In a withering j’accuse, Ha’aretz’s Bradley Burston makes the case that “while the Jewish state survived the war, Judaism as we knew it — Orthodox Judaism in particular — did not.”
If absolute occupation corrupts absolutely, no group would be more corrupted by Israel’s presence in the territories than rightist rabbis.
Of course, that’s the last way they would see it. Cloaked in a shawl of ideological purity, spiritual erudition and lawyerly one-sidedness, right-wing rabbis went to work utterly convinced that they were the one last incorruptible group of Jewish leaders.
With Messianic zeal, they set to dictating new commandments and enunciating new prohibitions, revolutionizing Judaism by casting the settlements as the building blocks of a Third Temple - all the while turning the settlement enterprise and territories as a whole into a new Golden Calf, a god to which the people as a whole would be forced to sacrifice.
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The Associated Press looks at the lingering psychic wounds in the Arab world from the 1967 Six Day War:
Egyptian columnist Wael Abdel Fattah wrote in the independent weekly Al-Fagr newspaper that Arabs blame the defeat for “everything” — from “price hikes, dictatorship, religious extremism, sectarian strife, even sexual impotence.”
“A military defeat, that could have been limited, has been transformed to an overall defeat, represented by regimes … and societies that fear change,” Syrian writer Bakr Sedqi said in the pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat.
Jordanian columnist Faisal al Ref’ou said the defeat has fueled a cycle of violence all over the region.
“Our Arab nation didn’t learn from the history lesson,” he wrote in Al Rai, Jordan’s largest newspaper. “We’re still at square one. We still have the spear in our abdomen in Gaza, Baghdad, Darfur, and Mogadishu. And our executioners are the same — they hand us the knives and we stab ourselves.”
Read the full article here.