Is something is wrong in our genes or what? How come we are that keen in smashing any “Holy Cow” in our pantheon?
A common sense is asserting that a nation that has no history is having no future either. Hertzel is part of our history. We need Icons, though it may seems as insult to the “holly” intelligence of some here, actually the human being’s nature is requires some sort of icons for its peace of mind, God we said already? Just to name a “Few”!
Hertzel’s commemoration is to remind us the reason for our, the modern Jews, being here. Yes, Hertzel is reminding us that modern Jews came to Israel on the wings of the Zionism promise.
The drive for Hertzel’s commemoration now is not for nothing. Our nation is severely divided these days. It is so divided that we are actually standing on the brink of a civil war here and that is in the face of a terrible threat to our existence namely: the Palestinian and the Arab war against us while the world is muted (Remember the division in our nation just before the Holly Temple destroyed? Remember? Yes, Yes, only short 2000 years ago).
Sure enough, the religious parts in us like to believe that a divine promise is the one that caused the waves of modern Jewish immigration and in part it is correct.
Nevertheless, in much larger parts, what brought us here are the new World Emancipation of the 19th century and the rise of the nation’s nationality desires and drives causing a great deal of misery to our ancestors in the process.
Hertzel showed many of our ancestors the way (not always a perfect one… Uganda?) Nevertheless, a clear way was charted out: Jews have to take their destiny in their own hands and initiate a living place for themselves. The end of this process was aiming at Israel, Zion, and the movement towards was called if then Zionism.
The immortal place of Hertzel in our modern history is coming from his ability in marking the directions and to the lesser extent in the creation of the Zionist movement.
Hertzel’s achievement seems for some nontrivial these days while open communication and minds are common facts, but remember that we are talking about entirely different times, the end of the 19th century, where such acts needed a real fresh and innovative vision and Hertzel was the one possessed, initiated and pushed it.
It seems that these days while parts in our nation are acting and working against the very core of our existence and survival namely a Jewish, democratic nation and country in Israel, the commemoration of Hertzel’s memory is important then ever.
Some mistakenly are celebrating the end of the Zionism, this is a sheer nonsense. Our answer to the “right of Return” claims by the Palestinians is the Zionism. Our answer to the Palestinian desires to take over the land of Israel from the river to the sea is our Zionism.
To those that falsely believe that no challenges remain for the Zionist movement I would like to remind you that the state of Israel is not starting and ending in Shainkin or Arlozorov streets in Tel Aviv.
Look around you, is the Negev already settled? What about the ‘Gallil’? Has it settled already too? Have we experienced the expected decline in Anti-Semitism against the Jewish people across the world? Have we provided a safe heaven to the world Jewry so we can rest by now?
Truth is that the Zionist movement and ideas have not been completed, not even by half of it. We have a long way in front of us before being able to declare “The Job is done”, if any.
To those claiming that the Jews emancipation materialized on the back of the others, the Palestinians I will remind everybody that most of world nations’ emancipation has materialized that way not to talk about our historic rights here that preceding the Palestinians’ and not to mention that the vast majority of today’s Palestinians residents are immigrant in this land just like we are (The end of the 19th century, beginning of the 20th century witnessed only small part of actual “Natives” here).
Sure enough the means were changing; the same ideological platforms that were carrying the World Jewry 100 years ago to Israel are not entirely valid any more so when we are talking about “Post Zionism” we have to aim ourselves towards updated, enhanced, modern ways of pursuing our Zionism and national goals. Nevertheless, we have to emphasize on the fact that we are only in our mid-way to Jewish deliberation and frankly I do not know if we will witness the end of the road ever (Anti-Semitism wise).
In short, if Hertzel did not exist, we had to invent him these days. Why now? Well, it is long time over due.