Reclaiming the Jewish Naqba by Rabbi Lopatin

I do not know who Mayor Dieter Salomon of Freiburg Germany is, but he recently made some excellent points – transformative – to help Jews and Israelis define their relationship with history and with the Palestinians.  It involves an exhibit that a pro-Palestinian group wanted Freiburg to sponsor, which the mayor rejected because of its one-sidedness.  But note two powerful points by the mayor: First for the Palestinians – and all Arabs – to take responsibility for their own predicament – that will be the only thing that will pull them out of where they are.  Second, we Jews and Zionists have to start using the term The Other Naqba: the expulsion of 800,000 Jews from Arab lands and their welcome absorption into the new Jewish State of Israel.  Let’s start remembering that many Jews were Palestinians and that we have a Naqba story to tell as loudly as anyone else.

From the Jerusalem Post:

The mayor of Freiburg, Dieter Salomon, pulled the plug on a Palestinian “Nakba” exhibit, which was slated to open on Friday in the local library, because “from the perspective of the city of Freiburg, the presentation is one-sided,” Edith Lamersdorf, the mayor’s spokeswoman, told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday.

“One-sided accusations and friend-foe paradigms do not promote insight into the complicated relationships in the Middle East or contribute to understanding and peaceful development in the region,” the Green Party’s Dieter Salomon said in a statement last week.

“Palestinian Arabs do not appear in the presentation as responsible and active actors in this conflict. There is, for example, no discussion of the anti-Semitically motivated Arab pogroms that took place since the mid-19th century, and especially after 1945, in the Jewish settlement areas in the Arab regions. The other ‘Nakba’ [catastrophe] meant flight and expulsion for hundreds of thousands of Arab Jews, who had to leave their homes and were taken in by Israel,” the mayor said.

6 Responses to Reclaiming the Jewish Naqba by Rabbi Lopatin

  1. Lisa says:

    This is just a roundabout way to concede to the Palestinian narrative. It isn’t a “naqba” if you do it to yourself. They did it themselves. And what they did to themselves wasn’t a fraction of what they claim happened.

    When Obama went to Cairo, he repeated the libel that Israel was the result of the Holocaust. But he can’t really be blamed. The “Jewish history began in Auschwitz” crowd has been so influential among Jews that who can really blame Obama for parroting it.

    Our rights to our land are not based on tragedies that we suffered. Nor are they reduced by the tragedies others claim to have suffered. Eretz Yisrael is our home because it’s our home. Because God promised it to us. Gave it to us. The Owner of the universe gave us title, and that’s the end of the story. Playing on heartstrings (“Oh, yes, I know, we were just awful to you, but then, your people were awful to us as well, so let’s sing kumbaya and have a pity party”) is kind of pathetic. Whatever happened to confidence and pride? When you say “Eileh b’rechev v’eileh b’susim, va-anachnu b’Shem Hashem Elokeinu nazkir” every morning, do you mean it?

  2. minda says:

    and i used to joke about all my Palestinian cousins (children of the yishuv)

  3. Dan Mendelson says:

    Emails of appreciation should be sent to Mayor Dieter Salomon of Freiburg Germany to express our support for his action. Only by this method will he know that he does not stand alone.

  4. Dan Mendelson says:

    Who knows his email address?

  5. Lisa says:

    I think I kind of had a feeling you wouldn’t okay that.

  6. Lisa says:

    This is just a roundabout way to concede to the Palestinian narrative. It isn’t a “naqba” if you do it to yourself. They did it themselves. And what they did to themselves wasn’t a fraction of what they claim happened.

    When Obama went to Cairo, he repeated the libel that Israel was the result of the Holocaust. But he can’t really be blamed. The “Jewish history began in Auschwitz” crowd has been so influential among Jews that who can really blame Obama for parroting it.

    Our rights to our land are not based on tragedies that we suffered. Nor are they reduced by the tragedies others claim to have suffered. Eretz Yisrael is our home because it’s our home. Because God promised it to us. Gave it to us. The Owner of the universe gave us title, and that’s the end of the story. Playing on heartstrings (“Oh, yes, I know, we were just awful to you, but then, your people were awful to us as well, so let’s sing kumbaya and have a pity party”) is kind of pathetic. Whatever happened to confidence and pride? When you say “Eileh b’rechev v’eileh b’susim, va-anachnu b’Shem Hashem Elokeinu nazkir” every morning, do you mean it?

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