Jewish Geopolitics: Nationalism and the Ties between the State and the Land
Professor Yosseph Shilhav's article in this issue of National Identities entitled 'Jewish Territoriality between Land and State' is an important addition to the literature on territoriality and national sovereignty. His carefully researched and insightful study of the religious affinity between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel is especially timely because of the urgency that the present intifada has given to the debate within Israel over the political future of the West Bank and Gaza. What is most provocative, as well as innovative, is Dr Shilhav's thesis that the clash of opinion within Israel over the solution to the Occupied Territories is not, as commonly understood, a political debate between 'hawks' and 'doves', but is rooted in differences of religious interpretation concerning the 'sanctity of the Land'. It is with this thesis that I take issue.