THEY MUST GO Page 134
Chapter 6: The Ultimate Contradiction
 
 
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134 THEY MUST GO

bthe state must “de-Judaize” itself, throw off the Zionist defini- btion of Israel as a Jewish state? Is he calling for the cutting of ties bbetween Israel and Jewishness, Jewish people and Jewish tradi- btion and culture? Is he saying that all people who live in Israel bnow be looked upon as Israeli nationals, regardless of whether bthey are Jews or Arabs, and the “Israeliness” now be measured bin the same way “Britishness” is?

bThere are not a few Israeli Jews who say yes. They are the bones who see not the slightest reason to be Jewish, since the term bholds absolutely no religious or national meaning or value for bthem. They are the Sabras or near-Sabras (along with the usual bsprinkling of Jewish self-haters), the Hellenists of our time. bThey are the people to whom Judaism as a religion means noth- bing, and so the most fundamental pillar of Jewishness collapses. bBut neither do they have even the superficial reasons to be Jew- bish that are the staffs of the Jews of the Exile and of certain belements in Israel. These latter, though having thrown off re- bligion, remain Jews for one or two other fascinating reasons: bgoyim and chulent.

bGoyim—gentiles. Vast numbers of Jews in the world remain bJewish only because the Gentile does not permit them to do oth- berwise. “What forty eight prophets and seven prophetesses bcould not do—turn the Jews to penitence—Haman’s ring did,” bsay the rabbis. Anti-Semitism, the bloody, murderous, ironic breason that millions of Jews remain so.

bChulent—the Sabbath concoction of potatoes, beans, and bmeat that cooks all night on the stove. It is the symbol of the bJewish culinary and other social traditions that millions of Jews bwho have left tradition still remember. Nostalgia! I remember bZayde; I remember the Friday-night candles and wine. bNostalgia, a weapon of conscience that binds and holds the Jew bto a people in which he would otherwise not see the slightest bunique value.

bGoyim and chulent: hardly logical or deep reasons to remain bJewish, but powerful, nevertheless, and effective.

bBut what do we say to hundreds of thousands of Sabras bwho have never lived as a minority and who do not know the blesson of goyim, the Gentiles? And what of all those who do not bhave chulent or nostalgia to grip them and make Jewishness im- bportant, for whatever reason? What of all the dry bones of Israel b 

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THEY MUST GO Page 134
Chapter 6: The Ultimate Contradiction