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Israel throws great demonstrations, and on any given night, there are a dozen demonstrations in Tel Aviv alone. But what do demonstrations do? What have demonstrations done? Must we admit that they have become an empty ritual?

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This is a segment from The “If I Don’t Recognize You, O Jerusalem” Edition.

One comment on “What Do and Don’t Demonstrations Do?

  1. Greg Pollock says:

    Whether or not demonstrations are politically efficacious, their absence would make dissent harder to maintain in the mind, for the more isolated we feel the less we will either speak or hear.

    The national right has not been without its own successes in demonstrations. One can go back to those against High Court decision at the dawn of the “judicial revolution,” those preceding the assassination of Rabin, or, more recently, those associated with Protective Edge and the public watch for the safety of the (already dead) missing Jewish teens. Rallying for a nation or ethnicity (such as Black Lives Matter in the US) or oppressed group (such as Metoo in the US) has a hard, tangible quality. Rallying for peace as such is abstract, porous, almost a untouched ghost of a hope. The nation does; peace lets things happen. Perhaps the two meet in religion, where abstraction is made concrete–this often fusing faith and ethnicity for full effect.

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