One couldâ€Šâ€”â€Šwe mustâ€Šâ€”â€Šwonder whether at the root of this paradigm of a victim-centered vision of the world might not lie the worst of history in general and of religion in particular: competing Adams, infinitesimal differences that have generated infinite rivalry among Edom, Jacob, and Ishmael. From Edom to Adam, says the Talmud, what is there but an additional letter, a vavâ€Šâ€”â€Šthe red, bloody vav that is the matrix of a war set to become eternal?
Not to mention the thorough indecency of the quest for victim status, an indecency that is the unacknowledged correlate of the competitionâ€Šâ€”â€Šits perversity, born in the mud of Auschwitz and reÂpackaged, banalized, metered out in small doses to allow everyone a little slice of the cake of victimhood, just enough to affirm their idenÂtity and to clear away, if possible, any singularity that might mar the purity of their martyr status. How pathetic and grotesque this reduction of human essence to a bare suffering that becomes humanityâ€™s sole definition, its sole glory, while simultaneously purging it of anyÂthing resembling intellectualism, culture, literature, philosophy, concepts, reason, truth, remembrance, and, especially, religion and prophecy: all of these useless adornments, these now-secondary qualÂities that appear to have been there only to obscure deprivation and to prevent people from relishing their status as victims.
Remember, too, that underpinning the competition, at its origin and at its apex, is hatredâ€Šâ€”â€Šyes, hatred once again, a pure and unadulÂterated hatred: Once you give in to it, you never get out. Hatred for the victim whom one intends to unseat, of course, but also for the victim whom one is endeavoring to hoist onto the pedestal to be covÂered in the bird droppings of the competitorâ€™s sad passion. Oh, how the iron indifference of the â€œpro-Palestiniansâ€ to the Palestinians of flesh and blood recalls Genetâ€™s contempt for the fedayeen whose eulogist he strove to be and for the other dispossessed, Arab and black alike, who were no more than cards in his deck!
25 Jan 2017