Israel: Judaism & Zionism
WHOLISTIC WORLD VISION
GLOBAL NETWORKING SERVICE
This is one of the most important (and hopeful!) pieces WWV has circulated this year
and, interestingly, not long after we suggested that it was time for ordinary, decent,
peace-loving Jews to expose the Zionist agenda. Respected, non-Zionist Judaic spiritual
leaders have long maintained that:
1) the 'holy' land was NEVER to be taken by FORCE,
2) That the land was to be SHARED,
3) That the Jews are a religious and not political people.
motivated Zionists defied all 3 basic principles for the founding of the modern geo-political
state of 'Israel' and have consequently lead the world into misery and chaos - with
much worse to come unless these people can be reigned in quickly, ESPECIALLY by other
influential and moderate Jews. In relation to this, the newly published book "The
holy land of Scotland & the gospel of the Grail" by Barry Dunford is a MUST
read for those ready for a clear, if challenging, new perspective. He skilfully traces
the Grail and anti-Grail forces throughout history using a wide ranging body of scolarly
research. On the subject of the article below, he has also untangled the complex
& muddled definitions of 'Israel', Jews, Hebrews, Semites & Zionists resulting
in many fascinating and surprising revelations!(website for book ordering and contact:
www.sacredconnection.ndo.co.uk ). These are the times when "all truth will be
known" and "the Truth will set us free".
Israel, Judaism and Zionism
Talk By: Rabbi Ahron Cohen at Birmingham University, England
My friends, it is an honour to have the opportunity of talking to you
today.I and my colleagues of Neturei Karta attend occasions such as this because
we feel that we have both a religious and humanitarian duty to publicize our message
as much as possible. So I hope and pray that with the Creators help my words and
our discussions here today may be correct and true in their content and conclusions.
As you have already been told, I am an orthodox Jew (that is a Jew who endeavours
to live his life completely in accordance with the Jewish religion). I am involved
in ecclesiastical duties within the Jewish Community and am particularly involved
in educating our youth and in helping them to achieve healthy and correct attitudes.
It is thereforeof particular interest to me to be able to talk to you, a student
body, today. I have been asked to talk to you about Judaism and Zionism. This subject
is of course tremendously relevant in the light of the current situation in Palestine,
where you have - lets face it - one side, the Zionists (who are also Jews), wishing
to impose a sectarian State over the heads of an indigenous population, the Palestinians.
A confrontation which has resulted in horrific bloodshed and brutality with no end
in sight unless there is a very radical change. My qualification to talk on this
subject is by virtue of my being one of many orthodox Jews who absolutely sympathise
with the Palestinian cause, and we protest vehemently against the terrible wrongs
against the Palestinian People by the Zionist illegitimate regime in Palestine.
The spearhead group among us who are involved actively in this matter on a regular
basis are called Neturei Karta, which can be loosely translated as Guardians of the
Faith. We are not a separate party or organisation but basically a philosophy representative
of a large section of orthodox Jewry. Let me firstly state quite categorically
that Judaism and Zionism are incompatible. They are diametrically opposed.
The question must surely arise in the minds of many of you here today that there
appears to be a paradox. After all everyone knows that Zionists are Jews and that
Zionism is for the benefit of Jews. The Palestinians are the enemies of the Zionists.
How come then that I, a Jew, can sympathise with the Palestinian cause. I would like
to try to answer this question and to revert to the subject of my talk - Judaism
and Zionism - on two levels, religious belief and humanitarianism. Bearing in mind
that to be humanitarian is also a basic religious requirement. Firstly from a Jewish
religious belief point of view. One has to take a look at some aspects of the history
of the Jewish people and at their basic belief in the Al-mightys control of our destiny
and what the Al-mighty wants of us. All as set out in our Religious teachings, our
Toira, and as taught to us through the generations by our great religious leaders.
Against this we also have to look at the history of Zionism, how it developed, what
are its aims.
Our religion is for us a total way of life. Showing us how to live a life in the
service of the Al-mighty. It affects every aspect of our life from the cradle to
the grave. We are taught that it was revealed to us by Divine Revelation, as described
in the Bible, some three and a half thousand years ago, and that is when the Jewish
People came in to being. All of our religious requirements, practical and philosophical,
are set out in the Torah which comprises the Bible (the old testament) and a vast
code of Oral Teaching handed down to us through the generations.
As mentioned, our religion is a total way of life covering every aspect of our life.
One area of our religion is that subject to certain conditions is that we will be
given a land, the Holy Land, now known as Palestine, in which to live and carry out
various parts of our service of the Al-mighty. Now, before I go any further, I wish
to point out something which is very basic to understanding the difference between
Judaism and Zionism and that is that the orthodox Jewish concept of nationhood is
very different to the concept of nationhood held by most peoples. Most peoples understand
a nation to be a specific people living in a specific
land. The land is essential for the identity of the nation. They may or may not have
a religion, but the religion is immaterial to the national identity. The orthodox
Jewish concept of nationhood however, is a specific people with a specific religion.
It is the religion that establishes the national identity. They may or may not have
a land, the land is immaterial to the Jewish national identity.
This is borne out by the fact that the Jewish nation has been without a land for
2000 years, but as long as they retained their religion they retained their identity.
Now I mentioned earlier that we were given a land but under certain conditions. The
conditions were basically that we had to maintain the highest of moral, ethical and
religious standards. The Jewish People did have the land for approximately the first
one thousand five hundred years of their existence. However, regretfully, the conditions
were not fulfilled to the required degree and the Jews were exiled from their land.
For the last two thousand years or so the Jewish people have been in a state of exile
decreed by the A-lmighty because they did not maintain the standards expected of
them. This state of exile is the situation that exists right up to the present day.
It is a basic part of our belief to accept willingly the Heavenly decree of exile
and not to try and fight against it or to end it by our own hands. To do so would
constitute a rebellion against the wishes of the A-lmighty. In practical terms, although
we have maintained our Jewish identity by virtue of our attachment to our religion,
never the less exile for us means firstly that Jews must be loyal subjects of the
countries in which they live and not attempt to rule over the established indigenous
populations of those countries.
Secondly, that we may not attempt to set up a State of our own in Palestine. This
would apply even if the land would be unoccupied and it certainly applies when, as
is the case, there is an existing indigenous population. This prohibition is a basic
part of our teaching and we are forsworn not to contravene it and we are warned of
the dire consequences of doing so. It follows, therefore, that Jews have no right
to rule today in Palestine. Now let us consider the Zionist movement. This was founded
approximately 100 years ago mostly by secular people who were discarding their religion
but still retained what they considered as the stigma of being Jews in exile. They
considered that our state of exile was due to our own subservient attitude - the
Golus (exile) mentality - and not by Divine Decree. They wanted to throw off the
constraints of exile and to try and establish a new form of Jewish identity. Not
religion based but land based. It was based on a typical, emotion driven, secular
nationalistic aim, similar to that of most other nations. Their policy had as its
centre pin the aim of setting up a Jewish State in Palestine. But they were forging
a new kind of Jew. In fact not a Jew at all- a Zionist. This Zionist movement was
a complete abandonment of our religious teachings and faith - in general - and in
particular an abandonment of our approach to our state of exile and our attitude
to the peoples among whom we live.
The practical outcome of Zionism in the form of the State known as Israel is completely
alien to Judaism and the Jewish Faith. The very name Israel which originally meant
what are known as the Children of Israel i.e. the Jewish People was usurped by the
Zionists. For this reason many orthodox Jews avoid referring to the Zionist State
by the name Israel.
The ideology of Zionism is not to rely on divine providence but to take the law into
ones own hands and to try to force the outcome in the form of a State. This is completely
contrary to the approach to the matter of exile which our Toira requires us to adopt,
as handed down to us by our great religious teachers.
I have spoken till now from the religious belief point of view. But let us consider
the humanitarian point of view (and to do so is also a religious requirement as I
mentioned earlier).The Zionist ideology was and is to force the aim of a State irrespective
of the cost in life and property to anyone who stands in the way. The Palestinians
stood in the way. We have a fact that in order to achieve an ill conceived nationalistic
ambition, a shocking contravention of natural justice was
committed by the Zionists in setting up an illegitimate regime in Palestine completely
against the wishes of the established population, the Palestinians, which inevitably
had to be based on loss of life, killing and stealing. Most Orthodox Jews accept
the Neturei Karta view to the extent that they do not agree in principle to the existence
of the Zionist State and would not shed a tear if it came to an end. There are however
a range of opinions as to how to deal with the fact that for the time being the Zionist
State exists. These opinions range from positive cooperation to pragmatic acceptance
to total opposition in every way. The latter being the Neturei Karta approach. There
was and is however, an additional Zionist phenomenon which confuses the picture.
That is the Religious Zionists. These are people who claim to be faithful to the
Jewish Religion but they have been influenced by the Zionist secular nationalistic
philosophy and have added a new dimension to Judaism - Zionism, the aim of setting
up now and expanding a Jewish state in Palestine. This they try to fulfil with great
fervour. (I call it Judaism-plus) They claim that this is inherent in the Jewish
religion. But the fact is as explained earlier that this is absolutely contrary to
the teachings of our great religious teachers. Furthermore, from a humanitarian point
of view, their ideology too was and is to force their aim irrespective of the cost
in life and property to anyone who stands in the way. The Palestinians are standing
in the way. This is all the more shocking as it is done in the name of religion.
Whereas in reality there is a totally contrary requirement of our religion and that
is to treat all peoples with compassion. To sum up. According to the Torah
and Jewish faith, the present Palestinian Arab claim to rule in Palestine is right
and just. The Zionist claim is wrong and criminal. Our attitude to Israel is that
the whole concept is flawed and illegitimate.
We have another problem and that is that the Zionists have made themselves to appear
as the representatives and spokespeople of all Jews thus, with their actions, arousing
animosity against the Jews. Those who harbour this animosity are accused of anti-Semitism.
However, what has to be made abundantly clear is that Zionism is not Judaism. Zionists
cannot speak in the name of Jews. Zionists may have been born as Jews, but to be
a Jew also requires adherence to the Jewish belief and religion. So what becomes
abundantly clear is that opposition to Zionism and its crimes does not imply hatred
of Jews or anti-Semitism. On the contrary Zionism itself and its deeds are the biggest
threat to Jews and Judaism.
The strife between Arab and Jew in Palestine only began when the first Zionist pioneers
came to Palestine with the express aim of forming a State over the heads of the indigenous
Arab population. That strife has continued until this very day and has cost and continues
to cost thousands and thousands of lives. The oppression, abuse and murder in Palestine
is a tragedy not only for the Palestinians but for the Jewish people as well. And
is in fact part of the dire consequences of which we are warned if we transgress
our religious requirement not to rebel against our exile.
I wish to add that the connection between Muslims and Jews goes right back into ancient
history. Mostly the relationship was friendly and mutually beneficial. Historically,
the situation frequently was that when Jews were being persecuted in Europe they
found refuge in the various Muslim countries. Our attitude to Muslims and Arabs can
only be one of friendliness and respect.
I would like to finish with the following words. We want to tell the world, especially
our Muslim neighbours, that there is no hatred or animosity between Jew and Muslim.
We wish to live together as friends and neighbours as we have done mostly over hundreds
even thousands of years in all the Arab countries. It was only the advent of the
Zionists and Zionism which upset this age old relationship.
We consider the Palestinians as the people with the right to govern in Palestine.
The Zionist State known as Israel is a regime that has no right to exist. Its continuing
existence is the underlying cause of the strife in Palestine. 33. We pray for a solution
to the terrible and tragic impasse that exists. Hopefully based on results brought
about by moral, political and economic pressures imposed by the nations of the world.
We pray for an end to bloodshed and an end to the suffering of all innocent people
- Jew and non-Jew alike - worldwide. We are waiting for the annulment of Zionism
and the dismantling of the Zionist regime, which will bring about an end to the suffering
of the Palestinian people. We would welcome the opportunity to dwell in peace in
the holy land under a rule which is entirely in accordance with the wishes and aspirations
of the Palestinian People.
May we soon merit the time when all mankind will be at peace with each other.