Dear blogging friends, I am going to publish something that may upset you. Please believe me, I am not a person who judges others according to their race, religion, national origin, or beliefs….as long as those beliefs do not include racism, religious intolerance, espousal of genocide, hatred, murder, or the worship of martyrdom.
Unfortunately, the Jewish People have been on the receiving end of all of the negative things I’ve listed above. The mere fact that we still exist is a miracle.
According the the Pew Research Religion and Public Life Project, the world religion landscape looks like this:
Folk Religionists 5.9%
Other Religions 0.8%
That’s right, folks, Jews make up 0.2% of world religions! Yet not one day goes by that the Jews are not in the news. Jews in the News!
Jews make up 22% of Nobel Laureates, even though we make up 0.2% of the world’s religious affiliation.
It is my opinion that the overwhelming success of the Jewish People in education, business, academics, medicine, and survival of the endless persecutions we have endured, have made us even more hated by those who would wipe us off the face of the earth.
First of all I must make a few remarks about the recent (i.e., not Biblical) history of the connection of the Land of Israel and the Jewish People.
In the year 70 of the Common Era, the very same Romans who killed not only Jesus, but hundreds of other Jewish martyrs–in the year 70 of the Common Era (Jews reckon time differently), the Romans sacked Jerusalem and drove the Jews into the hills. In the year 640 C.E., the Moslem Conquest replaced the Romans, and the Jews were faced with forced conversion, death, or eviction from The Land.
Most fled, many chose forced conversion rather than leave the beloved Land, and some disappeared into crevices and caves. They never left. They are still there, but now live openly in their Land.
The Land then underwent a period of serial conquests by Christians and various Caliphates, finally settling into the Ottoman Empire, ceding to the British Empire, and finally becoming the Jewish State in 1948.
Even though the State of Israel began with a vicious war and has been at war ever since, Jews from other Middle Eastern countries such as Morocco, Egypt, Algiers, Iraq, Iran, Syria, etc. etc. made their way back home–some voluntarily, and many because of forced evictions from their home countries, which became one by one Islamized and forced the Jews out violently. In fact, some 900,000 Middle Eastern Jews were evicted starting in the late 1800s and continuing until now, when the few staunch holdouts are finally being forced out or outright killed.
Back to Israel. Did you know that tiny Israel, the size of the state of Rhode Island (the smallest state in the United States), is surrounded by 23 Moslem countries? Take a look at the map on the Pew Foundation map to get an idea of what that looks like.
You must understand, we are a thorn in the Moslem Middle East’s side! What is this tiny state full of historic enemies doing right in the middle of a solid bloc of Moslem countries?
And to add insult to injury, we (Israel) have taken in several other ethnic groups that are unwelcome and have been severely persecuted in Moslem countries: Baha’i, Druze, Christians (of course!), and although no one wants to admit it, the Bedouin, who were at one time a migratory people with their own belief system and language, who now live in Israel (not without their own set of problems, but they have the same rights as anyone else in Israel).
Now we come to the Palestinian People and the awful conflicts we have.
Everyone who does not understand the fundamental differences between the Palestinians and the Jews likes to point to the 0.2% and shout, “Why can’t you just get along?”
This is why.
Le’Chayim! To Life! We will live and not die, even if we must fight and fight to keep on living. Le’Chayim!