Anti-semitism is rarely out of the news lately. One might think that it was rising at a phenomenal rate to become the problem it is now. The truth, however, may be a little different, and the Anti-semitic Jews may give the clue to that difference. “Anti-semitic Jew“, of course, sounds like an oxymoron; and in all the Mainstream Media reporting of the topic, we never seem to hear of such a person.
The solution to this seeming paradox lies in the definition of anti-semitism. The common sense definition would be that it means insulting or being unfair to a Jewish person simply on account of their Jewishness. But the current definition, and one that is clearly accepted by the Mass Media, is any criticism of Israel, or its Government, or of Zionism. There are plenty of Jews who make such criticism, most notably the Haredi, also called Ultra-Orthodox, Jews. We’ll stick with the term “Haredi” here, as they themselves tend to regard “Ultra-Orthodox” as a slur.
The Haredi are firmly Torah believing. The term “Torah” is rather imprecise, but it always refers at least to the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Old Testament, or includes the entire Old Testament, or also includes the specifically Jewish Scriptures, the Talmud and the Kaballah. The Haredi devote much time to Torah study, and are very conservative in their thinking and practice. In some ways they bear comparison to the Amish, who take their Christianity far more seriously than the typical church-goer. Both groups, for example, require modesty in dress, have a high regard for family, and a tendency to keep to themselves. Both groups are also committed to non-violence, though the Haredi are perhaps somewhat less committed in this than the Amish.
Orthodox Jews believe they “are in exile by Divine Decree and may emerge from exile solely via Divine Redemption. All human efforts to alter a metaphysical reality are doomed to end in failure and bloodshed.” They are deeply opposed, to put it mildly, to the entire Zionist project. They have always opposed it, and the protests are ongoing. We rarely hear about these protests for two reasons. One is that the Haredi see personal studying and application of the Torah as their priority; protesting Zionism smacks too much of involvement in the political world. Secondly, the media ignore them and their protests. A possible third reason is that the Haredi are demoralised by the media blackout, so feel that protest is not worthwhile.
Some pictures are possibly the best way to give an insight into the veritable chasm that exists between different Jews:
First, a street scene in a Haredi neighbourhood of New York:
Second and third, Haredi Jews protesting against Israel, also in New York:
Next, a street scene in Tel Aviv, the Capital (or not?) of Israel:
Now, two photos of a Gay Parade in Tel Aviv: (Some Gay websites place Tel Aviv in the Top Ten of LBGT cities.)
Finally, the two worlds meet, or perhaps not, in Tel Aviv:
For Christian Zionists the dichotomy here presents a huge problem. Which Jews are Christian Zionists supporting? Those who devote themselves to God, albeit in a Jewish rather than a Christian way, or the atheists who equally oppose both the Old and New Testaments, both Judaism and Christianity?
Is their choice the militaristic, atheist Jews, or are they simply unaware that religious, anti-zionist Jews even exist? Having discovered their existence myself I informed a Christian Zionist friend, eager to hear the response. It was simple and immediate: “Oh, they’re all troublemakers. They won’t fight in the Israeli Army. They live on Benefits.” I had my answer, which was in essence that anti-zionist Jews are scum. Now, is that anti-semitic?
Two more pictures, this time from London, and video links below:
The videos linked here are very informative. First, an interview with Rabbi Dovid Weiss in New York, here, second, also an interview, but with Rabbi Elhanan Beck in London, here and finally (much shorter) with Beck and two others here.
NOTE: There is no inference in this article that Gays are always Zionist. The June Washington “Dyke March” was attacked by Zionists for banning pro-Israel symbols. (Other symbols of Judaism were welcome, but nothing indicating support for Zionism was allowed.) More significant is the fact that Tel Aviv is distinctly a Gay Pride City. See the City Hall here:
For religious Jews homosexuality is obviously not something to be promoted. The Tel Aviv City Hall being lit up with the Gay Rainbow shows the extent to which Israel is a racial, atheist Jewish construct rather than a religious one. (Which also presents us with the contradiction of atheists who hate the Bible using it to justify their presence in the Holy Land, and being in turn supported by Zionist Christians).