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*** THE ALIYAH REVOLUTION ALBUM ***

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Aliyah Is Something Only Russians Do, Right?


Jewsweek reports about The Jewish Reconnection Project which joins five young Jews in New York with four young Jews in Jerusalem. (Why not five on five? I guess Israel always does more with less!) In the series a host of issues are discussed. Naturally the one of most interest to Kumah is Israel vs. Diaspora. Some thoughts of mine follow below the clip.


When asked what "Aliyah" is, one young American Jew (or Jewish American depending on who you ask) responded matter-of-fact-ly, "Aliyah is like coming from Eastern Europe." She caught herself and very quickly added "or coming from wherever, and immigrating to the land of Israel."

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Here's something odd:

Secular Israeli guy remarks how if he grew up outside Israel he might have a stronger Jewish identity because here he takes it for granted because "everybody is Jewish." Now aside for the fact that the rate of Jewish intermarriage in America has proven that statement to be utterly ridiculous and of flawed logic, I was struck by something else I saw. On the words "[in Israel] everybody is Jewish" the film editor cuts to, if I'm not mistaken, scenes from Maron on Lag B'Omer. We see hundreds of Chassidim dancing. This is curious. When this Chiloni said he was surrounded by Jews in Israel I don't think he was thinking of Maron. He was more likely thinking of night clubs in Tel Aviv. And yet when the American producer of the video heard the words "everyone is Jewish in Israel" he thought of Chassidim dancing at the Kever of Reb Shimon Bar Yachi. Most curious indeed! Pray tell, why?

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Israel is a bad place for a Jew to live another American concludes because it's "too easy" to be Jewish and you don't have to "think about it." And here we are at Kumah using the very same logic to promote Aliyah! (Truth be told you ALWAYS have to "think about it" no matter where you are. It might just be a bit easier to find kosher pizza and falafel here. That's a bad thing?)

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Best line. "Well I find that kind of sad!" remarked by a young secular Israeli lady responding to a religious American Jew when he explains he doesn't wear his Kippa in college because he wants to hide his Jewish identity. Sad indeed.

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Other words of wisdom from the same chiloni, responding to the Americans who said how important the "Homeland" is (it's nice to visit, but they wouldn't want to live there):

"If you feel that Israel is a place for the Jews, and it should be there, then you should step up and do something about it." We, here at Kumah, agree.

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She also (the very same chiloni) got the last word in:

"I don't love this county because it's the prettiest country or it's the nicest country, you know, I love it because it's mine, and it's the only - the only home I've got."

Excellent! But, just for the record... it IS the prettiest! :)

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2 Comments:

  • At 4:15 PM , Blogger aaron fox said...

    This post has been removed by the author.

     
  • At 9:12 PM , Blogger aaron fox said...

    Listening to the American 5, old tendencies to hate people began to arise. Having gone through full tsheuvah just a day ago allowed me to hold steady in my commitment to love all Jews.

    I mean come on, "America helps me consider my Jewish identity more." Please!!!! Spare me!!!! Maybe if we were as a people more concerned with being a good Jew rather than just identifying oneself as Jewish, even this girl would feel embarrassed for coming up with such an asinine statement.

    Finally, this piece can be judged on the editing style alone: schizophrenic, fragmented, empty, canned, square, dull, trying real hard to be relevant and cool and failing miserably. Just like our lost-souled brethren the American Jew or Jewish American, I forget which. "Jewish American", I'm starting to loose my Tsheuva cool again.

     

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