While the state of Israel has no written constitution, it does have a declaration of independence. The text went through numerous revisions as the founders of the Jewish state debated when to declare independence, what the new country would be called, whether or not its borders should be specified, and whether God should be mentioned in the declaration. (As a compromise on the last point, it included the ambiguous phrase “Rock of Israel.”) In a newly released online course, the historian and Mosaic contributor Martin Kramer tells this remarkable story. Click on the link below to register for the course, or watch the preview here.
The Untold Story of the Jewish State’s Founding Document
The Sinister Attacks on Israeli Offers of Aid to Lebanon
“The only encouraging thing” about the deadly explosion in Beirut, wrote the former Swedish prime minister Carl Bildt on Twitter, “is that even Israel has been quick in offering humanitarian aid.” Had Bildt been better informed, he might have known that there is nothing new or unusual about the Jewish state offering humanitarian assistance to its Arab neighbors—or to more far-flung nations. Yet his bizarre comment was less hostile than the reactions of those who rushed to dismiss the offer as a meaningless public-relations stunt. Lahav Harkov writes: