Pragmatic Witness

David Ben-Gurion, the widely revered first prime minister of modern Israel, once stated that “the basis of Zionism is neither friendship nor sympathy but the love of Israel, of the state of Israel … It must be unconditional love. There must be complete solidarity with the state and people of Israel.” Such sentiments underscore a huge but unspoken problem in America — widespread Jewish American sympathy for and loyalty to Israel, the Jewish State. A Zionist, as Ben-Gurion defined the term, clearly cannot be fully American. His primary loyalties will always lie elsewhere.

“No other ethnic group in American history has so extensive an involvement with a foreign nation [Israel],” wrote Melvyn Urofsky in 1975. “No other nation relies upon a body of private individuals who are neither residents nor citizens of their land to underwrite a major portion of their budget. American Jews buy Israeli bonds, give generously to…

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