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Thursday, December 02, 2004

destroying jewish historical sites

zionist propagandists will assert israel's superiority over arabs based on treatment of holy sites: when jordan occupied the old city of jerusalem, they'll say, it kept it off limits to jews, while israel respects muslim and christian holy sites.

a thoughtful person would respond: "duh! the jews under consideration lived in israel, a country hostile to jordan, which attacked the jordanian forces in 1948, and which conducted terror raids in the occupied jordanian territories in the fifties and sixties. of course jordan would not unilaterally allow foreign citizens to enter the old city, holy sites or no holy sites."

an informed person would add: "israel's treatment of religious holy sites is possibly the worst in the world. it did to mosques and churches what it did to the villages containing them - razed them to the ground."

but today's topic is jewish historical sites, not muslim and christian holy sites.

crazy ol' rabbi arthur waskow of the shalom center points out that the palestinian town of anata is the biblical anatot, birthplace of the prophet jeremiah. you'll remember that jeremiah was the bible's fiercest critic of the wrongdoing and godlessness practiced by the ancient jews. the modern state of israel has being demolishing homes in jeremiah's birthplace.

and second, the city of falluja, which US forces have been committing war crimes in, turns out to be none other than the old jewish center of pumbedita. the place is mentioned often in the talmud, and was one of the great centers of jewish learning back in the day. talmudists from sura and naharda used to joke that the scholars from pumbedita would try, rhetoric-wise, to pass camels through the eyes of needles. of course, that's the pot calling the kettle black, the bush calling the bin laden a terrorist. let's remember the words of that old rabbinic scholar, jesus of nazareth, who said that it's easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to pass through the gates of heaven, and assume that in its modern interpretation, it applies to warmongering heads of state.

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