On Yom Kippur, we examine our sins, but defending Israel isn’t one of them.

UK Media Watch

As we approach Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, we highly recommend a thoughtful meditation on the Jewish culture of self-criticism by Ruth Wisse recently published in the Wall St. Journal.

Here’s an excerpt:

Jews rightly take pride in their culture of self-accountability—before the Ultimate Judge and justly established human authorities. This culture has created and sustained a remarkably resilient people. Lamenting the excesses of the current American electoral cycle, the columnist Ira Stoll imagines how much richer the country’s politics would be if “this spirit of self-examination were exported from the Jewish religion into the rest of American culture.” If democracy requires the patient improvement of life in a community, nothing furthers that goal better than the practice of individual and collective self-scrutiny.

But the millennial-long history of Jewish self-restraint also stands as a warning. It is all very well to focus on overcoming your failings…

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