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  • When Mr. Right Hates Israel

    From The Seesaw in The Jewish Daily Forward

    Can I Marry an Anti-Zionist?

    Mr. Right Hates IsraelI am an unmarried 32- year-old woman who is very ready to settle down and have kids. At the beginning of this year I met a really great guy. I am okay with his non-Jewishness because it will not interfere with my Jewishness or my kids’ Jewishness. I am not okay with his politics on Israel, which he calls an apartheid state. I tell him he hasn’t read enough, but he says the military occupation, settlements and large numbers of Palestinians who have died are all he needs to know. I am a Zionist, my father was born in Israel, and I am wondering if this should be a dealbreaker, or if that is ridiculous and I should just get over it.

    Red Flags Only Get Redder

    HAROLD BERMAN: In the midst of an otherwise satisfying relationship, many find it easier to overlook red flags, hoping they will go away. But red flags only get redder, and you are wise to be addressing them now. First, you don’t know that his “non-Jewishness … will not interfere with” your or your future children’s Jewishness. Although there are certainly examples of relatively tension-free interfaith marriages, many otherwise strong interfaith relationships still must labor hard through myriad issues that aren’t apparent before the wedding. What you envision is not a sure thing.

    What is a sure thing, however, is that your boyfriend’s attitudes toward Israel will have an impact, likely adverse, on any long-term relationship you develop with him. I write this as three Israeli boys were just found brutally murdered by Palestinians, and groups like the Presbyterian Church have expressed much the same attitude toward Israel as your boyfriend. As someone who calls Israel home, and who every single day interacts with Palestinians at close range, I can say unequivocally that your boyfriend doesn’t have the facts.

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