Seventy years ago, on August 24, 1929, the Arabs of Hebron committed a
pogrom in the small Jewish community of Hebron, murdering 67 men, women
trauma of this carnage is still with us. Two main components of the
Jewish society were completely taken by surprise.
The Zionist camp did not
envisage a Diaspora-type pogrom in Eretz Israel, and a typical
Eastern-Europe style pogrom it was. This did not fit into the
self-image of the "New Jew" the Zionists wanted to create. To be
involved as a warring party in a national struggle was one thing, to be
the passive victim of a massacre, was a different thing altogether.
The other segment of our
society, the so-called "Old Yishuv", the Jewish community in Eretz
Israel which preceded Zionism - some of them anti-Zionists, others
merely non-Zionists, were appalled to learn that they, not "the others",
had been chosen as targets. Did not they, who wanted to live as a
congregation rather than a sovereign state, do everything to demarcate
clearly this distinguishing line? Did not they even reject offers made
by the Zionists to protect their lives?
The brutal attacks mainly on
those congregations – in Hebron, Jerusalem and Safed – the slaughter of
Arab-speaking Jews, some of them friends and even business partners of
Arabs for hundreds of years, came as a stunning surprise.
Such was the impact, that
after the liberation of Hebron by the IDF, almost none of them returned
to the town.
It seems that all segments of
our society – Zionists on one hand and on the other hand ultra-religious
proto-Zionists, together with secularist post-Zionist "peaceniks" - did
not get the real message of Hebron -1929: For the Arabs all various
political, religious, cultural, shadings amongst us have no meaning at
all, they know only of Jews. Very often, these days, young Arab women
and men are caught, carrying long, sharp knives. In their confessions
they invariably admit to having set out "to kill Jews". Not soldiers,
settlers, Zionists or "extremist": Jews.
* * *
A most striking feature was
the unbelievable cruelty shown by the attackers, revealing a deep seated
hatred, without bounds. This raises a question, which unfortunately is
relevant even to day. Why? Why this consuming lust for our blood?
The Hebron pogromists killed
Ashkenazim and Sephardim, old-timers and newcomers, religious and
secular. No quarter was given even to those who sought protection with
friends and neighbors.
70 years later, a new
generation of would be "integrationists in the Orient" has come up among
us. They deride any attempt to learn from the past, as a paranoid
"Auschwitz Complex". Under their watchword "Peace is our Security" they
close both eyes to the ever recurring, ever resurgent urge to spill
Jewish blood. Learning the lessons of Kishinev-type pogroms, of Hebron
-1929, of the Holocaust, has become old fashioned, bothersome,
extremist, "politically incorrect".
Which brings us to the
conclusion, that it was a certain Jewish mentality which brought the
catastrophe upon the small Hebron community. This very same mentality
now threatens the existence of 5 million Jews in Eretz Israel. Not all
the Arab missiles, bombs and daggers constitute the main danger to our
existence, but our suicidal Jewish genetics. This is the cause of all
the destruction that ever befell us.