The Enemy’s Integrity
Is integrity a technical feature of professing any belief system, or is it intrinsically connected with the true, good and beautiful? If the latter, since we stand for these values, the enemy is by definition deprived of integrity. Is his recognition of this fact a precondition of reconciliation? And what happens if it is we who turn out to have been the enemy? How do we deal with the discovery that what we had thought to be integrity was only hubris? And if integrity is a technical feature only, is there any difference between it and consistency?
Konstanty Gebert is an international reporter and columnist at “Gazeta Wyborcza”, Poland’s biggest daily. He was a democratic opposition activist in the 1970s, when he was also an organizer of the Jewish Flying University, and an underground journalist in the 1980s under martial law. He is the founder of the Polish Jewish intellectual monthly „Midrasz“, and a board member of the Taube Centre for the Renewal of Jewish Life in Poland and of the Einstein Forum. He has taught in Poland, Israel and the US and has authored ten books, e.g. on the Polish democratic transformation and on French policy toward Poland, the Yugoslav wars and the wars of Israel, Torah commentary and post-war Polish Jewry. His essays have appeared in two dozen collective works in Poland and abroad, and his articles in newspapers around the world.