Naturally, the initial results of this week’s election in Israel were cause for right-wing jubilation and left-wing despair. I picked up from social media some of the unadulterated reactions of both sides of the political spectrum. These kneejerk reactions, I think, reflect something genuine, something too real to be ignored.
The first Facebook post features a picture of a mass gathering at the Western Wall, representing the future of Israel as right-wingers see it, a Jewish state through and through. Above the picture are the words of Psalm 147, popularized by Avihu Medina who composed them into a modern song in 1985. “Extol the Lord, Jerusalem; praise your God, Zion. He strengthens the bars of your gates and blesses your people within you.” It’s become a much-beloved song that one can hear both in synagogues and at other cultural and social occasions.
This song became something of an unofficial anthem for the Likud Party, following a February 14 viral social media clip showing Netanyahu singing those words together with right-wing journalists Erel Segal, Shimon Riklin and Yinon Magal. Israel public...
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