472 Comments

Thank you for this interview Bari, so impressive. Thank you to Lucy Aharish for her insights and bravery. As an American I know Israel must prevail in this war. Hamas is ISIS and must always be fought by all of us. I have sympathy for Palestinians some of whom I have known and worked with over many years and I hope the best for them. I also know that it is a very complex situation in Israel and its neighbors that any of us in the US who have not been there and spent time there can possibly comment on with any authority. Thus we should listen to people like Ms. Aharish among others who actually know something. I hear people around me here in America expressing passionate and self righteous views on the tragic and ugly events that have taken place since Oct. 7 of last year. Yet when I ask them, they are essentially and often literally ignorant of the history of Israel let alone the composition of the country and its neighbors such as Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt much less the rest of the MidEast in the last 150 years and how things got to this state. The Ottoman Empire, Trans-Jordan, the Balfour Declaration, they never heard of them. Not that that would give any answers but it would suggest that the situation is highly volatile and complex and best left to the people involved. However, we can conclude what policy we should pursue as Americans in the interest of the US and for me that means supporting Israel as a liberal democratic country who shares our values and interests. I can criticize policies of Israel such as the settlers in the West Bank and certain racists in the Knesset. As an American ally of Israel I'm entitled to that. But in the bigger picture I will leave how the pursuit of totally destroying Hamas as a military entity is conducted to the IDF as the experts. I have not been to war but in my 70+ years I have traveled the world and experienced enough human violence and suffering to have a minimal appreciation of what is happening in Gaza. It's bad but the only way to end it is to see this through to the end of Hamas. These guys are bloody-minded extremists who do not think like us and do not care about life except maybe their own. A close friend of mine who was a combat veteran of Vietnam once told me "You don't stop shooting when you think the enemy is dead. You stop when he thinks he's dead." It's awful but having talked to a few of these guys I've come to suspect he was right.

Expand full comment
Mar 16·edited Mar 16

To respond to a comment...If the Arabs of Palestine (residents and immigrants up to 1945, per the UN) and the neighboring Arab states were pacifist, we would have had a jolly nice 2 state solution in 1947.

Expand full comment

What a great interview, Bari. Many thanks I love the idealism but these parents should not fool themselves. Their son, Adam, cannot be both a Jew and a Muslim. He will have to decide who is God.. Is He Allah or Jehovah or the Triume God of Christianity or he can be an agnostic, atheist, or Deist. I deeply admire deep considerations of the limitations of Islam, like that of Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Mosab Hassan Yousef in his book, Son of Hamas which I strongly endorse. Also Nabeel Qureshi is his book Seeking Allah and Finding Jesus.

Expand full comment

Woman this, woman that... who cares if she is a woman or not? jeez....

Expand full comment

This Muslim Israeli woman is certainly a brave and moral person. But she is not a "hope for the middle East" since Israelis will not now or in future place their existence at risk nor will Arabs follow this woman's example. In truth she is simply a one-off outlier

Expand full comment

I’d write more, but have to deal with the tears.

Expand full comment

I just finished reading "Muhammad, His Life Based on the Earliest Sources" by Martin Ling. Mr. Ling was a convert to Islam, and this biography is written from a believer's perspective.

If Muhammad is the role model for even 1% of the Earth's 2 billion Muslims, it's hard to imagine there will ever be peace for Jews in the Middle East.

Expand full comment

How does this woman speak such perfect American English? It's amazing! And Hebrew and Arabic, I assume.

Expand full comment

I think you don't know the difference between aggressive and assertive statements. Read my posts again and you will see that I wrote absolutely nothing negative about Lucy Ararsh. I did say that intermarriage would not solve the problem of "peace in the Middle East"; any serious student of the situation would agree with me. And I also clearly stated that although I would never deny anone the right to love and marry whoever they wanted , I would certainly prefer Jews marrying Jew. Does that mean I have an "attitude" in your eyes?Does stating my opinion make me "aggressive"? Could it be that you just don't like what I wrote and so you are attacking me ad hominum, calling me names? Not very nice of you. Could it be that it's YOU who has an "attitude"?

I don't know how to relate to your statement that you could write "better" than me. Didn't know this was a literary competition...

And just for the record, I have been living in Israel for going on 48 years, continuously, and continue to bear daily responsibiliy for my opinions. You are certainly entitled to your own opinions , but from what you wrote I think I understood that you are preaching from a safe distance.

Expand full comment

Can you tell the difference between assertive and aggressive? I CLEARLY stated my opinions: that Lucy Ararish is a brave woman,; that she is entitled and blessed to marry whoever she loves; that intermarriage does not bring peace in and of itself. I also noted my own belief, that I would like Jews to marry other Jews and have Jewish children. I stated that I did not care who disagreed with these statements, but attacked no one and called no names.

You, on the other hand, were quite free with your nasty comments about me and my necessity to lose my so -called "attitude". Do you think living part of your life in Israel gives you permission to diss me ?

I will not stoop to that kind of thing.

Expand full comment

This was one of the most important and moving interviews I've heard in a very long time. Thank you, Bari and Lucy!

Expand full comment

Very passionate and inspiring interview. A powerful proof that Israel is a forward-thinking, democratic country - with flaws, no doubt - but its stem is solid. Not sure about the future of the Palestinian state though - how many decades will it take for these people to realize that the future of their children can't be built on the hatred of Jews? Palestinians need to find a better narrative to so that their children and grandchildren can have a future of their own. As of now, they don't have one.

Expand full comment

I just finished watching the interview, and it's phenomenal -- except for one disturbing detail.

At time-mark 01:25 (early in the intro), I hear that Lucy's marriage to Tsahi Halevi "sparked tremendous backlash from the country's religious far-right". But what I SAW on the screen to illustrate this "tremendous backlash" was a post from Betzalel Smotrich, which was totally irrelevant. It was aimed at MK Ahmed Tibi, not Lucy Aharish; and it had an obviously Zionist message (the only part translated to English) which actually supports Lucy's position. It was not at all disparaging against Arabs or intermarriage.

This dissonance could cause Israelis to turn off the clip before it even starts, which would be a shame since it's well worth watching.

Expand full comment

Yesterday, I watched Douglas Murray's interview Mosab Hassan Yousef, and today I watched Bari's interview with Lucy Aharish. Can't remember seeing more informative, poignant interviews ... ever. Thank you Bari and the entire FP team. Day in, day out, you provide journalism as it was meant to be delivered, and typically never is.

Expand full comment
founding

Thank you Bari, I agree quite an emotional and educational interview. Let us be realistic the world is in turmoil, politicians and citizens included. It is a fragile place but history is often repeated and the world has been in a fragile state before >> multiple times. When you look back you realize that in reality the lines on the world map that define borders of our countries might as well be drawn in pencil or crayon. I find the difference being most of the borders drawn were following a military victory. A winner and a loser and the loser does not get to draw the line. The country of Israel was drawn up by a committee. With good intentions by politicians with sometimes we must admit feigned sympathy. What to do with "those Jews". The answer give them some tiny piece of land and make them shut up and say thank you and keep quiet. What about the turmoil those Palestinians people will cause. Their brilliant answer was let that that feckless but well funded UN Organization handle them. So the result is you have "refugee camps" with multiple generations being raised with hatred ever since 1948. So they shook hands and went home with a "good Job well done" smile. For me this is another politically poorly thought out solution with even worse follow through. Todays sad reality result is hatred leading to absolutely heinous brutality, leading to more hatred and more brutality. Who do we think will govern and rule Gaza after the leaders are gone. The committee will, I am sad to say, decide to let the younger generation of Gazans have a chance to now govern. Cynically, I will now add the same generation that has been raised in our universities to hate our country as the Gazan children were raised to hate Jews. Does this sound promising?

Expand full comment

For the record, your characterization of her son as Moslem-Jewish is inaccurate. Judaism is inherited via the mother, thus without conversion, her son is decidedly not Jewish.

Expand full comment