While the materials collected in today's readings and that of the last few days come from different places, they teach an interesting lesson. First we learn how great the Hasmoneans were and then we learn how terrible the Hasmoneans were.
Those who win the battles are not always those who do the best job of ruling. What started as a religious battle becomes a battle against that same religion.
It shows how lucky we were that those that led the American Revolution, while far from perfect, did not take power as an end in itself. Those rulers established a country that allowed us as Jews to practice our religion in our own varied ways. Would those that established the State of Israel had been able to do the same.