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Summer of discontent

A year ago, Israelis felt in control of their destiny. Now the future looks bleak

By David B Green   October 2006

When I tell sympathetic non-Israelis that people here don’t feel that Israel’s continued existence is a given, the reaction is usually bewilderment. How can a state with such a strong army, an extensive nuclear arsenal, a highly developed and diversified economy and a healthy political system possibly perceive itself as existentially threatened? Its power and success make its description of itself as perpetual victim seem paranoid, and make its forceful responses to aggression by its neighbours appear extreme. Israel comes off as the neighbourhood bully, swaggering around the streets daring the other kids to knock the chip off its shoulder.

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