Photo by Cole Keister on Unsplash

Zionism, Anti-Zionism and Post-Zionism

Defining Zionism

Yaakov C Lui-Hyden
12 min readFeb 17, 2024

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By the rivers of Babylon
There we sat down
Yeah, yeah, we wept
When we remembered Zion

Then the wicked carried us away in captivity
Required from us a song
Now how shall we sing the Lord song in a strange land?

Boney M sang about it, Bob Marley sang about the Zion train, even my local hair salon is called “House of Zion.”

You can visit Zion national park in Utah, USA. Pray in Zion Cathedral in Tbilisi, Georgia. You can study at Mount Zion Medical College in Southern India.

Zion has many meanings to many different people. It is mentioned 152 times in the Tanakh, the Old Testament. In the Christian New Testament it is mentioned a further seven times plus five quotes used from the Old Testament.

Mount Zion is the Western hill, just outside the Old city, which Jerusalem is built on. It is used as a synomyn for Jerusalem, but also the idea of Jerusalem in a spiritual sense. For Rastafarians, like Bob Marley, Zion, to them is Ethiopia- a promised land and utopia.

Politcal Zionism emerged in the late 1800s, through the lens of the pogroms against Jews in Tsarist Russia. The lack of Jewish agency, and being at the mercy and whim of host rulers, gave rise to the idea of Jewish self-determination.

Indeed, more than 50 years before, in Palestine, Jews were being butchered in Hebron and Safed who had no other aspirations than to live in the land of their forefathers and work that land.

Despite Ottoman and Arab laws that classified Jews as second class citizens throughout the Middle East- subject to crushing taxation, no right to defend themselves, testimony not equal to a Muslim in court, restrictions on riding horses, wearing shoes in Muslim parts of a city, looking a Muslim in the eye or building a house taller than a Muslim neighbour- despite all this, Jews lived better in these countries than they did in Europe. The Europe that accused Jews of bringing the black plague, of kidnappig christian children to use their blood for food every Easter, and any other calamity that might befall a nation. Jews were expelled…

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Yaakov C Lui-Hyden

Yaakov is a world traveller and is accused of being an Australian. Published several novels. He writes about travel, writing, geopolitics and trading.