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Jonathan Sacks dumbs down Jewish history in order to defend Zionism

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“How can Anti-Zionism be the new antisemitism?” asks Rabbi Jonathan Sacks in his latest six-minute whiteboard animation.

You can view it here. And here’s the full transcript.

To remind you, Sacks is the ultimate Jewish establishment figure. He was Chief Rabbi of Great Britain and the Commonwealth from 1991-2013; he was made a member of the British House of Lords in 2009; he’s the author of more than 25 books on Judaism such as To Heal a Fractured WorldThe Dignity of Difference, and Not in God’s Name. He’s also written a multi-volume Torah commentary and edited prayer books. Sacks is highly-respected within the Jewish world and well beyond it. When he talks, people of all faiths, and none, stop and listen.

I’ve read much of his work over the years, but over time I’ve become increasingly disenchanted. In the abstract, Sacks is a great moral educator who can draw on Jewish scripture to make universal observations about justice, kindness, compassion, tolerance and political leadership. But when it comes to the greatest moral issue facing Jews and Judaism today, Israel and the Palestinians, he offers nothing but dumbed-down history and a version of Judaism that sells it short and denies another people their heritage and story.

All of this is on show in the Rabbi’s latest video. It’s one of several he’s made and they’re all designed to reach a broader audience than his books. I dealt with his animated distortions and untruths about BDS in an earlier post.

This new video is more significant. It’s an attempt to make any critical debate about Zionism impossible.

Sacks’ international standing means even his cartoon capers will be taken seriously no matter how dumbed-down and prejudiced is his presentation of Judaism and Jewish history.

A closed debate

 Notice in Sacks’ opening narration that his question is not “Is Anti-Zionism the new antisemitism?” but “How is anti-Zionism the new antisemitism?”.

The starting point is the assertion that anti-Zionism can be nothing other than antisemitism. Counter to the tradition that two Jews will always produce three opinions, Sacks makes clear that this particular subject is not open to the usual rabbinical rigour applied to the interpretation of matters of Jewish law or indeed any other subject of Jewish interest. When it comes to Zionism, only one interpretation is kosher.

Remember, Sacks doesn’t make these videos for a Jewish religious audience. He makes them for the secular world of politics in which he knows that Zionism is becoming a highly contested ideology because of its consequences for the Palestinian people.

Here’s an extract from the video which anyone who follows Sacks’ writing in recent years and his theory of “mutating antisemitism” will be familiar with:

In the Middle Ages Jews were hated for their religion. In the nineteenth and early twentieth century they were hated for their race. Today they are hated for their nation state, Israel.

It’s a tidy summation, easy on the ear and the brain. It uses the truth of antisemitism down through the centuries to set up a lie about Zionism.

The underlying assumption is that the creation of the Jewish State of Israel was an innocent, noble endeavour and certainly without victims. Therefore, the only possible explanation of the new “hate” is that it’s driven by age-old antisemitism.

Jonathan Sacks, from his website.

Aside from being unbelievably simplistic and devoid of context, Sacks pretends to be talking history and religion while in fact he’s being deeply political. Imagine you are a Palestinian watching this video. Or maybe you are a Palestinian and have unfortunately stumbled across it. According to Sacks’ rhetorical construction of events, despite your home being destroyed, your farmland confiscated and your family sent into exile, the only possible reason for your objection to Zionism must be antisemitism.

Sacks needs to be told that he cannot make statements about Zionism without first thinking how they would sound to Palestinian ears. The ideology that Sacks defends has impacted the lives of every Palestinian alive today. Zionism is part of their history too.

Unbroken connections

Sacks sketches out his dumb-down Jewish history emphasising the 3,000 year unbroken connection between Jews and the Biblical Land of Israel. I have no wish to deny this connection. But this telling of our story wipes out millennia-long connections to places elsewhere in the word, places which have shaped Judaism, as we recognise it today, just as much as Ancient Israel.

Our Jewish ‘exile’ has not been an historical aberration. Our wanderings have not been an unfortunate detour from our true destination. We are the product of a scattered existence of which there is nothing to be ashamed of and much to celebrate.

The construction of the Talmud, the wisdom of Midrash, the philosophy of Maimonides, the Hasidic masters, the Jewish Enlightenment, the paintings of Chagall, the stories of Bernard Malamud, the plays of Arthur Miller, the music of Bernstein and Gershwin, the songs of Paul Simon and Bob Dylan – these are the products of Jewish experience too and they happened well beyond the Land of Israel. Frankly, this inheritance is more recognisable to me as ‘Jewish’ than the modern State of Israel, built as it is on an unhappy cocktail of secular nationalist identity and extreme religious orthodoxy that could only be achieved through the displacement of another people.

If Zionist thinking has always been such a central tenet of Jewish life, why was it such a contentious idea among Jews for the first 50 years of its existence? But this has been erased from the whiteboard of Jewish history. Apparently, we’ve all been Zionists for 3,000 years.

Strangers

But it’s not just my history that Sacks ignores.

Jews are the only people who ever created a nation state there. At all other times in the past 3,000 years it was merely an administrative district in an empire whose centre was elsewhere: the Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Alexandrian, Roman and Byzantine empires, the Crusaders of the Holy Roman Empire, the various Muslim empires such as the Umayyads, Abbasids, Fatimids, Mamluks and Ottomans, and finally the British.

Never mind the empires whose centres were “elsewhere.” Why is it of no relevance who was actually living on the land, apart from the minority Jewish population? Why does Sacks make these people invisible in his narrative?

Sacks talks of Jews as:

the only people who have maintained a continuous presence in the land. They are its indigenous, original inhabitants.

So how long does anybody else have to be around before they stop being squatters, interlopers and off-comers? Five hundred years? A thousand? Two thousand? When can anyone else claim a “continuous presence”? The chances are that today’s Palestinians carry the same amount of first century Jewish DNA as I do. Perhaps more.

Historical revisionism

Then comes another shameless piece of historical revisionism.

The November 1947 United Nations vote to bring Israel into existence was a momentous reversal of imperialism. It gave back to the Jewish people the home taken from them by empire after empire.

The problem for Sacks is that his attempt at historical inversion ignores Zionism’s founding fathers. The early Zionist leaders knew their project was a colonial enterprise and knew they needed the support of imperial powers to achieve their aims. Herzl and Weizmann both imagined the Jewish State as a Western Imperial outpost – good for Jews, good for the ‘inferior natives’ they would displace, and good for their imperial sponsors. The idea that it was a “reversal of imperialism” is absurd, especially from a public intellectual like Sacks.

613 commandments

Sacks seems remarkably relaxed about cancelling out the contribution of his own rabbinic ancestors. He reminds us that many of the 613 commandments identified in the Torah relate only to living in the Promised Land. He fails to mention that the majority of those commandments refer to Temple practice including animal sacrifice.

The genius of rabbinic Judaism was not only to make Jewish observance ‘portable’ but also to move it forward in its theological understanding. For most of our history, possession of the Land has not been necessary for the maintenance and development of Judaism. Leaving the land made Judaism better not worse.

Cognitive dissonance

It’s when Sacks brings his just and compassionate telling of Jewish theology into the whiteboard frame that I’m most struck by the scale of the cognitive dissonance that must be at work in the Rabbi’s head.

Read the Hebrew Bible and you’ll see immediately that it isn’t about the salvation of the soul. It’s about creating in the holy land a society based on the biblical ideas of justice, welfare, the sanctity of life – and caring for the stranger “because you know what it feels like to be a stranger.”

This is my idea of Judaism too. Except, the story of the Jewish people has been the story of applying these values to every country in which we found ourselves. Judaism became our home and we carried it with us.

If Sacks believes what he’s saying about the grand project of Jewish life in the Holy Land, then where is his criticism of the modern State of Israel?

At best, I would expect Sacks to see the Palestinians as the “stranger” of Jewish theology. For any Palestinian, calling them strangers in their own land is deeply insulting as well as historical nonsense, but let’s put that to one side for the moment. How is stealing land and water; destroying homes; imprisonment without charge; snipers at the Gaza fence, “caring for the stranger”? Why does Sacks have no Torah commentary on any of this?

A political agenda

I have no problem with using Jewish myths to explain and illustrate our  religious understanding and to shape our ethical outlook. But that’s not how Sacks uses religious mythology. Sacks is applying Jewish myth, scripture, and ancient history to a highly political Jewish agenda that’s become enthralled to secular ideas of power. Calling anti-Zionism antisemitism is not a lesson in Jewish history, it’s an exercise in the delegitimisation of another people’s historic experience. In using his global reputation as a moral leader to defend Zionism, Sacks ends up not defending Judaism but undermining it.

We don’t need dumbed-down Jewish Studies or a whiteboard whitewash of Zionism to resolve the  greatest moral challenge facing Jews and Judaism. Zionism cannot be a ‘no-go area’ for debate in either religious or academic discussion. The sooner that admirers of Jonathan Sacks (both Jewish and non-Jewish) grasp this, the sooner we can progress toward a version of Judaism that takes seriously the meaning of justice, welfare and the sanctity of life.

This post first appeared on the Patheos site on May 9. 

Robert Cohen
About Robert Cohen

Cohen is a British writer. He blogs at Micah's Paradigm Shift. http://micahsparadigmshift.blogspot.co.uk/

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23 Responses

  1. eljay
    eljay on May 9, 2019, 12:36 pm

    Sacks’ blather is pure Zio-propaganda…
    – from the obvious falsehood that geographic Palestine is the ancient / historic / eternal / one true / lost homeland of every person in the world who chooses to embrace the religion-based identity of Jewish;
    – to the ugly and hypocritical belief that Jews are entitled to be supremacists and to do unto others acts of injustice and immorality they would not have others do unto them.

    • Misterioso
      Misterioso on May 10, 2019, 11:20 am

      @eljay, et al

      A brief and hurried primer for the fraud, Jonathan Sacks:

      Archaeological evidence found at ancient sites such as Jericho, founded by the Natufians, indicates that communities well advanced in agriculture as well as arts and crafts were thriving in Palestine as far back as 7000 BCE. These first settlers were joined by migrants from the Arabian Peninsula around 3500 BCE, (John Quigley, Palestine and Israel: A Challenge to Justice, Duke University Press, Durham and London, 1990, p. 68) and the region’s inhabitants subsequently became known as Canaanites. They established the world’s first mercantile state which consisted of at least 31 kingdoms or city states in all of historic Palestine as well as parts of Phoenicia (coastal Lebanon) and southern Syria.

      These distant ancestors of today’s Palestinians had been living in the region for about 15,000 years** when the Prophet Abraham, known as the first Hebrew, is said to have arrived from Mesopotamia, circa 1800 BCE, and when the Hebrews invaded circa 1184 BCE. “The Hebrews were in fact latecomers on history’s stage. All across the Bible lands, cultures had come to birth, assumed classical form, and run their course for hundreds and even thousands of years before Abraham was born.” (John Bright, A History of Israel, Philadelphia: Westminster, 1959, pp. 17-18)

      The province of Judea lasted a mere 75-80 years, less than a blip, and became part of the Roman colony of Syria/Palestine. Even the Hasmonean Dynasty under the Maccabees lasted only about 70 years (circa 140–70 BCE) and it was under Roman tutelage.

      For nearly 1800 years (i.e. prior to the League of Nations imposed British Mandate in 1922) Jews remained a small minority in Palestine – many more left at the end of the third century as a result of harsh taxes imposed by Emperor Diocletian – and by the fourth century, as elsewhere in what was then the Eastern Roman Empire (Byzantium), Christianity had become the dominant religion.

      By about 1300 CE there were virtually no Jews in Palestine, which was a recognized geographical concept using coinage with “Filistin” written on them. There were diaries of Palestinian travelers who said they missed “Palestine” and a distinctive Palestinian dialect of Arabic had evolved. From 1300 on, the vast majority of people who lived in Palestine were Christians and Muslims

      It is important to note that during all the turmoil that engulfed the region for over 7000 years as conquerors came and went, the Canaanites and their Palestinian descendants remained on the land and continued to be the base of the population until most, about 1,250,000, were dispossessed and driven out by Zionist Jews of foreign origin in 1947/48 and thereafter.

      As the Old Testament Hebrews were discouraged from intermarrying with gentiles (Ilene Beatty) and forbidden to do so following the rule of Solomon (Karen Armstrong, “The Holiness of Jerusalem.” Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. XXVll, #3, Spring, 1998, p. 18), they probably contributed little to the gene pool of modern Palestinians.

      The Jebusite/Canaanites ancestors of today’s Palestinians founded Jerusalem around 3000 BCE. Originally known as Jebus, the first recorded reference to it as “Rushalimum” or “Urussalim,” site of the sacred Foundation Rock, appears in Egyptian Execration Texts of the nineteenth century BCE, nearly 800 years before it is alleged King David was born. No credible archaeological evidence, or more importantly, writings of contemporaneous civilizations, have been found that prove Solomon or David actually existed. Nor has any real evidence been discovered to confirm that the Jewish exodus from Egypt ever occurred.

      Renowned historian/anthropologist and “Holy Land” specialist, Professor Ilene Beatty: “When we speak of ‘Palestinians’ or of the ‘Arab population [of Palestine]‘, we must bear in mind their Canaanite origin. This is important because their legal right to the country stems… from the fact that the Canaanites were first, which gives them priority; their descendants have continued to live there, which gives them continuity; and (except for the 800,000 dispossessed refugees [of 1948 along with the further hundreds of thousands expelled before and after the war Israel launched on 5 June 1967]) they are still living there, which gives them present possession. Thus we see that on purely statistical grounds they have a proven legal right to their own land.” (“Arab and Jew in the Land of Canaan,” 1957)

      While it is correct to refer to modern Palestinians as Arabs, it is important to remember that they are also descendants of the Canaanites who were the first permanent inhabitants of the region on the south-eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea that thousands of years later became known as Palestine.

      ** http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fgene.2017.00087/full Front. Genet.,
      21 June 2017 – https://doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2017.00087

      “The Origins of Ashkenaz, Ashkenazic Jews, and Yiddish”

      “Recent genetic samples from bones found in Palestine dating to the Epipaleolithic (20000-10500 BCE) showed remarkable resemblance to modern day Palestinians.

      “Overall, the combined results are in a strong agreement with the predictions of the Irano-Turko-Slavic hypothesis (Table 1) and rule out an ancient Levantine origin for AJs [Ashkenazi Jews], which is predominant among modern-day Levantine populations (e.g., Bedouins and Palestinians).”

      • edthespark
        edthespark on May 13, 2019, 8:51 am

        Arabs invaded Jerusalem in 636.Palestinians speak Arabic.Therefore Canaanites who spoke Aramaic and worshipped Baal are Palestinians.

        Isaac Luria the famous kabbalist was born in Jerusalem in 1534.

        Before the 636 Arab invasion Augustus Pianoicus played the amphitheater at beit shean.

        The first revolt was revolting but they did mint coin.

  2. bcg
    bcg on May 9, 2019, 1:17 pm

    A perspective on Israel from one of the characters in a novel written by the late Grace Paley:

    One character who reappears through many of her stories is Faith Darwin, a writer who has had disappointing experiences with men and close relationships with her parents and her children. Through Faith, her fictional alter ego, Paley expressed her remove from religious Judaism, and her belief that the Jews belong in the Diaspora, where they can remain “a splinter in the toe of civilizations,” rather than in Israel (she was writing this in the late 1950s), where, “once they’re huddled in one little corner of the desert, they’re like anyone else.” Paley was also a founder, in 1987, of the Jewish Women’s Committee to End the Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.

    https://www.haaretz.com/jewish/.premium-1922-n-y-jewish-writer-activist-is-born-1.5271023

  3. Sulphurdunn
    Sulphurdunn on May 9, 2019, 2:35 pm

    White Animation: “Complex Ideas Made Simple.” It doesn’t say true.

  4. Bumblebye
    Bumblebye on May 9, 2019, 6:24 pm

    Sacks shows his contempt for the non-Jews this is intended for. It’s at the level of a bedtime story for four to seven year olds.

  5. RoHa
    RoHa on May 10, 2019, 1:51 am

    “Jews are the only people who ever created a nation state there.”

    Why is this so important? I’ve asked several times, but no one has explained.

    “At all other times in the past 3,000 years it was merely an administrative district in an empire whose centre was elsewhere: … the Crusaders of the Holy Roman Empire…”

    The Kingdom of Jerusalem was an independent state. It requires considerable perversity to interpret its status as that of an administrative district of the Holy Roman Empire.

    But perversity from Zionists is the norm.

    • oldgeezer
      oldgeezer on May 11, 2019, 8:42 am

      “Why is this so important? I’ve asked several times, but no one has explained.”

      It’s not. It’s totally irrelevant.

  6. johneill
    johneill on May 10, 2019, 4:27 am

    zionism wants
    to reduce judaism
    to just israel

    • Mooser
      Mooser on May 10, 2019, 12:46 pm

      Well said, and in only 17 syllables.

    • Citizen
      Citizen on May 10, 2019, 2:30 pm

      Is the Vatican state all of Roman Catholicism? How much foreign aid does the USA government give the Vatican?

  7. RoHa
    RoHa on May 11, 2019, 2:40 am

    Useful series on Vridar.

    This link drops you into the middle of it.

    https://vridar.org/2019/05/10/ideological-preparation-for-the-expulsion-of-the-palestinians-continued/

  8. Danaa
    Danaa on May 11, 2019, 6:17 am

    I am struck first and foremost, by how simplistic and poorly constructed Sachs’ arguments equating anti-zionism with anti-semitism are. A child could deconstruct them rendering them nonsensical. There’s nothing scholarly, Talmudically logical and morally inspiring about them. It’s nothing more than a rehash of the eternal arguments for colonialism we have seen countless times from countless conquerors.

    So I ask – is this what passes for jewish “wisdom”? for scholastic argumentation? for moral compassing?

    If Sachs represents modern Judaism, frankly pagan animism is starting to look pretty good, not to mention greek Mythology. heck even some of those old Christian theologists, who debated concepts such as grace, redemption, morality and justice (the better ones!) have it all over this newly constructed dusty old mumbo-jumbo that passes for something “Judaism”.

    May be all these claims about Jews turning out so smart from much Talmudic studiousness were somewhat exagerated? may be they (Sacks included) should reconsider the advise against assimilation to blow some fresh air into those dusty old manuscripts?

    Actually, I am thinking of the way Fracking – this oh so advanced technology -= seems destined to exhaust itself digging ever further and harder for diminishing returns. Sacks seems a bit like a tired old well still spewing a few spurts of oil (or gas, if you prefer), but the cost of digging for convoluted “wisdom” is being overwhelmed by [geological] extraction realities.

    There is no free lunch. The wisdom of the jews seems to have died on the altar of Zionism, burning itself out like a golden calf that it always was.

    Or, as Confucius would say “Sachs Sucks!”.

  9. MHughes976
    MHughes976 on May 11, 2019, 1:35 pm

    I agree with Sacks – but why are such blandly cruel words taken seriously or with respect? – to the extent that the Hasmonean/Herodian Kingdom was the only clearly and unquestionably recorded polity roughly coterminous with modern Palestine. The borders of that kingdom, which was maybe never fully independent but had great power for a couple of centuries, have continued to define or at least influence borders ever since.
    But – I’m echoing RoHa and others – why does founding a state with borders following line L create permanent rights while founding a state – perhaps only a city state but still a state, something which gave meaning to some people’s lives – within L count for nothing? Why does founding a multinational state including the territory within L, such as the Achaemenid Kingdom including Palestine often regarded in the Bible as quite virtuous and constructive, mean nothing or something bad?
    It’s a bit horrible that the ancient and beautiful name of Palestine, whose very existence illustrates so much history, is unmentioned and degraded. But that’s a rather emotional comment.
    Imperialism exists surely when the normal right of all persons to be enfranchised citizens of a sovereign state is limited by some power which is clearly and significantly external or alien. The introduction of a new majority to an area for political or religious reasons by external forces, as happened in the early days of Zionism, is an imperialist act by that standard, not a negation of imperialism as Sacks would have it. The current relationship between Israel and Gaza would be a form of imperialism too.

  10. edthespark
    edthespark on May 13, 2019, 7:33 am

    I watched the video a few weeks back.Sacks is no fool and the points he made are valid.There is no difference between anti semitism and anti zionism.They are both an attack on judaism.Zionism can be traced back to the jewish revolt against the romans when coins were struck with the words “freedom of zion” by jews.Its like how dare the jewish people defend themselves against attack.

    Peace nik

    • Danaa
      Danaa on May 15, 2019, 12:32 am

      They are both an attack on judaism.

      Of course, many would say that Judaism itself – of the classical, Talmudic kind in its zionist version – was a profoundly racist and bigoted religion positing the superiority of jews over all else. So to be against such a Judaism is perhaps a Mitzvah.

      There is a reason that in the US, Judaism deviated substantially from the Talmudic traditions, which are “a bit” weak when it comes to ethics, generally has next to nothing to say about democracy, and certainly does not comport with the US Bill of Rights (all men/women are born equal, etc.). Classical Judaism, as practiced by ultra-orthodox now, and many orthodox in Israel, would indeed be viewed by and large as a reactionary religion by most American jews, who justifyably frown on those sharia-like Halachic patriarchal autocratic, non-democratic and inhumane rules.

      So the new Judaism that sprang up in the US, whether reform or conservative, generally tried to humanize the old archaic laws with their questionable ethics. As a result of the reformation of judaism, we got something called “Tikun Olam”, which makes Judaism more palatable, bringing it into compliance with the enlightenement values (the genesis of which the jews of Europe had little to do with, even as enlightenment freed them from the yolk of the backward, authocratic, oppressive rabbis, and their mambo-jumbo).

      Alas, the newly concocted zionist version of Judaism, which represents a Jews-uber-ales approach per that semi-fascist theocracy known as Israel, cannot co-exist with modern democratic and humanistic traditions. So, most enlightened jews in the World – and some in israel, have become anti-zionists. That in an effort to remain part of the human family of the enlightened kind.

      If this anti-zionism is something “anti-semitism”, and if zionism is, at its core profoundly racist (which it is), may be we should question what “semitism” is?

      Tutorial done. Questions?

      • gamal
        gamal on May 15, 2019, 12:47 pm

        “Tutorial done. Questions?”

        well yes

        “who justifyably (sic) frown on those sharia-like Halachic patriarchal autocratic, non-democratic and inhumane rules.”

        Your expertise on the Sharia, at least you will have read “Introduction to Islamic Law : Principles of Civil, Criminal and International Law Under The Sharia” by Jonathan G Burns, you would do well to take a fleeting look, Halacha nearly as bad as the Sharia why Jews must be hanging their heads in shame, it is an issue you should address to free yourself from settler colonial notions of your superiority and our Muslims ineradicable inferiority unless that is uncongenial to you, the above book may help but it has to be read and considered.

      • Danaa
        Danaa on May 15, 2019, 4:52 pm

        My issue with both Sharia and halacha has little to do with which one is superior to which, as I am hardly an expert on either. I must leave these kind of questions to the ones who are theologians.

        My issue is with religious law in general, no matter where it originates, or even how “relatively enlightened” it is compared to others. Rather I come from a place of preference strict church-state separation, whether the “church” is a church, or a synagogue or a mosque. The reason being that religious laws, even the best of them, presuppose faith, and that is something that no one can – or should – legislate.

        I am a staunch believer in the Rule of Law as the final arbiter in all personal affairs. That includes the jury system where individuals OR entities such as corporations can be subject to decisions made by their “peers” rather than a religiously mandated authority. I wish I could say the Law is always properly practiced, but obviously I can’t, because of the huge influence of money in Western countries, such as the US, where it can buy great defense for an accused, making the application of Law uneven at best. But civil law is still preferable to any verdict or ruling administered by a religious authority where equitable application must, by definition, rely on appeal to a trans-human “higher power”..

        Of course, for those who are religious they can – and should – use their religious authorities to weigh in on spiritual matters, interpersonal relations, etc.

        Anyways, my little comment above on thie matter of Halacha/sharia was partly tongue in cheek. The same people who criticize Iran for following Islamic law hardly make a peep about israel being effectively subject to halachic law (on matters such as marriage, divorce, circumcision, Shabbath, separation between genders at synagogues, the western wall, etc.).

        Needless to say, being a secular person I know little if anything about any religious law. So you may want to read my comment again.

      • edthespark
        edthespark on May 18, 2019, 7:40 am

        Zionism is a reaction to attacks on Judaism.Regardless of what type of Judaism and in what era.It is the snow in the snow bunny world.

      • eljay
        eljay on May 18, 2019, 6:02 pm

        || edthespark: Zionism is a reaction to attacks on Judaism. … ||

        The fact that you Zionist routinely and anti-Semitically conflate…
        – your hateful and immoral ideology;
        – your colonialist and religion-supremacist construct; and
        – the (war) crimes that both of the above advocate, commit, support and/or defend,
        …with all Jews demonstrates very clearly that Zionism is an attack on Judaism and on Jews.

        I simply cannot understand why Zionists hate Jews so much.

    • eljay
      eljay on May 15, 2019, 2:36 pm

      || edthespark: … There is no difference between anti semitism and anti zionism. … ||

      Sure there is:
      – anti-Semitism is like anti-Muslim; while
      – anti-Zionism is like anti-Islamism.

      The hateful and immoral Islamist would conflate Islamism with all Muslims, just as the hateful and immoral Zionist conflates Zionism with all Jews.religion.

      • eljay
        eljay on May 15, 2019, 2:47 pm

        || eljay: … the hateful and immoral Zionist conflates Zionism with all Jews.religion. ||

        Correction: … the hateful and immoral Zionist conflates Zionism with all Jews.

  11. Ossinev
    Ossinev on May 16, 2019, 7:07 am

    @danaa
    ” The same people who criticize Iran for following Islamic law hardly make a peep about israel being effectively subject to halachic law (on matters such as marriage, divorce, circumcision, Shabbath, separation between genders at synagogues, the western wall, etc.).”

    The seriously mad Ziorabbis are real as opposed to the invented “mad mullahs”.

    https://harpers.org/archive/2012/11/the-mad-mullah-myth/4/

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