Purim is the holiday of the contrarian, the champion of the right to be different. In a word: the Jew. And if Purim has a subtext, it is the theme of reversal. As recorded in Esther 9:1 – “it was turned to the contrary, that the Jews had rule over them that hated them”. We are not like others and we have accepted that, we, in fact, have chosen it. We are proud of that status.
Unfortunately, too many Jews recently, although they follow a long ‘tradition’ of Jews in former generations, assume that the “right to be different” means being different from their fellow Jews. And as we learn from the Talmudic comment (Tractate Megillah 12A):
R. Simon b. Yohai was asked by his disciples, Why were the enemies of Israelin that generation deserving of extermination? He said to them: Do you answer. They said: Because they partook of the feast of that wicked one…Samuel gave different interpretations of this: He first put them in the court, and it did not hold them — Then he took them into the garden and it did not hold them; and finally he had to take them into the palace, and he found room for them.
In a new book by a friend, Michael Widlanski Battle for Our Minds he asserts that
Terrorism is about brains, not blood. Terrorists win when they capture our minds. Sadly, they have a lot of help: some of our best and brightest intellectuals…and shows how analysts in our intelligence agencies, academics at our universities and journalists in our media have helped our enemies, knowingly and unknowingly.
What a Turk, Burak Bekdil knows, that
the Syrian death toll has moved from 2,000 to over 7,000 - about five times more than the Palestinian casualties during Israel’s Operation Cast Lead in late 2008 and early 2009.
Is lost on our way-out Jews. Even such a simple differentiatory element is not impressionable for our Jewish fellow-travelers of the most illogical, irrational and immoral ‘isms’ of our world that seek to negate Jews, Jewish nationalism and our Jewish narrative.
David Remnick in The New Yorker. From his latest New Yorker piece:
...a profoundly anti-democratic, even racist, political culture has become endemic among much of the Jewish population in the West Bank…A visitor to Tel Aviv and other freethinking precincts might overlook the reactionary currents in the country, but poll after poll reveals that many younger Israelis are losing touch with the liberal, democratic principles of the state...Netanyahu and many of his supporters…consider the tenets of liberal democracy to be negotiable in a game of coalition politics. Such short-term expedience cannot but exact a long-term price: this dream—and the process of democratic becoming—may be painfully, even fatally, deferred.
Remnick has no sense of proportion - or truth:
Reactionary elements lurk in many democracies…But in Israel the threat is especially acute.
This is the writing of no philo-Israelite. It is that of an ideological perverter, one committed to a vision of extreme liberal progressivism that seeks to subvert Judaism and then its national expression into the framework of non-identity - in a not very democratic method: maligning it in the high profile periodicals of self-elected intellectual elites.That, I will admit, though, is very Jewish.Just ask Karl Marx, and Noam Chomsky and followers.
There are some left-of-center who perceive what is wrong with this new relativist moralism of those seeking to sit at the “King’s table”.
Ben-Dror Yemini at Maariv takes on David Grossman whose front page sob piece at Haaretz bothered him, writing of “Grossman and anti-Semitic method” so:
The problem is that Grossman, like many others, sometimes inadvertently, sometimes deliberately, switch the correct order. When examining the number of Palestinians killed over more than forty years of occupation, it turns out that Israel is cautious, by any international standard. But Grossman upends the plate. It is like when a Jewish thief is discovered, the claim is that all Jews thieves. Anti-Semites specialized in this method. Grossman, alas, adopts it…We are already accustomed to the fact that there are Grosmans who are trying, by force, to counter any claim of Israel. After all, they are enlightened. You can rely on Grossman…
And when these Jews are not castigating Jews, they find time to worship non-Jews, seeking a seat at that King''s table such as an “enlightened” and a “moral” person, Hillary Clinton for one. Here she is explaining or at least intimating, pre-AIPAC conference, why we shouldn''t believe a word President Obama would say
in this answer at a press conference (Secretary Clinton at Town Hall in Tunis with Tunisian Youth. Palais du Baron d''Erlanger, February 25, 2012):-
…let me say you will learn as your democracy develops that a lot of things are said in political campaigns that should not bear a lot of attention. There are comments made that certainly don’t reflect the United States, don’t reflect our foreign policy, don’t reflect who we are as a people. I mean, if you go to the United States, you see mosques everywhere, you see Muslim Americans everywhere. That’s the fact. So I would not pay attention to the rhetoric.Secondly, I would say watch what President Obama says and does….I sometimes am a little surprised that people around the world pay more attention to what is said in our political campaigns than most Americans, say, are paying attention. So I think you have to shut out some of the rhetoric and just focus on what we’re doing…
And after those words, the anger of the leaders of Americans for Peace Now, J Street and the New Israel Fund who issued their first-ever joint statement (even though they have been laboring in tandem for years) to attack the Jerusalem Post’s former editor, Bret Stephens, is nigh laughable if so disappointing. Stephens attacked President Obama by focusing on the President''s association with their organizations. They call that
…a litany of partisan attacks on the President for standing for and with the values that are actually at the very heart of the Jewish community…
Heart? Those three groups are at the heart or at the far-out extremist and radical ideological sects within the very non-Jewish political legacy of self-distaste?
Rebbe Yitzhak of Vorke has said: the secret of the drinking on Purim is understood by reviewing the real meaning of Haman’s accusation that we Jews are "a separated, scattered people," as if we lack unity. Every Purim we disprove this accusation in gathering together, to strengthen our unity by being happy with one another, drinking and feasting and, unlike the message of our “liberals” and our “progressives”, being happy one with each other simply because they are Jews.