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Israel’s Right to a Jewish Identity

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Israel’s Right to a Jewish Identity – Adam Levick
(dailyalert.org, Dec. 4, 2014)

If the Guardian or New York Times published a long essay about some tiny, obscure indigenous tribe in Africa with a language, culture, and religious tradition unique in the region, whose history extends several thousand years and was threatened with extinction, readers would almost certainly lament their plight. Further, it certainly seems unlikely that many readers would challenge the tribe’s vigilance in protecting its ancient traditions, or its fierce desire to prevent the erosion of its unique religious-ethnic identity.

    The broader debate about Israel’s right to identify with a specific religious tradition is the subtext underlying many debates about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 64 countries have national flags that include religious symbols. Nearly half have Christian symbols and a third include Islamic symbols. 57 countries self-identify as uniquely Muslim states. Jews are not at all unique in seeking to maintain a majority citizenry united by a similar historical memory and a common political and moral destiny.

    The existence of a sovereign Jewish polity is no mere religious, abstract, or ideologically driven desire. Rather, it is a rational approach to ensuring the safety of a small, historically persecuted minority who can no longer risk relying on the goodwill of enlightened nations to ensure its well-being and survival. (CiF Watch-Guardian-UK)

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