Wake up! Its time to leave the shtetl. Take a look around you. The ghetto walls are gone. Its time to abandon this ghetto mentality and to start standing up for ourselves. The year is 2008, not 1808. The days when we had to look beseechingly to the goyyim are gone. As a nation, we seem to be stuck in this Pale of Settlement mindset. We need to wake up to the incredible reality of a sovereign Jewish state, a Jewish army and the beginning of the Redemption.
Jews, many of us are uncomfortable with the idea of Jewish self-defense or of a Jew fighting back. During our long 2000-year exile, our beliefs have grown corrupt and perverted with galutishe attitudes and ideas. We have become so accustomed to seeing Jews downtrodden, beaten up and degraded, that we see this as normal. We squirm at the prospect of using legitimate violence to protect ourselves. We would rather see ourselves in the role of the mourning family, the perpetual victim, than as the aggressor, the strong man.
Tevieh the milkman standing in the midst of his ransacked village. The Jew locked behind the ghetto walls as the goyyim taunt him. Raging Cossacks burning down our homes and synagogues. Jews beaten up in the streets. We have gotten used to it. That's the way its meant to be. Second class status for Jews. Israel demonized, delegitimized and held to a double standard. Same old, same old. No, my friend. It is time to stand up. There is nothing Jewish about being weak, about being persecuted and oppressed. We have become the proverbial battered wife who cannot fight back, who accepts her torment silently. Suffering is just part of the bargain of being the Chosen People. How Galut has corrupted our ideals!
The recent incident in the settlement of Yitzhar demonstrates the same ghetto mentality that still grips our leaders, as well as the true Jewish response. Early Shabbat morning, an Arab terrorist snuck into a Jewish house and set it on fire. A 9 year-old boy who went to investigate was stabbed in the chest by the terrorist and flung 4 meters high over a fence. The terrorist promptly fled in the direction Asira el-Jabaliya, a hostile Arab village which gave shelter to the terrorist. The IDF sat on their hands and did nothing. A Jew stabbed? We can live with that. Business as usual. Seeing that they would get no help from the corrupt authorities, the attacked and beleaguered citizens of Yitzhar descended on the village which harbored the terrorist, fired shots and threw stones at some homes. The proud Jews of Yitzhar let the Arabs know in no uncertain terms that they are not afraid of them and will stand up to Arab attacks. The stabbing of a little boy cannot be taken lightly. The Jewish people are not the be trifled with.
What was the reaction from the authorities? Olmert condemned the Jewish response, using words such as "taking the law into their own hands," "brutality," and "pogrom." He further accused the Jews of having "used live weapons and wounded Palestinian residents," and said that there had been "no basis to assume... that [the targeted Arab] residents were at all connected, whether directly or indirectly, to the terrorist attack in Yitzhar." It mattered little to him that the Arabs of the village had set fire to Yitzhar homes seven times in the past three months, or that they had protected the man who stabbed a child. What mattered to him was that Jews had the audacity to defend themselves instead of passively resigning themselves to their fates. Such a thing could be a dangerous precedent for Olmert who might have to rethink his brilliant strategy of surrender and capitulate.
Being weak is not a moral virtue. We were sent into exile as a punishment and we must do all that we can to leave it behind. As the Sages teach: "the lowliness of Israel is the greatest Desecration of G-d's Name". While we may forgive personal affronts, we have no right to dispense with G-d's honour. Jews, we must shake off our reservations about standing up for ourselves. Rabbi Kahane taught that "a Jewish fist has to be attached to a Jewish head". We have one of the strongest militaries in the world yet we continue to allow ourselves to be murdered and maimed all out of fear of "what the goyyim will say". When Jewish blood is spilled, and could have been easily prevented, we comfort ourselves by reminding ourselves of our "Jewish values", how much more moral we are, how we are better, how we "are not like them". My friends, the Torah does not command us to go like sheep to the slaughter. That is not my Judaism. My Judaism is that of King David who fought the enemies of Israel, and who prayed that "the righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance; he will wash his feet in the blood of the wicked". My Judaism is that of Samson the Brave who asked G-d that he be able to destroy the foes of his people before he died, and "to punish them for what they have to done to one of my eyes". My Judaism is that of Yehudah HaMaccabee who led a fierce revolt against the Greek occupiers and Hellenistic assimilationists. My Judaism is that of Bar Kochba who almost succeeded in expelling the Roman forces from the Holy Land and reestablishing Jewish sovereignty. That is my Judaism. That is my Torah. And it it beautiful.
Cross-posted to Jewish Vengeance and Stop Raping Israel