The right should demand a single ministry: Education. Other portfolios are important, but none is as significant as education. The right could control the army or police, but still fail fundamentally because the leftist, anti-Semitic Ministry of Education exterminates the Jewish idea. The conservative movement is foremost about winning minds. If young Jews are educated in our most cherished values, the right need not care about any government posts—society will follow the Jewish path, anyway. The older generation of conservatives was traditionally skeptical of secular education, and conceded the ministry to Jew-haters from the left. The new generation of conservatives that doesn’t rely entirely on religion must understand the critical importance of education in shaping Israeli society. Secular subjects are fine and necessary, though biology had better stress the mathematical impossibility of evolution through random mutations. The important things to teach every Jewish child are three: beautiful, sensible, and logical religion; patriotic attachment to the Land of Israel in its entirety; and the highly structured ancient Hebrew language, whose root-cell and affixes system is artificial, not naturally evolved.

Ten to twelve years of learning almost nothing about almost everything, accumulating irrelevant knowledge which the children forget as soon as they pass exams, does nothing for human development. Jewish education was always about learning to learn. Jewish children memorized and analyzed the Torah, and thus acquired the skills necessary for later specialized study. The educational establishment, like any bureaucracy, promotes itself by unnecessarily building up its object. School programs continuously grow only for the sake of employing more teachers. The prominence given to physical training works against the Jewish reason of excellence. Jews excelled in learning and mental activity in general because we were weak. Mental advantage was the only way to overcome physical and institutional disadvantages. Israeli educators proceed as if from the anti-Semite Juvenal’s “mens sana in corpore sano”; in this context, that phrase doesn’t support the reading, “healthy mind in healthy body.”

Jewish education in the Diaspora became a moral deathbed for young, promising Jewish children. Religious confessions compete in ineptness of education. Reformists emasculate Judaism to the point that the children see nothing religious about it, and the smarter among them realize that Christianity is more Judaic than the atheist Reformism fed to them. Orthodox schools push antiquated nonsense—which was sensible and progressive at the time it appeared, and wasn’t meant to be frozen in time. From mechanical recitation of prayers, the most intimate form of contact with the divine, to the demand of uncritical acceptance of the wildest biblical stories—which the Talmud asserts were given for the sake of interpretation, not to be taken literally—Jewish children are fed dogmas unacceptable to rational minds. Charismatic rabbis rarely arise and almost never make headway inside the rabbinical establishments. Religious educators keep muttering things which the children know to be irrelevant to their lives—and which they ignore. Judaism is immensely practical, but neither nihilist Reformists nor obsessed Orthodoxes could explain it. Secular teachers play their part. Unable to comprehend the complexities of the Israeli political process, they demand unquestionable loyalty to Israel, whose actions are universally questioned. At the same time, liberal teachers promote Arab rights without bothering to realize how they contradict both Judaism and Zionism.

Educational policies stem from sadism. Arrogant Orthodox rabbis detest less correct Jews; for them, it’s “either my way or the highway”; either be Orthodox and tear toilet paper on Thursday or you’re lost to the Jews and not worth the effort. Misguided Reformists feel their moral bankruptcy on the background of nationalist Jews and are determined to raise their pupils to be as spineless as themselves. Liberals hate any strong values and expunge their roots from children’s souls. Ideological education was unimportant in a time when Jews had little choice: once born Jews, they remained so. Modern Jews are free to assimilate, and unless education changes to promote strong nationalism and practical religiosity, they will continue down the path of assimilation.