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Archive for July 5th, 2007

Zionism, A Security Problem

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 5, 2007

I just read an article/interview with Gilad Atzmon – I disagree with basically all he has to say – except when he quotes Avrum Burg allegedly quoting David Ben-Gurion:”I think it was Ben-Gurion who said that “the Zionist movement was the scaffolding to build the home, and that after the State’s establishment, it should be dismantled”. It is pretty easy to see why David Ben-Gurion would say such a thing – there would no longer be a need for when its goal, a Jewish Homeland, had been achieved – just as there was no longer a need for Lehi after the Brits had left. Any land acquisition out-side the 1947-48 borders goes beyond what has been agreed upon.

Yes, I have friends in i Settlements in Palestinian Territory, and I think they should move, I think they are wrong to be there – even more I think the Israeli Government is wrong to “give” them living space there.

Nothing says that Israel cannot accommodate all Jewish Immigrants inside the 1947-1948 borders. Except a hoard of variations of the term “Zionism”. I also suspect another thing is playing into Israel’s reason to expand on Palestinian Territory – most of the Jews making Aliyah are from the US, well to-do middle-class people, who can’t or won’t move into something that is not pristine, well-supplied Suburbia-like neighborhoods. If such neighborhoods does not exist inside Israel, then the Israeli Government creates another security zone on Palestinian soil and builds a Settlement there. Why? Because Israel needs the money those Americans bring.

I just took a look a map of Israel and the West Bank – and honestly, I cannot see how those small dark-green patches from a point of view of strategy are not huge security problems.

Jewish Settlements on the West bank 2002

Map is from here

It does very clearly raise the question – Why? There is a Jewish Homeland, so why want more? There is room for 13 million Jews in Israel. Why put civilians at risk for the sake of an Idea? Normal thinking Nations move their civilians out of harms way, out of war zones – it makes no sense to move civilians into a war zone, it’s bad politics at best and insane at worst. That wasn’t what the early Zionists wanted or even thought of when they immigrated.

The first Zionists didn’t move to ready-made neighborhoods after making Aliyah – they worked them up from the ground on land they had bought with honest money.

Zionism was never meant to be a political tool against anything – it was meant to be a political tool for something. There is a Jewish Homeland – the goal has been achieved – now, let’s dismantle the instrument that achieved it.

“Zionism” is obsolete and it more than anything functions in its antonymic meaning as a cover for Antisemitism, and in today’s society a more proper word would be Jewish Nationalism, which would also uncover the Antisemitism expressed by those opposed to Jewish Nationalism in it’s simplest form:

Nationalism, in its broadest sense, is a devotion to one’s nation and its interests over those of all other nations.[1] The term can also refer to a doctrine[2] or political movement[3] that holds that a nation—usually defined in terms of ethnicity or culture—has the right to constitute an independent or autonomous political community based on a shared history and common destiny.”

In its simplest form, Nationalism is the same a National Self-Determination:

“The principle of self-determination, often seen as a moral and legal right, is that every nation is entitled to a sovereign territorial state, and that every specifically identifiable population should choose which state it belongs to, often by plebiscite. It is commonly used to justify the aspirations of an ethnic group that self-identifies as a nation toward forming an independent sovereign state, but it equally grants the right to reject sovereignty and join a larger multi-ethnic state.”

Now that this has been clarified it is possible to look at Israel of today and determine if the nationalism practiced by the Israeli Government is a simple exercise in Self-Determination or not.

Looking at the map above – knowing that the borders of 1947-48 are not being honored, it is quite easy to see that we are not looking at National Self-Determination, but at National Expansion. Israel is expanding at the expense of the Palestinians.

In my mind this is immoral, and I am amazed that honest religious Jewish Immigrants will actually accept homes that are an intrusion on someone else land against International agreements.


Posted in Israel, Zionism | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

The Jewish Problem??

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on July 5, 2007

The first was bad enough. ‘There are other theocratic countries, not least Israel“. All right, he [Prof. Steven Rose] should go back and look at a simple primer of political theory and learn the difference between a theocracy and a secular, liberal democratic, ethnic nationalism, but so far so depressingly familiar.”[…]”Then I heard a chilling phrase that took the breath away. “We cannot bring everything back down to the Jewish problem“. Shit. Did I hear that? The Jewish problem? Is mainstream British liberalism using the language of the Holocaust?”

Or do you [Prof. Steven Rose] really think that the world’s problems are master-minded by and/or, the responsibility of, the Jews, and that you – as a Jew yourself – are able to point that out in a way that non-Jews cannot?”

Two Blogs, and divergent approaches – both on the matter of the “Jewish Problem” – One from a decidedly Jewish Perspective and the other seemingly from a non-Jewish Perspective.Both react strongly to the idea of the “Jewish Problem”. I agree. It is kind of chilling that in our day and time someone can go on the air and seriously talk about the “Jewish Problem” and yet it is not.

The non-Jewish World has been obssessed with “the Jewish Problem” for centuries if not millenniums, and it has naturally rubbed off on the Jewish world. Some times in terms of self-hating acceptance of the implication of what non-Jews have painted onto us, and some times in terms of aggressive paranoia that sees ghouls in every corner of other peoples’ minds.

Don’t get me wrong – there really are people out there that hold the idea of “The Jewish Problem” very dear and preach it like a gospel – and Jew Watch for instance, and then there is the odd Canadian Politician who will spout it when ever he is disagreed with.

But we really need to be discerning when approaching peoples’ criticism of f.i Israel. Israel has it’s faults, and those need to be addressed seriously from a perspective of Human Rights and Social Justice as well as a Religious one. We can’t ask for fairness for Israel, if we try and white-wash her short-comings, hiding behind the mantra “Don’t bring up the Jewish Problem!”

True, there is no JEWISH Problem, but there certainly is an Israeli one, and if we keep claiming that Israel and Jews are not interchangeable, then we shouldn’t react as if they were when people criticize Israel.

We should just calmly explain to them that those two are not interchangeable and that they need to have their heads examined if they think so, because “The Jewish Problem” is just another Ghoul from the past that needs to be buried once and for all.

Posted in Religion | Tagged: , , , | 5 Comments »

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