we don't need a Jewish state"
Le retour de
El retorno de Vanunu
Israel Adam Shamir
Ashkelon is a peaceful small town to the south of Tel Aviv
and to the north of Gaza, rebuilt after 1948 on the ruins of
the old Palestinian town. White houses and white sand give
it its clean look. Its high-security jail is also painted
white, though it is far from idyllic place. Today the
Mossad-operated jail returned Ashkelon into news for the
first time since Richard Coeur-de-Lion took it from Saladin.
long years until today Mordechai Vanunu was buried alive in
its super-secret Agaf Seven, ever since he was kidnapped in
Europe by Mossad spies and illegally brought to be tried and
imprisoned here. Vanunu committed a double crime for he
defied the Jewish state by disclosing the secret of its evil
nuclear might and by embracing Christ. For this he was kept
in solitary confinement; hour upon hour, day upon day, year
after year under lidless eyes of Mossad watchers. This would
be enough to break spirit of an ordinary man, to drive him
into release of insanity, as his tormentors wished. But they
failed for he was not an ordinary man.
thanksgiving). The name given to the Blessed Sacrament of
the Altar its twofold aspect of
Sacrifice of Mass, and in
Jesus Christ is
truly present under the
bread and wine. Other titles are used, such as "Lord's
Supper" (Coena Domini), "Table of the Lord" (Mensa
Domini), the "Lord's Body" (Corpus Domini), and
the "Holy of Holies" (Sanctissimum), to which may be
added the following expressions, and somewhat altered from
their primitive meaning: "Agape" (Love-Feast), "Eulogia"
(Blessing), "Breaking of Bread", "Synaxis" (Assembly), etc.;
but the ancient title "Eucharistia" appearing in writers as
early as Ignatius,
Justin, and Irenæus, has
taken precedence in the technical terminology of the Church
and her theologians.
Born into a
working-class Sephardic Jewish family in arid Negev, Vanunu
witnessed persecution of the native Palestinians, and he felt
compassion for them. This brotherly compassion for goyim, frowned
upon in the Jewish tradition, brought him to Christ. He could not
continue working at Dimona, the place where Israel makes weapons of
mass destruction. He openly broke with Jewish omerta, denounced
evil, and made his fellow citizens and the world aware of huge
nuclear arsenal accumulated in the underground storages to threaten
the world peace.
A Christian has
some qualities of Christ, and witness of Vanunu made him a Christian
martyr. Jews are not a forgiving lot, and they are not likely to
forgive a man who broke free. In order to make this religious
meaning of his trial clear to all, the judges sentenced Vanunu for
18 years, ‘to be immured alive’, for ‘18’ means ‘alive’ in Hebrew.
Many Jews wear the sign of 18, or ‘Chai’ on their necks, where
Christians wear cross.
‘Do you know
what this sign means?’ – Daniel McGowan of Deir Yassin
Remembered was asked by a policeman, and replied: ‘It
is the sentence you gave Vanunu’.
But 18 years
passed, and today Vanunu came back to life. It was a moment of
supreme elation reminiscent of Resurrection Sunday, when the white
doves flew over the white prison, and crowds chanted in front of the
gate of heavy iron bars guarding the entrance to Ashkelon jail.
He approached the
gate, grasped its bars as if wishing to break free, pulled
his strong body up and looked at us, at his friends who came
to see him coming out alive, and at his enemies who called
for his blood. There was no Hollywood smile of a released
prisoner. Not a timid lamb anymore, but Son of Man who saw
death and came back. His face was stern and grim in the blue
frame of the iron bars, like that of Christ breaking the
Gates of Hell on an old icon.
Gates of Hell,
He turned to the TV crews and
spoke to them, at first in his heavily accented Sephardic Hebrew,
then in English:
“I want to tell you something very important.
I suffered here 18 years because I am a Christian, because I was
baptised into Christianity. If I was a Jew I wouldn't have all this
suffering here in isolation for 18-years.
Only because I was a Christian… Vanunu Mordechai says we don't need
a Jewish state. Vanunu Mordechai doesn't want to live in Israel and
doesn't need a Jewish state. I am a symbol of the will of freedom.
You cannot break the human spirit.”
‘Kill him!’ –
yelled the Jewish crowd, braying for blood like in Mel Gibson’s
film. They raised their signs declaring ‘Kill the traitor’. But the
prey escaped them: in a minute, his car took him into safe sanctuary
of St George cathedral, the Anglican Neo-Gothic building in East
Jerusalem, where kind Bishop Riah expected him.
confirmed in his own words and deeds: Christ is the symbol of
compassion to our fellow men and thus of rebellion against the
Jewish rule, the symbol of unvanquished human spirit that is akin to
God. Probably the bravest man alive, he reminded me that ‘God
became Man so a Man can become God’ (in words of
St Athanasius). I thought of my
friend Gilad Atzmon in London and of other good people who rebelled
against the archaic spirit of dominance; of endless arguments
whether Christ is relevant for our struggle in Palestine, arguments
Vanunu answered so eloquently.
In 1986, when
Vanunu was arrested, I wrote in the socialist newspaper Al Hamishmar,
‘Vanunu was my spy, for he spied for me the dark secrets of the
Zionist establishment’. But he returned with even more important
message, that of spirit. Years ago, he revealed to us the weapons of
our enemies; now he revealed our secret weapon in the battle for
Palestine, that of Christ. And this battle goes on;
while white doves flew over the prison, the Jewish tanks bombarded
towns of Gaza, a few miles away, killing innocent civilians.
revealed complicity of the American and European pseudo-Christians
in the plot. Vanunu told us he was trapped not by Mossad but by a
CIA agent for his revelations were mightily embarrassing for the US,
for the country that forced the world to disarm while turning its
blind eye to Dimona nuclear facility. Even now the US authorities
promised ‘to keep an eye on Vanunu’ so he won’t embarrass them even
more. Italy’s Berlusconi, this great friend of Sharon and Bush, did
not move a finger to save the man kidnapped on Italian soil. This
question should be discussed in the election campaign in the US: it
is not too late for Americans to reject the accomplices of the
Yes, Vanunu is
right: “The time has come to end this silence and secret
cooperation by the West, the United States, Canada and all Europe
helping Israel and co-operating with Israel's secrets...”
It is not too
late for us, the Israelis to listen to this man and to agree with
him: we do not need a Jewish state.
need a state of compassion.