PAUL BALLES: Transformed by Truth


Those who read ‘Breakthrough: Transforming Fear into Compassion,’ by Rich Forer may discover that integrity is an antidote for fear of the truth.

—Paul Balles / STAFF WRITER

Rich Forer visits the West Bank Seperation Wall

Richard Forer joined AIPAC for the same reason that most Jews joined this Israel lobby.  He refers to what he calls “the primal fear of many Jews around the world–the fear of another holocaust.”

He felt strong support for Israel at the time of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon and the capture of Israeli Gilad Shalit.  However some of his friends disagreed.

Retelling a story of his discussion with a friend, Forer raises every single argument and justification ever offered for the occupation of Palestine.

As a result, Forer decided to study the history, “something I’d never really done. What I found astounded me and blew all of my beliefs apart.”

He found out that everything he, as a Jewish American, had grown up believing was false.

He discovered that the propaganda about Israel wanting peace was not true. What Israel really wanted was more land. “That’s always been their primary objective; peace is secondary to that.”

He learned that Israel’s pre-emptive attacks on Egypt, Syria and Jordan in 1967 were based on a falsehood that they would have attacked Israel.

Forer discovered that stories put out by Bill Clinton and Dennis Ross after the 2000 Camp David summit were also lies about how Yasser Arafat “would not go along with a very fair and generous offer made by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak.”

The entire history of Israel and the Palestinians put out by Israel is deceitful according to Forer.

Growing up, “I identified more as a Jew than as an American…I felt that Israel was the one place where Jews could go if ever they were persecuted again.”

In his book, Breakthrough: Transforming Fear into Compassion, Forer tells of how he changed his thinking about Israel as a benign and democratic state to a tribe of people dominated by fear.

“If Jews looked at the history and not at the fictions, their fear would crumble,” says Forer.

“They would realize that the Palestinians were not only human but that the Jews have dehumanized the Palestinians through their indoctrination.”

Forer’s transformation took place at the time of the second Lebanese war. The typical response to his transformation was to call him a self-hating Jew.

Forer makes the important point, after his visit to the West Bank, that the Palestinians and Arabs are not angry at Jews but at the Zionist ideology and the government of Israel that oppresses them.

“Every single person I met (in the West Bank) said it’s not about Jews or Muslims, it’s about human beings, it’s a human rights issue.”

Interestingly, Forer notes that the government of Israel does not represent the Jewish people. “That’s just an excuse they make.

Most of the Jewish people in Israel are apathetic.  They don’t know what’s going on.”

They don’t even know that the Separation Wall is built mostly in Palestinian territory.

“They just live in denial. If the Israelis were honest, they’d say if the Palestinians would just lie down and do what we tell them to do, then we’ll have peace and maybe we’ll give them 8 to 10 percent of Palestine.”

In his book, Forer debunks all of the arguments that people make to defend Israel against criticism.

He talks about Hebron, the only Palestinian community with a Jewish presence.  He writes about the Separation Wall and about settlements and the seizure of land by Israelis.

Virtually any argument that he heard before his transformation Forer goes into and shows what the truth really is.


A Jew, brought up on Israeli propaganda, had his early beliefs challenged by friends.  His honest study of the facts resulted in a monumental transformation.

His courageous decision to share that experience led to the publication of his book Breakthrough: Transforming Fear into Compassion.

The blind will continue to label Forer a self-hating Jew.  This will come from apathetic Israelis and Zionists who have fed on fear and falsehood.

Those who read his book may discover that integrity is an antidote for fear of the truth.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR : Paul J. Balles is a retired American university professor and freelance writer who has lived in the Middle East for many years. He’s a weekly Op-Ed columnist for the GULF DAILY NEWS . Dr. Balles is also Editorial Consultant for Red House Marketing and a regular contributor to Bahrain This Month. Read Full Bio


We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully Informed
In fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming an educated opinion.

About VT - Policies & Disclosures - Comment Policy
Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT.
Previous articleNetanyahu Invited To Speak to DC Friends at Joint Session of Congress
Next articleEVOLVING STORY: Israeli Ambassador Leaves Cairo Amid Speculations of Opening Egypt’s Border with Gaza Soon