For Medieval Jews, Fantasies of Jewish Kingdoms Served a Polemical Purpose

March 27 2020

As early as the 3rd century CE, Christian writers argued that Jews lived in exile, with their Temple destroyed and their sovereignty lost, because God had chosen to punish them for their rejection of Jesus. Jewish thinkers had a simple rebuttal: God was indeed punishing His people with exile—as the biblical prophets had said He would—but was doing so because they had failed to observe His Law. In the Middle Ages, as Jewish-Christian relations became more intimate, Jews developed what Michael Weiner argues is a different sort of answer: imagining that in some faraway land, Jews maintained their political independence:

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Read more at Lehrhaus

More about: Christianity, Exile, Judaism, Ten Lost Tribes

 

The Sinister Attacks on Israeli Offers of Aid to Lebanon

Aug. 10 2020

“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:

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Israel diplomacy, Lebanon