By Thomas Kolsky
This can be the 1st full-scale background of the single equipped American Jewish competition to Zionism in the course of the Forties. regardless of broad literature at the Zionist circulation, the Jewish competition to Zionism has acquired in basic terms marginal and customarily damaging realization. during this neutral research, Thomas A. Kolsky examines the missed phenomenon of Jewish anti-Zionism, its roots, and its results.In 1942, a few dissident Reform rabbis based the yank Council for Judaism, the 1st and basically Jewish association created to struggle opposed to Zionism and the institution of a Jewish kingdom. Emphasizing the merely spiritual nature of Judaism and unequivocally rejecting Jewish nationalism, the Council supported unfastened Jewish immigration and equivalent rights for Jews during the international. For Palestine, in particular, it encouraged institution of a democratic kingdom in which all electorate, despite their faith, might take pleasure in equivalent political rights.Summarizing either the historical past of Zionism and the heritage of yankee Jews, Kolsky lines the consequences of the Holocaust at the Zionist stream and the personalities that formed the management of the Council. Its place towards Zionism has specific modern relevance in realizing the historic dating among Israel and the Palestinians.
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Additional info for Jews Against Zionism: The American Council for Judaism, 1942-1948
Indeed, in Copyrighted Material 24 Zionism and Its Reform Critics in America view of the vehement opposition to Zionism in their social group, it is surprising that the leadership of American Zionism from 1898 until 1914 consisted mostly of German Jews. They were, however, a distinct minority. Many of these leaders were attracted to Zionism as a result of their encounters with East European Jews. They were impressed by the new immigrants' personal pride, attachment to Jewish traditions, and extensive knowledge ofJudaism.
They Copyrighted Material 15 Zionism and Its Reform Critics in America realized that Zionism might improve its position immeasurably by mobilizing two untapped sources of independent Jewish power: a Jewish fighting force and a sympathetic American Jewry. Ben-Gurion, particularly, believed that, once mobilized and controlled, these sources ofJewish power could be transformed into potent weapons in the postwar Zionist struggle for a Jewish state. Therefore, soon after the beginning of the hostilities in Europe, the Jewish Agency attempted to persuade the British to allow the Yishuv to form a Jewish army, under a Jewish flag, that would fight in the war on the side of Great Britain.
In America, they maintained close ties with German non-Jews. In the Middle West, particularly, Jews were highly active in German communal affairs. Indeed, many German cultural institutions, such as theaters, glee clubs, and gymnastic and literary societies, often depended on them for support. Jews used the German language in their own religious, social, and communal institutions until the late nineteenth century. Significantly, their prior exposure to non-Jewish culture and their ability to mingle easily with non-Jews enabled them to integrate without much difficulty into American life.