Saturday, June 2, 2012

American Jews vs Israeli Jews-priority: ethnicity or religion?

When we begin to understand the difference between religion, ethnicity, geography and politics there    will be no more dreamlike expectations. Religion teaches its followers that they are all a unit and they must feel with each other and help each other. Sometimes citizenship affects religion; as America which has heterogeneous religions and ethnic groups so overall an American regardless of religion will not be intimidated when dealing with a person of another religion or ethnic group as they are all citizens of the same country. Things in Israel on the other hand are more complicated because of the political goals of the country, which gives citizenship according to religion (with a few exceptions) thus creating a country homogeneous in religion (with the exception of the non-Jewish spouses of Israelis and the Muslim and Christian Palestinians). If a person is born and raised in a country where there is very little interaction with people of other religions, especially when there is a negative void between them, they will view any interaction with a person of another religion as not necessary and maybe even wrong.  A country raises their citizens with beliefs that meet its political goals. How would Israel get citizens in its military if they do not believe that Muslims especially Arab Muslims are terrorists for example? Who controls education? The government does. Everything taught to children in textbooks is controlled and works towards the goals of the government. As for geographies of countries and human geography: a country can be composed of people of different ethnic groups and religions thus emphasizing citizenship; as is the case in America, thus people of the same ethnic group can be citizens of different countries so citizenship here will dominate ethnicity and the bonds will be stronger between people of the same country rather than people of the same ethnic group. You can say almost the same for ethnicity and religion; thus an American is first and foremost American, in second place his/her religion or ethnicity is considered. This is a political goal of America, to have people united under one flag and country, where their country comes first; it is also what is taught in the educational system.  At the end of the day an American will be an American and an Israeli will be an Israeli, regardless of religion. Unless a Jewish American chooses to be an Israeli citizen, there will always be a void between the two.