Dedicated to our anti-zionist friends

Don’t be surprised when I tell you that in order to understand what anti-zionism really is, we have to travel back in time to 3500 years ago.

Specifically, we go back to the accursed meeting between Jacob and Esau, during which the latter had planned to kill his brother because he had “stolen” his father’s blessing, the act formally acknowledging the firstborn as the principal heir.

Esau was really born first, but in a moment of great hunger he had sold his birthright to his younger twin in exchange of a bowl of lentils. Regardless of this legal transaction, Esau wanted to vindicate his birthright and vowed revenge against his brother.

Back in 1100, Rashi the commentator explained that a war between the two sides was avoided by a mere miracle, but the stage was set: Esau and his descendants would hate Jacob and his progeny for eternity.

Joseph, Jacob’s son, traveled to Egypt and soon became the Pharaoh’s vizier. Regardless of his having saved Egypt from terrible famine and having replenished the royal finances through some strategic moves, his progeny was enslaved because it was considered a menace to the country’s internal order.

It was the year 1312 before our Common Era and a community that taught monotheism and that respected each individual’s life regardless of social status, could undermine Egypt’s stability from the ground up. The young Jewish males were trained and then used to make the bricks used to build the pyramids, while the men were subjected to grueling work.

The Jewish people would be extinct if God hadn’t freed them during the renown Exodus.

History continues with the Jewish people conquering the land of Israel and the several attempts of the world powers of the time, such as the Assyrian and Babylonian Empires as well as the Roman Empire, to beat and wipe out those people who were monotheists of unwavering faith, intellectuals and promulgators of universal rights.

The rights of women, slaves, foreigners and immigrants were considered dangerously destabilizing values for those societies based on the clear distinction between the privileged classes, on subservient classes and on the deprivation of all the rights of the people they conquered.

Let’s travel forward in time and get to the Inquisition. A thorn in the Jews’ side is that they know that it is possible to coexist in absolute respect for the different and with who prays to a different God. Yet, the Church of the time didn’t like diversity and the Jewish people’s values were the opposite to all that was necessary to retain its power over the people. The Church needed ignorant followers who could easily be trained to have unconditional, reverential respect towards the clergy.

The real danger of the Jewish people was that they could read and write, they taught the poorer classes how to study, and they treated their own slaves with respect. This modus operandi was a serious menace to the Church’s hegemony. Massive anti-Semitic propaganda was carried out: the Jews were accused of deicide, of spreading the plague, of lending money at rates of interest (that really happened considering that the Jews were forbidden by local political and religious authorities to carry out all professional activities). In religious sermons, the Jews were described as diabolical, deceitful and disloyal beings.

Let’s travel geographically this time, and move towards Russia, in the Ukraine to be exact.

The Jews were used by the czar’s regime as scapegoats against whom the people’s discontent was directed to. The Jewish people were too curious intellectually, too skilled commercially and stubbornly bound to a faith that didn’t let them lose their heart or identity, even in the darkest moments.

Then it was the turn of the nazis and the fascists, who found fertile ground in centuries old anti-semitic propaganda. The Jews represented a foreign body, an alternative thought, a refusal to comply. They were a group of people who always aimed for the top and were able to rise from the ashes and get back in the game. Without the Jews the world could become a cleaner, better place, they said. Nazism and Fascism drew on the ancestral accusations of deicide, usury and conspiracy to build the greatest racial campaign of all time.

On the Berlin walls there were no posters advertising cars or tomato sauces, but representations of hooked noses, sharp fingers holding the planet, satanic faces that lead the way towards Auschwitz, Bergen Belsen and Mauthausen for those people who were dangerously and persistently different.

After the second world war, mankind tried to set itself free from that irrational anti-semitic feeling that had caused the death of six million Jews.

The Jewish people were not seen as usurers anymore, they didn’t spread the plague and even the Church promoted them from evil beings to older brothers.

Now they are Israelis, they have their own Army, a place where they cannot be mass slaughtered and where nobody will force them to sew a yellow star on their jackets.

Nowadays they are not represented with hooked noses but with long shotguns.

They don’t greedily spread their fingers on the globe but on a tiny plot of land.

They don’t have satanic faces but they wear military helmets.

The Jewish people have shed their skin.

Now they are zionists.

Mankind tries to forget the hatred directed at the Jews but it’s almost impossible to eradicate an idea that’s been passed along from generation to generation.

Antisemitism, after centuries of brain washing, cannot simply vanish into thin air.

Just like an hibernating animal, it just took a break to then wake up more ferocious than ever.

Anti-Jewish hatred has been lying dormant, waiting to reappear in a new guise.

Being anti-Jew is not trendy, high tech is not reconcilable with those who hate regardless.

But if we call it anti-zionism, it’s a whole different story.

Not Judaean anymore, the Jews have become respectable.

Regardless of all conflicts and wars – 90.000 dead in Iraq and in Yemen, 70.000 dead in Afghanistan, 200.000 victims in Syria, Israelis have become a current issue. Basically they are nothing but a few million Jews who have miraculously survived the continuous extermination attempts, a group of  people who tries and hopes to give their children a better future.

The label “Israeli” indicates, once again, the fearsome Jews.

In one of his eight homilies written in 386 against the Jews, John Chrysostom said that “Nothing is more miserable than than those people who never failed to attack their own salvation.”

The early man hated what he was scared of and in some level even the modern man is primitive. Hatred against the Jews is an inferiority complex in disguise. Back in 1958, Herman Hesse said that “toward the very old and very intelligent Jewish people the less intelligent sections of another race feel competitive envy and a shaming inferiority, and the more blatantly this base feeling parades as superiority, the more surely fear and weakness are behind it.”

Call them Judaeans, infidels, Jews, the Jewish race, Israelis – the Torah has said that more than three thousand years ago.

Esau and his descendants will never cease to hate Jacob and his progeny.

Yet, it’s written that, despite of all this eternal hatred, us Jews will never cease to exist.

Am Israel Chay.

Gheula Canarutto Nemni

When I sit in darkness G-d will be my light

hanukkah nazismWhy do we light these candles every year? you ask me, my son.

Why do we go on repeating this ritual every year and every day of this festival we insist that a new flame shall dance in our homes?

My child, Hanukkah is not only a beautiful story.

When the Maccabees defetaed the enemy they did not go around the streets with their swords, as all other nations used to do. They had more important things in their mind.

They ran to the Beth Hamikdash, the sanctuary in Jerusalem, with one main goal. To rekindle the menorah, the seven branched candelabra. They did not organize parties or massive celebrations, but they dedicated all their time looking for a sealed, still pure, oil flask. All they wanted was to bring back to life with the outmost pureness, the light that for years had been lighting from Jerusalem, the whole world.

They found a sealed flask, but it was only one.

And this little flask resisted with its own strenghts against winds, oxygen and the laws of nature and it went on dancing and lighting for eight uninterrupted days.

 

We Jews are used to walk in the dark. Every step we undertake there is an obstacle, a challenge, an enemy, to wait for us.

 

And yet nothing could make us ever think ‘this is the end. I will surrender’.

My little child, we did not come to this world for observing in a passive way what is going on.

Our soul was not detached from the Divine throne to suffer events without shouting back.

G-d cared to blow inside us His deep essence for only one reason. Because we can.

Everyone of us is that flask, everyone has inside himself that strenght to resist, the power to change.

We are all able to overwhelm ourselves and the world that surrounds us with positivity and absolute light.

My son, Hanukkah is Jewish history that repeats itself, again and again.

It’s the story of a girl who just lost a few weeks ago her father and brother in a terror attack and did not want to surrender to our enemies and their plans.

We, Jews, do not give evil a break.

And from the last, weakest ray of light, from the last drop of faith that survives in every human soul, we kindle a new fire, bigger and stronger than before.

‘Do not joy my enemy, because I fell down but I got up’, Micha the prophet said and the Israeli girl, who was ready to get married when two days before the wedding she had to bury her father and brother, this girl wanted this sentence printed on her new postponed wedding invitation.

Remember my son.

 

We, Jewish nation, blind darkness with endless light.

 

Hanukkah sameach

Gheula Canarutto Nemni