In his article, “The ‘Fire’ This Time” (Dec. 25), Ted Merwin uncritically reports what he describes as “searching questions” raised by “Land Of Fire.”
The thinking of Mario Diament, the playwright, is epitomized by his declaration that Israel and the Palestinian Arabs need to break “the vicious cycle of four generations of Israelis learning to be occupiers and four generations of Palestinians living under the occupation.”
Leaving aside the playwright’s tendentious and highly controversial framing of the issues, his referring twice to “four generations” of “occupation” is quite revealing since, by any measure, “four generations” brings one back at least 80 years, well prior to Israel’s independence and decades prior to Israel’s “occupation” in the wake of the Six-Day War of 1967.
It appears that Mario Diament, along with Hamas and other Islamist groups, views the “occupation” as encompassing all of Israel since statehood. It is noteworthy that Merwin does not leaven his unstinting praise of Mr. Diament with a comment, or even a question, regarding this rather extreme position.
Regrettably, this is the type of distorted reporting that is more likely to misinform than enlighten the readers of The Jewish Week.