By Gilad Atzmon
The Messiah must be finally here–or at least just around the corner!
What other conclusion can be drawn from the fact that in the last few days almost 50 Jews, most of them notorious for being Anti-Zionist Zionists (AZZ), have decided to support the universal and elementary right of the Palestinians to return to their homes. These elite 50 even formed an exclusively Jewish list and a website for the matter. Isn’t it wonderful?
Considering the fact that more than 14 million Jews live in the world today, we must assume that as things stand now–I mean following this sensational ethical outburst of 50 Jews—around 0.000125 % of Jews should be considered to be ethical and universally driven. True, this is not a lot, but you must admit it is more than nothing. According to Rabbinical Judaism, at least 36 Righteous Jews are living on the planet at any one time. The ‘progressive’ Jews made it into 50. But I am not so sure that even 50 ethical Jews alone could vindicate the Jews. We may need just a few more.
However, a few of the Jewish signatories are actually leading academics in addition to being secular Jews. How would they react, I wonder, to a similar list that defined itself exclusively as “Aryans for Palestinian Right of Return”? In short, I am interested to know what really stands ideologically behind this racially exclusive Jewish collective.
But it goes further: considering the fact that our wonderful ethical Jews regard themselves as secular, one may wonder what their Jewishness stands for. Why must they form a Jewish collective instead of operating simply as ordinary human beings? And if they insist that their Jewishness doesn’t refer exclusively to race or ethnicity, to what does it in fact refer?
Surely the very few academics on this list are sufficiently familiar with Jewish culture and heritage to know that we are dealing with a tribal culture that has no clear textual reference to any universal humanism whatsoever.
Is it, I wonder, once again the love of chicken soup they all share? Are they really calling for the Palestinians’ Right to Return to their homes in the name of chicken soup? Or is it Gefilte fish this time?
And if this is indeed the case–If they call for the Palestinian Right of Return in the name of soup or Gefilte fish–surely they will be kind enough to share the recipes with the rest of us ASAP.
Gilad Atzmon is an Israeli-born British jazz saxophonist, novelist, political activist and writer.
Atzmon’s album Exile was BBC jazz album of the year in 2003. Playing over 100 dates a year, he has been called “surely the hardest-gigging man in British jazz.” His albums, of which he has recorded nine to date, often explore the music of the Middle East and political themes. He has described himself as a “devoted political artist.” He supports the Palestinian right of return and the one-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
His criticisms of Zionism, Jewish identity, and Judaism, as well as his controversial views on The Holocaust and Jewish history have led to allegations of antisemitism from both Zionists and anti-Zionists. A profile in The Guardian in 2009 which described Atzmon as “one of London’s finest saxophonists” stated: “It is Atzmon’s blunt anti-Zionism rather than his music that has given him an international profile, particularly in the Arab world, where his essays are widely read.”