Last Sunday, I took part in the Jewish Leadership Conference in New York on Jews and conservatism. There were some excellent presentations from a line-up including Ruth Wisse, Rabbi Meir Soloveichik, Jonathan Haidt, Yoram Hazony and others.
The point of the conference was, in the JLC’s own words, to harness the power of conservative ideas to strengthen the Jewish people and revitalise American civic life.
It is not over-dramatic to say this is a project that is urgently needed to save the west. For the past several decades, the bedrock values of western civilisation have been under assault from the left’s “long march through the institutions”. The traditional family, the purpose of education and the very idea of the nation state based on historic western values have all been undermined, turned inside out and vilified.
At the root of this process is the belief on the left that the moral principles of the Hebrew Bible must be overthrown by secularism. Those principles which the Hebrew Bible introduced to the world include respecting the dignity of every human being and forming societies based on justice and compassion. It even introduced the revolutionary idea of a rational universe upon which western science is based and which made modernity a western concept.