There comes a time….
From 1933 until as late as 1940 Nazi Germany was struggling with the ‘problem’ of, ‘who is the Jew?’ Various attempts were made and laws passed, often cited generally as the ‘Mischlinge’ regulations. The intention, strange to us now, was to protect the ‘good’ blood in the mixed breeds, (mischlinge). Ironically, a full Jew, not even a mischling could be declared Aryan for services to the state, as was Field Marshal Erhard Milch, declared by Adolf Hitler ‘of German blood’ through the influence of his boss, Hermann Goring.
Ancient history? “Inevitably, differences in the rights and duties of the individual derive from differences in character between races, nations, and people.” (quoted from ‘The History of an Obsession’. Klaus P. Fischer. Constable. 1998, p.262).
I’d be grateful if someone could point out to me what is substantially different in the laws the Israeli Prime Minister is trying to force through the Knesset. For many observers what has been happening in Israel for many years is remarkably similar to what was being done in Germany in those years before the Second World War.
As late as October 1941 Hitlers intention for the Jews was deportation not destruction. The Zionist aim for Palestine from the late 1920’s on was (and is) the same. The recent changes (October 2015) require Israeli-Arabs who are Christian to serve in the military. In a way rather like the Mischlinge laws it is an attempt to divide them from their Arab-Muslim neighbours.
Many Germans claimed that they did not know what their Nazi rulers were doing. Did not know, or did not want to know. Even many Jews, well into the war and with plenty of evidence, could not believe what was happening in their modern civilized nation.
It was the prophet Isaiah who asked, “who is blind like my servant Israel?” Ancient Israel’s blindness was chosen, they didn’t want to see. That may be the case for Israeli Jews who have been taught to fear, taught that the Arabs are less than human, that they want to kill them. And they have had hundreds of years of fear in preparation. Is it the case that many in the diaspora, and those Christians who give unquestioning support to ‘democratic Israel’ that they refuse to accept evidence that is all too clear, blind because they don’t want to see.
Any who genuinely care for the Jewish people should examine their own conscience. Judaism is being destroyed by Zionism. Zionism has taken Judaism and led it down a blind alley, perverting all that is good in that faith. The Christian Church, having bent over backwards to say sorry for past sins will find it impossible to know what to say when the Judaism they purport to love disappears in a flame of hate. Except: they will be too busy trying to escape the inferno themselves.
‘Never forgive’ is the Israeli mantra, but that can only work if all you do is hate. Whenever we come face to face with the enemy as an individual we are presented with a choice, to hate without reason or to understand. Of course, even when we understand we may still hate, but, here’s the quandary, we may not. Understanding is a step on the way that may end in forgiveness. And, whilst understanding and forgiveness have the power to bring peace, hate can only consume us. That is why Judaism is in grave danger of dying. There too is the irony. Just supposing that Israel and the West is able for ever to contain the bitterness and pain of our ‘enemies’, what will we have become?
What morality will remain when our souls are torn by the images of dead and dying children and mothers? How will we rationalise the collateral damage of innocent young lives hideously shortened? ‘They’ will not be Jewish, and we shall not be Christian.
There is time, although not much. And this is the time, the Kairos Time. Christians must set aside their differences and unite for peace with justice. Not just for Palestinians oppressed for 66 years, not just for Syrian Sunni Muslims, or Saudi Shiite, but for all who suffer oppression wherever it may be. On these issues we must seek partners with those of other faiths, especially the increasing number of Jews who are challenging what is being done in their name. We need to act with urgency to call to account our political and faith leaders who have failed to see where they are leading. Words are fine, but meaningless unless tied to action.