Wednesday, November 9, 2011

With yearning soul



Jewish fundamentalism, which seeks to restore the Jewish and nationalist crown to its former glory, had already planted its roots in the settlements and in Israeli society during the Six-Day War in 1967.

Salman Masalha | With yearning soul

When Yigal Amir shot Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in the back on November 4, 1995, he was only the messenger. The sender resided in words set down long before, in May 1948.

It is true that in its Declaration of Independence, Israel promised to "ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants, irrespective of religion, race or sex," but these words were intended only to satisfy foreign ears. The document places greatest emphasis on "the establishment of a Jewish State in Eretz Yisrael," on "the Jewish people," and on this people's "spiritual [and] religious identity" and its "ancient homeland."

Such expressions could not exist outside of a religious context: "Ancient homeland" is connected to Judaism, an ancient religion. Therefore, the link between Zionism and the Jewish religion has never been severed.

It is no accident that the name "Israel" does not appear in the national anthem. The words of "Hatikva" recall a Jewish prayer carried from a distance both geographic and chronological: "A Jewish soul yearns ... The hope of two thousand years ... The land of Zion and Jerusalem." By adopting such formulations, the Zionist leaders turned the State of Israel into a state of halakha, or Jewish religious law, from the very first day.

The Zionism that aspired to establish a "Jewish home" in the Jews' "ancient homeland" did not take into consideration the fact that the land was not empty. It thus adopted the principle of population transfer, based on the same ancient biblical tradition. We know this from what was on David Ben-Gurion's desk: "At the end of the conversation, I saw on his desk a passage from the Book of Exodus: 'I will not drive them out from before thee in one year ... By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.'" That is what the writer Haim Gouri said in a lecture at the National Security College (according to the journal "Ma'arachot," issue 359 ).

At the time, Ben-Gurion staunchly opposed conquering all of Eretz Yisrael (the Land of Israel ), but for tactical and demographic reasons only: "In early spring of 1949, I asked Ben-Gurion why he hadn't conquered all of Eretz Yisrael," Gouri related. Ben-Gurion's reply: "Getting entangled in a hostile Arab expanse would have forced us to make a choice we could not bear - either expelling hundreds of thousands of Arabs or absorbing them. They would have destroyed the young state from within."

Ben-Gurion left the conquest of the remaining territory for later. "We have liberated a very large territory, much more than we expected," he said in 1949. "Now we shall have to work for two or three generations. As for the rest, we shall see later."

And indeed, history didn't end there: The Six-Day War broke out two decades later. It not only brought about the conquest of the mountain ridge running through the West Bank and the broadening of Israel's "narrow waist," but also nurtured the seeds of calamity: that "historic and traditional attachment" cited in the Declaration of Independence to the soil of "the ancient homeland," so rich with biblical myths.

Rabin, who was chief of staff during that war, awakened much too late to the implications of the choice "we could not bear." Jewish fundamentalism, which seeks to restore the Jewish and nationalist crown to its former glory, had already planted its roots in the settlements and throughout Israeli society.

The main complaint about the moves Rabin initiated was that he didn't have a Jewish majority, since he relied on the support of Knesset members from outside the Jewish tribe. Rabin tried to rescue "the Jewish state" from the above-mentioned choice by adopting an "Israeliness" that included Israel's Arab inhabitants. But his actions came much too late. The "Jewish genie" was already out of the bottle.

And so the fundamentalist Jewish golem, with yearning soul, turned on its Zionist creator. And so Rabin, too, was murdered, an "honor killing" to avenge the "dishonor" he caused his family, known in Israel as "the Jewish state."

Published: Opinion-Haaretz, November 9, 2011
***
For Hebrw, press here
_______________


Share:


Facebook comments:
0 Comments:
Post a Comment

Middle East
  • The Arab world's quagmire

    Only a society that can engage in introspection and self-examination can emerge from its dark past and march confidently to a different future. Otherwise, it will continue to sink into the same marshy swamp.

    Read more

    A Feeble Middle East

    The West learned on its own flesh that this region conducts itself by other codes. Iran has continued to entrench its standing by means of its religious ideology. The toppling of Saddam Hussein shattered the illusion of the existence of a unifying “Iraqi identity” and gave an encouraging shot in the arm to Iran, which is forging ahead.

    Read more

  • The decay in the Arab world

    With great sadness, it can be said that in the absence of a sane civil alternative, the Arab world will continue along this path.

    Read more


    Neither Arab nor Spring

    The vicissitudes that have, for some reason, been collectively dubbed the "Arab Spring" are neither Arab nor Spring. One can say that they are actually living proof of the identity crisis and reverberating bankruptcy of Arab nationalism.

    Read more

  • another title

Israel - Palestine
  • Our troubles come from us

    And so we have reached a situation in which every Arab is concerned with his own problems and everyone talks about what preoccupies him personally – that is, his own troubles.

    Read more


  • Never-ending tragedy

    The Israeli right, in all its forms, wants exclusively Jewish control over all of the Land of Israel. To the Palestinians who live in this space, it promises residency – temporary, of course, on condition that they keep their heads down, accept their designated status and behave accordingly.

    Read more
  • Solomon’s Mosque

    Religion, every religion, is the No. 1 enemy of nationalism. But under conditions of tension, such as tribal warfare, these polar opposites combine into a toxic soup that consumes all common sense.

    Read more


Racism
  • They see not, nor know

    The term "neutralize" is very popular with people who have served in the security and expulsion forces. The question to be asked is, What did the poet who spoke of "neutralization" mean in this plan?

    Read more

    For Jews only

    From the moment the pundits followed in the footsteps of the politicians, both large and small, they carried this noxious melody everywhere. They were part of legitimizing the illegitimate in Israeli politics.

    Read more

  • With yearning soul

    The Zionism that aspired to establish a "Jewish home" in the Jews' "ancient homeland" did not take into consideration the fact that the land was not empty. It thus adopted the principle of population transfer, based on the same ancient biblical tradition.

    Read more

    Rabbis of the Dry Bones

    Racism surfaces when a society loses its self-confidence and turns to seeking ways to defend itself against what is different and perceived as increasingly threatening.

    Read more

  • الحلم

    حلمتُ:
    أنّي في سجن جدران بيضاء
    حيث لا يعرفني أحدٌ، وأصواتٌ
    تختفي في الرّدهات، وأضواء تستنشقُ
    جمجمتي اللّاهثة.
    ...
    تتمة الكلام


Press photo to Email

Classic

***
Jazz




Site Archive

Selected Topics

 
Essays
  • The pit and the pendulum

    In those days, we did not drink four goblets of wine, because everything that gladdens the human heart is not a part of our custom.

    Read more

  • Welcome Back to History

    Islam, like other imperialist ideologies, still needs enemies to flourish. Enemies have served Islam in the past as fuel for its wagons. Without enemies Islam declines and stagnates...

    Read more

  • another title

Poetry
  • Balkrishna Sama

    Man Is God


    He who loves flowers, has a tender heart.
    he who cannot pluck their blooms,
    has a heart that's noble.

    Read more

  • Martin Niemöller

    First They Came

    First they came for the Communists
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Communist.
    Then they came for the Socialist
    And I did not speak out
    Because I was not a Socialist.


    Read More

  • Salman Masalha

    The Song About the Child

    Boston Gospel Choir

    Text: Salman Masalha
    Composer: Stephen Feigenbaum


    listen

TOPICS