03 April 2011

160: A Closing Window

Truth be told, I don't worry about an 0-3 start to a season.  April seems to set the tone in a way but if you think about it, not really.  For a month and a half many of the players in baseball stretch and ready themselves for the six month run to the playoffs in fairly artificial conditions.  And then, especially for those teams that move north, to the cold and the rain, there is an adjustment period in which a whole new pre-season kicks into gear.  Generous pitching and spotty batting notwithstanding, it's far more reasonable start worrying about a record in late May or early June.  That's me.  You're free to do as you wish.

What I did find myself worrying about today during the Brewers' shellacking and sweep-fest in Cincinnati, was Israel, particularly given the dire estimations of Ethan Bronner in Sunday's Times about the ticking diplomatic time clock, Israel, Palestine and the U.N.  Here is a painted picture, the result of decades of failed diplomacy and the unstable irony wrapped up in the notion that at the end of the day, Israel may face a United Nations declared Palestine, similar to the way Israel was presented to the world via a U.N. vote.  Non-negotiated borders are far more problematic for Israel on so many levels and so one had the sense reading this article that we are facing, arguably, one more chance to get the two sides to the negotiating table to set borders for the two states.  What's meant to happen to the much talked about land-swaps when, by fait accompli, that land is suddenly in another state?  This next series of steps is going to require such a unified and concerted effort that belies any diplomatic moves we've seen from either side in decades.

See what I mean?  Here's where baseball is nothing but a guilty pleasure.

As Israel reacted to Goldstone's retraction of his Report's claim that Israel intentionally killed Palestinian civilians in Operation Cast Lead, the Huffpost shared a link to an Israel military photograph of a thousand Hezbollah bunkers in Southern Lebanon, bunkers for rockets that can reach Tel Aviv and that most people believe will be used in a future conflict between Israel and Hezbollah.  It's not a good situation; and with turmoil heating up across the region, Israel needs a far greater sense of unity and purpose in order to be in a strong position to defend itself and achieve the necessary diplomatic victories with Palestinians to ensure peace.

Again, perspective.  One shellacking--yesterday's 12-3 loss to the Reds--brings to mind, yet again, how important great pitching is to a team's success.  In baseball, it's the most proactive thing you can do--assemble a great staff of people who know how to throw a ball and where.

With a window closing, I pray that Israel and Jewish communities around the world will have the skill to get the ball through a shrinking space, into daylight, for peace.

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