18 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
    CONCERNING THE TORAH

    by

    Aron Katsenelinboigen

                                                     

                                                                              Chapter 7

A MANIFOLD AND A SINGULAR VARIETY (CONTINUED)

 

I will continue the analysis of the development of the manifold and its integration with a singular variety that occurred after the six days in which the universe was created. This development concerns “material” components as well as the relations between them. It could be illustrated by the formation of many nations and their integration.

THE MANIFOLD OF NATIONS AND THEIR SINGULAR VARIETY

As the human race evolves, it undergoes differentiation in which a diversity of nations is formed. Abram already witnessed different nations inhabiting the earth, and just to mention those with whom Abram came in contact, we have Chaldeans (Genesis 11:31), Canaanites (Genesis 12:6), Egyptians (Genesis 12:12), Perizzetes (Genesis 13:7), Amorites (Genesis 14:13), and others. At the same time, God continues to expand the diversity of nations and tells Abram that many new nations will spring from his descendants:

As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations. Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. (Genesis 17:4-5)

Later, this manifold of nations is converted to a singular variety when God sets priorities for some of the nations. These singular points are the great nations that descend from Abraham. God vows that the Jewish nation is to have as many people as there is dust of the earth (Genesis 13:16). God says to Abraham:

Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them,' and He said unto him, 'So shall thy seed be.' (Genesis 15:5)

The authors of the Torah also point out that God promises Abraham to make a great nation from the descendants of Ishmael, Abraham's son, and Hagar, who is an Egyptian servant to Abraham's wife Sarah:

 And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. (Genesis 17:20)

The creation of different nations is accompanied by the appearance of a still more important entity: the chosen people that are taken from the set of singular points that are the great nations. As it is written in the Torah,

Now the Lord had said unto Abram:

Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will show thee. And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:  And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. (Genesis 12:1-3)

In another part of the Torah, Moses says to the Jews:

For thou art a holy people unto the Lord thy God: the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. (Deuteronomy, 7:6)

It is notable that God's promise to make the descendants of Abraham the chosen people does not mean the most populous people. This is stated explicitly in the Torah:

The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people. (Deuteronomy, 7:7)

The creation of the chosen people increases the singular variety in the sense that the range of priorities is extended, but the chosen people do not represent the ruling class. There is nothing in the Torah about the chosen people becoming rulers of the world. The Torah does not call for the Jews to rule over other peoples. The role of the chosen people is a difficult and delicate matter that has been discussed in numerous books. I just want to emphasize the fact that Jews were not meant to become the rulers of the world.[75]

 

In accordance with the Torah, the Jews play a special role in the singular variety of different nations. They do influence other nations, because they are an example of a righteous nation.

But ye that did cleave unto the Lord your God are alive every one of you this day. Behold, I have taught you statutes and ordinances, even as the Lord my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the midst of the land whither ye go in to possess it. Observe therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, that, when they hear all these statutes, shall say: ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people’ For what great nation is there, that hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is whensoever we call upon Him? And what great nation is there, that hath statutes and ordinances so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day? Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes saw, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life; but make them known unto thy children and thy children's children. (Deuteronomy 4:4-9)

I have doubts concerning this role of the Jewish people. In general, there is a manifold of different ethnic groups. A given ethnos could be defined by the biological attributes of it that are expressed in the mentality of its people, and the culture of an ethnos is first of all a function of the mentality of its people (Lumsden, C., and E. Wilson, 1981). Such a statement becomes more convincing if we assume that a religion is a global representation of a certain culture, and we compare, on this basis, the leading religions in different ethnic groups. We see from history that people choose different religions and preserve them. (Certainly, this does not preclude situations where religions are imposed on people.) One of the best examples is Judaism. It is very attractive to the Jews to convert to the governing religions of the countries where they are settled, but the most influential Jews – the core of the ethnos – do not do this. It seems to me that their mentality precludes them from changing their religion. Analogous situations occur with the appearance of Protestantism in Catholic countries, etc.

The emergence of the political institution called a state (country) promotes the preservation and development of a given ethnos. The existence of many independent, sovereign countries serves to reinforce this manifold of ethnic groups. This manifold of independent states does not preclude the conversion to a singular variety where some states have greater power and play a greater role in a given situation. This results in a paradoxical situation where a manifold may actually convert to an unstable singular variety and destroy or shrink itself. As countries seek to improve their lot, certain countries (perhaps, due to their success) begin to fancy that they are exclusive, and this brings with it all the consequences that ensue, including the desire to conquer the world and impose what is believed to be the one legitimate world order. The presence of large countries with aggressive ideologies may threaten the manifold itself (to say nothing of its expansion).

What kind of relational components have been set to regulate the interactions between nations? In principle, we can view the moral code bestowed upon Noah as pertaining to all different nations, because this happened before Abram creates the special relations with God that can be treated as the appearance of Jews as a separate group of people. (See more in the beginning of Chapter 5.) Since the aforementioned moral code was presented through the Torah, this code is not accepted by people who do not follow the Torah.

Note that the need to preserve mankind could be claimed via its uniformity (cosmopolitism), i.e., the intermixing of all ethnic groups into a single ethnicity. For better or for worse, cosmopolitanism did not become the way in which the human race is integrated, because this idea is related to the destruction of the diversity of nations. The leading direction of human history has been the preservation of a manifold of ethnic groups, and it may be that there are deep biological origins behind this.

This preservation is a very complicated problem, and the means that are used here depend on the compatibility of different nations. Before I proceed, I would like to briefly digress about the concept of compatibility, which has not been duly investigated as a general systems phenomenon. It was only in the twentieth century that major theoretical and practical strides have been made in the field of compatibility in medicine, notably in the classification of blood types so essential for transfusion, organ transplant, etc.

Organ transplant, including heart transplant, is substantially more complicated. The heart transplant operation is fascinating, not so much because of its technical merits, but because of the methodology that it employs. The latter embodies a two-step procedure. The first step is donor selection, that is, the process of finding a heart compatible with the host. Since the donor heart may still encounter a rejection by the host organism, the next step is to administer drugs to attune the transplanted organ to the host.

These developments in the field of medicine surface in connection with the problem of the compatibility of various ethnic groups. Armed with the systems vision of compatibility, let us turn our attention to the complementarity of the various ethnic groups living in one country. Complementarity is a two-stage process: finding the proper donor and suppressing rejection-inducing factors. It is essential to distinguish ethnic conflicts that arise from the non-complementarity of the ethnic groups from those that result from the rejection of ethnicities that basically qualify as donors.

Non-complementarity should not be confused with the hostility that one ethnic group may have for another, because the non-complementarity of two ethnic groups does not necessarily entail hatred or mutual hostility (although there is usually no love lost between the two groups). In principle, the extent to which members of one ethnic group are non-complimentary, or hostile, toward other ethnic groups may vary. While non-complementarity and hostility are correlated, ways of resolving ethnic conflicts are many and diverse. Once non-complementarity of certain ethnic groups is recognized, we can work to attenuate hostility to the level of non-acceptance, opting for a peaceful separation instead of perpetual confrontation. By the same token, an open dialogue may help ease possible tensions between complementary ethnic groups.

Hostility on the part of the dominant ethnic group toward a minority varies over a wide range of attitudes: from the desire to help the incompatible group leave the country, with as little suffering as possible; to the limitation of the areas where the minority is allowed to live or the occupations that it is allowed to practice; to a policy of complete extermination.

While the liberal perspective does recognize ethnic diversity and the need for the state to protect various ethnic groups, it tends to spotlight features that are common to all of humanity and to attribute disparities to socio-cultural circumstances. As a result, the liberal approach presumes that there is always a way to make any ethnic groups complementary. Ignoring key differences among the ethnic groups only impedes the very formidable task of creating an environment that is conducive to the development and subsequent integration of different ethnic groups. The conservative perspective, on the other hand, acknowledges the existence of traits that are common to all humanity, but it underscores distinctions and alleges that complementarily is not always attainable. For instance, the conservative approach may maintain that incompatible ethnic groups should not be allowed to live under one roof. Under certain historical circumstances, this emphasis on ethnic differences may ultimately lead to a value judgment (ranking of different ethnic groups), thus transforming the conservative view into a reactionary view characterized by racism, chauvinism, a call for the subjugation of all ethnic groups to one supreme ethnic group, and even the desire to exterminate the malignant ethnic groups.

Throughout history, incompatibility between nations prevails and compatibility is very rare. Under these conditions, military strength is the major lever that preserves the existence of different nations.

Here we arrive at the problem of the preservation of the Jewish ethnos. I believe that statehood is apparently a necessary (but perhaps insufficient) condition for the stable, long-term maintenance of an ethnic community inasmuch as it protects the culture, the genetic code of society, as well as all ethnic institutions that stem from it. The lack of statehood could, in certain critical situations, turn out to be fatal to a particular ethnic group, especially with the development of inexpensive means of mass destruction and the imbalance between the strength of armed killers and that of their defenseless victims.

History shows that without statehood and without their own territory, Jews have repeatedly become objects of oppression, oppression that ranges from attempts at direct physical annihilation, which have been at times very successful, to their expulsion from their resident countries. As I recall, the Torah illustrates this statement. Some rulers invite the Jews to live on their lands and create favorable conditions for them to do so, but when the Jews become strong there and begin to play a noticeable role in the country's growth, at best they are asked to leave and at worst, attempts are made to exterminate them. Thus,

Abraham dwelt in the land of the Philistines many years as a stranger. (Genesis 21:34).

He lived there in peace under King Abimelech. Then, in the days of famine, Abraham's son, Isaac, came to the land of the Philistines. He was received joyously. Isaac flourished in his affairs.

And Abimelech said into Isaac: 

Go from us; for thou art much mightier than we.' And Isaac departed thence. . . (Genesis 26:13-17)

The story of Joseph is another example of this point. Joseph's fame is great, and he does much for the flourishing of Egypt. When Joseph informs the Pharaoh that Joseph's father and brothers have come to Egypt, the Pharaoh welcomes them. The end of this story is well-known. The Jews succeed in leaving Egypt, while overcoming enormous difficulties to do so under the threat of complete disappearance. The "Joseph Model," as Boris Moisheson termed it, is instructive through and through. It has been frequently replayed, and just in this century, quite successfully in Germany, the USSR, and Poland. Who knows where it will flare up next?

There are many reasons for the existence of anti-Semitic feelings, including envies and religion differences. It seems to me, the incompatibility of Jews with many other ethnics groups is the basic reason for anti-Semitism. Interestingly, that aforementioned peculiar feature of the Jewish mentality (e.g., the parity of God and Man), along with other peculiar features (e.g., there is no one case in the Torah when a Jew sacrifices own life on the name of any idea) are particularly bothersome to the intellectuals of many countries who possess a different mentality. This is especially aggravated in countries with a Jewish Diaspora . There exist certain spheres of society which, if penetrated by foreign bodies with a radically different system of values, will pose a grave danger, and this stems from the fact that foreigners are in a position to alter the system of values of the country as a whole (the values of its major ethnic group), thereby steering it astray from its indigenous, or true, course.

To clarify my point, I want to distinguish the sphere that includes ideology, art, basic science, mass media, education, politics, military, economic leadership, etc. – all the areas that are involved in defining ethnos's genetic code. The infiltration of the Jews into this sphere is considered most ruinous to the development of the native ethnos, for the Jewish system of values may disturb its genetic code.

All these ideas suggest that the Jews will, for various reasons, be incompatible with a great number of peoples. It seems to me that the understanding of the peculiarities of the Jewish mentality can help in understanding why the creation of Jewish enclaves in many countries is so dangerous.

One well-known solution to preserving the Jews as an ethnic group is to have both a Jewish state and a Jewish Diaspora , which may exist in countries that are more compatible with the Jews.  

Thus, I share the opinion of those who believe that a Jewish state is needed. I also agree with those who already realized by the end of the nineteenth century that it is needed immediately. There was a time when God promised Abraham the Land of Canaan for the great nation that would spring from him, but God said that the time had not come yet, that 300 years were needed "for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full" (Genesis 15:16). The Holocaust demonstrated the validity of the Zionist perspective that the time for the establishment of a Jewish state had arrived. I anticipate the question from a perplexed reader: "What is all this discussion about the creation of Jewish state, since such a state, namely Israel, already exists”? I share the opinion of those who see in Israel the best solution to this question at present. However, I cannot consider this solution the only possible one as far as solving the problem of Jewish statehood as a whole is concerned.

 THE WAYS OF THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A JEWISH STATE

The establishment of a Jewish state could go in at least three different directions.  It could go to the past, the present, or the future.     

According to the first criterion, i.e. with a view to the past, the establishment of a Jewish state is linked with Israel, the land of our ancestors, the Promised Land. It is stressed in the Torah that the Jewish people ought to have land of their own, and God promises this and leads them to the land of Canaan:

And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them. And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant. (Exodus 6:3-5)

(See also Exodus 3:9; Number 34:1-3; Deuteronomy 6:3.)

This great idea was a pivotal one in the history of the Jews, and it managed to grab hold of millions of Jews in modern times. In 1948 Israel was created, and in a short period of time, it established a democratic system, in spite of a hostile environment and frequent wars; introduced its own agriculture and industry; and put together one of the best armies in the world. This is proof that the potential of Israel is so great that it is able to handle fields that for ages were thought of as foreign to the Jewish people.

On the road to the implementation of this idea, enormous difficulties were encountered. The state was created in a hostile Arab environment. Israel, even if it gathered together all the Jews in the world, would be hard-pressed to produce modern weapons in quantities sufficient to rebuff Arab countries that are provided with weapons from militarily advanced countries, and the size of its territory makes Israel even more vulnerable.

Arab countries have a culture that predisposes them to aggression, authoritarian regimes, and awkward economic development. After all, their economic prosperity is ethereal, for it hinges on the abundance of one natural resource: oil.[76] Israel, on the other hand, possesses a culture predisposed towards peaceful foreign policy, democracy, and the counterpart of democracy: effective economic development. Therefore, Israel will, for a long time, represent an unsightly model for Arab countries. However, in the age of advanced armaments, the military dependence of Israel on a greater power will remain strong, and at the same time, great powers have their own interests and may sacrifice their satellites for the sake of them.

When the Jewish state existed two thousand years ago, it was preserved by military strength, but these means were not sufficient against a mighty Roman empire, and the Jewish state was destroyed.  It remained in that condition for about 2000 years. There are no guaranties that this could not happen again.

Looking toward the present, a Jewish state could be created by the purchase of land. (Plans were made to buy land in Kenya or Canada or elsewhere.) The other way to create a Jewish state at present is to form a Jewish enclave in a large country, but such autonomous national entities are unstable. On one hand, the ruling group of a large country primarily develops a culture innate to that group. If an ethnic group that has its own history, and especially, its own land, happens for some reason to be situated in the territory of a large country, it will struggle to preserve its own culture, and eventually to separate into an independent state.

A successful example of such a separation is the country of Norway, which separated from Sweden. On the other hand, autonomous national entities always hang by a thread, because the governing nation attempts to assimilate them for the purpose of preventing separatist movements, as well as for the purpose of controlling them (because it is generally good to have uniformity of language and culture). Therefore, for example, even if Soviet Jews had received the Crimea, which was within the Soviet Union, instead of Birobidzhan, life would nevertheless be unbearable there. Moreover, this autonomy could be revoked at any time.  

So, solving the problem of Jewish statehood through Jewish autonomy within the borders of an existing great power is unacceptable for the aforementioned reasons.

Where, then, to find room for a new state with all territories belonging to various states?[77]  

With a view toward the future, a Jewish state could be created using pioneering ideas that are based on new technological means. Let us say, for example, that a state could be established on floating artificial islands that are supported by the availability of inexpensive thermonuclear energy and that draw on unlimited water resources.

In 1932, for the first time, a real plan, not a fantasy, was hatched to build an artificial island for the fueling of airplanes flying over the Atlantic Ocean. In 1940 the British Air force began to build open platforms in the sea, not so far from the outfall of the Thames. These platforms were used for antiaircraft installations to protect England from German bombers.

In 1967 the state Sealand was based on one of these platforms. Terry Roy Baits, a major of the English army, decided to settle on this platform with his family. He announced that this island was a state and that he was a prince.  He accompanied his claims with accessories such as broadcasting, stamps, etc. Unfortunately, this state was involved in some scandalous affairs, although it continues to exist. A reader who is interested in the activities of this state can find a huge amount of literature about it on the Internet under the rubric Sealand.

Today, artificial islands are wide-spread in the open sea for digging oil.

In 1957 the famous American writer Ayn Rand published a novel called Atlas Shrugged. In this novel she describes a utopian country that is free from any blemishes of a modern society. Erwin Strauss from Virginia decided to design such a country on atolls that are located 260 miles from the South Pacific island kingdom of Tonga in Western Polynesia. He describes this design in his book “How to Start a New Country”? (1985).

The New York Times Magazine (08/09/1998, pp.29-30) informed its readers that the Millennial Project, the New Island Creation Consortium under the general name Oceania, has tried to implement the idea of a new society on artificial islands. Lazarus Long from Oklahoma is trying to create a new society on an artificial island that is located in the Caribbean Sea 120 miles from the Cayman Islands. He found an offshore company that agreed to invest three million dollars to build a platform in Florida and transport it to the aforementioned location. According to an announcement on the Internet, a platform had been moved, and the development of this platform continues.

An article called “Strange Islands” by Lidia Loevski appeared in the Israeli journal Vesti (News) on April 25, 1999. This article describes the activities of Yry Back, a prominent Israeli designer who designed an artificial island. It is a floating platform with a basis of strong tube parts. The infrastructure that is inside the tubes supports the parts of the island that are above-water. The platform itself could be located any distance from shore on the sea surface, and it does not interrupt the currents, nor does it conflict with the local winds. Certainly, the implementation of this project requires a substantial amount of investment. But, could this investment be comparable with Israeli military expenditures? Still, there are some companies from Japan and Holland that seriously consider making investments in this project.    

The outrageous idea to build a Jewish state on artificial islands draws on the Jewish pioneering spirit and might be attractive for a number of Jews who have actively joined the civilization. Recall that the Jewish pioneering spirit has a tradition throughout Jewish history, and it goes back perhaps even farther than the idea of the Promised Land. If we study the history of the Jews, then it is clear from this (naturally, in the sense of a hypothesis) that the Jews, as a biological entity, have been carriers of innovative ideas, even if the Torah calls for great precaution concerning technological ideas. Boris Moisheson’s book (2001) supports the idea of the innovative implementation of new technological ideas by the Jews.  

Thus, I have briefly described the arguments for and against the variants of the creation of a Jewish state according to three possible criteria. From this description, it follows that the idea of founding a Jewish state based on a view that looks to the past succeeded, because it was based on a very powerful tradition and, moreover, because it was "technically" attainable. The view that looks to the present apparently failed, because in it there is no concrete idea that flows either from the past or toward the future (but that is connected with the past), and it is dangerous to settle in countries in which the Jewish enclave can be aborted. The view toward the future, even if it does have the potential to survive from the point of view of the exploitation of tradition, it must first of all become technically feasible. Thus, for floating islands in open waters, cheap energy is needed in great quantities. Controlled thermonuclear fusion is one of the most promising sources of an unlimited amount of cheap energy from independent water sources (independent in the sense that they do not belong to anybody). But, alas, how many more years it will be until this is possible!

Thus, the first path to creating a Jewish state, the one that was realized, remains the most realistic, and in accordance with this path, major efforts have to be undertaken to develop Israel. Meanwhile, we have to keep in mind still other possibilities and spend some resources in order to develop new projects. Moreover, I cannot exclude the idea that such projects can have an effect on the present situation of the Jewish state.

 

THE ROLE OF THE JEWISH DIASPORA

Indeed, acknowledging the necessity for a manifold of ethnic groups does not determine how they should be organized. The preservation of the Jewish race raises questions about its spatial structuring. In extreme cases, an ethnic group can either be scattered throughout the world or can be concentrated in one region. In general, having a home base does not exclude the possibility of living in other areas; neither does it resolve the question of what proportion of the population lives in the central land and what proportion lives in the peripheries. In other words, here arises a well-known problem of the Jewish state versus the Diaspora. The problem defies an unequivocal solution, for neither alternative can be proven to be the better one.

I do not know the critical size of the territory or the number of people that would in effect reduce the role of the Diaspora  to zero. In principle, the presence of statehood for a given ethnic group does not mean that "all eggs should be put in one basket."

I realize that acknowledging the need for a Diaspora  is subject to strong criticism, for it creates the danger of Jewish annihilation. Anti-Semitic feelings are dangerous for Jews who live in foreign countries, and this is especially true at times when host countries experience troubles and look for a scapegoat to appease the native population. In principle, such methods of appeasement can take place in any country. For instance, attempts to solve this problem in the Soviet Union led to many tragedies. Throughout Soviet history, Jews were persecuted under various banners: the struggle with the Trotskijtes,[78] cosmopolitanism, and Zionism.

Still, I venture to think that there are considerations in favor of combining statehood and the Diaspora , particularly if the territory of the state is not very large and it is surrounded by a very hostile environment. These considerations include financial help extended to the Jewish state by Jews who live in wealthy countries and the influence of Jewish lobbies in establishing friendly relations with Israel. For instance, Theodor Mommsen (1867) emphasized that the strength of the Judea was that Jews had, together with their own state, major settlements in the most developed cities of the day: Alexandria and Rome.

Certainly, there is the danger that Jews in the Diaspora  will assimilate into the native population, but this danger is not so clear-cut. The assimilation process of one group of Jews in the Diaspora  is accompanied by the strengthening of the sense of ethnic identity in another, and this is especially prominent with the appearance of the Jewish state. Of course the ratio between these two groups varies from country to country. Perhaps, in free countries where Jews are not afraid to show their ethnic origin, those who reject assimilation and strengthen their own ethnic background comprise the greater share of the Jewish population. This is visible in the USA where, in the past 30 years, the growth in the interest of Jewish youth in Judaism can scarcely be doubted.

I call this latter phenomenon the "Reverse Pyramid Effect." It is usually thought that the older generation, grandfathers and grandmothers, are the most conservative and are the ones who maintain the religion and culture of their people. Their children are already less inclined toward these things, and their grandchildren become completely atheist "without clan or tribe." At the same time, we can also observe opposite tendencies in the Diaspora .

The present-day grandfathers, having grown up under the idea of assimilation and having been encouraged by anti-Semitic sentiments of people among whom they lived, try to forget their Jewish ancestry. They attempt to find a solution to the problem by renouncing the ideas of their Jewish-minded parents. Whereas, the next generation, their children, become convinced that escaping their Jewishness does not solve the problem. However, they still have hopes of adapting to their surroundings along the same lines as their fathers. Yet, the grandchildren largely understand the illusion of such an answer to the problem. Thus, the pyramid is turned upside down, and it exhibits a tendency that its pinnacle will once again consist of Jewishness.

Let me put forth some thoughts that come to mind when we attempt to generalize the history of the Jewish tribe in the Diaspora . There arise four possible combinations generated by two factors: the degree of hostility of the environment towards the Jews and the size of the Jewish population. In rather simplistic terms, the degree of hostility can be denoted as being either strong or weak, and the size of the population can be denoted as being either sufficient or insufficient in having the critical mass to preserve the Jewish identity.

Under favorable surroundings, but with the size of the population small, and in a sense lacking the critical mass that is needed to maintain distinct identity, Jews tend to dissolve among the native peoples. This is what happened with old Jewish settlements in China. With hostility from the environment, Jews in sufficient numbers can preserve their ethnicity for a limited period of time. An example of this situation is the Jews of Spain when they managed to survive as Marranos during the time of the Inquisition. Perhaps, this is also true for Russian Jews, especially if we account for the emigration of Jews who actively maintain their Jewish identity. The combination of favorable conditions and sufficient size is evident in Jewish communities in England, the USA, and some Latin American countries. Nevertheless, the historical perspective of this experience is too narrow to make any definite conclusions about the prospects of the Jews in these countries. Hostile environments in conjunction with small populations practically led to the disappearance of the Jews. Modern day Poland is an example of this situation. 

All of this leads me to conclude that the Jewish problem could be solved through combining a Jewish state with Diaspora . This approach defies the sentiments of Jews who prefer to give up the idea of an independent Jewish state and remain only as an independent ethnic group that lives in foreign countries. Certainly, my defense of combining a Jewish state with Diaspora  is inadvertently colored by the personal desire to justify a high appreciation of Israel and my own decision to live in the Diaspora .

 


NOTES:

[75]. It seems to me that the idea of subjugation is generally foreign to the Jewish people. As I have said, the relationship between God and a Jew presumes parity.

Relations between a monarch and the people can be used as an example to illustrate the above statement on the societal level. The institution of monarchy is oftentimes associated with a singular point which transforms the social manifold into a singular variety. When the Torah discusses the problem of the king in the future Jewish state, it emphasizes the need to prevent the king from usurping all the power, the need to limit him as much as possible. (See Deuteronomy, 17:14-20.)

[76]. It is not an accident that Simon Kuznets in his book (1966) excludes Arab countries from consideration. While many of these countries have high GNP, their development hinges on a single product and therefore does not satisfy the requirements of modern economic growth.

[77] This reminds me an old joke about a Jew who planned to emigrate from the Soviet Union. He searches the globe trying to find a proper country for settlement, and he finds disadvantages in all countries. Then, he asks his friend to give him another globe.

     [78]. Boris Moisheson told me in a private conversation that, in his opinion, based on the analysis of the documents from the thirties, the term Trotskijte was at that time associated with the Jews. On the basis of my knowledge I share his opinion.

[79] Now that Adam and Eve have eaten from the Tree of Knowledge, humans have the intelligence necessary to improve or destroy the world. So too with the tower builders and their descendants: If they use their collective intelligence without fore-sight, wisdom, and moral constraint, they may well succeed in producing apocalypse, thus merging our earthly world with God's heavenly domain. (Dershowitz, 2000, p. 45-46)

 


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