By Matt Parrott
Zionism is not Jewish Nationalism. It is not merely “happy homelands” for the Jewish people, even if its 19th century origins were heavily nationalist. Zionist apologetics and propaganda rely very heavily on the impression that Zionism is just “nationalism for Jews,” when Zionism has proven to be ideologically and institutionally antithetical to nationalism in both theory and practice.
Nationalism gets unfairly conflated with a lot of things, including national chauvinism, revanchism, irredentism, colonialism, imperialism, apartheid, segregation, and militarism. Additionally, in the Israeli case, nationalism gets conflated with Rabbinical Judaism’s religious themes and theories pertaining to “the Holy Land.”
Nationalism is, as the etymology suggests (natio-, of birth) and (-ism, ideology), the ideal of human tribes of shared heritage, values, and dreams possessing the political agency to perpetuate that heritage, protect those values, and pursue their dreams. It is best understood as “familyism” writ large.
Nationalism is an abstract ideology, with universal and reciprocal implications. If you reject the universal and reciprocal implications then you are not a nationalist at all, but a National Chauvinist. The honest and malicious confusion of nationalism and national chauvinism must be disentangled in order to arrive at a coherent model for approaching ethnic, intrastate, and interstate relations.
I am a proponent of authentic Jewish Nationalism, which would necessarily find expression in an earnest and equitable pursuit of a “two state” solution to the conflict that honors Palestinian nationalist goals as well. Jewish Nationalism is a rounding error in Israeli politics, however, sandwiched between religious Jews believing that the state is centered in their racial supremacist religious fantasies, irredentist Jews who aim to expand their state at the expense of their neighbors in the region, and secular liberal Jews who aim to transition Israel into a racially and religiously diverse administrative state akin to what the United States has become.
After all, if Israel were a humble ethnostate, then it could be regarded as an ally to support, or perhaps even a model to emulate. It is not. Israel is to national values what the mafia is to family values: a criminal parody of nationalism that virulently opposes the dignity, autonomy, and self-determination of every identity save for its own. And even there, as with the mafia, the syndicate is a threat to Jewish ethnic identity, with Zionist ambitions directly conflicting with the original vision of an ethnostate.
Closer to home, White Nationalists must be on guard against White Zionism, against making the same mistakes that corrupted and will eventually destroy the Israeli Zionist project. We can learn from the Zionist project what not to do with our own nationalist ambitions.
It’s my opinion that the majority of the current White Identitarian movement is essentially White Zionist, harboring national chauvinism, racial supremacy, unrealistic territorial ambitions, and indifference or hostility to the other nations within this failed state that we would need to work out a separate peace with. Even if this movement were permitted to get off of the ground by our powerful opponents, the current movement would be on track to become a pariah state similar to what Israel is on a fast track to becoming.