How Anti-Israel Politics Overtook Durham, North Carolina

Oct. 27 2020

In April of 2018, the Durham city council adopted, by unanimous vote, a statement opposing “international exchanges with any country in which Durham officers receive military-style training.” The statement concluded with some generic declarations about racial justice, clarifying that “Black lives matter.” But it began with a quotation from the municipal police chief stating clearly “there has been no effort while I have served as chief of police to initiate or participate in any exchange to Israel, nor do I have any intention to do so.” This disclaimer points to the origins of the statement in a petition from an offshoot of Jewish Voice for Peace, a particularly vicious anti-Israel group. In his speech in favor of the resolution, Durham’s mayor made the connection to the Jewish state clear, as Sean Cooper reports:

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Read more at Tablet

More about: Anti-Semitism, Jewish Voice for Peace, Nation of Islam, U.S. Politics

Reclaiming Secular Zionism’s Religiosity

Feb. 24 2021

A recent article in an Israeli political journal argued that anyone who wishes to revive Israel’s moribund left must stay true to its secular heritage and “take a stand against both religion and religious people.” But to Gershon Hacohen this claim rests on a profound misunderstanding. While it is true that David Ben-Gurion and other early leaders of the Zionist left were secular insofar as they were agnostic and did not observe halakhah, their ideology was deeply enmeshed with the Hebrew Bible and Jewish traditions:

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Read more at BESA Center

More about: David Ben-Gurion, History of Zionism, Labor Zionism, Religious Zionism