Why should Judaism unshackle itself from Zionism?
One part of the short answer is that the credibility of Judaism is being undermined by Zionism’s contempt for its moral values and ethical principles. In that sense there’s a case for saying that Zionism is a threat to the survival of Judaism. (The detailed case was made by Auschwitz survivor Hajo G. Meyer, an anti-Zionist Dutch national of German-Jewish origin, in his 2007 book An Ethical Tradition Betrayed, The End of Judaism.
Also to be noted in the context of the paragraph above is that Zionism’s founders were secular.
Their only interest in Judaism was using its idea of God as an estate agent.
The other part of the short answer is signalled by the title of my book, Zionism: The Real Enemyof the Jews.
Today the message of that title is being underlined by a rising, global tide of anti-Israelism. Contrary to what Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and those of the neo-fascist tendency to the extreme right of him assert, this rising tide is not, generally speaking, a manifestation of anti-Semitism (meaning prejudice against and a loathing of all Jews everywhere just because they are Jews). It is a manifestation of concern and anger provoked by the Zionist (not Jewish) state’s arrogance of power and insufferable self-righteousness. And it is happening because more and more people of all faiths and none, including a still smallish but growing number of Jews, are beginning to see Israel for what it really is: the oppressor and not the victim.
The danger for the Jews of the world is that anti-Israelism could be transformed into anti-Semitism, setting the stage for Holocaust II, my shorthand for another great turning against Jews everywhere, and starting quite possibly in America. A warning of this danger was issued by Yehoshafat Harkabi, Israel’s longest serving director of military intelligence, in his 1988 book Israel’s Fateful Hour. He wrote:
Israel is the criterion according to which all Jews will tend to be judged.
Israel as a Jewish state is an example of the Jewish character, which finds free and concentrated expression within it.
Anti-Semitism has deep and historical roots.
Nevertheless, any flaw in Israeli conduct, which initially is cited as anti-Israelism, is likely to be transformed into empirical proof of the validity of anti-Semitism. It would be a tragic irony if the Jewish state, which was intended to solve the problem of anti-Semitism, was to become a factor in the rise of anti-Semitism.
Israelis must be aware that the price of their misconduct is paid not only by them but also Jews throughout the world.
From the review of Zionism: The Real Enemy of the Jews a journey through the propaganda lies and truth of history.
The key to understanding, the author writes, is knowledge of the difference between Judaism and Zionism.
"Judaism is the religion of Jews, not 'the' Jews because not all Jews are religious.
Like Christianity and Islam, Judaism has at its core a set of moral values and ethical principles.
Zionism is Jewish nationalism in the form of a sectarian, colonial enterprise which,
in the process of creating and then expanding in the Arab heartland a state for some Jews,
made a mockery of Judaism's moral values and ethical principles and demonstrated contempt for international law and the human and political rights of the Palestinians.
That's why, for example, Nazi holocaust survivor Dr. Hajo Meyer titled his latest book
An Ethical Tradition Betrayed, The End of Judaism."
The author adds:
"Supporters of Israel right or wrong conflate Judaism and Zionism because the assertion that they are one and the same enables them to claim that criticism of the Zionist state of Israel is a manifestation of anti-Semitism.
Often, almost always these days, the accusation that criticism of Israel is anti-Semitism is false.
And this false charge is the blackmail card played to silence criticism of, and suppress informed and honest debate about, the Zionist state and its policies.
The reality is that Judaism and political Zionism are total opposites,
and knowledge of the difference is the key to understanding two things.
One is why it is perfectly possible to be passionately anti-Zionist - opposed to Zionism's colonial enterprise - without being in any way, shape or form anti-Semitic (anti-Jew).
The other is why it is wrong to blame all Jews everywhere for the crimes of the hard core Zionist few in Palestine that became Israel.