The terrible massacre of innocent civilians in Gaza by far superior Israeli military forces had me looking for any book related to the decades-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Unfair to Goliath by Ephraim Kishon is a collection of satirical short stories about the day to day lives of Jews in Israel.
A good number of the 40 stories are crass or corny but some are really funny. Of the latter, I can include “Unfair to Goliath,” the title story. It satirizes the Biblical David and Goliath story in the wake of the 1967 Six-Day War, the message of which can be summarized to sorry we won.
One thing that strikes me though is how the David and Goliath relationship has been made inverse today. The roots of the conflict is far from simple and the realities complex. What has become clear, however, is the Israeli State’s vicious equation of justifying the killing of hundreds of Palestinians for every single Israeli victim.
Where in “Unfair to Goliath” David symbolizes the Israelis who faced a coalition of numerically superior Arab armies, today we see the Palestinians being crushed under the heels of an Israeli Goliath. But here the analogy falls short. Unlike in the 2006 Israeli invasion of Lebanon, David is still missing. ■