For the past week I have been really struggling with the explosion of antisemitic acts both in the United States and abroad. I know there is a contorted effort of “apologists” to defend anti-Zionist rhetoric, claiming it is separate from antisemitism, however, this is not true, no matter how hard people try to make that argument. One can certainly believe and argue against policies of the Zionist State, Israel – a JEWISH state – one can even oppose the government. That is NOT the same as advocating for the end of and destruction of Israel. As much as people try to disconnect Jews from the land of Israel, it is impossible; we are inextricably linked.
While I was going to write a more extensive blog on this critical issue, I am going to, instead, share with you a blog by Rabbi Benjamin Blech, Professor of Talmud at Yeshiva University and an internationally recognized educator, religious leader, and lecturer, who writes eloquently on this issue, and a video that Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks z”l made on this subject. While no argument or presentation can address every nuance, or is ever complete, these two are very much on point. Please take the time to read the blog and watch the video. Please share them as well. We must be better educated on this topic, for the sake of our children, and we must not remain silent.
The focus of this blog is on the connection between anti-Zionism and antisemitism. This in no way is intended to diminish the plight of the Palestinian people. While in many ways Israel is a progressive country at the forefront of diversity and inclusion, especially in the Middle East, I personally believe Israel must address the systemic discrimination against Israeli Arab citizens. In spite of the many catastrophic missteps Palestinian leaders have made that have prevented Palestinian statehood, I still believe the Palestinian people also deserve a place to call home, in peace, and side by side with a strong, democratic, and moral Jewish state – Israel.
Rabbi Benjamin Blech: It’s Not About Israel; It’s about Being a Jew
Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks z”l: The Connection Between Anti-Semitism, Anti-Zionism, Judaism and Israel
Please note: Today, May 27, 2021 is designated, ‘A Day of Action Against Antisemitism’. Please see how you can participate by clicking for more information here.
הָגֵן עָלֶיהָ בְּאֶבְרַת חַסְדֶּךָ, וּפְרֹשׂ עָלֶיהָ סֻכַּת שְׁלוֹמֶךָ
May Israel be shielded from harm and established as a place of peace -A Prayer For the State of Israel