US Envoy Dennis Ross says a mouthful

Papers are reporting that Dennis Ross, President Obama’s special advisor on the Middle East, said at the President’s Conference in Jerusalem on Thursday that Israel cannot sit idly by and wait for things to happen.   According to Haaretz:

bold steps need to be taken to make sure that Israel remains a Jewish and democratic state.

This statement struck me as ridiculous when I read it after I got home tonight. If bold steps need to be taken in the future, then what currently makes Israel Jewish and democratic? Certainly not its solvent borders. What steps were being taken to make it Jewish and democratic?

If someone told me I needed to exercise every day in order to stay in shape, that wouldn’t necessarily mean I’m not currently in shape – but it would mean that my pattern of behavior would lead me to gain weight unless I made specific efforts (which I need to be urged to do) to ensure that I am able to somehow stay in shape.

In this one little statement, Ross has said it all. Nothing Israel is doing (or not doing) is boding well for its self-definition as Jewish and democratic.