For many of today’s mainstream progressives, opposing the Jewish State is part of a complete breakfast. In order to be progressive, we must stand against the racist Zionist agenda. At least, that’s what we have been taught. But if you take the time to look deeper, you might be surprised to find that progressivism and Zionism are closely intertwined. I know I was.
What is Zionism? At its core, Zionism is the Jewish liberation movement. It is the movement for self-determination of the Hebrews in their indigenous homeland. Modern Zionism was developed in the 19th century, though Jewishness has always been intricately linked to Jerusalem and the surrounding land, and a Jewish community, though small, remained in the land without end. The Jewish State is an example for all indigenous peoples, like the Kurds; a hope of what could be.
Zionism is not a monolith. It doesn’t mean you have to support a particular political party. It doesn’t mean you have to agree with everything the Israeli government does. It doesn’t mean you have to hate Muslims or convert to Judaism. It doesn’t mean you cannot support a two-state solution, or the Palestinian right to self-determination. It just means that you support an indigenous people’s right to self-determination in their historical homeland. And that is an inherently progressive belief.
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Contributed by Binghamton University CAMERA Fellow Nadiya Al-Noor.
This article has since been published in Binghamton University campus paper BU Pipe Dream.