RSS

Can Israel Be a Moral JEWISH State?

I am a Zionist but have lost faith in Israel as our homeland

 I was raised as a Zionist after my Dad, the man responsible for much of the liberation of Buchenwald returned to Boston. He got death threats because we were the only Jews in our suburb.  My family had our lives threatened. The local nuns spread horrible stories of deicide.  The kids tried to stone me for killing Jesus.  My Dad told stories of Jews, especially certain Boston Rabbis, willing to hide stories about anti-semitism out of fear that the goyem would make our lives worse.  
 
Against this reality of America, stood a belief in a moral, JEWISH Israeli.  Even if imperfect, Israel had a moral edge, .. not the kind of country where Kushner and Muhamud ben Salman can have shabbat together with Trump.

Now my kids live in Oslo.  Every Shabbat we celebrate Norwegian sundown, lighting candles over SKYPE at 9AM Seattle time.  We worry about the kids’ yiddishkeit but we are convinced that in Norway they have a richer Jewish life then they would have in Seattle. Thanks to Chabad, an impressive expat Jewish community, and the Norwegian .. including Muslim .. community that understand the difference between true respect and condescension.  Being different in Norway is celebrated not tolerated.

Meanwhile, our kids need to deal with how Israel is seen.  Israel, as seen in Norway, is headed down the whirlpool of right wing bigotry. Israel itself lacks the respect and

Meanwhile, today, Israel’s Attorney General filed charges of bribery and corruption against Bibi Netanyahu. Netanyahu immediately claimed the charges were faked.

celebration of diversity that makes Norway a good Jewish home.

It is not, as our kids tell us, because Norwegians lack a belief in Israel’s right to exist.  It is the nature of Israel itself that is the issue. Yitzak Rabin explained that beautifully when he talked of his handshake with Arafat. Rabin said he had no other choice, Jews can not become Spartans!  Today’s Israel is seen as a country driven by jingoism, a fit partner to Trump, Muhamud ben Salman, or Hungary’s Viktor Orbán .

There is a song sung at Peach, “Dayenu.” Dayenu translates as “”it would suffice” and refers to the myriad of things Jews credit the Deity for.  In that spirit, I as what would it take for Jews to turn from the Israel?

 

דַּיֵּנוּ 

what would it take for the Jews

to turn from the Israel?  

What happens when we read of a joint Saudi/Egyptian/Saudi/American effort to invade Syria or Lebanon with the IDF in the lead? דַּיֵּנוּ

What happens when the IDF take charge of the failed ground war in Yemen .. using Egyptian troops because the Saudis are too damn rich to risk their lives? דַּיֵּנוּ

What happens when there is a revolution in Jordan and the Palestinian majority, after HAMAS overthrows the Saudi sponsored Hashemites? דַּיֵּנוּ

What happens when, finally, the Palestinians can channel MLK, Mandela, and Gandhi and take up the weapons of non violence? Do the Israelis channel Hillel, Kahane and Trump? 

 דַּיֵּנוּ


Your Comment