Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

May we ask Israeli politicians to tone it down a bit in the Three Weeks?

In the three weeks leading up to Tisha be’Av, we try to be extra careful to diminish strife among Jews, and even try and spread ‘baseless love.’ The destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem on that fateful day was preceded and enabled by baseless hatred against each other. Unity is so holy and has always helped us; discord has always been at the root of any downfall. Some secular Jews may not know about this, but they should.

A group of people under insurmountable vicious oppression not seldom will start attacking each other, since the enemy seems so invincible. Not for nothing does Jewish Law have very tough rules against Jews demeaning or insulting other Jews, even if the attacks are truthful — and even more so if the facts are exaggerated or even completely made-up.

In fact, the Sages tell us that the only thing that stops Redemption, the coming of the Messiah, right now, is infighting among Jews. That’s serious.

It is horrifying to hear members of the coalition and opposition use hateful words to describe each other, especially in the Three Weeks.

Trying to extend the Citizenship Law was narrowly foiled. The euphemistic name tries to hide what it really is: a law to prevent Muslims from areas occupied by tyrants (the PA and Hamas) to acquire Israeli citizenship by marrying an Israeli Muslim. Too many of them turned out terrorists. It also prevents such a spouse from legally working or from driving in freed Israel.

Without that Law now being in force, what happens? Tens of thousands can now apply for citizenship what that Law blocked for decades.

First of all, that is great for all genuine attempts to unite Muslim families.

Yet, the minister can still deny each and every such request. That can lead to appeals and clogging of the legal system. But it’s utterly false that Israel will now be defenseless against Muslims overrunning the Jewish majority or killing us all since they are all terrorists inside Trojan horses. Also, by extension, every politician who didn’t support this Law did nothing wrong.

Equally, every politician who tried to keep the Law in function did nothing wrong. The security forces and Attorney General had recommended so.

The most ultra-left-wing parties in the coalition voted for what seems a racist law because under a compromise, it would only stand for half a year and grant automatic citizenship to a couple of thousand affected spouses.

Also the media could play it down a bit. I know, indignation and rows sell, and money must be made to stay afloat. But for the good of the nation, please, make less dramatic headlines. Don’t quote every angry sound bit.

So, there is no reason for any side to call the other side terrible names and adjectives. Tone it down a bit, please. We just try all to do our best, the other is not the enemy, no one is endangering anyone else, and the only dangerous thing is all the animosity among us. Thank you.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (statistics), Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500th blog post with the ToI. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having a peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To find his earlier blog posts on a certain subject XXX, among his over 1200 ones, go to the right-top corner of the Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". His second daily active less tame blog, to which one may subscribe, one may find here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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