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Good Jew Bad Jew

These days there are two kinds of Jew. There is the Jew who is proud to be a Jew, who stands up for other Jews and acknowledges that the vast majority of Jews, both in Israel and the Diaspora, are Zionists. That is, they believe in the right of Jews to self-determination in their ancient homeland. Let’s call them the Bad Jews.

Then there is the other kind. This kind, who is regularly wheeled out by the ABC and other left -green organisations and media,  and religiously ( if you will pardon the pun),commence their commentary with  the words “ as a Jew”. They then go on to deracinate  themselves from any attachment or connection to the Bad Jews. They refer to the word Zionist with the same disgust that most people use for paedophiles or animal abusers.  What they do in effect is to remove their skin from the rest of them, or any part of them that has attachment to the Bad Jews so that they are ritually reborn, if you will, as Good Jews.

Good Jews march at pro- Palestinian rallies and appear on panels with those screaming for intifada and jihad and for their children to be shahid  .  Good Jews make no mention of the 134 hostages still languishing in god knows what kind of conditions.  Good Jews are feted at writers festivals and other events with unholy ,or perhaps it is holy , reverence.

Good Jews may have been born Jewish but they renounce it , or reject it, or refute it( to use the words of Jonathon Glezer) , revelling in the delusion that because they are Good Jews and not Bad Jews, the Gentile Doors in the Diaspora will magically open for them and acceptance and love will flow and there will be peace on earth. Or at least for them.

Good Jews may have been born Jewish, but they are not Jew-ish. That is, they do not have the spark of a Jewish soul. They do not have courage or internal fortitude . They lack, for example, the courage of a Queen Ester who prevailed upon her husband, the king of Persia, to revoke a decree to kill all the Jews of the land. The Good Jew would have seen such a decree, no doubt, as lawful resistance.

The Good Jew despises the Bad Jew.

And yet, like Cain and Abel, they are inextricably joined. Two sides of a coin. Where the Good Jew seeks to demonize his cousin the Bad Jew, in the hope that in the next pogrom he will be spared, the Bad Jew knows that in the next pogrom no one will be spared.

The truth of that is apparent when one considers who was murdered on October 7- the peace-loving leftists of the Gaza envelope were those who were committed to peace, to working with the Palestinians in Gaza, who took them to hospitals in Israel, who helped them with the checkpoints, who did everything they could to bring peace. These Jews were murdered , raped and mutilated just like everybody else down there. The peace-loving kids at the Nova festival were not  Bad Jews. They were kids wanting to have a fun time and no doubt used some chemical assistance for that purpose.

But the Good Jews cannot bring themselves to condemn these atrocities. They regard them as lawful resistance. They are so consumed by internal self-hatred, and by the desire for acceptance that they are blinded by both what they see and by what they cannot see.

Dara Horn ,in her wonderful book “People love Dead Jews” writes about how, during the Greek occupation of Judea, the Jewish boys who wanted to compete in sports underwent a sort of de-circumcision so that they would not be recognised as Jews. The Greeks, she writes, wanted not to exterminate the Jews as did the Persians under the rule of King Ahasverous, or the Nazis, or indeed Hamas or Islamic Jihad, but to de-Judaise them. In other words, to not kill them but to remove from them any vestiges of Judaism. Hence the desire of the boys to undergo an extremely painful kind of surgery.

The Good Jews of today attempt the same kind of intellectual and moral surgery. They try to  de -Judaise themselves so that they will “pass” as Good Jews.

It is probably tempting to be a Good Jew. After all, public spaces are rapidly becoming judenrein. So why  not be a Good Jew so that you can get on that panel, speak at that festival? All you have to do is to yell and scream the same phrases. Just remember to start with “as  a jew” and the rest will flow. There’s a standard vocabulary, you just need to learn it.

Your new friends will salute you and fete you and herald you as a true hero, as a righteous person.

But one day, and that day will come, much as Dorian Grey looked in the mirror, and instead of seeing a young beauty, saw  a wizened freak, the Good Jew will be condemned to a lonely existence, shunned by both those by whom he thought he was accepted and by those he rejected.

And when they come for him, as they surely will, as they came for the peace lovers in the Gaza envelope, he can try to reason with them by saying “ as a Jew’ but they won’t hear him.

All they will see is a Bad Jew.

About the Author
A family law barrister and amateur Holocaust historian with an interest in writing about what is important right now.