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How Jewish terrorists grew up and moved to the inside of Israeli politics

TJI Pick
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Published: 9 July 2018

Last updated: 4 March 2024

A documentary series about the Jewish Underground charts the movement’s terrorist activities in the 1980s and its members’ influence on modern politics

JEWISH TERRORISTS ARE troubled, rebellious youth who have somehow gone astray – distant from Israel’s core values. That’s the stereotype most Israelis have of their fellow citizens who commit violent acts against Arabs in pursuit of their far-right political agenda.

A new documentary series, The Jewish Underground (airing on the Yes Doco channel in Israel), aims to shatter that persistent myth once and for all.

The three-part series, created by veteran Israeli journalist Shai Gal, relates (and recreates) how a group of determined Jewish settlers committed acts of violence in the early 1980s with the aim of destroying the Dome of the Rock (part of the site known to Muslims as Haram al-Sharif).

These same men still retain the same ideology and agenda. But today they sit in the centre of power in Israeli politics. As former Jewish Underground member Yehuda Etzion – convicted and imprisoned for his participation in terror activities, and one of the series’ stars – tells Gal: “We are aiming at the same target. We are just using different means.”

Today Etizon is the leader of a group that works to promote Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount and to revive ancient traditions like animal sacrifice.

FULL STORY How a group of Jewish terrorists ended up in Israel's halls of power (Haaretz)

Photo: Yehuda Etzion, one of the members of the Jewish Underground interviewed in Shai Gal's new documentary series (Courtesy of YES Doco)

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