A Palestinian bulldozer driver went on a rampage in downtown Jerusalem on Tuesday, wounding at least 24 people, just weeks after a similar attack in the capital left three dead.
The driver was identified as a 22-year-old resident of East Jerusalem who held an Israeli ID card. Police sealed off possible escape routes into the predominantly Arab area of Jerusalem and were searching for two suspects who fled the scene, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.
Another day, another jihad-by-heavy-equipment.
Time to ponder the words of A. D. Gordon:
We [the Jewish people] have become accustomed to every form of life, except to a life of labour–of labour done at our own behest and for its own sake. It will require the greatest effort of will for such a people to become normal again. — People and Labour, 1911
Now it is true that every people have many individuals who shun physical labour and try to live off the work of others… We Jews have developed an attitude of looking down on physical labour…. But labour is the only force which binds man to the soil… it is the basic energy for the creation of national culture. This is what we do not have, but we are not aware of missing it. We are a people without a country, without a national living language, without a national culture. We seem to think that if we have no labour it does not matter – let Ivan, John or Mustafa do the work, while we busy ourselves with producing a culture, with creating national values and with enthroning absolute justice in the world. — Our Tasks Ahead, 1920
The early kibbutzniks took Gordon seriously and learned how to farm, how to build, and how to defend themselves, things that most Diaspora Jews had forgotten. The Zionist idea that Jews would possess the land only when they were the workers as well as the owners of it was called “kibush ha’avoda“, the Conquest of Labor.
Israel is at a turning point today (see Daniel Pipes, “Samir Kuntar and the Last Laugh“). Lots of things have to change to get the country on the right path, but it wouldn’t hurt to start with a Reconquest of Labor.