Yet the shortsighted attempt to compartmentalize Israeli extremists — to treat them as inherently more repugnant than “mainstream” hawks and nationalists — is not simply doomed to fail. It will, in fact, only enable more violence. Israeli society refused to recognize that Kahanism drew from the rivers of Zionism, rather than the other way around, only to find that it would return to dominate public life. American Jewish organizations are now making the same mistake. They hope that somehow, with just enough petitions or strongly-worded condemnations, they will defeat the scourge of Smotrich — without addressing the ideology and state structures that both encourage his call for genocide, and give him and his successors the power to fulfill it. They are dangerously wrong.
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