A CONVERSATION ON ISRAEL: JONATHAN TOBIN AND J.J. GOLDBERG
Is Israel locked in a tragic dispute between two peoples claiming the same land - or a global conflict between Western democracy and Islamist terrorism? Is partition into two states the only way to ensure Israel’s survival - or is it the surest path to ever-increasing bloodshed and possibly even endangering Israel’s survival? Jonathan S. Tobin, senior online editor and chief political blogger of Commentary Magazine, and J. J. Goldberg, editor-at-large of the Forward newspaper and former U.S. bureau chief of the Israeli news magazine The Jerusalem Report, will debate these and other critical issues concerning the State of Israel.
Mr. Tobin will argue that Israel stands on the front line of a global conflict between Islamist terrorism and Western democracy. When American liberals try to pressure Israel into appeasing terrorists that oppose peace on any terms, they not only threaten Israel’s security and seek to nullify its democracy but also weaken the West in an existential struggle.
Mr. Goldberg will argue that Israel could enter a regional alliance with moderate Sunni states if it accepted the Saudi-led Arab Peace Initiative leading to a Palestinian state. As long as it tries to retain control of Judea and Samaria it will face continuing Palestinian violence, ever-worsening diplomatic isolation and, ultimately, the end of the Jewish state.
Jonathan S. Tobin is the senior online editor and chief political blogger of Commentary, the neo-conservative magazine of opinion and ideas covering American politics, international affairs, Judaism and social, cultural and literary issues. Tobin was executive editor of The Jewish Exponent in Philadelphia from 1998 through 2008. He is a frequent commentator on domestic politics, Israel, and Jewish affairs.
J.J. Goldberg is editor-at-large of the newspaper The Forward, where he served as editor in chief for seven years. In the past he served as U.S. bureau chief of the Israeli news magazine Jerusalem Report, managing editor of The Jewish Week of New York and as a nationally syndicated columnist in Jewish weeklies. He previously served as an education specialist with the World Zionist Organization in Jerusalem and was a member and secretary of Kibbutz Gezer, near Tel Aviv. Goldberg is the author of Jewish Power: Inside the American Jewish Establishment, published in 1996.