Monday, February 22, 2010

Brazen hardliners and ardent critics: the Israel I have seen

As he prepares to leave Jerusalem after four years as a correspondent, Rory McCarthy reflects on a new, harsher climate of thought that is apparent in the wake of the Dubai assassination. But this attitude is not universal: dissent thrives in the most unlikely places
Living here for the past four years, it is hard for me to escape the sense that there is a new climate in Israel, one in which dissent is marginalised and any criticism from abroad robustly shouted down. In part, it is the result of the election of a staunchly right-wing coalition government. It also plays on a sense long shared by many Israelis that they are embattled, misunderstood and find themselves in an increasingly unsympathetic world.

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