Melanie Phillips on the excoriation of apostate leftist Israeli professor Benny Morris:
The Israeli historian Professor Benny Morris is currently spending time in Britain doing research for a new book. Morris has earned the unusual distinction of becoming a target of ire from both sides of the political divide. Once excoriated as a ‘New Historian’ for allegedly distorting the early history of Israel, in recent years he has become a hate-figure for the left. This is because, since the 2000 intifada, he has come to believe that the single most important reason for the Middle East impasse is that there is no Palestinian ‘partner for peace’, and that instead the Palestinians show by every word and deed that they want to wipe Israel off the map.
He remains committed to a ‘two-state solution’; he still believes the Israeli ‘settlements’ are an obstacle to peace (although not the obstacle, which is Palestinian rejectionism); in no way can he be described a man of ‘the right’. Maybe it is for that reason that he sustains such vicious abuse from the left; nothing drives them more crazy than being confronted by an apostate upon whom they cannot pin the lazy label that automatically consigns him or her to exile beyond the pale.
Whatever; the fact remains that Morris displays considerable courage by bluntly and implacably telling the brutal truth as he sees it – that there is no real difference between Abbas and the Hamas, and that a Palestinian state that doesn’t accept Israel’s right to exist will be a staging post for the elimination of Israel. To those on the left – including Jews – this is a heresy that is simply impossible to acknowledge without provoking in themselves an existential political and moral meltdown. And the fact that one of their own is voicing it means that he must therefore be banished to the third circle of hell, aka ‘the right’.
Last year, the Israel Society at Cambridge University cravenly cancelled a proposed talk by Morris after a Facebook campaign whipped up complaints against him of ‘Islamophobia’ and ‘racism.’…