There are two broad categories within the class of Jewish people; the culture Jew and the religious Jew. It is an important point to distinguish because we tend to lump both in one basket and refer to them from one broad based religious standpoint. In fact, it is estimated that between 65% and 70% of Israeli Jews identify as either atheist or secular. Leaders in Israel have tended toward the secular side, including:
Benjamin Netanyahu – Prime Minister – secular, non-religious
Golda Meir – Former Prime Minister – born in Kiev – secular atheist
Yitzhak Rabin – Former Prime Minister – atheist
David Ben Gurion – First Prime Minister – born in Poland – atheist
Ariel Sharon – Prime Minister – agnostic
Moshe Sharett – Prime Minister – born in Ukraine – agnostic
Levi Eshkol – Prime Minister – born in Ukraine – atheist
Yitzhak Shamir – Prime Minister – born in Russia – secular
Shimon Peres – Prime Minister and President – born in Belarus – secular
Ehud Barak – Prime Minister – secular
Ehud Olmert – Prime Minister – secular
Ezer Weizman – President – secular
Reuven Rivlin – Current President – secular
Other prominent Secular/atheist Jewish people include:
Why is this relevant?
For one, it identifies a false thought that if you are Jewish, you are religious. It makes the Muslim-Jewish battle more odd because it is not a battle of religion after all. It alters the Palestinian land grab conflict and redefines the core of it. It opens up the debate over refugee camps, including the mass exodus from African nations to Europe.
From the Orthodox standpoint, Israel was given to the Israeli Jews by God. This would not apply then to the secularists, atheists and agnostics who are not part of that plan. But Israel is a land where Jews will forever be safe from persecution for their ‘culture’ after being expelled from every other mid-east country. The land was annexed by the UK as they sought to divvy up land under their control. They made a mess of it and never were able to reverse the harm. Annexing land is relatively common in history, most recently in Ukraine. Borders continuously change. Yugoslavia has changed, Romania, Ukraine, Hungary, Russia, Georgia, Prussia, Iran, Poland, Czech Republic, Syria, the list goes on. How quickly we forget the Ottoman Empire.
Annexing a portion of Israel and giving it to the Palestinians is not a religious battle, it is a battle of land control. From the Jewish standpoint, it is a battle rooted in the belief that this annexation would provide a gateway for the Middle East to ultimately eradicate the Jewish people. From the Palestinian perspective, it is persecution. They have no place to go.
Ironically, the same people who want to annex Israel cry foul at the annexation of Crimea despite the fact that the Crimean’s wanted to return their roots to Russia. Of the 810,000 internally displaced Ukrainians, 790,000 were from Donetsk, the region where pro-Russian Ukrainians fought the coup government of Kiev. Coincidentally, it is also the region where Biden’s son Hunter and Burisma Holding Company have interest in drilling.
But Israel continues to dig in their heels as does all the other Arab countries that don’t want the Palestinian refugees. So why do we focus on Israel alone – and not the multitude of Middle East nations that shun and enslave their refugees?
I’ll answer that in my next blog – The Palestinian Pox.