Down to the Last Israeli Ghetto?"

Zionism succeded in many ways. It has been one of the heroic successes of human endeavor. But in a very significant way, Zionism is losing ground.

Giulio Meotti

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צילום: עצמי

When Jews lived under the yoke of others, they were prevented from owning land and they were obliged to live in the ghettos.

The Arab boycott of Israel stretches back to the Fifth Arab Congress in Shechem [Nablus] in 1922 when a resolution called for “every Arab to buy nothing from the Jews but land, and to sell them everything but land”.

The goal, again, was to ghettoize the Jews. Something similar, even if in much different conditions, is happening in Israel. Today a Jew who owns land, say, in Hebron-Judea (not so in one of the several Hebrons in the US! ) and who also possesses a license of ownership, is nevertheless forbidden to build.

And this is solely because of his race. The institution called “Pale of Settlement” was the regular anti-Jewish policy of the Russian Tsars in Eastern Europe.

Today it’s not only that Jews must be careful when they acquire private land for fear of terrorist violence directed against the sellers, in conjunction with the notorious Jordanian and PA law which threatens those who sell land to Jews with the death penalty.

Now the Israeli government has joined the pack, not only withholding from the Jews their last reserve - government land – but also by evicting Jews from the houses they bought from the Arabs.

Paradoxically, Israel today remains the only country in the world which has open, unveiled and unabashed anti-Jewish legislation. Imagine such pernicious, shameful laws and decisions being passed against Arabs in Tel Aviv.

Israel today remains the only country in the world which has open, unveiled and unabashed anti-Jewish legislation.
The news from a house in front of the Hevron’s Cave of the Patriarchs bring us to a much deeper question: is Israel ghettoizing itself?

Zionism succeded in many ways. It has been one of the heroic successes of human endeavor to build a new future.

Zionism succeeded demographically, since considering the Diaspora’s low birth rates and high assimilation rates, it may not be long before most of the world's Jews will be Israelis.

It succeeded militarly, since Israel is the very haven for oppressed Jews that its 19th-century architects had envisioned. Dimona’s nuclear plant is one of Zionism’s most important symbol: with the Holocaust still a vivid recollection for thousands of people, the Jews have a superbly equipped army, navy and air force.

And - much in line with Theodor Herzl's prophecies, Israel boasts universally acclaimed technological, scientific and agricultural achievements.

Against all odds, the movement has revived its ancestors’ language, Hebrew.

But in a very significant way, Zionism is losing ground.

Israel is erecting many defensive barriers to prevent terrorists from entering the country. And successive Israeli governments declared war on Jews who wanted to live outside the “pale of settlement's”’ fences, in the Biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria.

Paradoxically, fences and barriers have been anathema to Jews since 1179, when the Pope at the Third Lateran Council officially established the medieval ghetto throughout Western Europe.

Having first been implemented in Venice, the Jewish ghetto ultimately spread across urban Europe. On the regional level it would later be “perfected” - in Czarist Russia’s Pale of Settlement, which not only caged the Jews into a legally defined region and blocked their access to major towns, but also restricted their engagement in free professions within those geographical confines.

Throughout its thousands of years of history, the only wall Jews have cherished is the ruin of the outer Temple compound Western Wall in Jerusalem.

Israel now created a new Maginot line. 600 people with heavy machinery are working on the new fence with Egypt intensely every day. In 2005, Israel also built a sophisticated fence around the Gaza Strip after the immoral eviction of 10.000 Jews.

And in a few years Israel should finish the fence in Judea and Samaria, which will isolate from the rest of the country more than 150.000 Jews.

A sophisticated 15-kilometer fence is going to rise in the Golan Heights as well.

It’s sad to say, but at its very inception Israel had become a ghetto-state. Israel is now living an obsession to become “normal” and to emulate its Western friends.

The collective assimilation, however, must pass through the new ghettoization. That’s why Hevron Machpelah’s Jews must be defeated.

Is the next step a disengagement from the entire Middle East?