As the horrific fire that consumed precious lives tragically illustrates, it’s possible for a single individual to cause irreparable damage. To be sure, we must be vigilant against those who seek to destroy. However, if our sole focus remains on those who either directly or indirectly engage in destructive acts, perhaps we risk losing even more.

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The loss of life in that disaster makes it inappropriate as a basis for comparison with other potential tragedies. But there are situations which are the metaphoric equivalent of a hot coal being thrown into a dry underbrush.


One such case is the anti-Israel “Boycott, Divestment, and Sanction” (BDS) movement. A critique that delegitimizes Israel’s right to exist is, unfortunately, not benign. The consequences, not just for Israeli Jews and their diaspora brethren, but for Middle East and world peace, are palpable. By calling for the end of Israel as a Jewish state, delegitimizers are re-inviting a military struggle that is the antithesis of peaceful coexistence.

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