Recorded live in Israel at the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem, I am kicking off Season 2 on modern Israel history!
There is an old story about Rabbi Akiva traveling to Jerusalem with two of his fellow rabbis. Upon arriving in the city and seeing the Temple in ruins following its destruction by the Roman army, the two rabbis wept. But Rabbi Akiva laughed. The rabbis asked Akiva, “How could you be laughing when Jerusalem lies destroyed, as foretold in the prophecies?” And Akiva said, “because if those prophecies were true, then the other prophecies must also be true. And the other prophecies say that someday old men and women shall sit again in the streets of Jerusalem.” And here we are for I am standing at the Western Wall surrounded by thousands of Jews coming to fulfill the rituals and traditions of the covenant we learned about in Season 1.
This season, we’ll dive into Israeli history — from the Zionist Movement to the Arab-Israeli conflict to everything in between. I am interested in talking about this history with an eye towards explaining why things today are the way they are.
It’s a massive story, a fulfilling story, a complex story and a story that exemplifies that famous phrase from Theodore Herzl: “if you will it, it is no dream”.
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© Jason Harris 2017