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Surabye-bye, Johnny



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A group of Pennsylvania students on a religious pluralism tour of Indonesia pay a visit to the last synagogue on Java, only to find it’s been torn down by Islamic supremacists.

The synagogue predated Islam’s arrival in the islands, but so what? As I wrote in NR a few weeks back, eventually an Islamic present consumes the past:

To anyone who knew the “Muslim world” of the mid-20th century, today’s Mahgreb and Levant are dull places, drained of everything but Islam… In the once cosmopolitan cities of the Arab world, the minority communities are confined to the old graveyards, like the rubbish-strewn Jewish cemetery of broken headstones, squawking chickens and hanging laundry I wandered through in Tangiers a while back. Islam is king on a field of corpses.

As it goes in the Mahgreb and Levant, so too in the East Indies.



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