Kemp, Martin. “Collusion as a Defense against Guilt: Further Notes on the West’s Relationship with Israel and the Palestinians.” International Journal of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies 12.3 (2015): 192-222.
Returning to the theme of an earlier paper (Kemp 2011), the author explores the anxiety-ridden nature of debate about Israel-Palestine in the West. Rather than guilt per se, it is suggested that it is collective defences against guilt that are threatened when the issue is raised in public. The West’s dilemma has been to reconcile its commitment to universalist values with its support for Israel. Zionism’s objective of a Jewish state in an already inhabited country has led inevitably to repression and racism. The outcome has been collusion in a cover-up of the true nature of Israeli ideology and policy, akin to the collusion that takes place in a clinical relationship when a psychoanalyst fails to make a necessary interpretation to a patient in order to avoid discomfort or conflict. Among the many unfortunate consequences has been a failure to challenge the instrumentalization of the Holocaust, paradoxically now used to neutralize opposition to the subjugation of the Palestinians.