There is a lot of bad faith in this argument as these are the same Zionists who justified the Gaza carnage on the grounds that the residents of Sderot and, indeed, all the Southwest of Israel had suffered irreversible psychological damage due to the Qassam rockets fired by Hamas from Gaza. Well, a country whose southwestern citizens are mentally scarred for life can hardly be said not to be losing out, right?
But I have always thought that Israel is paying an additional price for not having peace. Its society is open to forms of violence that are not usual in other countries, and which stem from the impunity with which its soldiers abuse the Palestinians.
Roi Ben-Yehuda, writing in Haaretz, concurs. After listing a few striking examples of violence that took place in Israel this summer, he reflects:
Israelis get conditioned for violence through a highly militarized and patriarchal social order; an exclusive form of nationalism that privileges the interests of a particular group of citizens; a media obsessed with narratives of war; and a religious establishment that often lends spiritual credence to the institutional violence of the state.In Internet forum language, +1. Israel is a brutalized society with a high rate of domestic violence, an underworld that engages in gang warfare complete with drive-by shootings and innocent people killed, attacks on ethnic and sexual minorities, and the state within a state of religious extremists, who perpetrate violence unhindered by the police.
Yes, Palestinians may be paying a price for not accepting a Bantustan, but Israelis are also paying theirs for sticking to the theory that everything can be solved through violence.