What Israel means to me ….in 150 words!

For me, Israel is at the forefront of Jewish history. The state is the inheritor of the French revolutionary tradition and nineteenth century European liberal nationalism.

As someone who was embedded in the political causes of the 1960s, the Six Day war in 1967 was a watershed. The Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 propelled me to work for the emigration of Soviet Jewry. I understood that it was what the Jews did themselves that counted. Auto-emancipation, not emancipation by others.

Even if Israel today is a flawed democracy, its leaders lacking a moral compass amidst multiple charges of corruption, it remains the central answer to the millennial Jewish problem. All other ideologies, both Jewish and non-Jewish, have failed. After all, there was no mass workers’ uprising on behalf of the Jews, when Hitler invaded.

The task of diaspora Zionists is rightly to stand up for Israel, but also to help transform Israel into Zion.

Jewish Chronicle 13 April 2018

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