8 thoughts on “Jewdas: Radical Diaspora Voices – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
Comments are published at the sole discretion of the owner.

  1. Thanks for pointing out this site, Richard. Naomi Klein may be their saint, but Spinoza must be their guardian angel. More power to them.

    1. Yes, I should do a post on some of my Jewish heroes. Among them would be Kafka, Spinoza (of course), Yochanan ben Zakkai, Yehuda Ha-levi, Martin Buber, Judah Magnes, Rabbi Akiva, Hillel, Marek Edelman, Elisha ben Abuya, Emma Goldman, Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav. You get the idea.

  2. Their critique of Dispatches Israel lobby episode is spot on, particularly the conclusion:

    But even having said all this, the programme did make one big error. It portrayed the Israel lobby as serious, powerful and controversial.

    Instead, it should have portrayed them as a bunch of pillocks. These guys are sad bastards, who have little better to do than scrutinise every word of bbc reports, write pompous letters to the Times, and whose Jewish identity is so screwed up that it relies for its focus on defending Israel. Are the Board of Deputies ultimately that menacing? No, they’re a load of twats. We could have had a great film exploring the social lives of the Israel lobby, chatting to Jonathan Hoffman while he enjoys lunch in Sollys, golf drives with Board of Deputies spokesmen, Kalooki with Poju Zabludowicz. Much more enjoyable for all.

    Do you really think that when David Milliband meets the Jewish Leadership Council, he quakes in fear and apprehension? No, he thinks ‘ Oh my God, another dinner with those absolute tossers’

  3. I looked through the website and although I am not Jewish, I had a wonderful enjoyable time.

    Gem of the day, from a commenter on the website:

    “Every day, Israel takes a shit on my dignity.”

    Well said.

  4. Yay, I love lists. On the subject of great Jewish dudes (or dudettes), I realize no one asked, but here are my Jewish heroes: Andre Previn, Daniel Barenboim, Gustav Mahler, Noam Chomsky (greatest linguist of the 20th century, easy call, and also one of our most insightful political thinkers), Marcel Proust, Harold Pinter (‘The Homecoming’ particularly blew me away when I first read it), Kafka, Einstein, and I’ll throw in Jacques Derrida for good measure, what the heck. Those are the top ones for me, in more or less that order.

    So we share Kafka at least, that’s a good one to share. Your list is maybe a tad more nerdy academic than mine. When I get frustrated by the American Jewish establishment consensus line(s) when it comes to our foreign policy and whatnot, in my admittedly totally subjective way I tend to think of the above guys as the ‘real’ thing and the right-wingers as the imposters, when it comes to authentic Jewish values.

    Daniel Barenboim is particularly a shining star for me. Not only is he a tremendous musician and artist, but his whole outlook and worldview is very powerful and compelling, imo. Far be it for me to tell Jews who to look toward or emulate, but I want to say, ‘psst, look over there, here’s someone who’s got maybe a deeper & healthier relation toward the world and human family as a whole than we perhaps commonly see among many right-wing Israelis and right-wing nationalist Jewish Americans’.

    One of the things that’s powerful about Barenboim is how he inhabits various cultural fault lines and fissures in a striking way (we see this perhaps most intensely in his deep love and attachment to the music of Wagner). He understands the interconnectedness of Western culture and world culture, how say it’s pretty difficult to musically/artistically understand Mahler and Schoenberg without understanding Wagner and so on. He’s an old Enlightenment universalist; he seems to see the whole while respecting difference. And that’s pretty rare in our current era of ethnic chauvinism and identity politics.

    (Plus, he lives in Berlin and that’s a cool city.)

    1. Yes, I’m with you on Barenboim, one of my heroes too. Here are a few more including Israelis (& I’m going back a ways): Jacob Talmon, Yeshaia Leibowitz, Nechama Leibowitz, Abie Nathan, Nahum Goldman, Pierre Mendes France, Grace Paley, David Broza, Paul Simon, Ahad HaAm, Arthur Hertzberg.

  5. And Naomi Klein, of course! She is massively cool. She’s right up there, I’ll put her after Proust. How could I leave her out?!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share via
Copy link