In my eyes, the month of Iyar which begins this week is the month of Zionism in general, and specifically religious Zionism. In this month political Zionism is represented by Yom Ha’atzma’ut (Independence Day), and the religious sector reached a new level with the advent of Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Liberation Day). This sector, which was put to shame by a marginal scribe in the newspaper Ha’aretz (who was duly followed by the editor), is in fact alive and well, and can often be seen “kicking.” It evidently brings out such emotions as jealousy and even hatred. Religious Zionism is deeply entwined in all walks of life in Israel, except for its basic foundational issue, which is known as “religion and the state.” (Note that I prefer to use the term, “Judaism and the state.”)
Classic Religious Zionism
From my earliest memories, I was educated along the lines of organized religious Zionism, which was the soul of the now defunct Mafdal, a political party which fought to implant a Jewish face on the State of Israel . This was one of its banners, which inspired thousands of youths just like me, above and beyond such issues as nationalism, settlements, integration into all the sectors of the new nation, while taking on responsibility for the nation in terms of leadership, development, and its advancement. The religious youth movement Bnei Akiva was an integral part of the “mother party,” and within it grew ranks of members who were loyal to these ideals.