Isaaci Asimov himself was discriminated against because he was a
Jew. In spite of his immense talent, he was refused admittance to
medical school because there was a quota on Jews. I myself would take
serious issue with this systematic anti-semitism in America, but he saw
it a bit differently than I had ever thought of-till I was researching
the program we did on him the other day. Asimov said:
I really dislike Judaism....It's a form of particularly
pernicious nationalism. I don't want humanity divided into
these litle groups that are firmly convinced, each one, that it
is better than the others. Judaism is the prototype of the "I'm
better than you" group-we are the ones who invented this
business of the only God. It's not just that we have our God
and you have your God. I feel a deep and abiding historic guilt
about that. And every once in a while, when I'm careful, I
think that the reasons Jews have been persecuted as much as they
have has been to punish them having invented this pernicious
Zionism cannot be separated from this problem that he points out,
and neither can Islam or Christianity. Both are outgrowths of Judaism,
and neither dropped this notion that they have the only valid religion
and that all others are lesser creeds.
Perhaps the reason why some of us who criticize Israel first are
people who expect more out of Israel than out of the Palestinians.
Certainly the tactic of Palestinians killing other Palestinians for the
least little bit of compromise is abhorrent, as is the killing and
capture of hostages. I just don't think that people become this way
for no reason, just as Zionism wasn't pursued so seriously after the
holocaust for no reason.
The problem is that these reasons were so consuming. They left
little room for the realization of what other people's problems were,
and the potential for working together toward common goals instead of
endless conflict. Such realization is necessary for peace. Creeds
which induce fanatical belief don't allow this process to take place.
So what's the REAL penalty for a Jew killing an Arab? What's the
REAL penalty for ordering troops to break the limbs of Palestinian
youth? It appears the penalty is to be elected Prime Minister. Who got
jailed for killing all those Palestinians on the Temple Mount? Whose
water is being taken by the other? It goes on and on, it seems. But
maybe the recent elections will make a little difference.
It's a little difficult to say these things about Israel when we
have the very same problems here in America, as can be pointed to in the
case of Rodney King and a host of others. Truly the leadership, and the
criminal justice system, of our nation and the nation of Israel are of
the same ilk. It doesn't seem to do much good to criticize either it
seems, and in fact just causes backlash. I must be crazy for doing it.
I also criticize people like Rodney King and Yasser Arafat, BTW. There
just aren't too many people willing to be reasonable in this world.