Immediately after the horrors of October 7, Edward Rothstein thought some things might change about the way the West saw Israel. Not only was he wrong, he soon realized, but he was wrong in almost the exact same that he had been wrong in the days after September 11, 2001:
As it turned out, in the aftermath of 9/11, the doctrines of the intellectuals became even more . . . doctrinaire. In the following decades, the “root-causes” argument was heard anytime a particular kind of terrorism was confronted. The extremism of a terrorist act was taken to be proportional to the size of the grievance. Think of what awful things had to have been done to inspire that kind of primordial fury!
Not only that, but as has been reiterated again and again over the decades, if you respond to terror in any combative way without addressing the purported injustice, then clearly you are becoming part of a “cycle of violence.”
What has been made clear over the past month is that under current ideological conditions, anything done to the Jews in Israel would be justified. Anything. And that something very close to nothing would be tolerated in response.