What Exactly Is the Freedom Celebrated on Passover?

April 23 2019

The Hebrew word for “freedom,” ḥerut, appears prominently in the Passover liturgy and in the Haggadah, but nowhere in the Bible. Nor do equivalent biblical Hebrew terms occur anywhere in the Bible’s telling of the Exodus story. To resolve this paradox, Yehoshua Pfeffer argues that the Torah does not view the purpose of redemption from Egyptian bondage to be liberation, but rather the actualization of the covenant between God and Israel:

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Read more at Tzarich Iyun

More about: Exodus, Hebrew Bible, Passover

Israeli Sovereignty Would Free Residents of the West Bank from Ottoman Law

To its opponents, the change in the legal status of certain areas of Judea and Samaria is “annexation;” to its proponents, it is the “extension of sovereignty” or the “application of Israeli law.” Naomi Khan argues that the last term best captures the practical implications of the measures in question. Since the Six-Day War, the Jewish state has continued to uphold the Ottoman legal system in areas of the West Bank under its jurisdiction—despite the fact that the Ottoman empire ceased to exist in 1922; “annexation” would end this situation. Setting aside the usual questions of foreign policy, security, and the possibility of Palestinian statehood, Khan argues that this change would be the one most felt by those who live there:

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Read more at JNS

More about: Annexation, Israeli law, Ottoman Empire, Palestinian Authority, West Bank