*Israel’s primary national security challenge is the reinforcement of education on the 4,000-year-old Jewish/Zionist roots in the Land of Israel, through the bolstering of the Jewish/Zionist identity (self-determination), vision (the reestablishment of the Jewish State in its Homeland) and destiny (the Jewish Ingathering/Aliyah to the Land of Israel).
*These core values are currently threatened by a cosmopolitan and post-Zionist worldview – in addition to the anti-Zionist worldview, that is dedicated to Israel’s physical destruction – which aims to play-down, misrepresent and replace Jewish/Zionist roots and values with multicultural and universal values and institutions.
*Post-Zionism considers Jewish/Zionist identity, vision and destiny as a major obstacle on the way of advancing its top goal: being embraced by the international community.
*This post-Zionist worldview, also, reflects battle fatigue. It refuses to accept the reality of Zionism as a multi-generational uphill marathon-like mission; deluding itself that Zionism is a sprint-like undertaking.
*Post-Zionism is eager to abdicate the colossal responsibility entailed in being the only Jewish State (e.g., securing physical and spiritual Jewish survival and combating anti-Semitism).
*Moreover, post-Zionism wishes to escape the, supposedly, frustrating reality of an ongoing Jewish/Zionist struggle against clear and present lethal threats in the inherently unpredictable, violent, despotic, intolerant and anti-“infidel” Middle East. It wishes to replace the inconvenient Middle East reality with the convenient make-believe “New Middle East,” which professes cancel-culture, cancel-history and dramatic Israeli land concessions, which are the cradle of Jewish history, culture and religion, and critical to the national security of Israel.
*Jewish/Zionist identity, vision and destiny – which represent Judaism as a historic, cultural, linguistic, religious and territorial entity – are not merely intellectual issues. Rather, they are at the foundation of Israel’s national security and spiritual and physical steadfastness. The stronger the Jewish/Zionist identity, the stronger the resolve to defy the military, diplomatic and intellectual challenges facing the Jewish State and the Jewish People.
*History-driven identity, vision and destiny are fixed and durable components of national security. On the other hand, political, diplomatic, defense, economic and peace accords are variable and tenuous components of national security, whose durability is tenuous due to the systematically changing regional and global leadership, policies and relations.
*The stronger the resolve and steadfastness of Israel, the more compelling is its contribution – as a force and dollar multiplier – to the US economy and defense, and the more productive is the mutually-beneficial US-Israel two-way-street. Bolstered US interests are advanced by bolstered Jewish/Zionist identity, vision and destiny, which inspired the US Founding Fathers.
*In the pursuit of bolstered Jewish/Zionist identity, vision and destiny, contemporary leaders of the Jewish State should adhere to the legacy of David Ben Gurion, Israel’s Founding Father, who was the iconic leader of Israel’s Labor Party: “…. Our commitment to our history is a prerequisite to Israel’s political and military steadfastness in the face of our continued military struggle…. It is impossible to comprehend Jewish history and struggles, if one is not aware of the unique Jewish vision…. Jewish/Hebrew education is the precondition for Jewish unity and attachment to the Land of Israel…. The Jewish nation is not merely a national and political entity. Since its inception, it has possessed an historic vision [the Ingathering of Jews to their Homeland]…. The very small Jewish nation was able to defy major powers due to its determined spiritual and moral uniqueness…. While the ethnic, cultural and political environment of the Middle East has changed dramatically during the last 4,000 years – since the dawn of the Jewish people – the Jewish people has retained its language and culture, notwithstanding 2,000 years of exile…. The retention of the unique Jewish national character has served as a magic-vitamin, sustaining Jewish survival and independence and the power to withstand threats, challenges and temptations…. The establishment of the State of Israel has not ended the struggle for Jewish uniqueness and destiny…. The Ingathering is our central undertaking; it is a prerequisite to our independence…. Jewish history did not start upon the 1948 establishment of Israel or the 1897 First Zionist Congress. Jewish history is a 4,000-year-old wealth of values, culture and heroic events, which are based on the Bible and the Land of Israel. It must be shared with the Jewish youth” (Ben Gurion, Uniqueness and Destiny, 1951).
Thanksgiving was initially celebrated in November 1621 by William Bradford, the leader of the “Mayflower” and the Governor of the Plymouth Colony.
He enhanced his appreciation of the Bible – and especially the Five Books of Moses – in Leiden, Holland, where he found refuge from religious persecution in England, where he heavily interacted with the Jewish community.
Bradford and the other 102 passengers perceived the 66-day-voyage in the Atlantic Ocean as a reenactment of the Biblical Exodus, the departure from “the Modern Day Egypt,” the perilous “Modern Day Parting of the Sea” and the arrival to “the Modern Day Promised Land” and “the New Israel.”
Governor Bradford announced the celebration of Thanksgiving by citing Psalm 107, which constitutes the foundation of the Jewish concept of Thanksgiving, thanking God for ancient and modern time deliverance.
Bradford was, also, inspired by the Jewish holidays of Pentecost (Sha’vou’ot in Hebrew) and Tabernacles (Sukkot in Hebrew), which highlight the importance of gratitude, and commemorating Thanksgiving for the harvest, the legacy of Moses (e.g., the Ten Commandments), the centrality of the family, and the deliverance from persecution in Egypt to liberty in the Land of Israel.
The epitaph on the tombstone of Bradford in the old cemetery in Plymouth, Massachusetts begins with a Hebrew phrase – “God is the succor of my life” (יהוה עזר חיי) – as befits the person who brought Hebrew to America. He aimed to make Hebrew an official language, suggesting that reading the Bible in the original language yields more benefits.
The Hebrew word for Thanksgiving’s central dish, turkey, is Tarnegol Hodoo (תרנגול הודו), which means “a chicken from India,” but also “a chicken of gratitude/Thanksgiving.”
Thanksgiving was proclaimed a national holiday in 1863, by President Abraham Lincoln, as a means to heal the wounds of the Civil War.
*The 400-year-old roots of the unique US-Israel nexus are highlighted in these YouTube-1, YouTube-2 and Facebook-1 and Facebook-2 videos.
The Federalist, https://bit.ly/3ldeYQN
Significance of the 400th anniversary
Four hundred years ago, in November 1620, the 102 pilgrims of the “Mayflower” landed in Plymouth Rock, which they considered the modern day Promised Land. They were inspired by the Bible, in general, and the Mosaic legacy, in particular, which feature a civic covenant, cohesive peoplehood, a twelve-tribe-governance and a shared vision. They planted the seeds of the Federalist Papers, the 1776 American Revolution, the Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution, Bill of Rights, Separation of Powers, Checks and Balances and the overall US history, culture and political and justice systems. These seeds vaulted the US to the leadership of the Free World, economically, technologically, scientifically, educationally and militarily.
The 102 pilgrims of the “Mayflower” viewed themselves as “modern day Biblical Israelites,” seeking freedom from the bondage of the “British Pharaoh,” King James I. They sought Biblical-driven liberty, planting the roots of the uniquely thriving, mutually-beneficial kinship between the US and Israel, historically, spiritually, culturally, technologically and geo-strategically.
Indeed, these roots eclipse the political beltway of Washington, DC, transcend the pertinent role of the Jewish community, and run deeper than geo-strategic considerations and formal agreements. They precede the 1776 US Declaration of Independence and the 1948 reestablishment of the Jewish State, Israel.
These roots have yielded an exceptional bottom-up international relations phenomenon, whereby pro-Israel sentiments among most Americans have played a key role in shaping the mindset of their state and federal legislatures, as well as the actions of the person sitting behind the Resolute Desk of the Oval Office.
The Early Pilgrims
The Bible was the most widely read book in colonial America, inspiring the Early Pilgrims, the Founding Fathers, educators, the clergy, political leaders and the public at-large.
The Early Pilgrims referred to King James I as the Modern Day Pharaoh; their departure from England as the Modern Day Exodus; the sailing across the Atlantic Ocean as the Modern Day Parting of the Sea; and the New World as the New Canaan and the New Israel. They considered themselves the Modern Day People of the Covenant and Modern Day Chosen People.
Hence, the litany of Biblically-named towns, cities, mountains, deserts, rivers, national parks and forests throughout the United States. Thus, in the US, there are 18 Jerusalems, 30 Salems (the original name of Jerusalem), 83 Shilohs (where the first tabernacle stood), 34 Bethels, 27 Hebrons, 26 Goshens, 19 Jerichos, 18 Pisgahs, and many more.
William Bradford and John Winthrop, the leaders of the “Mayflower” (1620) and the “Arabella” (1630) were called Joshua and Moses respectively.
Moreover, the 1620 “Mayflower Compact” and the 1639 “Fundamental Orders of Connecticut” (the initial Constitutions), which highlighted the rights of the individual – and the limits to the central government – were partly inspired by the Mosaic laws and covenant.
In 2020, the 400-year-old roots of the special US and Israel ties are reflected by the statues and engravings of Moses and over 200 Ten Commandments monuments, which are featured in the US House of Representatives, the US Supreme Court, the Library of Congress, the Justice Department, the National Archives, and throughout important buildings and landmarks across the US.
Early America and the Hebrew language
Familiarity with Hebrew was quite common among the Early Pilgrims’ intelligentsia and the better-educated clergy. In fact, the initial ten colleges in the colonies offered Hebrew courses.
Moreover, the first two Presidents of Harvard University, Henry Dunster (1640-1654) and Charles Chauncy (1654-1672) were ardent Hebraists, as were Harvard’s 6th and 11th presidents, Increase Mather (1692-1701) and Samuel Langdon (1774-1780), who proposed to make Hebrew an official language in the new colonies. Valedictory addresses at Harvard, Yale and other institutions of higher learning were offered in Hebrew.
King’s College (Columbia University) founding President (1754-1763) Samuel Johnson installed Hebrew as a required course, and stated that “Hebrew was part of a gentleman’s education.”
Yale University’s 7th president, Ezra Stiles (1778-1795), spoke, read and taught Hebrew in addition to astronomy, chemistry and philosophy. He corresponded with Hebron’s Rabbi, Hayyim Carregal, and noted that “Moses assembled 3 million people – the number of Americans in 1776.” He urged graduate students to be able to recite Psalms in Hebrew, “because that is what St. Peter will expect of you at the Pearly Gates….”
The official seals of Yale University (“Light and Truth”), Columbia University (“Jehovah” and “Divine Light”) and Dartmouth College (“G-d Almighty”) feature key Biblical terms in Hebrew. The official seal of Princeton University features an open Bible with the Latin inscription: Old and New Testaments.
The special role of Hebrew in the formation of the US culture and university curricula was demonstrated by Prof. George Bush, the great grand-uncle of President George H. Bush. Prof. Bush was the first Hebrew professor at New York University (1831-1846), wrote books on the Bible and Hebrew, and urged the ingathering of Jews “to the Biblical Zion.”
Hebrew words have been integrated into the English language. For example, the origin of Jubilee is the Hebrew word Yovel (liberty in Hebrew), Jehovah is Yehovah (He was, He is, He will be), amen is a’men (faith in Hebrew), hallelujah is halleluyah (praise God in Hebrew), Abracadabra is Evra keDabra (creating while talking in Hebrew), evil is Eyval (the Biblical Mount of Curse), kosher is kasher (proper in Hebrew), tour’s origin is the Biblical word toor (Moses’ instruction to the leaders of the twelve tribes, who were assigned to scout the Land of Israel), etc.
The Founding Fathers and the Mosaic covenant
The Bay Psalm Book was the first book printed in 1640 in the New World in Cambridge, Mass. 1700 copies were printed, containing Hebrew characters. In 2013, one of the eleven existing copies was sold for $14.2MN, a record for a printed book. Currently, some 20 million copies of the Bible are sold annually, making it still the best-selling book in the USA.
According to a February, 2020 Pew Research Poll, 49% of Americans say the Bible should have at least some influence on US laws, including 23% who say it should have a great deal of influence.
In fact, the name of the US political system – the Federalist system – is a derivative of Foedus, which is the Latin word for the Biblical Covenant between God and Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Moses, as well as the civic covenant among the Biblical Israelites during the forty years following the Exodus.
Moreover, the inscription on the Liberty Bell is from Leviticus, Chapter 25, Verse 10: “Proclaim liberty throughout all the Land, unto all the Inhabitants thereof.” This inscription is the essence of the Jubilee, which is the Biblical role model of liberty – freeing slaves and prisoners and returning land to original owners.
Furthermore, Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, which was the moral and intellectual touchstone of the American Revolution, was influenced by the Old Testament: “For the will of the Almighty as declared by Gideon, and the prophet Samuel, expressly disapproves of government by kings… (pp. 10-13).”
Harvard University’s 11th president, Samuel Langdon (1774-1780), opined: “the Jewish government… was a perfect republic…. Let us therefore look over [the Israelites’] constitution and laws…. They had both a civil and military establishment under divine direction, and a complete body of judicial laws drawn up and delivered to them by Moses in God’s name…. Instead of the twelve tribes of Israel, we may substitute the thirteen states of the American union….”
James Madison, the 4th President, the 5th Secretary of State, the “Father of the Constitution,” a key drafter of the Bill of Rights and a co-author of The Federalist Papers, was deeply influenced by his study of Hebrew and the Old Testament at the College of New Jersey (Princeton University). In a 1778 speech at the General Assembly of Virginia, he stated: “…We have staked the future of all our political institutions upon our capacity… to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God….”
John Quincy Adams, the 6th President, asserted that “[The Bible] is the best book in the world…. The law given from Sinai was a civil and municipal as well as a moral and religious code…. The Bible is the book to be read at all ages….”
The Abolitionist anti-slavery movement inspired by Moses
Moses and the Exodus played a key role in the formation of the Abolitionist anti-slavery movement. Thus, Harriet Tubman, who was born into slavery and escaped in 1849, was called Mama Moses, since she was among the initiators of the Underground Railroad, which freed Black slaves through a network of secret routes and safe houses,
In 1862, the anti-slavery informal anthem of Black slaves was composed with lyrics from Exodus 8:1: “Go Down Moses, way down in Egypt land, tell old Pharaoh to let my people go.” This black spiritual regained popularity in the 20th century when sung by Paul Leroy Robeson.
Martin Luther King, Jr., a leader of the Civil Rights Movement from 1955-1968, based many of his sermons and speeches – including “I have a dream” – on Moses and the Jewish liberation from slavery in Egypt, as well as on the Biblical books of Psalms, Jeremiah, Isaiah and Amos. His battle cry was: “Let My People Go (Exodus 5:1).”
President Abraham Lincoln was a student of the Bible, which bolstered his determination to abolish slavery. In his second inaugural address, he stated: “[The Bible] is the best gift God has given to man…. The rebirth of Israel as a nation-state is a noble dream, shared by many Americans….“
The Bible, in general, and the Moses legacy, in particular, provided American Black slaves with much hope and strength, striving for their own Exodus, trusting that God opposes Black slavery in the US as he opposed Jewish slavery in Egypt.
400 years of US identification with the Jewish State
The chief engine behind the unique US-Israel kinship was the spirit of the Early Pilgrims and the Founding Fathers. They considered the idea of a Jewish Commonwealth in the Land of Israel an authentic implementation of the Biblical vision.
For example, President John Adams supported the idea of a Jewish State in the Land of Israel: “I really wish the Jews again in Judea an independent nation.”
Most notably, on March 5, 1891 – six years before the convening of the 1897 First Zionist Congress by Theodore Herzl, the father of modern day Zionism – 431 US leaders, including the Chief Justice, House and Senate leaders and chairmen of Congressional committees, governors, mayors, businessmen, clergy, professors and editors, signed the Blackstone Memorial, which called for the reestablishment of a Jewish State in the Land of Israel. Pastor William Eugene Blackstone was a Christian Zionist, who dedicated his life to the reestablishment of the Jewish Commonwealth in its homeland.
In 1917, the Blackstone Memorial influenced President Woodrow Wilson’s support of the Balfour Declaration, and on March 3, 1919, President Wilson stated: “…In Palestine shall be laid the foundation of a Jewish Commonwealth….” “[The Bible] is the Magna Charta of the human soul.” In 1918, President Theodore Roosevelt wrote in his best-selling “History of the American West”: “…It seems to me entirely proper to start a Zionist State around Jerusalem…. Many of the best backwoodsmen were Bible-readers…. They looked at their foes as the Hebrew Prophets looked at the enemies of Israel…. No man, educated or uneducated, can afford to be ignorant of the Bible.”
Highlighting the potency of these roots, on June 30, 1922 Congress passed a Joint Resolution, introduced by the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Henry Cabot Lodge (MA-R), and Representative Hamilton Fish III (NY-R), which was signed by President Warren Harding on September 21, 1922: “…. Favoring the establishment, in Palestine, of a national home for the Jewish people….” The Resolution was opposed by the State Department and the New York Times, which also opposed the re-establishment of Israel in 1948.
On June 10, 1943, Alabama Governor Chauncey Sparks signed a unanimous Joint Resolution of the Alabama State House and Senate, which called for the establishment in Palestine of a Jewish Homeland, in accordance with the 1917 Balfour Declaration, as was approved by the 1922 Joint Congressional Resolution and the 1924 Anglo-American Treaty.
On May 12, 1948, during a critical session at the White House, Clark Clifford, a Special Assistant to President Truman (and Defense Secretary under President Lyndon Johnson), confronted Secretary of State, General George Marshall, who opposed the recognition of the Jewish State: “Behold, I have set the land before you; go in and possess the land which the Lord swore unto your Fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give unto them and to their seed after them (Deuteronomy, 1:8).” Clifford was not an evangelical Christian.
On May 14, 1948, during a special broadcast upon Israel’s declaration of independence, Lowell Thomas, a US radio icon stated: “Today, as the Jewish State is established, Americans read through the Bible as a historical reference book.”
Biblical impact on Modern day USA leaders
While the US Constitution does not require Presidents to be sworn in on a Bible, almost every Chief Executive since George Washington – except four Presidents – has chosen to do so.
Almost all US Presidents have integrated Biblical verses in their inaugural addresses and major speeches.
For example, on May 3, 1925, President Calvin Coolidge said: “Hebraic mortar cemented the foundations of American democracy… If American democracy is to remain the greatest hope of humanity, it must continue abundantly in the faith of the Bible.”
On February 15, 1950, President Harry S. Truman told the Attorney General’s Conference: “The fundamental basis of this nation’s laws was given to Moses on the Mount. The fundamental basis of our Bill of Rights comes from the teachings which we get from Exodus and St. Matthew, from Isaiah and St. Paul. I don’t think we emphasize that enough these days….”
On September 10, 1968, President Lyndon Johnson told a B’nai B’rith conference: “Bible stories are woven into my childhood memories as the gallant struggle of modern Jews to be free of persecution is also woven into our souls….”
In his 1969 inaugural addresses, President Richard Nixon referred to the book of Isaiah: “…. And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more…. (Isaiah 2:4).”
President Ronald Reagan was known for his Biblical references such as: “Within the covers of the Bible are all the answers for all the problems men face…. Of the many influences that have shaped the United States of America into a distinctive Nation and people, none may be said to be more fundamental and enduring than the Bible.”
President Bush’s deep Biblical conviction was evident during his May 15, 2008 speech at Israel’s Knesset: “When Israel was declared independent, it was the Redemption of an ancient promise given to Abraham, Moses and David…. The source of our friendship runs deeper than any treaty…. It is grounded in the shored spirit of our peoples, the bonds of The Book, the ties of the soul. When William Bradford stepped off the ‘Mayflower’ in 1620, he quoted the words of Jeremiah: ‘Come let us declare in Zion the word of God.’ The Founders [of the United States] saw a new Promised Land and bestowed upon their towns names like Bethlehem and New Canaan. And, in time many Americans became passionate advocates for a Jewish State… Our alliance will be guided by clear principles, shared convictions rooted in moral clarity and un-swayed by popularity polls or the shifting opinions of international elites.”
President Barack Obama made a frequent use of Biblical quotes. For example, Psalm 46 was recited at the unveiling of the 9/11 Memorial upon the 10th anniversary of that Islamic terror attack on the US: “God is our refuge and strength… therefore we will not fear….”
On December 24, 1968, the three astronauts of Apollo 8 – the first manned mission to orbit the moon – conducted a direct broadcast to earth, reciting the first ten verses from the Book of Genesis: “In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth….” It was the most watched television broadcast at the time.
The May, 2009, House Resolution 397 highlights the Biblical milestones in US history.
The US civil religion
The depth and durability of the 400-year-old Biblical roots among most Americans – notwithstanding their gradual erosion – has been consistent with separation of religion and state, but not separation of religion and society. It is demonstrated by the institutionalization of “In God We Trust,” inscribed above the seat of the Speaker of the House of Representatives. In 2020, all 50 State Constitutions refer to God.
In 2012, the National Democratic Convention reinstated God and Jerusalem into its platform.
On October 31, 2011, the House of Representatives voted 396:9, reaffirming “In God We Trust” as a national motto, as did Joint Resolution #396 (July 30, 1956), and a May 26, 1955 Resolution to inscribe “In God We Trust” on all US currency.
According to an NBC May 2019 poll, 86% of Americans favor “In God We Trust” and retaining “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance.
An April 2018 Gallup poll showed that 45% and 39% of Protestants and Catholics frequent church each Sunday.
About 20 million copies of the Bible are purchased annually in the US.
In the US, there are some 300 Christian TV (9 in 1974) and 3,000 Christian radio stations.
Since 1974, Congress opens daily deliberations with a prayer and “God bless America;” and US Presidents conclude their oath of office, State of the Union and other major statements with God Bless America and So Help Me God.
On June 28, 2005, Chief Justice William Rehnquist ruled that the Ten Commandment monument on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol was constitutional, underlining the impact of the legacy of Moses and the Ten Commandments on the US culture and civic life: “Since 1935, Moses has stood, holding two tablets that reveal portions of the Ten Commandments, written in Hebrew, among other lawgivers in the [Supreme Court’s] south frieze…. Moses sits on the exterior east façade, holding the Ten Commandments… Since 1897, a large statue of Moses holding the Ten Commandments alongside a statue of the Apostle Paul, has overlooked the rotunda of the Library of Congress’ Jefferson Building. A two-tablet-medallion depicting the Ten Commandments decorates the floor of the National Archives. In the Justice Department, a statue entitled ‘The Spirit of Law’ has two tablets representing the Ten Commandments. In front of the Ronald Reagan Building stands a sculpture that includes a depiction of the Ten Commandments. A 24-foot-tall sculpture, outside the Federal Courthouse [in Washington, DC], depicts the Ten Commandments and a cross. Moses is prominently featured in the Chamber of the US House of Representatives…. Moses was a lawgiver and a religious leader, and the Ten Commandments have undeniable historical meaning….”
A February 2005 Gallup Poll documented 76%:21% support of a display of the Ten Commandments Monument in Texas and a 56%:20% support, with 24% indifferent, of such a display on the ground of their own state capitols.
The lasting US-Israel Kinship
While there has been a gradual erosion of the 400-year-old roots and core values – as a result of the dramatic demographic and ideological transformation of the US population – they created the healthy foundations of US-Israel relations, which have been cultivated by the state of mind of most Americans.
The recent dramatic enhancement of such a unique and mutually-beneficial relationship – militarily, industrially, technologically, agriculturally and medically – has evolved in response to mutual threats and challenges, but in defiance of the State Department bureaucracy and much of the “elite” media, which opposed Israel’s establishment in 1948.
Israel remains the top unconditional ally of the US in the Middle East and beyond, wholeheartedly reciprocating the value-driven unconditional identification by most Americans with the Jewish State. And, as suggested by The Ethics of the Fathers, a second century compilation of Jewish ethical teachings: “Conditional love is tenuous; unconditional love is eternal.”
4th brand new video in a series of 9 (Facebook, YouTube)
“1620-2020: The 400th Anniversary of the Unique US-Israel Kinship”
*”Go Down Moses… tell old Pharaoh to let my people go” are the lyrics of the anti-slavery anthem of black slaves, quoting Biblical verses in the Book of Exodus.
*The legacy of Moses and the Biblical Exodus played a key role in the formation of the Abolitionist anti-slavery movement.
*Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of the anti-slavery novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” and her husband were dedicated students of the Hebrew language.
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A Brand New 3-min-video (Facebook, YouTube)
“The 400th Anniversary of the unique US-Israel Kinship”
(3rd in a series of 9 videos)
*Any clue as to who wanted to make Hebrew an official American language?
*Why does the official seal of Yale feature a Biblical term in Hebrew?
*Which US colleges made Hebrew a mandatory course?
*The roots of the US-Israel bond precede the 1948 re-establishment of Israel and the 1776 establishment of the USA.
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A brand new 3 min video #2 (in a series of 9)
“The 400th Anniversary of the unique US-Israel Kinship”
?What is the historical and cultural background of over 200 monuments of Moses and the Ten Commandments in Washington, DC, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Florida, Colorado, Arizona and throughout the USA?
?What is the reason for choosing Leviticus 25:10 for the inscription on the Liberty Bell?
?Are you aware that the roots of the special bond between most Americans and the State of Israel are 400-year-old?
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“The 400th Anniversary of the unique US-Israel Kinship”:
*Have you ever asked yourself why there is a deep bond between the US and Israel?
*Have you ever wondered how old is this bond?
*Have you ever enquired what brought the statues of Moses and the Ten Commandments to the US House of Representatives, Supreme Court, Library of Congress and the Justice Department?
*Have you ever queried why are there 18 Jerusalems, 32 Salems (the original name of Jerusalem), 83 Shilos, 34 Bethels and 18 Zions in the USA?
More in the March 2020 eBook
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March 2020 eBook available on Amazon and Smashwords
From the 1620 “Mayflower,” through the 1752 Liberty Bell, 1891 “Blackstone Memorial” and the 1968 “Apollo 8,” to the 2005 Chief Justice William Rehnquist’s decision on the Ten Commandments, and the 2020 statues of Moses in the US Supreme Court , Chamber of the House of Representatives, Justice Department and the Library of Congress….
Table of Content:
John Adams, the 2nd US President: “I really wish the Jews again in Judea an independent nation.”
The Early Pilgrims
The roots of the unique ties between the United States and Israel precede the 1776 US Declaration of Independence and the 1948 founding of Israel. They eclipse the political beltway of Washington, DC, transcend the pertinent role of the Jewish community, are deeper than the intimate diplomatic discourse between the two countries, and exceed the mutually-beneficial bilateral defense and commercial cooperation.
The seeds of US civic culture and the unique US-Israel kinship were planted in 1620 by the 102 “Mayflower” passengers, who landed at Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts.
These passengers were inspired by the Old Testament, referring to their departure from England as the “Modern Day Exodus;” the sailing across the Atlantic Ocean as the “Modern Day Parting of the Sea;” and the New World as the “Modern Day Promised Land” and the “New Israel.” They considered themselves the “Modern Day Chosen People.”
Hence, the litany of Biblically-named towns, cities, mountains, deserts, national parks and forests throughout the United States. For example, in the US there are 18 Jerusalems, 32 Salems (the original Biblical name of Jerusalem), 83 Shilohs (where the first tabernacle stood), etc.
In 2020, these roots are reflected by the statues and engravings of Moses and some 200 Ten Commandments monuments, which are featured in the US House of Representatives, the US Supreme Court, the Library of Congress, the Justice Department and throughout the US.
Familiarity with Hebrew was quite common among the Early Pilgrims’ intelligentsia and the better-educated clergy. Thus, the ten initial universities offered Hebrew courses, and valedictory addresses at Harvard, Yale and other institutions of higher learning were offered in Hebrew.
Yale University’s 7th President, Ezra Stiles (1778-1795), spoke, read and taught Hebrew in addition to astronomy, chemistry and philosophy. He urged graduate students to be able to recite Psalms in Hebrew, “because that is what St. Peter will expect of you at the Pearly Gates.”
The official seals of Yale University (“Light and Truth”), Columbia University (“Jehovah” and “Divine Light”) and Dartmouth College (“God Almighty( feature Biblical terms in Hebrew.
The Founding Fathers
The legacy of Moses and the Exodus had a profound impact on the Early Pilgrims, the 1776 American Revolution, the shaping of The Federalist Papers, US Constitution, Bill of Rights, Separation of Powers and Checks and Balances.
In fact, the inscription on the Liberty Bell is from Leviticus, Chapter 25, Verse 10: “Proclaim liberty throughout all the Land, unto all the Inhabitants thereof.” The inscription is the essence of the Biblical Jubilee, which was considered by the Founding Fathers as the role model of liberty.
Furthermore, Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, which was the moral and intellectual touchstone of the American Revolution, was influenced by the Old Testament: “For the will of the Almighty as declared by Gideon, and the prophet Samuel, expressly disapproves of government by kings… (pp. 10-13).”
James Madison, the 4th President and the “Father of the Constitution” stated: “We have staked the future of all our political institutions upon our capacity… to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God….”
The Abolitionist Movement
Moses and the Exodus played a key role in the formation of the Abolitionist anti-slavery movement, and in the determination of President Lincoln to abolish slavery. Thus, Harriet Tubman, who initiated the Underground Railroad, which freed Black slaves, was called Mama Moses.
The anti-slavery anthem of Black slaves was composed with lyrics from Exodus, Chapter 8 Verse 1: “Go Down Moses, way down in Egypt land, tell old Pharaoh to let my people go.” The Jewish liberation from Egyptian bondage inspired Martin Luther King, Jr., the key leader of the Civil Rights Movement (1955-1968).
US identification with Jewish Statehood
The 2nd US President, John Adams, supported the idea of a Jewish State in the Land of Israel: “I really wish the Jews again in Judea an independent nation.”
On March 5, 1891, six years before the convening of the 1897 First Zionist Congress, over 400 US leaders, including the Chief Justice, House and Senate leaders and chairmen of Congressional committees, governors and mayors, signed the Blackstone Memorial, which called for the reestablishment of a Jewish State in the Land of Israel.
On June 30, 1922 Congress passed a Joint Resolution, which was signed by President Warren Harding: “…. Favoring the establishment, in Palestine, of a national home for the Jewish people….
The 400 year old roots and the US Supreme Court
Theodore White wrote in The Making of the President, 1964: “It was as if Kennedy, a younger Moses, had led an elder Joshua [Lyndon Johnson] to the height of Mount Nebo, and there shown him the Promised Land which he himself would never enter.”
On December 24, 1968, the three astronauts of Apollo 8, the first manned mission to the moon, conducted a direct broadcast to earth, reciting the first ten verses of the Creation from the Book of Genesis.
The depth and potency of the 400 year old roots were expressed on June 28, 2005, by Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who ruled that the Ten Commandment monument on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol was constitutional: “Since 1935, Moses has stood, holding two tablets… in the [Supreme Court’s] south frieze…. Moses was a lawgiver and a religious leader, and the Ten Commandments have undeniable historical meaning….”
These 400 year old roots have nourished an exceptional bottom-up international relations phenomenon, whereby elected US officials implement the worldview of most constituents, enhancing the ideological, cultural, commercial, technological and military bond between the United States and its most reliable, systematic, effective and ideological ally, Israel.
The US mindset on Israel – unlike the US attitude toward other countries – is a bottom-top phenomenon: a derivative of the US public worldview, which feeds legislators in the House and Senate and policy-makers in the White House.
The US mindset on Israel draws its strength from the religious, ethical, moral and cultural roots of the US society, which were planted in 1620 and thereafter upon the arrival of the Early Pilgrims, and bolstered by the Founding Fathers, who authored the US Constitution in 1787.
For example, the Early Pilgrims referred to their 6-8 week sail in the Atlantic Ocean as the “Modern Day Exodus” and “Parting of the Sea.” Their destination was “the Modern Day Promised Land.” Hence, the hundreds of US towns, cities, parks and deserts bearing Biblical names such as Zion, Jerusalem, Salem, Bethel, Shilo, Bethlehem, Dothan, Hebron, Gilead, Carmel, Rehoboth, Boaz, Moab, etc.
Furthermore, the Philadelphia Liberty Bell, which represents the Founding Fathers’ concept of liberty, features an inscription from Leviticus, 25:10, which presents the Biblical core of liberty – the Jubilee: “Proclaim liberty throughout all the land and all the inhabitants thereof.” Moreover, Yale University’s seal is inscribed in Hebrew letters: אורים ותומים, which was the power of the High Priest during the Exodus from Egypt. And, the seal of Columbia University features the four Hebrew letters of God: יהוה (Jehovah) and one of God’s Angels: אוריאל (Uriel – Divine Light in Hebrew). The battle against slavery was based on Biblical values and themes, such as “Let My People Go,” and a key leader in that battle, Harriet Tubman, earned the name “Mama Moses.”
In spite of the erosion of these roots and core values – as a result of demographic and ideological transformations in the US – their impact has been deeper than shifting national security interests, and more effective than the worldview of short-term serving policy-makers.
In fact, these long-term core values (and the larger geo-strategic, regional and global context) have moderated occasional short-term confrontations between the leaders of the US and Israel.
While the US Jewish community has provided tailwinds to the 400-year old unique US mindset on the concept of a Jewish State, it was not the Jewish community that laid the foundations of such a unique public mindset toward the Jewish State.
The potency of the core American values – which are defined as Judeo-Christian values in the US, which is the most religious Western democracy – is reflected by the 69% favorability of Israel, according to the February 2019 annual Gallup poll (compared with 21% Palestinian favorability) in defiance of significant odds, which do not challenge any other ally of the US: a systematic criticism by the “elite” US media and many in the US academia; the entrenched hostility of the State Department’s movers and shakers, who opposed Israel’s establishment in 1948, and have brutally criticized Israel ever since; and a pressure by all US presidents from Truman through Obama.
However, contrary to presidential pressure on Israel, the Jewish State has enjoyed systematic support by the co-equal and co-determining Legislature, which has been the most authentic representative of the (largely pro-Israel) American public and, therefore, is most attentive to public mindset and concerns. The Legislature is well aware of the awesome public muscle, which is displayed every two years during the election cycles for the (full) House and (one third) Senate, which have highlighted the electorate battle cry: “We shall remember in November.”
Ignoring the electorate’s core values amounts to political suicide by Members of the House and the Senate, and could transform presidents into “lame ducks.”
Among the core values of the US electorate are the bust of Moses facing the Speaker in the Chamber of the House of Representatives; the statue of Moses and the Ten Commandments on the ceiling of the US Supreme Court above the seats of the nine Supreme Court Justices; the Ten Commandments monuments on the ground of the State Capitols in Austin, TX, Oklahoma City, OK and Little Rock, AR, and in scores of additional towns in the US; the statues of Joshua, King David and Judah the Maccabee among the “Nine Worthies” at the West Point Military Academy Administration Building; the January, 2001 welcoming address by Senator Mitch McConnell of the newly-elected President George W. Bush: “We trust that you shall lead us in the best tradition of Joshua and Caleb”; etc.
Thus, the inception and perpetuation of the unique US public mindset on the Jewish State – since the 1620 docking of the “Mayflower” – has been a derivative of the assumption made by most Americans that the Jewish State is not a generic foreign entity, but rather an integral part of cardinal Judeo-Christian values, which have shaped the US history, morality and culture.
Official Palestinian demographic numbers are highly-inflated, as documented by a study, which has audited the Palestinian data since 2004:
*500,000 overseas residents, who have been away for over a year, are included in the Palestinian census, contrary to international regulations. 325,000 were included in the 1997 census, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, and 400,000 in 2005, according to the Palestinian Election Commission. The number grows steadily due to births.
*350,000 East Jerusalem Arabs are doubly-counted – by Israel and by the Palestinian Authority. The number grows daily due to births.
*Over 150,000 Arabs, who married Israeli Arabs are similarly doubly-counted. The number expands daily due to births.
*A 390,000 Arab net-emigration from Judea & Samaria is excluded from the Palestinian census, notwithstanding the annual net-emigration since 1950. For example, 15,466 in 2022, 26,357 – 2019, 15,173 – 2017 and 24,244 – 2014, as documented by Israel’s Population and Migration Authority (exits and entries) in all the land, air and sea international passages.
*A 32% artificial inflation of Palestinian births was documented by the World Bank (page 8, item 6) in a 2006 audit.
*The Judea & Samaria Arab fertility rate has been westernized: from 9 births per woman in the 1960s to 3.02 births in 2021, as documented by the CIA World Factbook. It reflects the sweeping urbanization, growing enrollment of women in higher education, rising marriage age and the use of contraceptives.
*The number of Arab deaths in Judea & Samaria has been under-reported (since the days of the British Mandate) for political and financial reasons.
*The aforementioned data documents 1.4 million Arabs in Judea and Samaria, when deducting the aforementioned documented-data from the official Palestinian number (3 million).
In 2023: a 69% Jewish majority in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-1967 Israel. In 1947 and 1897: a 39% and 9% Jewish minority. In 2023, a 69% Jewish majority benefiting from fertility tailwind and net-immigration. Arab fertility is Westernized, and Arab net-emigration from Judea and Samaria. No Arab demographic time bomb. A Jewish demographic momentum.
More data in this article and this short video.
Jewish Policy Center’s inFOCUS, Spring, 2023
Saudi-Iranian diplomatic relations
*Riyadh does not allow the resumption of the Saudi-Iranian diplomatic ties to befog the reality of the tenuous and shifty Middle East regimes, policies and agreements, and the inherently subversive, terroristic, anti-Sunni and imperialistic track record of Iran’s Ayatollahs.
*Saudi Arabia is cognizant of the 1,400-year-old fanatic, religious vision of the Ayatollahs, including their most critical strategic goal – since their February 1979 violent ascension to power – of exporting the Shiite Revolution and toppling all “apostate” Sunni Arab regimes, especially the House of Saud. They are aware that neither diplomatic, nor financial, short term benefits transcend the deeply-rooted, long term Ayatollahs’ anti-Sunni vision.
*Irrespective of its recent agreement with Iran – and the accompanying moderate diplomatic rhetoric – Saudi Arabia does not subscribe to the “New Middle East” and “end of interstate wars” Pollyannaish state of mind. The Saudis adhere to the 1,400-year-old reality of the unpredictably intolerant and violent inter-Arab/Muslim reality (as well as the Russia-Ukraine reality).
*This is not the first resumption of Saudi-Iranian diplomatic ties, which were previously severed in 1988 and 2016 and followed by the Ayatollahs-induced domestic and regional violence.
*The China-brokered March 2023 resumption of diplomatic ties is a derivative of Saudi Arabia’s national security interests, and its growing frustration with the US’ eroded posture as a reliable diplomatic and military protector against lethal threats.
*The resumption of Saudi-Iranian diplomatic relations constitute a major geo-strategic gain for China and a major setback for the US in a region which, until recently, was perceived as a US domain.
*The US posture of deterrence has been severely undermined by the 2015 nuclear accord (the JCPOA), the 2021 withdrawal/flight from Afghanistan, the systematic courting of three real, clear and lethal threats to the Saudi regime – Iran’s Ayatollahs, the “Muslim Brotherhood” and Yemen’s Houthi terrorists –- while exerting diplomatic and military pressure on the pro-US Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt.
*US policy has driven Saudi Arabia (as well as the UAE and Egypt) closer to China and Russia, commercially and militarily, including the potential Chinese construction of civilian nuclear power plants and a hard rock uranium mill in Saudi Arabia, which would advance Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s “Vision 2030.”
Saudi “Vision 2030”
*Effective Israel-Saudi Arabia cooperation is a derivative of Saudi Arabia’s national security and economic interests, most notably “Vision 2030.”
*The unprecedented Saudi-Israeli security, technological and commercial cooperation, and the central role played by Saudi Arabia in inducing the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco and the Sudan to conclude peace treaties with Israel, are driven by the Saudi assessment that Israel is an essential ally in the face of real, clear, lethal security threats, as well as a vital partner in the pursuit of economic, technological and diplomatic goals.
*The Saudi-Israel cooperation constitutes a win-win proposition.
*The Saudi-Israel cooperation is driven by Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman’ (MBS’) “Vision 2030.” He aspires to catapult the kingdom to a regional and global powerhouse of trade and investment, leveraging its geo-strategic position along crucial naval routes between the Far East and Europe (the Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean, Arab Sea and the Red Sea).
*”Vision 2030″ has introduced ground-breaking cultural, social, economic, diplomatic and national security reforms and upgrades, leveraging the unique added-value of Israel’s technological and military capabilities.
*Saudi Arabia, just like the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, are preoccupied with the challenge of economic diversification, realizing that they are overly-reliant on oil and natural gas, which are exposed to price-volatility, depletion and could be replaced by emerging cleaner and more cost-effective energy. They consider Israel’s ground-breaking technologies as a most effective vehicle to diversify their economy, create more jobs in non-energy sectors, and establish a base for alternative sources of national income, while bolstering homeland and national security.
*”Vision 2030″ defies traditional Saudi religious, cultural and social norms. Its future, as well as the future of Saudi-Israel cooperation, depend on Saudi domestic stability and the legitimacy of MBS. The latter is determined to overcome and de-sanctify the fundamentalist Wahhabis in central and southwestern Saudi Arabia, who were perceived until recently as the Islamic authority in Saudi Arabia, and an essential ally of the House of Saud since 1744.
“Vision 2030”, the Middle East and Israel’s added-value
*MBS’ ambitious strategy is preconditioned upon reducing regional instability and minimizing domestic and regional threats. These threats include the Ayatollahs regime of Iran, “Muslim Brotherhood” terrorists, Iran-supported domestic Shiite subversion (in the oil-rich Eastern Province), Iran-based Al Qaeda, Iran-supported Houthis in Yemen, Iran-supported Hezbollah, the proposed Palestinian state (which features a rogue intra-Arab track record), and Erdogan’ aspirations to resurrect the Ottoman Empire, which controlled large parts of the Arabian Peninsula. Currently, Erdogan maintains close security and political ties with the “Muslim Brotherhood” and the pro-Iran and pro-“Muslim Brotherhood” Qatar, while confronting Saudi Arabia in Libya, where they are both involved in a series of civil wars.
*Notwithstanding the March 2023 resumption of diplomatic ties with Iran, Saudi Arabia is aware that the Middle East resembles a volcano, which frequently releases explosive lava – domestically and regionally – in an unpredictable manner, as evidenced by the Arab Tsunami, which erupted in 2010 and is still raging on the Arab Street.
*The survival of the Saudi regime, and the implementation of “Vision 2030,” depend upon Riyadh’s ability to form an effective coalition against rogue regimes. However, Saudi Arabia is frustrated by the recent erosion of the US’ posture of deterrence, as demonstrated by the 43-year-old US addiction to the diplomatic option toward Iran’s Ayatollahs; the US’ limited reaction to Iranian aggression against US and Saudi targets; the US’ embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood; and the US’ appeasement of the Ayatollahs-backed Houthi terrorists. In addition, the Saudis are alarmed by the ineffectiveness of NATO (No Action Talk Only?), European vacillation in the face of Islamic terrorism, and the vulnerability of the Arab regimes. This geo-strategic reality has driven the Saudis (reluctantly) closer to China and Russia, militarily and commercially.
*Against this regional and global backdrop, Israel stands out as the most reliable “life insurance agent” and an essential strategic ally, irrespective of past conflicts and the Palestinian issue. The latter is considered by the Saudi Crown Prince as a secondary or tertiary issue.
*In addition, the Saudis face economic and diplomatic challenges – which could benefit from Israel’s cooperation and can-do mentality – such as economic diversification, innovative technology, agriculture, irrigation and enhanced access to advanced US military systems, which may be advanced via Israel’s stature on Capitol Hill.
*The Saudi interest in expanding military, training, intelligence, counter-terrorism and commercial cooperation with Israel has been a byproduct of its high regard for Israel’s posture of deterrence and muscle-flexing in the face of Iran’s Ayatollahs (in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Iran itself); and Israel’s systematic war on Palestinian and Islamic terrorism. Furthermore, the Saudis respect Israel’s occasional defiance of US pressure, including Israel’s high-profiled opposition to the 2015 JCPOA and Israel’s 1981 and 2007 bombing of Iraq’s and Syria’s nuclear reactors, which spared the Saudis (and the US) the devastating wrath of a nuclear Saddam Hussein and a nuclear Assad.
*A deterring and defiant Israel is a cardinal force-multiplier for Saudi Arabia (as it is for the US). On the other hand, an appeasing and retreating Israel would be irrelevant to Saudi Arabia’s national security (as it would be for the US).
*On a rainy day, MBS (just like the US) prefers a deterring and defiant Israel on his side.
Saudi interests and the Palestinian issue
*As documented by the aforementioned data, Saudi Arabia’s top national security priorities transcend – and are independent of – the Palestinian issue.
*The expanding Saudi-Israel cooperation, and the key role played by Riyadh in accomplishing the Abraham Accords, have contradicted the Western conventional wisdom. The latter assumes that the Palestinian issue is central to Arab policy makers, and that the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict is preconditioned upon substantial Israeli concessions to the Palestinians, including the establishment of a Palestinian state.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, MBS is aware that the Palestinian issue is not the crux of the Arab-Israeli conflict, neither a crown-jewel of Arab policy-making, nor a core cause of regional turbulence.
*Independent of the pro-Palestinian Saudi talk, Riyadh (just like the Arabs in general) has demonstrated an indifferent-to-negative walk toward the Palestinians. Arabs know that – in the Middle East – one does not pay custom on words. Therefore, the Arabs have never flexed a military (and barely financial and diplomatic) muscle on behalf of the Palestinians. They have acted in accordance with their own – not Palestinian – interests, and certainly not in accordance with Western misperceptions of the Middle East.
*Unlike the Western establishment, MBS accords critical weight to the Palestinian intra-Arab track record, which is top heavy on subversion, terrorism, treachery and ingratitude. For instance, the Saudis don’t forget and don’t forgive the Palestinian collaboration with Saddam Hussein’s 1990 invasion of Kuwait, which was the most generous Arab host for Palestinians. The Saudis are also cognizant of the deeply-rooted Palestinian collaboration with Islamic, Asian, African, European and Latin American terror organizations, including “Muslim Brotherhood” terrorists and Iran’s Ayatollahs (whose machetes are at the throat of the House of Saud), North Korea, Cuba and Venezuela. The Saudis are convinced that the proposed Palestinian state cannot be different than the Palestinian rogue track record, which would add fuel to the Middle East fire, threatening the relatively-moderate Arab regimes.
Saudi Arabia and the Abraham Accords
*Saudi Arabia has served as the primary engine behind Israel’s peace treaties with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and the Sudan, and has forged unprecedented defense and commercial cooperation with Israel, consistent with the Saudi order of national priorities.
*Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, the Saudis do not sacrifice Middle East reality and their national security interests on the altar of the Palestinian issue.
*The success of the Saudi-supported Abraham Accords was a result of avoiding the systematic mistakes committed by Western policy makers, which produced a litany of failed Israeli-Arab peace proposals, centered on the Palestinian issue. Learning from prior mistakes, the Abraham accords focused on Arab interests, bypassing the Palestinian issue, avoiding a Palestinian veto.
*Therefore, the durability of the Abraham Accords depends on the interests of the respective Arab countries, and not on the Palestinian issue, which is not a top priority for any Arab country.
*The durability of the Abraham Accords depends on the stability of Saudi Arabia and the Arab countries which signed the Abraham Accords. Their stability is threatened by the volcanic nature of the unstable, highly-fragmented, unpredictable, violently intolerant, non-democratic and tenuous Middle East.
*The tenuous nature of most Arab/Muslim regimes in the Middle East yields tenuous policies and tenuous accords. For example, in addition to the Arab Tsunami of 2010 (which is still raging on the Arab Street), non-ballot regime-change occurred (with a dramatic change of policy) in Egypt (2013, 2012, 1952), Iran (1979, 1953), Iraq (2003, 1968, 1963-twice, 1958), Libya (2011, 1969) and Yemen (a civil war since the ’90s, 1990, 1962), etc.
*Bearing in mind the intra-Arab Palestinian track record, regional instability, the national security of Saudi Arabia, the Abraham Accords and US interests would be severely undermined by the proposed Palestinian state west of the Jordan River. It would topple the pro-US Hashemite regime east of the River; transform Jordan into a chaotic state in the vein of the uncontrollable Libya, Syria, Iraq and Yemen; and produce another platform of regional and global Islamic terrorism, which would be leveraged by Iran’s Ayatollahs, in order to tighten their encirclement of Saudi Arabia. This would trigger a domino scenario, which would threaten every pro-US Arab oil-producing country in the Arabian Peninsula, jeopardizing the supply of Persian Gulf oil; threaten global trade; and yield a robust tailwind to Iran’s Ayatollahs, Russia and China and a major headwind to the US and its Arab Sunni allies, headed by Saudi Arabia.
*Why would Saudi Arabia and the Arab regimes of the Abraham Accords precondition their critical ties with Israel upon Israeli concessions to the Palestinians, which they view as a rogue element? Why would they sacrifice their national security and economic interests on the altar of the Palestinian issue? Why would they cut off their noses to spite their faces?
The well-documented fact that Arabs have never flexed a military muscle (and hardly a significant financial and diplomatic muscles) on behalf of the Palestinians, provides a resounding answer!
Israel-Saudi cooperation and Israel’s national security interests
*Notwithstanding the importance of Israel’s cooperation with Saudi Arabia, it takes a back seat to Israel’s critical need to safeguard/control the geographic cradle of its history, religion and culture, which coincides with its minimal security requirements in the volcanic Middle East: the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria (West Bank), which dominate the 8-15-mile-sliver of pre-1967 Israel.
*The tenuously unpredictable Middle East reality defines peace accords as variable components of national security, unlike topography and geography (e.g., the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights) which are fixed components of Israel’s minimal security requirements in the non-Western-like Middle East. Israel’s fixed components of national security have dramatically enhanced its posture of deterrence. They transformed the Jewish State into a unique force and dollar multiplier for the US.
*An Israel-Saudi Arabia peace treaty would be rendered impractical if it required Israel to concede the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria, which would relegate Israel from a terror and war-deterring force multiplier for the US to a terror and war-inducing burden upon the US.
*Contrary to the Western (mis)perception of Israel-Arab peace treaties as pillars of national security, the unpredictably-violent Middle East features a 1,400-year-old reality of transient (non-democratic, one-bullet, not one-ballot) Arab regimes, policies and accords. Thus, as desirable as Israel-Arab peace treaties are, they must not entail the sacrifice of Israel’s most critical national security feature: the permanent topography of the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria, which dominate 80% of Israel’s population and infrastructure.
*In June and December of 1981, Israel bombed Iraq’s nuclear reactor and applied its law to the Golan Heights, in defiance of the Western foreign policy establishment. The latter warned that such actions would force Egypt to abandon its 1979 peace treaty with Israel. However, Egypt adhered to its national security priorities, sustaining the peace treaty. Routinely, Western policy makers warn that construction in Jerusalem (beyond the “Green Line”) and in Judea and Samaria would trigger a terroristic volcano and push the Arabs away from their peace treaties with Israel.
*None of the warnings materialized, since Arabs act in accordance with their own interests; not in accordance with Western misperceptions and the rogue Palestinian agenda.
US departure from the recognition of a United Jerusalem as the exclusive capital of the Jewish State, and the site of the US Embassy to Israel, would be consistent with the track record of the State Department, which has been systematically wrong on Middle East issues, such as its opposition to the establishment of the Jewish State; stabbing the back of the pro-US Shah of Iran and Mubarak of Egypt, and pressuring the pro-US Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, while courting the anti-US Ayatollahs of Iran, Saddam Hussein, Arafat, the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, the Palestinian Authority and the Houthis of Yemen; transforming Libya into a platform of global Islamic terrorism and civil wars; etc..
However, such departure would violate US law, defy a 3,000 year old reality – documented by a litany of archeological sites and a multitude of documents from Biblical time until today – spurn US history and geography, and undermine US national and homeland security.
United Jerusalem and the US law
Establishing a US Consulate General in Jerusalem – which would be a de facto US Embassy to the Palestinian Authority – would violate the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which became US law on November 8, 1995 with substantially more than a veto-override majority on Capitol Hill.
According to the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which enjoys massive support among the US population and, therefore, in both chambers of Congress:
“Jerusalem should remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected….
“Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the state of Israel; and the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem….
“In 1990, Congress unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 106, which declares that Congress ‘strongly believes that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected….’
“In 1992, the United States Senate and House of Representatives unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 113… to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem, and reaffirming Congressional sentiment that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city….
“In 1996, the state of Israel will celebrate the 3,000th anniversary of the Jewish presence in Jerusalem since King David’s entry….
“The term ‘United States Embassy’ means the offices of the United States diplomatic mission and the residence of the United States chief of mission.”
United Jerusalem and the legacy of the Founding Fathers
The US Early Pilgrims and Founding Fathers were inspired – in their unification of the 13 colonies – by King David’s unification of the 12 Jewish tribes into a united political entity, and establishing Jerusalem as the capital city, which did not belong to any of the tribes (hence, Washington, DC does not belong to any state). King David entered Jerusalem 3,000 years before modern day US presidents entered the White House and 2,755 years before the US gained its independence.
The impact of Jerusalem on the US founders of the Federalist Papers, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Federalist system and overall civic life is reflected by the existence, in the US, of 18 Jerusalems (4 in Maryland; 2 in Vermont, Georgia and New York; and 1 in Ohio, Michigan, Arkansas, North Carolina, Alabama, Utah, Rhode Island and Tennessee), 32 Salems (the original Biblical name of Jerusalem) and many Zions (a Biblical synonym for Jerusalem and the Land of Israel). Moreover, in the US there are thousands of cities, towns, mountains, cliffs, deserts, national parks and streets bearing Biblical names.
The Jerusalem reality and US interests
Recognizing the Jerusalem reality and adherence to the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act – and the subsequent recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the site of the US Embassy to Israel – bolstered the US posture of deterrence in defiance of Arab/Islamic pressure and threats.
Contrary to the doomsday assessments by the State Department and the “elite” US media – which have been wrong on most Middle East issues – the May 2018 implementation of the 1995 law did not intensify Palestinian, Arab and Islamic terrorism. State Department “wise men” were equally wrong when they warned that Israel’s 1967 reunification of Jerusalem would ignite a worldwide anti-Israel and anti-US Islamic volcanic eruption.
Adherence to the 1995 law distinguishes the US President, Congress and most Americans from the state of mind of rogue regimes and terror organizations, the anti-US UN, the vacillating Europe, and the cosmopolitan worldview of the State Department, which has systematically played-down the US’ unilateral, independent and (sometimes) defiant national security action.
On the other hand, US procrastination on the implementation of the 1995 law – by Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama – eroded the US posture of deterrence, since it was rightly perceived by the world as appeasement in the face of pressure and threats from Arab/Muslim regimes and terrorists. As expected, it radicalized Arab expectations and demands, failed to advance the cause of Israel-Arab peace, fueled Islamic terrorism, and severely undermined US national and homeland security. For example, blowing up the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and murdering 224 persons in August 1998; blowing up the USS Cole destroyer in the port of Aden and murdering 17 US sailors in October 2000; the 9/11 Twin Towers massacre, etc.
Jerusalem and Israel’s defiance of US pressure
In 1949, President Truman followed Secretary of State Marshall’s policy, pressuring Israel to refrain from annexing West Jerusalem and to accept the internationalization of the ancient capital of the Jewish people.
in 1950, in defiance of brutal US and global pressure to internationalize Jerusalem, Prime Minister David Ben Gurion reacted constructively by proclaiming Jerusalem the capital of the Jewish State, relocating government agencies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and settling tens of thousands of Olim (Jewish immigrants to Israel) in Jerusalem. He upgraded the transportation infrastructure to Jerusalem, erected new Jewish neighborhoods along the 1949 cease fire lines in Jerusalem, and provided the city land reserves for long-term growth.
In 1953, Ben Gurion rebuffed President Eisenhower’s pressure – inspired by Secretary of State Dulles – to refrain from relocating Israel’s Foreign Ministry from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
In 1967, President Johnson followed the advice of Secretary of State Rusk – who opposed Israel’s 1948 Declaration of Independence – highlighting the international status of Jerusalem, and warned Israel against the reunification of Jerusalem and construction in its eastern section. Prime Minister Levi Eshkol adopted Ben Gurion’s statesmanship, fended off the US pressure, reunited Jerusalem, built the first Jerusalem neighborhood beyond the 1949 ceasefire lines, Ramat Eshkol, in addition to the first wave of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria (West Bank), the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights.
In 1970, President Nixon collaborated with Secretary of State Rogers, attempting to repartition Jerusalem, pressuring Israel to relinquish control of Jerusalem’s Holy Basin, and to stop Israel’s plans to construct additional neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem. However, Prime Minister Golda Meir refused to rescind the reunification of Jerusalem, and proceeded to lay the foundation for additional Jerusalem neighborhoods beyond the 1949 ceasefire lines: Gilo, Ramot Alon, French Hill and Neve’ Yaakov, currently home to 150,000 people.
In 1977-1992, Prime Ministers Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir defied US and global pressure, expanding construction in Jerusalem, sending a clear message: “Jerusalem is the exclusive and non-negotiable capital of Israel!”
“[In 1978], at the very end of [Prime Minister Begin’s] successful Camp David talks with President Jimmy Carter and President Anwar Sadat, literally minutes before the signing ceremony, the American president had approached [Begin] with ‘Just one final formal item.’ Sadat, said the president, was asking that Begin put his signature to a simple letter committing him to place Jerusalem on the negotiating table of the final peace accord. ‘I refused to accept the letter, let alone sign it,’ rumbled Begin. ‘If I forgot thee O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its cunning,’ said [Begin] to the president of the United States of America, ‘and may my tongue cleave to my mouth’ (The Prime Ministers – An Intimate Portrait of Leaders of Israel, 2010)”
In 2021, Prime Minister Bennett should follow in the footsteps of Israel’s Founding Father, Ben Gurion, who stated: “Jerusalem is equal to the whole of the Land of Israel. Jerusalem is not just a central Jewish settlement. Jerusalem is an invaluable global historical symbol. The Jewish People and the entire world shall judge us in accordance with our steadfastness on Jerusalem (“We and Our Neighbors,” p. 175. 1929).”
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The goal of Passover’s liberty was not the subjugation of the Egyptian people, but the defeat of the tyrannical Pharaoh and the veneration of liberty throughout the globe, including in Egypt.
Moses received the Torah – which includes 50 gates of wisdom – 50 days following the Exodus, as celebrated by the Shavou’ot/Pentecost Holiday, 50 days following Passover. Moreover, there are 50 States in the United States, whose Hebrew name is “The States of the Covenant” (Artzot Habreet -ארצות הברית).
Passover aims at coalescing the fabrics of the Jewish family and the Jewish people, commemorating and strengthening Jewish roots, and refreshing and enhancing core values such as faith, humility, education, optimism, defiance of odds and can-do mentality, which are prerequisites to a free and vibrant society.
Passover is an annual reminder that liberty must not be taken for granted.
Jerusalem has been the exclusive capital of the Jewish people since King David established it as his capital, 3,000 years ago.
More: Jewish Holidays Guide for the Perplexed – Amazon, Smashwords
A new 8-minute-video: YouTube, Facebook
*Israel’s control of the topographically-dominant mountain ridges of the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria has enhanced Israel’s posture of deterrence, constraining regional violence, transforming Israel into a unique force-multiplier for the US.
*Top Jordanian military officers warned that a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River would doom the pro-US Hashemite regime east of the River, transforming Jordan into a non-controllable terrorist heaven, generating an anti-US domino scenario in the Arabian Peninsula.
*Israel’s control of Judea and Samaria has eliminated much of the threat (to Jordan) of Judea and Samaria-based Palestinian terrorism.
*Israel’s posture of deterrence emboldens Jordan in the face of domestic and regional threats, sparing the US the need to deploy its own troops, in order to avoid an economic and national security setback.
*The proposed Palestinian state would become the Palestinian straw that would break the pro-US Hashemite back.
*The Palestinian track record of the last 100 years suggests that the proposed Palestinian state would be a rogue entity, adding fuel to the Middle East fire, undermining US interests.
Israel’s and the US’ counter-terrorism
*Islamic and Palestinian terrorism consider Israel as a critical beachhead – and a proxy – of the US in the Middle East and a significant collaborator with the pro-US Arab regimes. They perceive the war on “the infidel Jewish State” as a preview of their more significant war on “the infidel West” and their attempts to topple all pro-US Sunni Arab regimes. Therefore, Islamic and Palestinian terrorism has been engaged in intra-Arab subversion, while systematically collaborating with enemies and rivals of the US and the West (e.g., Nazi Germany, the Soviet Bloc, Ayatollah Khomeini, Latin American, European, African and Asian terror organizations, North Korea, Venezuela and Cuba). The more robust is Israel’s war on terrorism, the more deterred are the terrorists in their attempts to bring the “infidel” West to submission.
*Islamic and Palestinian terrorism has terrorized Jewish communities in the Land of Israel since the late 19th century, adhering to an annihilationist vision as detailed by the Fatah and PLO charters of 1959 and 1964 (eight and three years before 1967), as well as by the hate-education system, which was installed by Mahmoud Abbas in 1993 following the signing of the Oslo Accord.
*Israel battles Palestinian terrorism (Hamas and the Palestinian Authority) and Islamic terrorism (Iran and Hezbollah), which are not preoccupied with the size – but with the eradication – of the “infidel” Jewish State from “the abode of Islam.”
*Israel and the West fight against deeply-rooted and institutional Islamic and Palestinian terrorism, that is inspired by 1,400-year-old rogue values, which are perpetrated by K-12 hate-education, mosque incitement and official and public idolization of terrorists.
*Israel and the West combat terrorism, that has astutely employed 1,400-year-old Islamic values such the “Taqiya’ ” – which promotes double-speak and dissimulation, as a means to mislead and defeat enemies – and the “Hudna’,” which misrepresents a temporary non-binding ceasefire with “infidels” as if it were a peace treaty.
*Israel and the West confront Islamic and Palestinian terrorism, which is politically, religiously and ideologically led by despotic and rogue regimes, rejecting Western values, such as peaceful-coexistence, democracy, human rights and good-faith negotiation.
*Israel and the West face off against Palestinian and Islamic terrorism, which does not allow lavish financial and diplomatic temptations to transcend intrinsic, fanatic, rogue and annihilationist vision. Moreover, terrorists bite the hands that feed them.
*Israel and the West are not assaulted by despair-driven terrorism, but by hope-driven terrorism – the hope to bring the “infidel” to submission. The aspiration of these terrorists contradicts peaceful-coexistence.
*Israel and the West clash with terrorists, who view gestures, concessions and hesitancy as weakness, which inflames terrorism.
*Israel and the West struggle against terrorism, which is not driven by a particular Israeli or US policy, but by a fanatic vision. Thus, Islamic terrorism afflicted the US during the Clinton and Obama Democratic Administrations, as well as during the Bush and Trump Republican Administrations.
*The US State Department has embraced a “moral equivalence” between Palestinian terrorists – who systematically and deliberately hit civilians, while sometimes hitting soldiers – and Israeli soldiers, who systematically and deliberately hit terrorists, while sometimes, unintentionally, hitting civilians. It emboldens terrorism, which threatens all pro-US Arab regimes, undermining regional stability, benefiting US’ rivals and enemies, while damaging the US.
War on terrorism
*The bolstering of posture of deterrence – rather than hesitancy, restraint, containment and gestures, which inflame terrorism – is a prerequisite for defeating terrorism and advancing the peace process.
*The most effective long-term war on terrorism – operationally, diplomatically, economically and morally – is not a surgical or comprehensive reaction, but a comprehensive and disproportional preemption, targeting the gamut of terroristic infrastructures and capabilities, draining the swamp of terrorism, rather than chasing the mosquitos.
*Containment produces a short-term, false sense of security, followed by a long-term security setback. It is the terrorists’ wet dream, which does not moderate terrorism, but adrenalizes its veins, providing time to bolster its capabilities – a tailwind to terror and a headwind to counter-terrorism. It shakes the confidence in the capability to crush terrorism. Defeating terrorism mandates obliteration of capabilities, not co-existence or containment.
*Containment aims to avoid a multi-front war (Hamas, the Palestinian Authority, Hezbollah and Iran), but it erodes Israel’s posture of deterrence, which brings Israel closer to a multi-front war under much worse conditions.
*Containment erodes Israel’s posture of deterrence in the eyes of the relatively-moderate Arab countries (Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Morocco, the Sudan, Jordan and Egypt), which have dramatically enhanced cooperation with Israel due to Israel’s posture of deterrence against mutual threats, such as Iran’s Ayatollahs, the “Muslim Brotherhood” and ISIS terrorists).
*Containment is also a derivative of White House’s and the State Department’s pressure, subordinating national security to diplomatic priorities. It undermines Israel’s posture of deterrence, which plays into the hand of anti-Israel and anti-US rogue regimes. Precedents prove that Israeli defiance of US pressure yields short-term tension, but long-term strategic respect, resulting in expanded strategic cooperation. On a rainy day, the US prefers a defiant, rather than appeasing, strategic ally.
*The 2002 comprehensive counter-terrorism Israeli offensive, and the return of Israel’s Defense Forces to the headquarters of Palestinian terrorism in the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria (West Bank) – and not defensive containment and surgical operations – resurrected Israel’s effective war on Palestinian terrorism, which substantially curtailed terrorists’ capabilities to proliferate terrorism in Israel, Jordan and the Sinai Peninsula.
*The containment option intensifies terrorists’ daring, feeds vacillation and the self-destructive “don’t rock the boat” mentality. It erodes steadfastness and confidence in the capabilities to withstand the cost of terrorism, and feeds the suicidal perpetual retreat mentality.
*The addiction to containment is one of the lethal by-products of the 1993 Oslo Accord, which has produced a uniquely effective hot house of terrorism, highlighted by the importation, arming and funding of some 100,000 Palestinian terrorists from Tunisia, the Sudan, Yemen, Lebanon and Syria to Gaza, Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem, who have unprecedentedly radicalized the Arab population of pre-1967 Israel, established a K-12 hate education system, launched an unparalleled wave of terrorism, and systematically violated agreements.
The bottom line
*The 30 years since the Oslo Accord have featured unprecedented Palestinian hate-education and wave of terrorism. It has demonstrated that a retreat from the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria has boosted terrorism; that the Palestinian Authority is not committed to a peace process, but to the destruction of the Jewish State; and that terrorism requires a military, not political, solution. A successful war on terrorism behooves a preemptive offense, not defense, containment and reaction; and that fighting in the terrorists’ own trenches is preferable to fighting in one’s own trenches. No Israeli concessions could satisfy international pressure; and diplomatic popularity is inferior to strategic respect. Avoiding a repeat of the critical post-Oslo errors requires a comprehensive, disproportional, decisive military campaign to uproot – not to coexist with – terroristic infrastructures.
*The historic and national security indispensability of the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria – which dominate the 8-15-mile sliver of pre-1967 Israel – and the necessity to frustrate Palestinian terrorism, behooves Israel to eliminate any sign of hesitancy and vacillation by expanding the Jewish presence in this most critical area. It will intensify US and global pressure, but as documented by all Prime Ministers from Ben Gurion, through Eshkol, Golda Meir, Begin and Shamir, defiance of pressure results in the enhancement of strategic respect and cooperation.
*The Palestinian track record during the 30 years since the 1993 Oslo Accord has highlighted the violent, unpredictable and anti-US rogue nature of the proposed Palestinian state west of the Jordan River, which would force the toppling of the pro-US Hashemite regime east of the River. It would transform Jordan into an uncontrollable, chaotic state in the vein of Libya, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen, triggering a domino scenario into the Arabian Peninsula (south of Jordan), which could topple the pro-US, oil-producing Arab regimes. This would reward Iran’s Ayatollahs, China and Russia, while severely undermining regional and global stability and US economic and national security interests.