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Defining Zionism Discussion Forum

Here are some questions to consider. Please share your thoughts and opinions with us below:

  • Do you identify as a Zionist? Why or why not?
  • What about these Defining Zionism presentations has resonated for you?
  • Do you think Zionism is relevant for the next generation? Why or why not?
  • What is your biggest challenge when discussing Zionism with others?
  • In what ways do you think your age and Jewish identity impacts your views about Israel?

What articles are you reading about Israel? Here are two articles to enhance our discussion: Defining Zionism:

The Good News from Campus

Comments

From: Chris on June 27, 2015
Jews have never lived in any country for more than 600 years without being expelled. And that even Jewish communites who felt they were priviledged to live in a country and time of Jewish prosperity (e.g. the Golden Age of Spain) were shocked to see that world collapse in a relatively brief period.
From: Rocky on June 27, 2015
Jewish people are historically and spiritually connected to the Land of Israel
From: judi on June 8, 2015
join Zionism
From: Sarah on March 12, 2015
Kudos to the comments by Varda. You couldn't have a clearer, right to the point view of one of the aims of Zionism: a safe haven for the Jewish people.
From: Stephen on March 12, 2015
To me being a Zionist means recognizing that the Jewish people are historically and spiritually connected to the Land of Israel and that our relationship with that land -- even in exile -- has defined much of Jewish existence. Zionism means recognizing that if Jewish history teaches us one thing it is that Jews have never lived in any country for more than 600 years without being expelled. And that even Jewish communites who felt they were priviledged to live in a country and time of Jewish prosperity (e.g. the Golden Age of Spain) were shocked to see that world collapse in a relatively brief period. I am a Zionist because I believe that the answers to Jewish continuity revolve around the centrality of Israel to Jewish identity. My perspectives are Zionism are clearly a reflection of my experience of Israel in the 1970s when young Americans often said they would fight going to Viet Nam but would fight for Israel and Israel was represented by works such as The Seventh Day in contrast to the settler movement. For many over the age of 45 Israel was the key to our non-religious but strong Jewish connection. It is near impossible to convey to that sense of connectedness to a secular Jewish teen today because Israel does not resonate with them the way it did with us. The great challenge is to find ways that non-religious Jews can connect to Israel; to find ways that their views about Israel are not delegitimized or stigmatized. Jewish life changed 100 years ago with the Balfour Declaration; we need to find a way to demonstrate to non-religious Jews what their life would be like today if there were not a Jewish state.
From: Varda on March 12, 2015
Quoting one of the entries in this discussion--"How can we support a Jewish state"? Isn't the writer lucky to be posing this question on January 27, 2015 and not on January 27, 1940??? She should have posed that question to the European Jews who in 1940 were searching the world over for a place to escape, who were turned away in that quest even from the shores of these United States. Pose the question to the 7,000 French Jews who found shelter in Israel in 2014, escaping rising Anti-Semitism in France. The last I saw no one in the American Administration OR in Congress issued these French Jews immigration Visas to find shelter the the States. "How can we support a Jewish state?" We can support it because ONLY the Israeli Prime Minister can tell France's Jews and other Jews across Europe, "You have a home In Israel!" I think it is high time for serious lessons in Jewish History for all those attempting to define Zionism. And in my view there is only one point of view--Jewish survival!
From: Jonathan on February 11, 2015
It would be nice if you mentioned where the event is scheduled to occur.
From: Laurie on January 27, 2015
I don't ' particularly like being labeled or labeling -ists in general. It's too limiting. I think it's REALLY important that any member of a group who's at odds with another group try to think of the situation from the other's point of view. It doesn't mean you have to agree with them, but must see their side in order to know how to proceed to compromise. From what I've heard even in the last discussion, the Zionists/israelis are still trying to have things both ways: that is, to comply with the Israel Declaration of Independence (or constitution) they must accept the existence of other people in their country, and yet the Zionist would have an Israeli state and worry about 'too many outsiders' in the population. Something must be given, and I hope it's tolerance and acceptance of differences. if we don't want an Islamic state, how can we support a Jewish state?
From: Judi on January 22, 2015
President, Central Pacific Coast
From: David on January 15, 2015
I am a Zionist because history and the events of today make it clear that security for Jews will require a homeland of their own. Assimilation has repeatedly shown to be futile.
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