Archive for October 12th, 2009


Who’s afraid of young Israelis talking?

October 12th, 2009 — 3:57pm

By Sydney Levy

Are Israeli youth allowed to speak about their views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? Not always.

Some believe that the ideals of Israeli democracy and free speech stop at the border. Take the example of the young Israeli conscientious objectors — the Shministm — currently in speaking tours both in the United States and in South Africa.

Here’s Dan Klein, the North America campus director for StandWithUs, speaking to the JPost on the issue:

“I definitely understand that Israelis have the right not to agree with their government. That`s fine. Every citizen in a democracy has that right. But you take that up in your country. Once you take that abroad, what does that gain you?”

I do not understand the distinction he makes. Maybe Dan believes that news and information stop at the border, at any border. Or maybe he ignores the fact that the Shministim have already gathered a great deal of international attention while they were still in Israel: over 60,000 letters of support and counting, over 53,000 hits on their short film in Youtube, and a great deal of media attention in a good number of countries around the world.

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