Thursday, March 29, 2018
The Jewish Revolution: Jewish Statehood Hardcover by Israel Eldad (Gefen Publishing Company)
This brilliant treatise on Zionism and Israel by one of the Lehi fighters offers an amazing glimpse into the past and yet, despite the fact that it was originally written 1970, it offers important lessons for today. The book begins with the fate of the Jews in Europe and why assimilation and equal rights failed to provide security for Jews. Some may disagree that "before the emancipation, before the Jews attained their civil liberties, there was no 'Jewish problem' ". However the emancipation led to the theory of racial anti-Semitism. The author points out, correctly, that the inquisition was not directed against Jews, but Jewish converts. He points out correctly that "outward signs of Jewishness [were] the first ingredients of shame and self-contempt that entered the soul of the emancipated Jews." He draws an important parallel between Karl Marx and Joseph, each desired to help the other and forgot about his own people and the result in both cases was that a "new pharaoh" came to rule over the Jews.
Succeeded chapters detail the forgotten world of extreme Soviet anti-Semitism and how that anti-Semitism infected western leftists. He details his own meetings with the Mufti's brother while they were both in a British prison in Palestine. Most moving of all, Eldad speaks of Jewish military prowess "suddenly gathering all its latent military strength, stirring the embers of its ancient courage and strategic talents." He also notes the increasing attempt by the left to compare Israeli actions to hose of the Nazis; this "all to frequent analogy made by Jewish intellectuals in order to denigrate Zionism and Israel and thus give vent to their own self-hate."
His discussions of the Israel-Arab conflict are less original today. Declaring that Jordan is not a state rooted in history and that there are no Palestinians is not new. Statements such as "the swastika was a direct descendant of the cross" may annoy some.
Other premonitions are quite brilliant, noting that "the whites I South Africa will suddenly remember that the Jews were actively inciting the blacks against them and the blacks of South Africa will remember that the Jews are members of the white race that has been exploiting them." The statement has been born out as were the authors predictions about problems between Africa-Americans and Jews in the U.S.
He sums up his brilliant work noting that "we still have created no paradise here. Sometimes it smacks somewhat of hell. But it is our hell, and our job to turn it into the paradise we want."