# 140 / Editorial

Videos, corpses, devastated kibbutzim, survivors’ testimonies: a month and a half after the massacre, its traces are still being collected, analysed and deciphered in an attempt to reconstruct the horror of this unimaginable event. At a time when the Israeli response is still raining down on Gaza, when the death toll is mounting and when speeches are flourishing that do not hesitate to question the reality of the massacre, it is easy to understand the need to let the world know what happened, even to remind it of what it seems to have forgotten so quickly. In her text, however, Frédérique Leichter-Flack emphasises another aspect of this initial effort to archive and document. The work undertaken is part of a collective imaginary and a set of testimonial practices that cannot be understood without reference to a double legacy of memory: that of the Holocaust and that of the pogroms. Sensitive to the ambiguity of Israeli society – which, although imbued with this memory, has nevertheless sought to construct itself by avoiding the figure of the Jew as a powerless victim – she questions the effects of memorial interweaving, between traumatic revival and a resource for not allowing oneself to be stupefied by the Gorgon.

Periods of crisis have the merit of clarifying the political game, sharpening positions and bringing to light previously unnoticed dividing lines. Crisis is also a time of revelation – and disillusionment. Certain people on the left have had the unpleasant surprise of discovering that those they thought were their allies, with whom they thought they shared values and political goals, have proved incapable of issuing a clear condemnation of the Hamas massacres, or even of refraining from gloating at the news of the murder of Jews. Mitchell Abidor interviewed K. Adam Raz, one of the signatories of a tribune of Israeli progressives disillusioned by the reaction of the ‘global left’. In their exchange, one senses the disappointment and frustration of a young historian who has devoted his research to documenting the human rights violations committed by the Israeli state, in the hope that his criticism will help to build a fairer situation for both peoples, but who finds that his work is also being exploited by ideologues who believe that Israel is inherently guilty and must be destroyed. Beyond this disillusionment, we also hear the dismay of a left that no longer knows what criteria to use in its criticism or how to recognise its allies. Since the editors of K. have our own ideas on the subject, we have decided to accompany this interview with a short reflection that we hope will help the disillusioned to break the deadlock.

The Editors

In the aftermath of the 7 October massacre, the Israeli left saw how a section of the global left in the United States and Europe refused to condemn the murder of 1,200 men, women and children, most of them Jewish. Within the extreme left, some even glorified the pogrom as a decolonising event and expressed no hesitation in their objective support for Hamas. Adam Raz – interviewed in K. this week- was one of the authors of the open letter expressing his ‘concern at the inadequate response of someAmerican and European progressives to Hamas’s targeting of Israeli civilians, a response that reflects a disturbing trend in the political culture of the global left’. Julia Christ looks back at the disillusionment of the Israeli left and sets out the political lessons to be learned from the rift that has emerged between the Israeli left and part of the global left. 

Adam Raz is an Israeli historian. He has published numerous books and articles condemning, in particular, the expulsion of Arabs during the 1948 war and the post-1967 occupation. As a left-wing activist who was stunned by some of the reactions in the United States and Europe after October 7 within his own political camp, he is one of the authors of the open letter: “Statement by Israel-based progressives and peace activists. Regarding the debates on recent events in our region”.

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Thanks to the Paris office of the Heinrich Böll Foundation for their cooperation in the design of the magazine’s website.