You Make Us So
A short one for today. I don’t have much time, and also, American readers most likely aren’t in a state to read long essays today.
Of the many complaints of Leftists about the state of Israel, about Zionist exceptionalism and therefore, knowingly or not, about Judaism itself, there is the contention about the Jewish conception of chosenness. Even when it is pointed (as I did) that Jewish chosenness is not a pretext for world domination and subjugation of all the outsiders, the Leftists decry the concept of Jewish chosenness as “racism”. Under the article, ‘Never Forget’ Is Never Enough on Common Dreams, from April 13, 2007, by Jewish Leftist Seth Freedman, who is a columnist on the British Jew-hating rag The Guardian, here is a pertinent comment, by “PJD”:
I may get a lot of flack for this [No, you won’t. Quite the opposite: you’ll be praised as “championing progressive values”. —ZY], but there seems to a very USA-like exceptionalism that runs through Jewish culture. And, please educate me if I am making a logical mistake somewhere, but how can a belief in being a “God-chosen people” not be a form or racism?
Possibly an indication of where things are going to come to soon. The Leftists have no problem respecting, à la National Geographic, all manner of barbaric customs of exotic peoples, saying, “That’s what they believe, that’s their culture” (and often wishing they, the Westerners, had something comparable), but when it comes to something we Jews believe out of the same motives, i.e. out of acceptance of the truth of our traditions, the attitude is changed. Picture a Leftist saying, for example, that the Druzes’ insistence on keeping their religion secret except to an elite stems out of a basic “plotting in the dark to rule the world”. Ridiculous, of course. But, for Jews they have a different standard.
Which brings me to the main point of this post: I, as an Orthodox Jew, may believe in Jewish chosenness out of acceptance of the tradition of my people; the Leftists, however, make it so through their actions. Consider this passage:
All our current foreign policy problems stem from our one-sided support of India against the Kashmiris. When we, at the behest of the India Lobby, support India’s oppression of the Kashmiris, who are fighting for their right to self-determination, we fuel the hatred of the whole Muslim world. That is the root cause behind 9/11, and all the ill-feeling on the part of the Muslim world toward us. For the sake of peace, we must force India to the negotiations table, to sign a just and lasting peace accord that will provide for security for both India and the Kashmiri people. That isn’t prejudice against the Hindus, it’s just criticism of India’s policies.
I do not have to warn that the above is a fiction of mine. But, on the other hand, we all know that if you change a few names, you get the Leftist position on the Israel/“Palestine” debate.
I do not understand, from the rational point of view, why the USA’s support of Israel is the root cause of 9/11 and Arab/Muslim hatred toward it any more than the USA’s support of other countries. Far beyond my understanding is the train of thought that leads one to say the resolution of the Israel/“Palestine” conflict would spell the end of, or at the very least minimize, the risk of a terrorist threat to the West. Muslims are fighting for “self-determination” everywhere—Kashmir, Thailand, Australia, Malmö, anywhere on the globe where they are in sizable numbers—yet the Leftists choose to give an unrelenting, uncompromising, raging focus on the Israel/“Palestine” conflict.
From time to time there have been Jews who tired of Jewish exceptionalism and wanted to become “a nation like all other nations”. Zionism, by the way, originally had that as one of its goals. But the Leftists, much as they may condemn Jewish exceptionalism as “a form of racism”, are the ones who, by G-d’s direction, are doing everything to perpetuate it. Through their divinely-inspired madness of focusing on the state of Israel, they make Jewish chosenness a naturally visible reality.
Ma gad’lu ma’asecha, HaShem, m’od am’ku machsh’votecha—“How great are Thy works, O LORD! Thy thoughts are very deep” (Psalms 92:6). How amazing it is to see HaShem rule His people, keep them close to Him, through the agency of—of all possible people—the “reality-based community”. You, Kossacks and CommonDreamers and the like, you make our chosenness a visible, undeniable fact.