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June 6, 2009

avrum-burgInterfaith Radio ( recently interviewed Avrum Burg, former speaker of the Knesset, on his recent controversial book.  They then interviewed me for an alternate perspective.  The interview (along with an audio file that can be downloaded) is available at  Burg’s interview begins at 22 min 56 sec, while the segment with me begins at 37 min 12 sec.

In a controversial new book, Avraham Burg argues that Israel is “stuck in Auschwitz,” using the Holocaust as the defining experience of Jewish identity. This former speaker of the Israeli Parliament says his country’s preoccupation has led to an unhealthy nationalism that mourns the past, fears the future and feeds violence.

Daniel Gordis also views Israel as Holocaust-centric, but doesn’t think it impacts Israeli politics as negatively as Burg suggests.  He emphasizes Israel’s mandate to remember, and points out that the country was founded by survivors of the Holocaust.

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