Judaism and Democracy: The Issue in Israeli Perspective

By Charles S. Liebman

Charles S. Liebman, March 1997

The question of Judaism and Democracy would be rendered simpler and its emotional charge at least somewhat defused if the Hebrew language distinguished Judaism and Jewishness. But Israelis do not make that distinction. We wouldn't expect the religious to do so but the surprising thing is that the non-religious refuse to do so as well. Hence, they must either fight with the religious, i.e. the Orthodox, over the definition of Judaism-Jewishness, a battle in which, today, unlike a generation ago they are at a disadvantage because most of them know so little about the subject, or as the radical secularists among them do, concede the definition of Judaism to the Orthodox. The radicals are happy to do so since this strengthens their case for dejudaizing Israel. This, in a nutshell is what I have to say. The rest is commentary.

Topic: Halakha, Political Behavior, Jewish Law, Democracy, Statehood, Religion, Politics, Zionism, Extremism

Name of Publication: The Collected Speeches of Charles S. Liebman

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Genre: Speech

Coverage: Israel

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Author

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Liebman, Charles S. Judaism and Democracy: The Issue in Israeli Perspective. The Collected Speeches of Charles S. Liebman. Charles S. Liebman. March 1997: http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=8020


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