Trending Topics:

‘BirthWrong’ in the Cradle of Jewish Culture: Jews gather in southern Spain for tour that aims to repudiate Zionism

Middle East
on 136 Comments

It started with a drunken idea a month after Israel’s ground invasion of Gaza last summer. In a London pub, at a table filled with young leftist Jews, Lev Taylor’s voice rose above the din: “What we need is Birthwrong!”

When the laughter died down, the group fell into a serious discussion. Would it be possible to present a serious alternative to the Birthright Israel trip that has sent hundreds of thousands of young diaspora Jews through the pipeline of Zionist indoctrination? Before long, Taylor’s joke had become an agenda. Organizers were setting out to southern Spain to scout out sites of Jewish history from Andalusia to the Spanish Civil War, and to make contacts within the local Jewish community. By the end of the year, the BirthWrong trip was born. 

“It was drunk consensus that has been propelled forward by a strong desire to drink sangria in Spain,” Taylor joked.

He continued: “We were frustrated that there was an institutionalized theater centering around Israel, a well funded beach holiday for teens that was a secret way to get youth to care about Israel. But we were like, we can do a drunken holiday too but we can have it in Spain where the diaspora happens. Ours isn’t free but it will be fun, and there will be plenty of propagandizing and drinking too.” 

Tonight, I’ll join thirty people from around the world on the first installment of BirthWrong. The trip is open to all ages and religious backgrounds, including non-believers. Among the only regulations on the tour relates to Zionism — it is not welcome here. 

BirthWrong begins this May Day with a celebration of worker’s solidarity and end the following day with Kabbalat Shabbat (the ritual inauguration of the sabbath) with Beit Ram Bam, a progressive Jewish group based in Andalusia. In Cordoba, we will explore the legacy of Maimonides, the Arabic-speaking Jewish polymath who corresponded with Ibn Rushd who drew heavily on the influence of Islamic philosophers like Ibn Rushd. On our way, we plant to stop in the village of Marinaleda, a self-proclaimed “communist utopia” that is, in fact, a model of communitarian stability and an outpost of resistance to austerity. BirthWrong will conclude with by touring Spanish Civil War sites and exploring the contribution of the Jewish fighters who comprised more than a quarter of international anti-fascist volunteers.

The trip is the brainchild of a loosely knit band of left-wing British Jewish activists known as Jewdas whose history stretches back to a series of party-themed provocations and parodic demonstrations held around London in 2006. “The main obsessions of British Jews are defending the state of Israel and making Jewish babies. We aim to knock these idols down and reopen the debate on who owns Judaism, who has the right to speak for the Jewish community and who is a Jew – surely anyone committed to justice?” Jewdas member Joseph Finlay said at the time. “We’re also trying to bring in a new sense of fun, playing with tradition rather than sanctifying it. Once Judaism is sacred, it is already dead.” 

During Operation Cast Lead, the Israeli assault on Gaza in 2008-09, Jewdas sent out an email blast to thousands of contacts announcing on behalf of the Chief Rabbi of the Board of Deputies of British Jews the cancellation of a march in support of Israel’s war effort. The impostor email urged Jews to speak up for peace and justice and reject Israeli miltarism. “People believed it was great,” Finlay recalled. “They were happy to receive such a refreshing message.” In the end, the grim pro-war march proceeded as planned and though at least one member of Jewdas was arrested for wrongful impersonation, none were prosecuted.

(Image: Jewdas)

(Image: Jewdas)

Jewdas re-emerged during Israel’s assault on the Gaza Strip last summer with a raucous public protest convened under the banner, “Haskalah, not Hasbara.” As Israeli forces reduced Gaza’s border areas to ash and ruin, Jewdas members crashed a British Zionist Federation meeting. “That was one of my favorite Jewdas moments in our history,” Taylor recalled. “They were there to plan the community’s response to the attack and they only wanted to talk about our relationship to Israel. We spaced ourselves out across the room and any time a speaker rattled off some tired Zionist talking point we groaned and disrupted them. They were so used to total consensus they just lost it — they had no idea what to do with us.” 

The protest was complimented by an open letter to British Jewish community leaders demanding justice and reparations for Palestinians while disavowing any connection to Israel or Zionism. It concluded: “We affirm a Jewishness not tied to state violence. A diasporic Jewishness that welcomes critique and speaks truth to power. We refuse to be complicit in our words, in our actions, or in our silence, to the massacres perpetrated in our name.” 

This March, Jewdas stole the show at a conference by BICOM — the UK’s version of AIPAC — dedicated to “winning the communications battle.” Annie Cohen and two other activists were tossed from the event by Community Security Trust (CST) officers when they handed out humorous cards for a game called “jingobingo,” or Jewish nationalist bingo. As CST personnel dragged her out, Cohen belted out a stanzas from Daniel Kahn’s Yiddish anthem, “Oh you foolish Zionists”: 

You want to take us to Jerusalem

So we can die as a nation

We’d rather stay in the Diaspora

And fight for our liberation

Earlier that month, Jewdas had gathered in Clapton to protest a planned march by the National British Resistance. The far-right white nationalist group had called on its supporters to battle what it called “The Jewification of Great Britain” and “the ongoing Jewish Problem” by marching on the ultra-Orthodox enclave of Stamford Hill. Despite the fact that police attempted to contain them to a designated protest zone, Jewdas succeeded in blocking the white nationalists from reaching Stamford Hill.

After the march, Jewdas’s Taylor wondered about the inaction of the Zionist-dominated Jewish establishment. “Jewdas is the probably the only UK Jewish organization that’s done anything around the far-right,” he remarked to me. “Everyone else is concerned with Islamic anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism and we’ve had fascists coming to every area of London to intimidate Jews and all the mainstream [Jewish] groups tell us to just ignore them and they’ll go away.” 

This April 29, Jewdas organized an event at the New London Synagogue celebrating Arabic and Hebrew muwashahaat poetry from Andalusia. It was the send-off event for BirthWrong, the group’s most ambitious endeavor to date. “This trip is about making a strong Jewishness that doesn’t have fuck all to do with Israel,” Lambeth explained. “This is a positive Jewish identity connection that I can get excited about that connects to where I live now and not this whole other place I have nothing to do with.”

“The people whose experience revolves around whether to go skiing or take a beach vacation in Eilat are the ones who have been setting the agenda for us,” Taylor commented. “What BirthWrong represents is resetting the agenda back to social justice.” 

I first learned about BirthWrong during a Yom Kippur fast breaking party Jewdas held last September. The trip seemed like the perfect way to repudiate a grim Jewish nationalist vision buttressed by the dual poles of Israel’s ethnocracy and the phantasmagoria of Auschwitz. Not only did it offer a potential escape hatch from Zionism, it presented a real alternative by re-centering Jewish identity around a vibrant diaspora tradition. As Lambeth said, “The Talmud was written in the diaspora. Rashi is from the diaspora. Parts of the Torah were written in the diaspora. Maimonides was from the diaspora. There is a legitimate part of religious Judaism that has nothing to do with Eretz Israel. So it’s simply a myth that Israel is the foundation of our authenticity.” 

Once I realized Jewdas was serious about making this trip happen, I started selling the idea to my friends at Mondoweiss. They must have liked what they heard because they sent me to cover it. So here I am, on a train to Seville, not knowing what to expect when I get there. Is BirthWrong a one-time stunt, or will it burgeon into a serious, long-term movement? 

For now, Jewdas is setting conservative expectations. When I asked Lambeth what she hoped to achieve from the trip, she responded: “A hangover.’

maxblumenthal
About Max Blumenthal

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and bestselling author.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

136 Responses

  1. johneill
    johneill
    May 1, 2015, 11:43 am

    How did I not know of this group before? Fighting fascism with humor and songs and good times is a winning strategy. So is learning about religion through all the places it’s touched instead of where it originated. I can’t wait to read about the trip! (Jingobingo: greatest educational drinking game)

  2. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    May 1, 2015, 11:48 am

    I just love those guys and gals of Jewdas who have a wonderful Bohemian left-wing vibe that I love. They are not liked by the Jewish establishment the because they consistently expose their hypocrisy.

    And Blumenthal has earned the right to kick back for a few days, strum a guitar and let his (ahem) hair down for a while…even if it is on the Mondo dime.

    • bintbiba
      bintbiba
      May 2, 2015, 9:02 am

      +1 abc !
      You put your finger on it exactly. I couldn’t have said it better !

  3. pabelmont
    pabelmont
    May 1, 2015, 11:58 am

    The idea of turning a serious evil into a (countervailing) skit is simply wonderful, as is the reset.

    It concluded: “We affirm a Jewishness not tied to state violence. A diasporic Jewishness that welcomes critique and speaks truth to power. We refuse to be complicit in our words, in our actions, or in our silence, to the massacres perpetrated in our name.”

    Terrific. In fact EVERY activity reported here was amazing, funny, lighthearted, ethically-correct, in one word: “PERFECT”.

  4. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    May 1, 2015, 12:17 pm

    Ironic that they would pick Spain as their destination. How many Jews live in Spain? More or less than lived there in 1492? Spain is certainly not a shining light for the Jewish Diaspora existence at least since the Christians took over and the last I looked, although post Christian might be more accurate, the Christians still control Spain. A strange place to assert the beauties of the Jewish Diaspora?

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      May 1, 2015, 8:45 pm

      I suspect that, for young British Jews, sun and sangria now are more important than moaning about things that happened and were over before they were born. And that is the way it should be.

    • Walid
      Walid
      May 1, 2015, 9:06 pm

      Yonah, stop whining, I also think that the Spain destination is somewhat of a perversion in light of a new Spanish law allowing a current 3.5 million Jewish descendants of expelled Jews living all over the world to apply for Spanish citizenship pursuant to a law to come into effect this month in Spain. Expelled Arabs are not being given the same consideration. From the JPost last month:

      “Spain close to granting citizenship to relatives of Jews expelled in 1492

      The law would potentially allow 3.5 million Sephardic Jews around the world to apply for Spanish nationality.

      The Spanish government is on the cusp of passing a law that would grant citizenship to the descendents of Jews expelled from Spain in 1492.

      On Wednesday evening, the Spanish parliament approved the law and it will go for a second vote in the Spanish senate, the parliament’s upper chamber, according to a report by the Financial Times. If passed, the law would come into effect in May and the application process would begin at the end of 2015.

      Around 300,000 Jews lived in Spain before the Catholic monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand, ordered Jews and Muslims to either convert to the Catholic faith or leave the country as a way to establish a purely Roman Catholic monarch.

      The government of Spain officially estimated that around 90,000 people will apply for citizenship, which would also grant them a passport allowing free access to live, work and travel throughout the European Union. The government said that it does not expect most applicants to move to Spain, but rather to stay in their current countries and use the Spanish passports as a secondary one.

      Spanish law does not normally allow dual citizenship except for people from neighboring Andorra or Portugal or former colonies such as the Philippines, Equatorial Guinea or Latin American countries.

      The law, which was first unveiled in February 2014, would potentially allow an estimated 3.5 million Sephardic Jews whose ancestors settled in countries such as Israel, France, the United States, Turkey, Mexico, Argentina and Chile to apply for Spanish nationality. The term Sephardic refers to the Hebrew word for Spain.

      Gabriel Elorriaga, a senior official in Spain’s ruling Popular party, called the bill “…a way to close the circle of reconciliation between Spain and the Jewish community.”

      “The idea is very clear: We want to reach out to those who were expelled from Spain and who have kept some form of connection with the country through all these years.”

      According to a draft of the law, the application process would come in two steps.

      First, applicants would need to prove their Spanish Jewish background through a certificate from the federation of the Jewish community in Spain or from the head of the Jewish community in which they reside, through their language or ancestry. It is not required for applicants to be Jewish currently.

      If a direct family link cannot be found, then authorities may accept applicants with a knowledge of Ladino (the traditional Jewish language of Jews in Spain which mixes Spanish and Hebrew), a Spanish Sephardic last name or an observance of Jewish customs.

      Next, they will have to show that they still have a special connection to Spain, as well as a basic handling of the Spanish (or Ladino) language, as well as a test of basic knowledge about the country.

      Currently, there are no plans to extend the same citizenship opportunity to descendents of Muslims expelled from Spain.

      Reuters contributed to this report.”

      http://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/Spain-close-to-passing-law-to-grant-citizenship-to-relatives-of-Jews-expelled-in-1492-395200

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 1, 2015, 9:41 pm

        @Walid: “Yonah, stop whining, I also think that the Spain destination is somewhat of a perversion in light of a new Spanish law allowing a current 3.5 million Jewish descendants of expelled Jews living all over the world to apply for Spanish citizenship pursuant to a law to come into effect this month in Spain. Expelled Arabs are not being given the same consideration.”

        Yonah is not really whining, just pointing out once again the constant, crushing, burden of antisemitism directed at Jews everywhere.

        So what if Spain is giving valuable citizenship and passports to the descendants of Jews expelled in 1492, which was 523 years ago. And so what if most of these Jews won’t bother to actually live in Spain, since the whole EU will be open to them as Spanish citizens.

        Every Jew who is smart will flee to Israel, where at least they won’t be treated so cruelly by the Spanish government.

      • Walid
        Walid
        May 1, 2015, 9:49 pm

        Kris, you can expect a tsunami of applicants lining up at Spanish Consulates to apply with most being probably as authentically of Spanish roots as those pretended Jews that came out of the USSR that transitted to Israel for 20 minutes before moving on to the US, Canada and Europe.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 1, 2015, 10:07 pm

        Sure, the descendants of Muslims expelled from Spain are excluded from the special offer to descendants of Jews expelled from Spain. Victimization of Muslims is nothing special.

        But what about the descendants of the Native Americans who were enslaved and treated like animals by the Spanish? What are they, nothing? http://histclo.com/act/work/slave/sg-am.html

        (Sarcasm alert, since we know that no one has ever suffered as much as the Jews.)

      • May 2, 2015, 8:48 am

        “Yonah is not really whining, just pointing out once again the constant, crushing, burden of antisemitism directed at Jews everywhere..”

        You cannot reach people who are so badly deluded.

        What a crushing burden American Jews are under.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 4:17 pm

        “What a crushing burden American Jews are under.”

        As soon as Zionism becomes a burden they will ditch it so fast it’ll make your head spin.

  5. Bumblebye
    Bumblebye
    May 1, 2015, 12:54 pm

    Have a great time Max, but not too much – we want you sober enough to record interesting historical snippets and anecdotes from your fellow travellers!

  6. bintbiba
    bintbiba
    May 1, 2015, 12:56 pm

    This non-believer thought that the time for crying has been spent, already !

    To the young Jewdas group, I wish I could call for multitudes of Blessings…. but the Supreme Dis-unifier in the Heavens can’ t hear a wretch like me !!

    Live your life with Joy and Harmony….multiply and prosper and as the song says

    ‘Stay as sweet as you are !””

    • Bornajoo
      Bornajoo
      May 1, 2015, 4:32 pm

      +1 Bintbiba!

      Thank you Jewdas and thank you Max Blumenthal. Great stuff!!

  7. Kris
    Kris
    May 1, 2015, 1:52 pm

    Wow! What can I say? BirthWrong is a brilliant idea, and I’m so grateful to mondoweiss for sending Max Blumenthal, whom I revere for his courage, honesty, clear thinking, and outstanding writing/reporting, to cover this first installment of BirthWrong.

    It is so wonderful and hopeful that these young people have found such an appealing and clever way forward. As Blumenthal says:

    “The trip seemed like the perfect way to repudiate a grim Jewish nationalist vision buttressed by the dual poles of Israel’s ethnocracy and the phantasmagoria of Auschwitz. Not only did it offer a potential escape hatch from Zionism, it presented a real alternative by re-centering Jewish identity around a vibrant diaspora tradition. As Lambeth said, “The Talmud was written in the diaspora. Rashi is from the diaspora. Parts of the Torah were written in the diaspora. Maimonides was from the diaspora. There is a legitimate part of religious Judaism that has nothing to do with Eretz Israel. So it’s simply a myth that Israel is the foundation of our authenticity.”

    • Jackdaw
      Jackdaw
      May 1, 2015, 4:43 pm

      “The Talmud was written in the diaspora.

      Actually, that’s only half true. The Jerusalem Talmud was written in Eretz Yisroel.

      • kerrypolka
        kerrypolka
        May 2, 2015, 4:23 am

        I did say “the Talmud we use was written in diaspora”, which I think is true – Bavli is much more widely quoted and relied on than Yerushalmi. Mondoweiss probably thought ‘we use’ was redundant and cut it for length.

  8. Les
    Les
    May 1, 2015, 2:16 pm

    [Here’s another possible trip coming up.]

    Another Gaza flotilla reportedly planned for this summer
    Organizers say three ships will set out for the Strip to break Israeli blockade, but refuse to specify points of departure or timetable, according to Palestinian media report.
    By Haaretz | May 1, 2015 | 2:56 PM
    Three ships are currently being outfitted for a flotilla to the Gaza Strip this summer, in yet another attempt to break Israel’s blockade of the coastal strip, Ma’an Palestinian news agency reported on Friday.

    Berawi Zaher, coordinator of The Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC), declined to specify the departure points of the ships and the exact dates of departure, in order to avoid what he called Israeli pressure on countries involved in the operation.

    Final logistical arrangements for the flotilla, which has been named Freedom Flotilla III, are to be made in Greece next month.

    “Our flotillas will continue to sail until the illegal blockade of Gaza is permanently lifted,” the organizers said in a statement. “The humanitarian situation in Gaza is more critical than ever and is worsening by the day. Media apathy and inaction by most governments puts the burden on civil society organizations, such as ourselves, to take the lead in challenging the blockade.”

    A range of political, religious, economic and public figures are expected to participate in the flotilla, including former Tunisian President Muncef al-Marzouki, Ma’an reported.

    It will be the third flotilla since 2010, when nine activists were killed on board the Mavi Marmara in an operation by Israeli commandos.

    A second flotilla planned for 2011 was unable to reach Gaza after Greek authorities prevented the ships from leaving Athens.
    http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/1.654511

    • lysias
      lysias
      May 1, 2015, 2:35 pm

      Will the new Syriza government in Greece take a different view of flotillas to Gaza? Will Cyprus, now that its relations are warming up with Russia?

  9. Jackdaw
    Jackdaw
    May 1, 2015, 3:07 pm

    BirthWrong.

    Self hating Jews now have a trademark!

    • just
      just
      May 1, 2015, 8:32 pm

      Pffffffffffft!

    • May 2, 2015, 8:53 am

      “Self hating Jews now have a trademark!”

      Where are all the self hating Poles, Italians, English, Africans, Brazilians, Chinese, etc? Why are there only self hating Jews? And why do only Jews face a racism so horrific it has a special name, anti-Semitism?

      It wouldn’t have anything to do with a Zionist strategy to demonize all those who oppose their racist philosophy would it?

    • eljay
      eljay
      May 2, 2015, 9:02 am

      || Jackdaw: Self hating Jews now have a trademark! ||

      Nasty, nasty Hobbitses…I mean, “self hating Jews”. Shame on them for distancing themselves from Jewish supremacism and all the injustice and immorality that it comprises. :-(

      Your petulance is amusing. :-)

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      May 2, 2015, 11:26 am

      “Self hating Jews now have a trademark!”

      Oh, how we suffer, Jackdaw. It’s just awful to be part of a religion which has so many self-haters, mosers and kapos in it.

      You could do no better than to devote your life to finding and expunging these traitors from our midst. After all, Jackdaw, they are so easy to pick out, since they disagree with you.

      Make sure to publish an official, updated list of those who have been barred from the Jewish religion and/or culture. So we’ll know who to avoid.
      And above all, suggest to parents that cutting kids out of your will is the best way to fight anti-zionism.

  10. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    May 1, 2015, 3:18 pm

    They tackle a number of serious issues on their website but what I love about them is their humor. In one posting they counseled Ed Miliband on how to win election by appearing less Jewish: “Ed Miliband will have to join Jewdas. Then nobody will believe he’s a Jew. Not even his own mother.” Or their assurances to the community of Bushey, who were getting antsy about an eruv being erected.

    DEAR GENTLE GENTILES OF BUSHEY

    YOU HAVE DISCOVERED OUR PLANS, THE ERUV IS INDEED THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS FULL ANNEXATION

    TL;DR DON’T WORRY WE AREN’T ZIONISTS, WE ARE COMMUNINSTS. WE WILL BE IN TOUCH SHORTLY ABOUT THE REDISTRIBUTION OF YOUR WEALTH. DON’T BE SCARED, YOU’LL LOVE IT WE PROMISE

    LOVE AND SOLIDARITY, JEWDAS XXX

    P.S. AN ERUV IS BASICALLY A PIECE OF STRING. CALM THE F*** DOWN

  11. just
    just
    May 1, 2015, 3:21 pm

    This is so “right” that it almost hurts~ the idea, the destination, the inclusiveness, the everything. The Jewdas article that is linked is great~ I highly recommend it. From it:

    “Jewdas: You’re about to come with us on BirthWrong, our radical Jewish trip to Andalusia. What made you decide to come?

    Max: I first heard about BirthWrong when I met a contingent of Jewdas in London breaking Yom Kippur fast last year. It was an idea I’d always entertained in my own mind, that we need an agenda that not only shows young Jews what lies behind the separation wall, but that we provide them with an exit ramp off of the Zionist super-highway to dystopia. So many non-Zionist Jews don’t feel like they can make the transition to anti-Zionism unless they can hold on to their Jewish identities, and that’s why it’s so urgent to start this kind of movement.”

    Thanks for this wonderful intro Max, and many thanks to MW for sending Max to cover it! Have fun.

    (The Birthwrong link is genius!)

  12. hophmi
    hophmi
    May 1, 2015, 3:29 pm

    Why is it that everything Max Blumenthal does involves drunk teenagers?

  13. jon s
    jon s
    May 1, 2015, 4:08 pm

    Um, you do remember that , in the end, Spain persecuted and expelled the Jews?

    Spain is, indeed a great example of a prosperous and successful Jewish community in the diaspora. Unfortunately, it didn’t end well, so it’s a bit far-fetched to learn an anti-Zionist lesson from the Spanish example.

    • Sycamores
      Sycamores
      May 1, 2015, 4:22 pm

      jon s

      following that logic, why is there birthright tours to Israel

      according to the zionist myth, Jews were persecuted and expelled from Israel 2000 years ago by the Romans.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        Maximus Decimus Meridius
        May 1, 2015, 4:49 pm

        Also, if Zionism is the answer to the Jews’ problems, how come it took them two millenia to come up with it? Those Jews expelled from Spain could have gone to Palestine, but chose to remain in Europe instead. Even today, with the existence of the ”Jewish state” nearly all Jews who have the option of living in a prosperous Western nation will do just that, rather than taking up residence in a glorified Levantine ghetto.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 1, 2015, 5:09 pm

        Sycamores, you’re right, The myth is, well, a myth , since the Romans may have persecuted and oppressed the Jewish population at times, but did not resort to expulsion.

        If you’re implying that like the story of the Jews of Spain didn’t end well, so, too , the periods of Jewish independence ended disastrously – I would agree on that, too.

        But, as far as I know, Birthright tours are not solely devoted to history. The participants are also introduced to various aspects of present-day Israeli society.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 7:03 pm

        “The participants are also introduced to various aspects of present-day Israeli society.”

        Yup, in spite of everything Birthright tries, many of the kids on Birthright trips learn an awful lot about “present day Israeli society”. We’ve had many articles about Birthright-backfire.

    • Sycamores
      Sycamores
      May 1, 2015, 5:31 pm

      jon s

      the Romans may have persecuted and oppressed the Jewish population at times, but did not resort to expulsion.

      so then the Palestinians are descendents of the ancient Israelis?

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        May 2, 2015, 4:53 am

        The Romans didn’t expel the peoples they conquered; rather, they taxed them heavily.

        Some scholars have argued that the Palestinians are descendants of the ancient Hebrews, many of whom converted to Islam when the Arabs took over the region. MW covered this issue back in 2008: http://mondoweiss.net/2008/09/israeli-historian-palestinians-are-biological-descendants-of-bibles-jews

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        Maximus Decimus Meridius
        May 2, 2015, 5:33 am

        And where did all the millions of Jews in the ‘diaspora’ come from?

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 2, 2015, 5:51 am

        That is the sort of question you should have asked your father some years ago.

      • just
        just
        May 2, 2015, 9:51 am

        RoHa~ wish that I had swallowed my coffee before I read that!

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 2, 2015, 4:11 pm

        Throughout history there have been conquests, migrations, inter-marriages, conversions..
        So, sure, present-day Palestinians could be , at least partly, descendents of the Jews.
        So what?

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 2, 2015, 4:27 pm

        “Throughout history there have been conquests, migrations, inter-marriages, conversions..
        So, sure, present-day Palestinians could be , at least partly, descendents of the Jews.
        So what?”

        So, sure, present day Jews who lived in Palestine before the European Jews showed up, could be, at least partly, descendants of the Palestinians

    • gamal
      gamal
      May 1, 2015, 9:07 pm

      oh Jon just Jews?

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 2, 2015, 4:14 pm

        Gamal, if you are referring to the fact that the Muslims were also expelled from Spain, I’m aware of that.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 2, 2015, 4:36 pm

        Yes Jon, but what use is that awareness, when a thief breaks in to your house he is aware that he is thieving, its just that his awareness is of little or no utility, you get me.

        Arab Muslims will accept you because you are a Jew, which is the opposite of Zionist, dont let the Wasps et al freak you out, this aint Christendom man Jews are respected because of their ‘moral priority’ immoral thieving “Jews” are going down with IS and others and are looked down upon here, they love that in Washington, but Washington is uncivilized.

        You need to free yourself man, do you think i think Islam is true? or truer, or better?

        you a sweet man Jon, but you lie to yourself.

      • bintbiba
        bintbiba
        May 2, 2015, 5:12 pm

        @ Bornajoo , well said !

        Through the ages people have migrated and intermingled all over the world. What is wrong if Palestinians descended from Jews and vice versa ? I challenge anyone, through DNA to show a pure unblended bloodline (unless the people in the Jungle who have never , ever been exposed to any intruder are considered ). Why are there so many blondes in Palestine… so many redheaded people (I know a few) from Gaza ? Why do Spanish people sometimes look indistinguishable from Arab Mediterraneans ; why did people in the US when they asked where did I come from … I said “The Middle East”… their comment: ‘Aah you are Israeli ” !

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 2, 2015, 5:34 pm

        Your argument makes perfect sense Bintbiba. It’s based on logic and reason. Unfortunately zionism is not interested in those kinds of facts or arguments. It only believes and propagates hasbara that backs up their sick ideology

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 4, 2015, 7:17 am

        Bornajoo, you’re not making much sense. There are no “present-day Jews who lived in Palestine before the European Jews showed up”. They would have to be well over 120 years old, depending on when you consider the European Jews “showed up”. (The First Aliyah? The arrival of R. Yehuda Hahassid and his followers? or of the disciples of the Vilna Gaon?)

        And why would they be decendants of the Palestinians, and not, simply, descendents of previous generations of Jews?

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 4, 2015, 7:50 am

        Of course it doesn’t make sense to you Jon S. That’s because your history of the world begins in ancient israel.

        Think about it

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 7:06 pm

        “you a sweet man Jon, but you lie to yourself.”

        Sorry, gamal, can’t agree with you, there. I don’t think “Jon s” lies to himself at all.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 4, 2015, 8:01 pm

        “can’t agree with you, there.” you are probably right I was drunk and melancholy, isnt he in Beersheba where the Bedouin are trying to get access to their mosque closed in ’48, praying in the street.

        Anyway its this turning Jews in to victims, the Iberian Jews and Donna Gracia et all were anything but, The Nagralah boys were warriors, poets, horsemen, statesmen and valued participants in the high culture and politics of their respective societies, it doesnt really matter you can tell any tale as anything a comedy, melodrama, this ethno-religious squabbling is pointless tedious and the cause of unimaginable suffering all round,

        There was a link to a Max B video the “was that you Max” conversation, it crystalized for me the feeling that guys like Max and Miko project, you dont hear them saying that they have gone down to the Palestinians and educated them civilized them nor alleviated their perplexity, they express gratitude for what they have learned from them and what they have received of human warmth and kindness.

        And in sympathetic elation I drink, immoderately, sing and dance and offer unreasonable friendliness to a guy who is, inter-alia, punishing himself the Hasbarists have such a claustrophobic quality, narrow, shallow life denying pessimism, sometimes whisky and deep round base are the only solution, despite its unfortunate side effects.

        You know bass culrture (this black lives thing has been going on all my life as the link attests)

        https://youtu.be/PNTIaFuLSdA

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 9, 2015, 11:46 am

        “Jon s” has pretty much dropped that whole “historic homeland of the Jews” nonsense he was so strong on when he first got here. Repeated that phrase (“historic homeland” or some permutation thereof) in almost every comment (that word-search feature is useful) and as a justification for everything.

        And now he’s pretty much dropped it. What happened?

  14. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    May 1, 2015, 4:19 pm

    Some have been calling Birthright BIRTHWRONG since it began. Hope the voyage trip turns into a regular event. Go go go Max and team. I have talked with about five young Jewish 20 somethings that said the BIRTHWRONG trip had the opposite effect on them that they believe and is clearly intended.

    Pushed them turn away from Israel as it is,

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 4, 2015, 8:02 am

      Bornajoo,
      Why don’t you just try to explain what you meant, so that even someone as feeble-minded as me could understand. Who are the “present-day Jews who lived in Palestine before the European Jews showed up”?
      And why would I think that the history of the world begins in ancient Israel?

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 4, 2015, 8:06 am

        Jon S. Do you believe in evolution or creationism?

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 5, 2015, 4:45 am

      Gamal,
      Yes I’m in Beersheva, and I support the campaign to have the mosque restored to the Bedouin.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 5, 2015, 6:00 am

        Sorry Jon I was all for you but it seems a Jew is out to get you, what can I do, my hands are tied.

        As to the Mosque when you say you support its restoration, can we expect civil disobedience on your part or is your support as worthless as your opinions about Hamas?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 5, 2015, 5:58 pm

        “First of all, for the record, I stand by what I wrote about Hamas bearing primary responsibility for the civilian casualties.” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/20#sthash.m1BurgmH.dpuf

        That’s our Jonny s! And he follows it up with this great bit of sophistry:

        “Someone can be wrong on one topic and correct on another (unless you have a totalitarian mind-set).”
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/20#sthash.m1BurgmH.dpuf

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 5, 2015, 6:01 pm

        “Yes I’m in Beersheva, and I support the campaign “

        And with about $3.50 and your support, I could buy a cup of coffee in any Starbucks.

  15. Boo
    Boo
    May 2, 2015, 10:34 am

    Yeah, no surprise that Sephardic Jews are less than enthusiastic about Zionism when they’re habitually treated like the red-haired stepchildren by Ashkenazi Israelis.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 4, 2015, 9:30 am

      Bornajoo,

      Creationism? are you kidding? Man, have you got me wrong…

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 4, 2015, 12:33 pm

        Jon S

        Zionists want everyone to believe that Palestine is the ancient and sacred homeland of the Jews and no other group. So when you say that Palestinians might be descendents of Jews you should also say ‘and vice versa’. Without vice versa your statement only allows the possibility that the Jews were the first and only historical indigenous group in that land and everyone since is either a temporary visitor or must be a descendant of that primary group.

        This is what the Zionists want everyone to believe. Yes, Jews used to live there and a small amount continued to live there but they could have easily been descendants of the Palestinians who could just as likely been there well before the Jews were. It’s impossible to know

        All of these claims about who lived where 2000 years ago is bullshit on so many levels yet Zionists use this mythical bullshit to justify the dispossession of the people who definitely did (and do) live there and this land IS their home. Not some mythical, biblical home from 2000 years ago but their real home

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 7:13 pm

        “Creationism? are you kidding? Man, have you got me wrong… “

        “Jon s” you have no idea how sad it makes me when I see someone who rejects and is left “with nothing but hatred for his religion”

        I mean, okay, skipping one or two Seders, that’s pretty bad, but rejecting the revealed truth in the Torah about the earth and man’s origin? And naturally if you reject the very basis of the Torah, the creation story, well, what’s left?

        So sad to see.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 7:48 pm

        Oh no, a horrifying possibility has occurred to me, and I hope “Jon s” will take the time to reassure me it isn’t true.

        It couldn’t be that “Jon s” treats the sacred, inerrant and revealed truth of our religion simply as something to be used? I mean, just picking out whatever part is convenient, whatever level of interpretation is convenient, all for the purpose of manipulation?

        No, that can’t be, and I’m sure “jon s” response will prove it so.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 5, 2015, 3:13 pm

      gamal,
      I try to do what I can, do my small part.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 5, 2015, 3:33 pm

        Bornajoo,
        You’re making assumptions about my position, which are not true.
        My position is that of the “classic” Left: This country is the homeland of two peoples, and the two peoples should enjoy equal rights, including the right to a state. Hence: partition and two states. In my view it doesn’t matter which people were here first, which people have a longer history, since I’m not aware of any rule that “older” nations have more rights than “younger” ones, or vice versa.

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 5, 2015, 6:01 pm

        Thanks for the clarification Jon S.

        So it means that you consider each and every settler an extremist and also anyone who supports them including those in the Israeli government also an extremist?

        So it means that you fully understand and agree that Israel is a brutal and illegal occupation force denying millions of Palestinians their basic human rights?

        And by defining yourself as “classic left” you agree with every word and sentiment of someone like Gideon Levy for example?

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 5, 2015, 4:22 pm

        well you are always very gracious, I hope your efforts bear fruit, my family comes from about 300km west of Beersheba near Zagazig, no one gives a damn about the local economies hundreds of years old or the local micro-cultures that were obliterated when our cousins in Palestine disappeared off the face of the earth, so that some suckers can live out their religious nationalist fantasies, the silk under your asses is wearing thin the costs of this insanity are going to go on increasing for the settlers and their state, the casualties will mount the end is nowhere in sight but seems to be in a hellish region. You won’t escape but we are inured to abjection, I am told little wars are breaking out all over Sharkiya, with the state security apparatus taking significant unreported losses, if Egypt erupts the whole region will explode and endlessly repeating a mantra about murderous terrorist is a woefully inadequate response, especially for a man of the left. You can not reduce your victims to a tactic.

      • just
        just
        May 5, 2015, 4:40 pm

        A most astute and excellent comment, gamal.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 5, 2015, 5:56 pm

        jon s: ” In my view it doesn’t matter which people were here first…”

        Bank robber: “In my view, it doesn’t matter who owned the money first…”

        Car thief: “In my view, it doesn’t matter who owned the car first…”

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 5, 2015, 7:53 pm

        “and the two peoples should enjoy equal rights, including the right to a state

        “Peoples” do not have the right to a state.

        People, on the other hand, do have rights.

        (I am inclined to the view that “peoples” do not have any rights at all.)

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 6, 2015, 4:07 pm

        “Speaking of which, it’s not entirely true that there’s no rebuilding in Gaza.
        Hamas is rebuilding its rocket arsenal and tunnels. A question of priorities, I suppose.”
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s#sthash.qkilY78c.dpuf

        “Jon s”, you are indeed correct, you are classic Israeli Left. Certainly doing your part.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 10, 2015, 12:28 am

        “This country is the homeland of two peoples,”

        “Jon s” you repeated “historic homeland of the Jews” in nearly every comment when you got here. Never mentioned “two peoples”. Nope, it was all about the “historic homeland”. But now you don’t use the phrase. What went wrong? “homeland of two peoples’ is quite a climbdown.

  16. tokyobk
    tokyobk
    May 2, 2015, 6:37 pm

    Kol ha Kavod. Judaism is bigger than Zionism.

    Here is some beautiful traditional Ladino (Spanish/Hebrew) music to enjoy:

    http://www.voiceoftheturtle.com

    • just
      just
      May 2, 2015, 6:46 pm

      Gorgeous music~ thanks for the link and for your comment, tokyobk.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 5, 2015, 4:43 pm

        gamal,
        300 km. west of Beersheva is somewhere in the Med. sea.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 5, 2015, 5:04 pm

        “300 km. west of Beersheva is somewhere in the Med. sea.” Dont be obtuse is Egypt west of Beersheba?

        already you want to displace us and in to the sea, you are incorrigible.

      • tree
        tree
        May 5, 2015, 5:35 pm

        jon s,

        I thought you were a teacher.

        Zigazag is just slightly to the southwest of Beersheva (by 45 arc minutes, or three quarters of a degree). If you insist on exactitude, then Port Said is directly due west of Beersheva (very same latitude) and 237 kilometers to the west, and Alexandria is 461 kilometers to the west and 3 arc minutes to the south. 300 kilometers exactly due west of Beersheva is firmly on land in Egypt, not in the Mediterranean. If your only comment is to nitpick at least get it right, otherwise you just sound like a pompous and ignorant *ss.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      May 4, 2015, 7:23 pm

      “Judaism is bigger than Zionism.”

      Uh, sorry, “tokyobk”, but I just don’t see how that can be true, although I wish to God it was.
      How many nuclear weapons does Judaism have? 0
      How many troops?0 How many tanks? 0 How many ships? 0
      How much money does Judaism have? Not all that much, the religion itself.
      And how much land does Judaism have? A few acres, here and there!

      No, whether we like it or not, at the present time Zionism is much, much bigger than Judaism, much more powerful, effects many more people in more direct ways. Judaism ain’t squat compared to Zionism. In fact, one could make a good case that unless something changes, Judaism for all practical purposes, is simply a function of Zionism, its ceremonial religion.

      I don’t like it, but there it is, until it changes.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 4, 2015, 7:43 pm

        What has more influence on the various governments of the world, Judaism or Zionism?

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 5, 2015, 4:46 pm

        “Judaism or Zionism?” ok dont hate me but I forsee a Judeo-Zionism gambit similar to that other successful scam, the Tibetans always welcome converts, they play a mean Trumpet/Horn, they are very non-violent though and are thus not a top nation, sometimes you have to go down market, I have known more Jews as co-religionists than in any other way, currently a VajraJew friend is freaking out on Kopan hill in Katmandu, She teaches madiyamika prasangika philosophy, very severely, shes from Birmingham UK, she could help you across, but brush up on your phenomenology, to avoid embarrassment.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 5, 2015, 6:05 pm

        “Gamal” if you are implying that Zionists don’t give a crap about Jews, except as raw material, I completely agree with you.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 5, 2015, 10:54 pm

        Zionism can not long term accommodate the non-, anti-Zionist Judaisms, ask a Muslim, Zionism must occupy Judaism, its the nature of the beast, great movements require sacrifices Judaism and Jews as well as many many others are the sacrifice required for a fully functioning Zionism as Islam and Muslims are for the new Islamism, a guy Mustafa Al Set Mariam Nasar nom de guerre Abu Musab al-Suri his record and analysis of his experiences in Homs and Hama under Hafez Assad led to a move away from the stolid brotherhood and has finally spawned the IS crew, he is the new Qutb, he wrote,

        “Da’wat al-muqawamah al-islamiyyah al-‘alamiyyah”,

        Islamic call to global resistance

        a theory of Islamic resistance, which explicitly rejects Islam in favour of a project so brutal and coldly calculating that it is with a sense of relief that one realizes that 90% of his strategies are aimed at terrifying and subduing the Muslims, at least he is mainstream in that way, in his opinion the US invasion of Iraq saved the hyper radical “Islamists” that became Nusra, IS et al, just when they were in profound crisis,

        “dont give a crap about” becomes “will tolerate no disobedience from” in short order,

        Saudi,Israel, the GCC’s, (Egypt) and IS are now an openly operating axis, its going to be a tough century all round.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 6, 2015, 5:43 am

        Yes, I stand corrected, it’s in Egypt.

      • Walid
        Walid
        May 6, 2015, 10:38 am

        “… And how much land does Judaism have? A few acres, here and there! (Mooser)

        Sounds a lot like Voltaire’s snide economic evaluation of Canada when he referred to it as “quelques arpents de neige.”

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 6, 2015, 4:07 pm

      Bornajoo,

      I’ve always opposed the occupation and the settlements, and consider them a major obstacle on the road to peace.

      Some settlers are less extreme than others. For instance: the non-idealogical, “economic settlers” ,who moved there because of the generous economic incentives.

      Since when does being a person of the Left mean agreeing with every word of Gideon Levy?
      I have lots of respect for Levy’s journalisic work over the years. He holds up a mirror that so many Israelis would rather not look into. But that does not mean that we have to regard every word of his as holy gospel. For example, he thinks that Roger Waters is a wonderful person, I think he’s a self-righteous prick.

      ( I hope I’ve passed the interrogation…)

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 6, 2015, 4:09 pm

        “( I hope I’ve passed the interogation…)”

        Only if the “interrogator” also suffers from Ziocaine Syndrome Amnesia. Or doesn’t know how to click on a commenter’s name, access their archive, and word search.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 6, 2015, 4:15 pm

        “Some settlers are less extreme than others. For instance: the non-idealogical, “economic settlers” ,who moved there because of the generous economic incentives.”

        So they are basically a kind of settler-mercenary, right? And you think that excuses them? Because they are doing it for money?

        “I’ve always opposed the occupation and the settlements, and consider them a major obstacle on the road to peace.”

        Great! So you must have a list of the settlements which must be dismantled immediately, and the areas Israel should vacate! What are they?

        “Since when does being a person of the Left mean agreeing with every word of Gideon Levy?”

        Go pull a pill. I bet you can pull a whole bottle-full.

        “Jon s”, are you coming here strictly to insult our intelligence?

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 6, 2015, 6:56 pm

        Jon S

        I would be very grateful if you could please answer Mooser’s question:

        ” So you must have a list of the settlements which must be dismantled immediately, and the areas Israel should vacate! What are they?”

        Also please send me one article by Gideon Levy that you don’t agree with and explain why you don’t agree. How about the one where he criticises Israeli air pilots for committing indiscriminate mass murder on innocent Gazans? He needed bodyguards after that one

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 6, 2015, 6:34 pm

        Jon S

        The first time I came across settlers was back in the 80s. I was out hiking with my Australian friend in a national park around the Gilboa region. We heard gun shots and the sound of kids laughing. When we walked over to see what was going on we saw a group of settlers with a bunch of young kids on what must have been some kind of day trip

        They had painted a crude caricature of an Arab on a large rock and the older men were giving the young kids turns at shooting at the rock with a real handgun with live ammunition and telling each of them it was their turn to kill the Arab. After a heated exchange with those psychos we got out of there

        There is no such thing as a less extreme settler. Are they supposed to be OK because they go and settle there for financial reasons? The very idea that someone agrees to go and live on a settlement is an act of extremism. Because that person is agreeing to illegally occupy someone else’s land as part of an overall strategy to completely disenfranchise the indigenous population. And they are backed by massive military power and generous government grants which means that the entire regime of Israel is extremist using its huge military advantage to terrorise and ethnically cleanse the indigenous population.

        But you still support and act as an apologist for that regime and yet you consider yourself part of the classic left.

        When you come out and denounce israel as a rogue pariah state that disregards international law, that is responsible for crimes against humanity, that is responsible for the decades long and ongoing brutal occupation, that is responsible for the mass murder of innocent children, men and women, then I’ll take you seriously as a man of the left. Because until you do that you are just deluding yourself by trying to defend the indefensible

      • just
        just
        May 6, 2015, 6:46 pm

        Thanks for sharing that, Bornajoo.

        jon s: “I’ve always opposed the occupation and the settlements, and consider them a major obstacle on the road to peace.”

        They’re not mere “obstacles to peace”, they are the much, much more than that. They are a method to the end that Zionists have dreamed of since the beginning. It’s nefarious and wicked, and is exactly the ‘road map’ that was planned long before Israel was ‘created’. Peace with Palestinians in Palestine was never a desire of the Zionists.

        Never.

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 6, 2015, 6:48 pm

        Perfectly stated Just. Thank you

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 6, 2015, 6:47 pm

        Seriously, jon s? Doing it for the money is “less extreme” than doing it for a racist ideology?

        So people who produce child porn, for example, who “do it for the money” are less to be despised than those who do it to satisfy their own sick impulses?

  17. anne-marie
    anne-marie
    May 2, 2015, 9:04 pm

    Dear Jewdas, Kudos to your initiative of an alternate non-zionist journey of initiation into Jewish identity, but why call it BirthWrong when in fact you are so right? Why not BirthLeft for instance? just a thought… I understand that you were drunk when you came up with the name… but it can help doing a bit more brainstorming when you are sober ;) Actually your name “Jewdas” might not be the most compelling either, especially for our Christian friends whom, as you know, still have a lot of resentment against a certain Judas… so I suggest a bit more thinking about your branding and communication ;) But your ideas are brilliant indeed! Also, I strongly recommend that you prolong your journey from Spain to Morocco which is a place where you will find lots of Jewish sites, many of whom are maintained by local Muslims – there are actually graves of holy men and women who are revered both by Moroccan Jews and Muslims… http://www.jewishmorocco.org/en?page_id=45 and if you want to know more about the Moroccan Jewish-Muslim conviviality, check out this documentary by Moroccan filmmaker Kamal Hachkar, Tinghir-Jerusalem: echoes from the mellah….

    • Walid
      Walid
      May 3, 2015, 12:47 am

      “I strongly recommend that you prolong your journey from Spain to Morocco which is a place where you will find lots of Jewish sites” (anne-marie)

      Anne-marie, I don’t think that this is what Jewdas is about. The article started out about an idea that popped up during drinking session, went on to say that the group decided the group could get drunk together elsewhere like in Spain and ended with the term “a hangover”. The tunnel tours probably covered the free hours until the bars would open. I’m sure Max thoroughly enjoyed the historical sites but I’m not so sure about the rest of the group. I could be wrong but this is the impression I got from this piece.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 7, 2015, 7:15 am

      Bornajoo,
      I oppose all the settlements. The distinction between “idealogical” and “economic” settlers is often made as a practical matter: when the time comes the economic settlers will be an easier nut to crack, as we’ve seen in the precedents in Sinai and Gaza.

      I don’t have to agree to your extremist formulations to be a person of the Left. Supporting peace, equality, human rights and socialism -means I’m on the Left, with or without your stamp of approval.

      Now some questions for you:
      Do you condemn terrorism?
      Do you condemn all forms of racism, including Anti-Semitism?
      Do you believe that the Jewish people have the same rights as other people?

      (And please don’t give me “it depends how you define terrorism, one side’s terrorist is the other side’s freedom fighter…” I think we all know the conventional definition).

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 7, 2015, 7:18 am

        Just,
        As I recall, you don’t support the two state solution, so there’s no sense in your complaining about the settlements.

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 7, 2015, 7:39 am

        jon s: Do you condemn terrorism?

        I condemn terrorism.
        (Presumably you do, too.)

        jon s: Do you condemn all forms of racism, including Anti-Semitism?

        I condemn all forms of racism, including anti-Semitism.
        (Presumably you do, too.)

        jon s: Do you believe that the Jewish people have the same rights as other people?

        I believe that any person who wants to be Jewish has a right to be Jewish.
        (Presumably you do, too.)

        Similarly, I believe that any person who wants to be Muslim / Christian / atheist / Wicca / Roma / bi-curious / other has a right to be Muslim / Christian / atheist / Wicca / Roma / bi-curious / other.
        (Presumably you do, too.)

        I do not believe that the existence of people who are Jewish entitles them to a supremacist “Jewish State”.
        (Presumably you believe they are entitled.)

        Similarly, I don’t believe that the existence of people who are Muslim / Christian / atheist / Wicca / Roma / bi-curious / other entitles them to a supremacist Muslim / Christian / atheist / Wicca / Roma / bi-curious / other state.
        (I have no idea where you stand on this. I would appreciate it if you’d clarify. Thanks.)

      • just
        just
        May 7, 2015, 8:03 am

        What a dumb comment, jon s.

        The settlements are an abomination and illegal as hell. It doesn’t matter if it’s one state or two states! It’s theft by violent thieves who terrorize the legal owners of the land of Palestine. It’s all part and parcel of the filthy Occupation aided by the grotesque courts of Israel.

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 7, 2015, 8:14 am

        Do you condemn terrorism?
        Do you condemn all forms of racism, including Anti-Semitism?
        Do you believe that the Jewish people have the same rights as other people? (Jon S)

        Of course I do Jon S, in answer to all those questions

        But I never conflate Jewish people and zionists. I’m a Jewish person and I have no intention of denying or compromising my own rights or the rights of any other Jewish person

        But what all you zionists do, even the ones dressed up as peace loving socialists, is to conflate zionism and Judaism in order to be able to deflect absolutely justified criticism of Israel as anti semitism.

        Look through all my posts and comments. If I do criticise Jews it’s because of what they do and who they support. I don’t criticise them for being Jews

        Zionists are in a major denial. They simply cannot accept that they are committing terrible crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing and a slow motion incremental genocide against the indigenous population. So when they are confronted with reality they scream anti semitism.

        And that’s why you felt you even had to ask me that question about Jewish rights.

        Back in the very early 80s, before the further radicalisation of many Palestinians and the real growth of radical groups like Hamas, israel was already operating a fully apartheid state, the brutal occupation was in its second decade and the Palestinians were being treated as sub-humans. I saw and witnessed it with my own eyes. Of course things have become worse since then. But back in those days it was so obvious that such disgraceful behaviour would only lead to further radicalisation. But Israel chose to continue its policy of expansion rather than genuine peace.

        And today, after all the predictable radicalisation has taken place, the supposed left wing Israelis like you sit there and blame Hamas and the other radicals for everything even though these groups came about (and were even supported) due to israel’s actions

        So now you have your convenient bogey man to deflect the real truth of the whole situation (whom you mass murder every once in a while) as well as your never ending claims of anti semitism whenever anyone tries to speak the TRUTH

        The vast majority of the world knows you’re wrong but you do whatever you like and get away with it not because you are right, but because you are being unfairly protected by the most powerful bully on planet earth.

        That’s the reality Jon. You need to stop fooling yourself

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 7, 2015, 8:25 am

        || Bornajoo @ May 7, 2015, 8:14 am ||

        Well said. It’s a shame that your comment will “go in one ear (of jon s) and out the other”.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 9, 2015, 11:51 am

        Go back and check “Jons” archive for, it’s “historic homeland” over and over and over, and gee, now he’s dropped the “historic homeland” wheeze!

  18. Elizabeth Block
    Elizabeth Block
    May 3, 2015, 10:29 am

    I was in southern Spain a year ago – had a lovely time. I visited Jewish places, museums etc., where I could. (Check my website, http://www.elizabethblockpottery.com, for details and pictures.)
    I hadn’t heard about Spain’s new Law of Return. I shouldn’t think they’d get too many takers, but I think they’ll welcome the ones who do come.
    I love what Max told us about Jewdas. They should be an example to all of us, their humour and their chutzpah.

    • bintbiba
      bintbiba
      May 7, 2015, 9:29 am

      +1 Just!
      +1 Bornajoo !
      +1 ElJay!

      Thank you for your comments ,and your unflinching support !

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 7, 2015, 10:46 am

        || bintbiba @ May 7, 2015, 9:29 am ||

        Appreciated… :-) …but not necessary.

        Advocating and supporting the universal and consistent application of justice, accountability and equality should be the norm, not the exception.

        Among Zio-supremacists, it’s taboo. Not a single Zio-supremacist – not even a “liberal Zionist” or a jon s – will do it. (If he did, he wouldn’t be a Zio-supremacist.)

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 7, 2015, 4:11 pm

      Just,
      I’ve seen – and even participated in – plenty of debates between supporters of one state and two states. One of the most significant points argued by one-staters is that the settlement project is irreversible and has made the two state solution impossible.
      So under one state the settlements get to stay, that’s the logic of one state.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 7, 2015, 4:25 pm

        Bornajoo,
        Of course I know that not all Jews are zionists. That’s the way it’s always been, since the emergence of modern Zionism. There were assimilationists, autonomists, Bundists, Communists, Ultra-Orthodox and Reform Jews, all anti-Zionists.

        These days, however, there’s frequently a convergence of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, manifested in the deadly incidents we’ve seen in Europe, or acts such as this:

        http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/jewish-world-news/1.622673

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 7, 2015, 4:33 pm

        I agree that this is absolutely wrong Jon S and it shouldn’t happen. However I agree with Norman finkelstein when he says:

        “It’s often claimed that there’s… no causal nexus between Israeli actions and anti-Semitism, that you can’t blame it on Israel, that there’s no connection between the… spikes in Israeli violence against Palestinians and the upticks in anti-Semitic violence. When in fact if you go through the evidence collected over many years, that’s exactly what the evidence does show: each time Israel launches another of its murderous assaults, anti-semitic incidents peak in Europe. And they’re often perpetrated by disaffected angry Muslim youth. If in recent times, a larger fraction of these incidents are violent, it’s the blowback from the brutish fanaticism currently plaguing the Arab Muslim world.

        Now if you’re really concerned about these spurts of anti-Semitism, and you want to contain them, then there are obvious things you can do.
        Number one, Israel can stop carrying out massacres….

        Another thing is: Israel can simply stop calling itself a Jewish state, so Jews wouldn’t have to bear the burden for its criminal actions.

        And the third thing is, official Jewish organizations in the diaspora, they could cease defending Israel’s criminal actions so it won’t appear as if Israel when it carries out these actions is acting in the name of the Jewish people.”

        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/04/violence-calling-finkelstein#sthash.Z8q09BtL.dpuf

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 7, 2015, 4:40 pm

        Jon S

        You’ve been very generous with your replies which I’m grateful to you for. I’m going to ask you to indulge me with just one more please.

        Here is part of what JeffB has commented in reply to a comment by Tony Greenstein:

        “@Tony

        You don’t keep shabbat, you don’t keep kosher, you don’t pray after meals and wear tefillin. You are a major anti-Jewish politician. What other than your name is Jewish about you? You tell me how are you a Jew and not an apostate?”

        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/rudoren-genocidal-statements/comment-page-1#comment-766298

        What is your opinion on his comment? Do you agree with JeffB?

      • just
        just
        May 7, 2015, 4:32 pm

        I am not one of those debaters. There’s room for other opinions. It’s not either/or. The settlements are illegal~ yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

        Period.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 8, 2015, 8:11 pm

        “Jon s” has never, as long as he has been here, never ever specifies one single thing that Israel must or could do, no matter how small to in any way lessen it’s intransigence, and ameliorate the sufferings of Palestinians.
        He’ll BS all day and night with sanctimonious evasions and and what I am afraid I can only call ‘brocha-mongering’ , but whenever he is cornered, jumps away.

  19. DoubleStandard
    DoubleStandard
    May 3, 2015, 5:25 pm

    The fertility rate in Spain is around 1.2. Israel is going to outlive Spain the way things are going.

    It’s so funny how the Europeans — and some European Jews looking to gain social acceptance by showing they’re not loyal to other Jews — think that bashing Israel will do them any good.

    Meanwhile, Europe weakens economically, culturally, and diplomatically by the day.

    The permanent future of the Jewish people is in Israel. Not only is that desirable, it’s inevitable no matter the invectives and resistance of people on this site.

    • Kathleen
      Kathleen
      May 4, 2015, 10:14 am

      In denial.

      • DoubleStandard
        DoubleStandard
        May 4, 2015, 1:46 pm

        The Spanish? Yes, indeed they are. Israel’s doing fine.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      May 4, 2015, 7:27 pm

      “and some European Jews looking to gain social acceptance by showing they’re not loyal to other Jews”

      ROTFLMSJAO!!! That’s right, DS, you hit ’em with that indictment! I’m sure they will immediately see the truth of your accusation, and proffer a tearful apology, and mend their ways, get back into their caftans and fedoras, and humbly beg you to lead them home.

      But of course, it doesn’t matter. As self-sufficient as Israel is, why does it need help or advice from Jews anywhere else in the world?

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      May 4, 2015, 7:36 pm

      “The permanent future of the Jewish people is in Israel.”

      They’re just having trouble finding it? If the future of the Jewish people is in Israel, why the hell don’t they get back inside Israel? If there’s too many to fit inside it now, how can the future be there?

      • DoubleStandard
        DoubleStandard
        May 5, 2015, 6:33 am

        Within the next decade, more than 50 percent of the world’s Jews will live in Israel.

        Israel’s the only place in the world where the Jewish population is increasing: there’s a reason for that. It’s not a coincidence. Our time in other countries is a temporary situation, and as pleasant as it may be at times, is ultimately unsustainable.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 5, 2015, 5:52 pm

        “Our time in other countries is a temporary situation, and as pleasant as it may be at times, is ultimately unsustainable.”

        Oy The big mayhven the expert on Jewish history has spoken!

        Gee, should I think DS is a big expert on the Jewish future, or just a crank on the Internet?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 6, 2015, 3:45 am

        “Within the next decade, more than 50 percent of the world’s Jews will live in Israel.”

        Will that leave enough Jews in the rest of the world to support Israel’s blood-sucking ass? We are getting tired of paying for your bullshit. I think we should have done with you, declare ourselves, non-Zionist Jews, a separate religion from Zionism, just like Jewish Orthodoxy and Jewish Reform are separate religions..

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 7, 2015, 9:54 am

        || DoubleStandard: … Israel’s the only place in the world where the Jewish population is increasing: there’s a reason for that. ||

        The most obvious – and the most unfortunate – reason is that far too many Jewish people are hateful and immoral Zio-supremacists who prefer Jewish supremacism in/and a supremacist “Jewish State” over justice, accountability and equality.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 7, 2015, 11:25 am

        @eljay: “The most obvious – and the most unfortunate – reason is that far too many Jewish people are hateful and immoral Zio-supremacists who prefer Jewish supremacism in/and a supremacist “Jewish State” over justice, accountability and equality.”

        True, but don’t forget, eljay, that jon s, who is a teacher in Israel, says that for many Jews, the incentive to move to Israel and steal Palestinian land is financial:

        jon s: “Some settlers are less extreme than others. For instance: the non-idealogical, “economic settlers” ,who moved there because of the generous economic incentives.” – http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/birthwrong-southern-repudiate#comment-766051

        Most people who commit crimes do it for personal gain; most nations, too.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 8, 2015, 3:34 pm

      Bornajoo,
      Frankly I don’t understand why you want my comment on another commenter’s comment.
      For myself, I don’t presume to determine whether someone else is Jewish or not.
      In general,if someone considers him/herself Jewish- that’s good enough for me.
      Shabbat shalom

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 8, 2015, 8:30 pm

        “For myself, I don’t presume to determine whether someone else is Jewish or not.
        In general,if someone considers him/herself Jewish- that’s good enough for me”
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/birthwrong-southern-repudiate/comment-page-1#comment-766657

        Okay, let’s take a look:

        As I said, it saddens me that a person raised as a Jew rejects her heritage, and is left with nothing but hatred.
        You seem to have internalized anti-Jewish stereotypes (“full court Jewish establishment”) and tropes (“murderous rampages of the henchmen of Mordecai against men women and children…”- totally false, read the Megillah.)
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s?keyword=Jewish#sthash.LE5PwkVs.dpuf

        “What’s lacking, (In Phil’s writing) in my view , is any concern, somewhere in his list of concerns and motivations, for the Jewish people. If he would have written , even as an afterthought “… and (such-and-such) would also ultimately be in the best interests of the Jews”. Caring about your own community is a perfectly natural ,healthy, inclination. The lack of any such concern strikes me as reflecting an alienation that’s not found in Peter Beinart and Jeremy Ben Ami. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s?keyword=Jewish#sthash.LE5PwkVs.dpuf

        “As to”crossing certain lines”, here’s an example: Gilad Atzmon, who crossed into outright anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial, which puts him out of the “Jewish communal tent”. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/3?keyword=Jewish#sthash.3N6tRbwK.dpuf

        I don’t want to waste any more space on him, but there’s a ton of it. . but Yes, “jon s” has some very definite opinions on who is a Jew and who is not. And he’s pretty sure he knows who is a good Jew and who is not, too.

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 9, 2015, 3:05 am

        “I don’t want to waste any more space on him, but there’s a ton of it. . but Yes, “jon s” has some very definite opinions on who is a Jew and who is not. And he’s pretty sure he knows who is a good Jew and who is not, too” (Mooser)

        Thank you Mooser

        That’s why I asked Jon S to comment on JeffB’s statement to Tony Greenstein. They do indeed have very similar opinions as you have once again exposed

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 9, 2015, 11:54 am

        BTW, I won’t ever do that again. When I started checking “Jon s” archive, I realized I would end up with several feet of thread taken up. From now on I’ll just say “check the archive.”

        Bornajoo, what is very interesting, tho, is tracing the disappearance of the phrase “historic homeland” (“of the Jews”) as a fact and a justification for everything. At the start of “Jons” archive the phrase is everywhere, but it peters out, gradually disappears, and by this thread, he seems to have abandoned the “historic homeland” defense. Wonder why?

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 9, 2015, 1:03 pm

        “Bornajoo, what is very interesting, tho, is tracing the disappearance of the phrase “historic homeland” (“of the Jews”) as a fact and a justification for everything. At the start of “Jons” archive the phrase is everywhere, but it peters out, gradually disappears, and by this thread, he seems to have abandoned the “historic homeland” defense. Wonder why?” (Mooser)

        I’d like to be optimistic and say that over time and during his frequent contributions to MW (long before I began contributing) Jon S has probably finally realised that his initial default stance was ridiculous and has slowly been burying for good those skeletons in the archive closet.

        But I suppose I’d better let Jon S answer for himself whether or not he believes that because Palestine was once the “historic homeland” of the Jews, this somehow legitimises the Zionist colonisation of Palestine and the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 9, 2015, 12:05 pm

        “In general,if someone considers him/herself Jewish- that’s good enough for me.”

        Thank you, “Jon s”. Please say a brocha for me, to bless me in the fight against Zionism! In fact, I (and I don’t think I’m all that alone) consider Zionism and it’s works the greatest enemy of and and danger to Jews in the world today.
        So please, “Jon s” as a fellow Jew, bless us, and pray for us in our endeavor to destroy Zionism, before it destroys us. Tribal unity is everything, you know that, and we will need to draw on it!

  20. seafoid
    seafoid
    May 3, 2015, 6:14 pm

    Great idea. Hebrew needs to be depoliticised as well. Ladino is a normal langage. Hebrew isn’t.
    Not with all the IDF crap in it.

    Allen Ginsberg on Vietnam rather than the Israel car crash but the sentiment is the same.

    Smoke some grass and relax. Drop the nonsense

    • Kathleen
      Kathleen
      May 4, 2015, 10:17 am

      Was able to be around Ginsburg at Naropa here in Boulder early on when Naropa first started. Ginsburg basically an ego maniac so would imagine that he would be all about Israel and be dismissive of the Palestinians

      Although not sure at all where he stood on this issue.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 9, 2015, 4:33 pm

      Bornajoo,
      I don’t get it. I wrote that I DON’T presume to determine whether other people are Jewish or not, and your conclusion is that I’m very similar to someone who does.
      I wonder whether you actually read what I wrote.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 9, 2015, 4:41 pm

        Bornajoo,
        I just checked my own archive and found that I used the term “historic homeland” three times on April 27-28.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 10, 2015, 12:37 am

        “I just checked my own archive and found that I used the term “historic homeland” three times on April 27-28.”

        Another pill-puller, this one! Did you really think you would get away with this? Okay “Jon s”
        Try word-searching “historic” and word searching “homeland” and tell me what you find.

        Yes, balmocha the words “historic homeland” occur three times in that combination, but we also have “historic Jewish homeland” or “homeland of the Jews” and various combinations.

        And BTW, “Jon s” “historic homeland” gives me 23 results not three!! What happened? All relevant, too, just checked. No wonder the Left in Israel never gets anywhere.

        I said I wouldn’t print a long series of quotes again, but it’s there for anybody to see.
        Did you really think you could pilpul like that, or do you have Ziocaine Syndrome Amnesia?

  21. echinococcus
    echinococcus
    May 3, 2015, 7:40 pm

    “Hebrew needs to be depoliticised”…. Now that’s a good one. A politically custom-made invented language, constructed with the exclusive goal of killing people’s mother tongues so that they will get rid of their ancestral culture and become cannon fodder for some crazy racialist fake-national scheme. You want to “depoliticize” the very self of politics, what?

  22. Nevada Ned
    Nevada Ned
    May 3, 2015, 9:14 pm

    Actually, IMHO American Jews and UK Jews have something in common that makes them very different from Israeli Jews. American Jews are a minority (2-3%) of the US population. British Jews are a minority also (dunno the percentage in the UK population). number but it’s small).
    So it’s in the interest of US and UK Jews to oppose racism in very form.

    However, Israeli Jews have expelled enough Palestinians that Jews are now a majority in Israel. So they’re in a different position. Israeli Jews have (or think they have) a stake in racial discrimination against the minority Palestinians,

    An unpleasant fact. But a fact.

Leave a Reply