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Why Israel?

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I need to tell you about myself. I am a naturalized American Citizen since October 1974. I was born in Egypt. I am 77 years old and hold Master's and Ph.D. degrees in pharmacology from the University of Illinois in Chicago (1960 and 1962) and a master in business from Columbia University (1980). I held several positions in the pharmaceutical industry before starting my own company. I am now retired.

Why Israel?

The Jews are better off without Israel

With the incessant violence in the Middle East, one is forced to think in new ways about the intractable Israeli/Palestinian problem.  The question arises, why would the Jews want to have a state of their own anyway? This thought will surprise many Jews and non-Jews alike.  Zionism, or the creation of a national home for the Jewish people, has dominated thinking in the West ever since the Belfour Declaration became public almost a century ago. After so many centuries of discrimination and pogroms, can't the Jews have a country of their own? How can anyone question such a premise? To examine the question, let us look at the history and the facts.

Throughout the history of the Jews, the establishment of a Jewish state has consistently been associated with disaster for all involved including the Jews themselves. This happened under Joshua, under Solomon, and under Herod the great. When the last Jewish state in Jerusalem was defeated in around 73 AD, most of the Jews were killed and rest were sold as slaves at prices lower than those for donkeys.  At the time, Judaism was a major religion.  Today, Judaism is a really minor one with only 25 million adherents.

The major Jewish contributions made to civilization happened while the Jews were living among other nations. This was the case under Abraham, under Moses, and during Jewish exile in Babylon. The Jewish culture that developed in Babylon lasted for over 1,500 years with no state for the Jews to call their own.

It is understandable that the Jews would want to free themselves of the creeping anti-Semitism that follows them everywhere.  They want to live unencumbered by the thought of being expelled, tortured or killed.  Hate for the Jews happened frequently in the past and is certain to happen again in the future.  Living in a state of their own, in theory, would free them from the threat of anti-Semitism and discrimination.  But, as history tells us, such a Jewish State may, in fact, be the greater threat to their existence.  Since its creation, the present-day Israel caused problems for the Jews and for everyone else. The rightful owners of the land and homes it now occupies will never rest till they get back what was forcibly taken from them.

Throughout the ages, Jews have always excelled and prospered while not living in a state of their own.  Jewish icons of science and philosophy from Maimonides to Einstein evolved and developed while living under non-Jewish administrations. Why in the world would the great Jewish scientists, doctors, psychologists"etc. of our time choose to live in Israel?  They would exchange living well in peace and prosperity in the most developed societies, for a life of fear and insecurity among hostile neighbors who won't rest till they eliminate them. In addition, most experts believe that, demographically, Israel has no future anyway. It is just a matter of time before it will be drowned out in a sea of Arabs and Moslems no matter what it or the West will try to do.

If I were a Jewish Israeli and had an opportunity to live in the United States, France, Canada or Great Britain in the way the Jews there live, I would jump at the chance to move there.  This is already happening. Since 2007, emigration has been outpacing immigration in Israel. A 2007 poll found that one-quarter of Israelis are considering leaving, including almost half of all young people. In another survey, 44 percent of Israelis say they would be ready to leave if they could find a better standard of living elsewhere, and over 100,000 Israelis have acquired European passports. One can easily see why. In the West, Jews live on top of the pyramid economically, culturally, socially and in every other way.  Why would they choose to go and live in Israel under the constant threat of missiles of perpetually increasing ranges, from both the North and south and live among Arabs who like to see them dead?  And now comes the possible longer range and existential threat from Iran!

It should always be remembered that the Jews succeed and become powerful, financially and otherwise, by relying on their intelligence and financial expertise while living among non-Jews. They thrive by collecting the cream from the top of the economies where they live. Demanding that Israel be totally Jewish would rob the Jews from using their relative advantage over non-Jews and limit both the possibility and extent of their success. The beginnings of social unrest where rich Jews are taking advantage of the poorer ones, is already apparent in Israel.

Perhaps, instead of fighting to keep Israel as a Jewish state, the Jews should concentrate on understanding anti-Semitism and find ways to combat it. They can live in peace everywhere else and allow their genius to make them richer and have richer lives. If they can combat anti-Semitism, they would not need Israel. Anti-Semitism, as it exists today, is not related to the Jewish religion per se. It is more related to Jewish exclusive and non-inclusive behavior. It is what draws the attention of others to the Jews. Out of their collective painful and miserable experience, Jews cannot easily trust non-Jews. They can only trust and do business primarily with other Jews. Jewish cronyism shuts off non-Jews from economic and other opportunities they feel entitled to. Together, the Jews form an exclusive club closed to non-Jews. They act as if they are still living in a Jewish Ghetto secluded and protected from outsiders. As it was said "You can bring the Jews out of the ghetto but you cannot bring the ghetto out of the Jews'.  They have predominantly Jewish friends; marry other Jews almost exclusively and do business mainly with other Jews.

To avoid the next wave of anti-Semitism, Jews must consciously strive to assimilate in the societies where they live. They should intermarry more, do more business with, and have more non-Jewish close friends. The key word here is: assimilation. Jews need to become more nationalists and put loyalty to the countries, where they live and work, first in their minds, ahead of their loyalty to themselves as a group and to Israel.  They should become mere patriotic Americans, British, French, "etc. and have normal ties with other Jews mainly based mainly on the practice of their common and ancient religion. In the long run, this would be better for them than a state of their own. Real assimilation will take determination and a clear purpose but it will be worth it. The result could be nothing less than Jewish salvation.

It is instructive to note that most Jewish scholars, from the beginnings of Judaism to the present, including Mendelssohn, Rathenau, Buber, Berr, Hertzl, Lippmann and many others prescribed assimilation as the remedy to anti-Semitism.  Walter Lippmann once expressed his view that Zionism is ""the greatest misfortune which has ever befallen the Jewish people'. Collectively, these Jewish leaders saw assimilation as the only way to secure Jewish survival.  It is only the shortsighted Israeli and American Jewish leaders that believe that their security lies in the Jewish collective economic and military strength.  And now, they are even thinking of attacking Iran.  This would be the height of irresponsibility and stupidity. If that ever happens, anti-Semitism will be fully revived on an international scale never before seen. The demise of Israel will not be in doubt anymore.

In addition to Jewish assimilation at the personal and business levels, Israel itself, perhaps with the help of the United States, must strive to assimilate within the Middle East.  It should become a good friend and neighbor to Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Iran and the rest of the Arab and Moslem world.  It should use its superior technology to help the people in those countries live better lives.  That is the Jews only salvation, not Israel.  

Sam Amer   

 

Retired Pharmacologist with two masters and a Ph.D.

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The article is visionary and should be widely read... by Sam Amer on Saturday, Dec 22, 2012 at 3:26:35 PM