporters of such." We have a very open and tragic history, yes. But to compare our election of the first African-American President of the United States to an Israeli election of its first Arab prime minister is patently ludicrous.

I read Haaretz for its excellent news coverage. On days like today, I am reminded why I do not read its OpEds.

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