Saturday, January 17, 2009

Letter from Zeb about Zion

December 1, 2008

Dear Ken,

No way could anyone who reads your work think you are Anti-Semitic, though some Zionists may attempt that for a variety of reasons.

I think you have explained the problem eloquently, though I think few will “get” the gist of your research, especially in America. It is indeed common knowledge in Europe and the Middle East. You are right about American brainwashing, and it is across the board, but of course the entire world is grappling with that problem, and it comes from a lot of different sources.... Understanding Zion has to be found outside of the borders where the hatred of Israel is published and openly talked about, away from your liberal media. Take heart, these thoughts (truths) are now posted all over the Internet, and are becoming better known, but here it is in a nutshell, and with my own twist... taken from our blog...

As you state, there is a rather large movement of Orthodox Jews who believe that the founding of Israel in the 20th century was not only wrong but an affront to their G-d. It is their G-d who is supposed to lead them to the Promised Land, not the British occupiers of Palestine. They (we) also believe it is blasphemy to speak Hebrew except for religious purposes. They live among us and speak our languages; a few still speak Yiddish. They are fiercely anti-Zionist, and yet these people, including you and me, can hardly be called anti-Semitic.Are you as pissed off as I am by the word "anti-Semitic" being appropriated to apply only to Jews? The Arabs are also a Semitic people, as are the Assyrians and a few other ethnic groups as well. Here in Lebanon, and my home, we know it well. They all speak languages of the Semitic-Hermitic family and the relationship is close and obvious. "Peace be unto you" is shalom aleikhem in Hebrew and salaam alaikum in Arabic.We Arabs outnumber Jews by about 100 to 1. If a person is anti-Semitic it means he also hates Arabs. Our language is being butchered for political purposes, as it is understood that the Zionists are locked into your government. It is difficult to realize where America will now go now that Mr. Obama is in office. He is not understood, and that frightens a lot of people here. My father told me Mr. Carter understands it, but I don’t know.

Essentially, I define being anti-Zion as being opposed to the formation of the state of Israel and the related situation including the manner in which it was done.If you feel that land was stolen from the Palestinians unjustly, to form Israel - you might be an anti-Zionist.If you thing Israel should not exist where it does - you might be an anti-Zionist.If you think the Israeli/Palestinian relationship equates to apartheid - you might be an anti-Zionist.If you think the land of Israel should be given back to Palestine - you might be an anti-Zionist.If you think that Israel should be forced back to its "original" (i.e. post WWII) size - you might be an anti-Zionist.It takes many forms, and I think the question, as I said, is a fairly simple and straight-forward one.

There is an obvious difference between cultural and religious Zionists. Let's follow your Wiki link for a moment: “Cultural Zionism is a strain of the concept of Zionism that values Jewish culture and history, including language and historical roots, rather than other Zionist ideas such as Political Zionism.”

The Wiki link to political Zionism takes you to the URL that is titled "Zionism". This is because it is conventional to associate "Zionism" foremost with political and not cultural Zionism.Cultural Zionists certainly appreciate Jewish culture, but do not necessarily advocate pushing other ethnicities around as an intrinsic part of that expression. Political Zionists either believe in or exploit a concept that is a Jewish version of manifest destiny- that a religious and/or historical mandate demands that other ethnicities had better get the hell out of their way while they build and maintain an exclusive Homeland for the Jews, where Jewish culture shall always reign superior to any other. Many Jews take offense to this ideology, not to mention the Palestinian victims of Zionism. Oops, I mean political Zionism. Yes, the concept of Zion has changed, and that is a problem for most to grasp, that Zionism can be used by both, and so I think your term “New- Zion” or “Secular Jews” describes my term “Cultural Zion” to a tee. I’m sure you will agree.

The simplest definition of "Zionizm", IMO, is how my dad explained it to me when I was 7: the idea that all Jews should live in Israel... and that they should rule themselves. (The difference between a State and a Homeland was not understood by him, or it wasn’t considered. Orthodox Jews believe that one can live in peace within the framework of any Government as live and let live, but mostly (Secular) Jews, who think of themselves mostly to be of a Jewish Race, and not an all encompassing Religion, is the hardest to comprehend, and misunderstand.
All the other definitions are sort of derivatives that were invented by academic types in recent years.Now, what is "hatred"?

Some say that rejecting of the idea of Jewish self-determination (i.e. to self-govern and to live in their recently-self-resurrected ancient homeland) falls under the definition. It is evident you don’t think so, and of course that concept is, as you say, is opposed to America’s fundamental separation of Church and State. Israel is nearly as much a Church-State as say, Saudi Arabia, though they would emphatically deny that, I’m sure.On a simple un-nuanced level, I agree. But there are many nuances that complicate the situation.By and large I find that most so-called anti-Zionists are also anti-Semites. They are not against one Israeli policy vs. another... they're against the entire existence of Israel. In my book that would make that person anti-Semitic. However, in one of your earlier postings you mentioned that Israel is the seat of many religions, and precious to them. No Religious person, seemingly fundamental, would want to do harm to Israel, but to the domination of the Government of Zion there.

Blue skies to you too! And thanks for the college try!


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