05/02/12 And the Jerusalem Post heralded this new de-Judaification effort at its conference in New York.
04/26/12 Following on the heels of the Global March to Jerusalem*, planned by the Arab League but seized upon by Israel-haters everywhere, we have a new DE-JUDAIZATION effort. This one is brought to us by that iconic Jewish newspaper, now considered by some as an aider and abettor of the Israel-and- Jewish delegitimization crowd, the Jewish Daily Forward.
Today, on Yom Haatzmaut, the Forward's editorial suggests now is the time to consider ways to alter the Israeli Anthem, HaTikva, to make it more relevant, less objectionable, to all of Israel's inhabitants. In other words, to REMOVE THE JEWISH connection to Israel. But HaTikva is a historical poem. It is the story of a yearning, yes, a yearning of the Jews, to recreate our Homeland, to return to Zion, to the place where our people was born. It is through the realization of that hope that modern Israel was reborn. Israel was not created in the abstract, and its anthem, like most, reflects its history, its struggle and its unique tradition. Look at the anthems of virtually any country and there are references to specific gods, kings, and/or specific religions. Jordan's does, so do those of Iran, Switzerland, Germany, and the UK, to name just a few. Indeed, frequently entire anthems are infused with nationalistic, militaristic (China's) or religious imagery. Yet few states are entirely homogeneous, and most have recent immigrants for whom the specific historic story told in the anthem could be considered either irrelevant, or worse.
We think it is an outrage to suggest HaTikva needs to be de-Judaized, and to pretend that modern Israel was not founded in response to the ancient yearning - and yes, need - of the JEWS for a Jewish Homeland. For goodness sake, they sang it at the liberation of Bergen-Belsen! Listen to that recording, made on Friday evening, April 20, 1945, here. The Forward is inviting people to comment on their suggestions (and to make other suggested changes). So let them know what you think, here.
*Largely failed effort, but one clearly planned as a permanent feature in this ongoing War of Language and Mindset Attrition.