In their still classic, though historically flawed, book O Jerusalem, the authors open with a description of the celebrations in tel Aviv and Jerusalem to the results of the Partition Vote, on November 29, 1947 (in Israel, it was already November 30). Spontaneous dancing took place in both cities, and nowhere with such gusto as in downtown Tel Aviv (around the Sheinkin area). The only exception was in a small corner of Me'ah She'arim, where the virulently anti-Zionist Neturei Karta were busy mourning the establishment of the new Jewish State. Dressed in black and sack-cloth, they beseeched God to undo the evil of the wicked Zionists.
Flash forward almost sixty years. Today, as we face the fifty-ninth anniversary of Israel's independence, the Haredi world has pretty much washed its hands of the Neturei Karta. Part of that disavowal is because of their nefarious, ignominious visit to Teheran, earlier this year. More generally, though, the Haredi community has undergone a serious process of Israelization and is far less militantly anti-Zionist than it ever was. (The prominent exception is the Lithuanian Yeshiva leadership. There is, however, serious doubt as to just how effective and representative they are on political issues.)
On the other hand, another group, also fashionably dressed in black, is busy mourning the establishment of the State. They refuse to fly the flag. They refuse to serve in the army. They are convinced that Israel is the root of all evil, whose birth was sinful. As opposed to the Neturei Karta, they have access to all of the mass media and the lecturns of the Israeli academy. They use these to spew their message in every direction. Where do they sit? In the area of the same Sheinkin Street that once leaped and danced for joy that the Jewish people would, once again, have a country to call its own in its ancestral home.
Please God, their fate will be the same as that of the Neturei Karta. Absolute, total, irrelevance.