Before getting into the allegation that Zionism is equated with racism, some definitions are in order. I used the American Heritage Dictionary to obtain the following:
Zionism: A movement originally aimed at the re-establishment of a Jewish national homeland and state in Palestine, and now concerned with the development of Israel.
Racism: The belief that some races are inherently better than others, racial prejudice or discrimination.
Now, Zionism isn’t just a movement of Jewish people. There are also Christians who have renounced the discrimination and prejudice against the Jewish people, which had been promoted over the centuries (i.e., through replacement theology in seeking to eradicate Jews who observe the Torah given to them at Mt Sinai). These biblical Christians aided Theodore Hertzl in developing the first Zionist Congress in the late 1800s. These are the type of Christians who believe in the biblical prophecies about the return of the literal descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to their land, which was promised to them by G-d in the Bible.
The Palestinians, under the leadership of Chairman Arafat, had determined to disavow the historic “terrorism” against Jews in the Middle East and to join with what is commonly called the “Olso Peace Process.”
And according to Don Feder’s recent article:
In September 1993, Arafat wrote to then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, “The PLO renounces terrorism and other acts of violence.” He solemnly pledged to end incitement, uproot Islamic extremists and extradite those responsible for attacks on Israelis. His record of breaking each and every one of these commitments is written in the blood of innocents. The moment Arafat determined that he would not ultimately get everything he wanted – all of the territories, the dismantling of Jewish settlements, Jerusalem and a Palestinian right-of-return – the war that never really ended was resumed.
What is this war that he says never really ended? It is a war of radical Islamists (also called extremist Islamists) who are in Durban, South Africa, this weekend trying to get the U.N. Conference on Racism to make a declaration that Zionism is equal to racism. Yasser Arafat and other PA-PLO leaders seemingly are joined today with those whom he had once vowed to uproot in the “disputed territories” as the extremists.
However, it isn’t possible to equate Zionism (Jewish and Christian) with racism, even in this world of double-speak and moral equivalence. First of all, Judaism is a religion that allows for anyone to enter in through “conversion,” so Jews are a mixture of all kinds of races.
Second of all, within Israeli law, there’s the possibility of acquisition of nationality under the “law of return” that gives priority to Jews who want to live in the Jewish homeland. But, there is also the possibility of an acquisition of nationality “by residence,” which gave priority to residents under British Mandate Palestine (before 1948) and “by naturalization” which spells out the criteria for accepting a non-Jewish person into the Land of Israel as an immigrant and Israeli citizen. Therefore, the Jewish state cannot be guilty of racism via its immigration laws.
Thirdly, the Torah reading for this week spells out the Bible’s position on the treatment of others in an observant Jewish society. In Deuteronomy 24:14, it reads: “… you shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether one of your brethren/kindred, or one of the aliens (Hebrew “geryim,” which means strangers) who is in your land within your gates.”
Now there are perhaps some Israelis who have been unkind to Palestinians. But Zionism is not the root problem. Lack of observance of the Torah is the problem!
The primary reason why the borders are closed right now, between Israel and the disputed territories, is because more than half of the Palestinian population (according to recent polls) is supportive of the suicide bombers (i.e., the terrorists) in murdering innocent women and children in Israel within the Green Line. Even if Israel were to ease restrictions, because of the hardship it is creating for the Palestinian economy, a small but clear majority of Palestinians would agree with the continued cold-blooded murder and slaughter of Israelis in order to force the “totalitarian methods” onto a democratic society that believes in negotiations and compromise rather than bloodshed.
So, according to the Palestinian’s view (based on their support for this terrorist brutality), Israel has no right to defend themselves against attack, even though the Palestinian Authority is not doing anything to stop the terrorists (which, based on the Oslo accords, the Mitchell Plan and the George Tenet Cease-fire, the PA are supposed to be doing).
This is called “radical Islam,” which the Palestinians have apparently bought into. Radical Islam is committed to a full-scale war against Israel to destroy her as a nation – just because they are Jewish and/or observe “Judaism.” So, the proper response to the “Zionism equals racism” accusation is for the world to wake up and realize that this resurgent “radical Islam equals true racism” by virtue of its persecution and discrimination against people of minority cultures and other religions.
This past week I finally saw a major media outlet with a balanced editorial, which talked about current news regarding this ongoing conflict in an appropriate and realistic manner. The New York Post had an article about the assassination of Mustafa Zibri head of the radical Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PLFP) which was responsible for six car bombs in six months. The article also mentioned the incursion into Beit Jala of Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), due to the 10 months of Arafat’s terrorists shooting at the Jerusalem suburb of Gilo. This article correctly pointed out that Chairman Arafat could have stopped the crisis a long time ago, but Arafat has no interest in doing so. I wish other news reporting could be as equally balanced.
I hope that more major outlets will finally start to see that the general population within the United States is more interested in balanced reporting than in advocacy journalism (the concept that “all news reports are biased anyway, so go ahead and put forth the new reports that support the particular subjective view you wish to advocate”). Advocacy views should be relegated to commentary articles (such as this column I write) and a more objective reporting of the events and situations of conflict should reflect the views of all the “major stakeholders” within that news report.