Opinion |

The State of the Judahites

B. Michael
B. Michael
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A man praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, widely regarded as Judaism's holiest site
A man praying at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, widely regarded as Judaism's holiest site Credit: Ohad Zwigenberg
B. Michael
B. Michael

One of the gravest sins of the State of Israel is the absolute custodianship it has granted itself, without permission and without authority, over the entire Jewish people. Both here and in the Diaspora. As though Israel is its leader, as though it is the one protecting the Jewish people as though they are all its subjects.

This presumption is not only chutzpah, arrogance and foolishness, it’s a great danger as well. In blurring the sharp difference between the State of Israel and world Jewry, Israel is turning all Jews, against their will, into partners, with responsibility for all its deeds. Every kippa-wearer in France is responsible for every bombing in Gaza. Every wearer of a kapote (a long coat worn by many ultra-Orthodox Jews) in New York finds himself a partner to the killing of Palestinian teens. Everyone identified as a Jew anywhere in the world becomes a collaborator with all the evil and crimes of the State of Israel. They don’t deserve that.

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A decent country would make an effort to create a clear distinction between itself and world Jewry. It would explain carefully that Israel is the state of the Israelis, and only they are responsible for its behavior, not all Jews everywhere.

The truth is that this distinction has already existed for a long time: Those called “Jews” in Israel are an entirely different species from those called “Jews” worldwide. A new sect has arisen here, a younger sister to the other sects and false messiahs to which Judaism has given rise: Sadducees, Essenes, Pharisees, Zealots, Sicarii, the Judean Desert sect, Nathan of Gaza, Sabbatai Zevi, Jacob Frank, David Alroy, Shlomo Molcho … we can easily add to the list Bratslav, Chabad, Rabbi Berland, Rabbi Zvi Yehuda Kook and the flock of Yesha (Judea and Samaria) rabbis.

It’s not easy to identify the Judahites. Their clothing is Jewish, their language is Jewish, their rituals are Jewish, their customs are Jewish, and yet they are only artificial Jews, because as opposed to Jews, the Judahites believe in shrinking the brain and inflating the muscles, in making the essence of Judaism secondary, and turning the secondary into the essence.

They have exchanged philosophy, ethics and culture for the fine points of Jewish law (“Is it permissible to kill Arabs on the eve of Purim too?”), ridiculous embellishment of the halakha (a kippa the size of a tub and an etrog costing 1,000 shekels), and unbridled bullying. They have exchanged the sanctity of human life for the sanctity of the land, and they use human blood to mark territory.

They say that it all began already in 1948. For the first time since the days of the biblical Joshua, the Jews committed despicable acts, and the strong taste of power that was exercised in order to expand the borders of the state made them lose their minds. It turns out that “despicable behavior” is a very heady drug. It paralyzes the conscience, releases the baser instincts and wears down the brakes. Suddenly everything is permitted and everything is kosher, because it’s all in the name of Heaven. What fun. Is it any wonder that the Judahites became fruitful and multiplied and filled the land?

In 1967 the brakes were totally worn down, and the Judahites began their short march to the government, which is where they are now. They are horrifyingly similar to the sects of the Zealots and the Sicarii who caused terrible destruction to the Jews of Israel, and brought them 2,000 years of exile. Years of persecution and enhancement, suffering and glory, death and prosperity. And that’s what will happen this time too.

But meanwhile, the entire world and the Jews living in it should be aware: The State of Israel is not a Jewish state, nor is it the state of the Jews. It’s only the Judahite state of its Judahite inhabitants. Please make no mistake.

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