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Jüdische Weisheit

Two People

By Uri Avneri

The folks in Zion are divided and Netaniahu, the son of the one people, succeeded in creating a paper bridge above the abyss to the second people.

99% of the religious people, including all sub-sects, voted against Peres and against the peace.
Many explanations were given: The labor party did not flatter the religious people enough, they didn't give them enough milliards and they abandoned the "Historic alliance" with the religious Zionists and so on.
But those are superficial explanations. The religious decision was much deeper. "Peace lovers" like Ovadia Yosef and Deri'i [the leaders of the Sephardic party Shas] rushed to sign an residual agreement with the Likud. Rabby Schach, an extreme pacefist, asked his believers to vote for Netaniahu, like the extremist settleres.
Habad people, professionalists in being nice during the whole year, became the extremest "Einsatzgruppe" of the right, why?

The "Historical-partner", MAFDAL (The Israeli religious-Zionists party, [B.K.]), is long time ago obstinct. The Mafdal of today is similar only in its name to the historic MAFDAL of the 1950's, that supported moderate Moshe Sharet against the extreme religious.

When Ben-Gurion betrayed the principle of the state-run education and gave the religious people a seperated education system, he sowed the seed that germinated now.
Two generations of pupils of this stream, changed entirely the face of this religious camp.
They are educated for "You have chosen us" and for messaiatic fanaticism, that were extremisted from year to year, especially after 1967.
The "Gush Emunim" settlers are the spear edge of this process, and Yiga'l Amir - Its prophet.

The ultra religious are apparently representing a completely different entity.
Their predecessors opposed Zionism and cursed Herzl. State is not a value for them, they do not serve in its army and therefore, they could apparently support the peace process. Now it is approved that this was a complete illusion.
The Haredi education, that isolates its students from the rest of the world and germinates in them the hatred for the "Goyim" and a kind of a Jewish patronizing, brings them to a situation,that they can't understand what is peace.

Between the religious public and the secular one, there is an abyss, that widens from year to year. Its about time to define its entity.
After the elections, people started to speak about "cultural war" and "A war between Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv". One can feel that there are things that happen beneath the surface, but people still afraid of confronting the deeper process.

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The real truth is that the "people of Zion" are not one nation but two.

One against another, there actually standing not only two political entities, two folks, two opinions, two cultures but two different people. Each one of them got its own identity, loyality and perception.
One folk is the Israel stream of the the "World Jewish Community", a continuation of the historic Jewish nation.
Its definition is religious-traditional, its historical memory is of persecuted minority. This folk hates the "Goyim" and scorns them. It carries a rich culture of 2000 years, but this culture is an anti-national one that completely contradicts the needs of a state that keeps its own land and lives peacefully with its neighbours. Deep in its heart, this folk can't be democratic because a religious Halacha and democracy are a contradiction. The people of this folk identify themselves first of all as Jews and much later (if at all) as Israelis.

The other nation was born in Israel in the last 100 years. This is an Hebrew-Israeli nation that completely identifies itself with the state it founded. It is aware of its Jewish roots, as most of the Americans, the Canadians and the Australians are aware of their Anglosax roots, but it faces the wide world. It is a part of the modern culture: democratic and liberal in its nature. It is completely identified with the life in a state and therefore it aspires to find itself in the geographical region where it lives and wishes (not without hesitations) for a peace with the neigbour nation in this region.
the people of this nation are firstly identified as Israelis, and their loyality to the state is higher than any other loyality.

The differences between those two people are great. Beginning with the most basic values (i.e.- Humanism, Feminism, etc.) and ending with the language, literature, fashion and food preferences. However, one difference is big enough: The vision of the country they aspire to see.
Few days ago, a TV program about the Islam was brodcasted. A young Pakistani student that works as a newspaper editor, said that there are only two states that were founded in the 20 century and based on a nationality which is defined in religious terms: Pakistan and Israel. It sounds astonishing in the first moment but it is completely true.
The Jewish aspiration is this indeed: Israel is like Pakistan, a pattern where the state-nation-religion are one unit and where the religion law rules.
The Israelis model, in contrary, is the U.S.A.: A pluralistic democracy, based upon a constitution , which assures a complete division of the religion and the country.

Between the two nations there is a group who didn't decide yet in which side it is located. The "LIKUD" succeeded in getting its sympathy. Bibi Netaniahu is a real Israeli, western and "American", but he succeeded in disguising as a Jew. Thats how he created a paper bridge above the abyss.

The real struggle starts now - Pakistan or the U.S.A.

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