Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Force of History

Enlightenment-age Jews felt that with the gradual erosion of the Church's power, traditional anti-semitism would soon disappear. In anticipation of becoming full citizens of their respective countries, they declared themselves "Frenchmen (or Germans, or Americans) of the Mosaic Faith". They were Jews in their homes and men in the street. A new age of equal rights was dawning upon them.

This hopeful dream was shattered in the aftermath of the Dreyfus affair, when anti-semitism in France attacked full force, ater 100 years of Jewish emancipation. Cries of "death to the Jews" woke the Jews up from their slumber. Many realized that anti-semitism made it virtually impossible for Jews to live peacefully in foreign countries. Assimilation could never be complete as the anti-semite would always remind the Jew of his origins. These Jews decided that the only solution to anti-semitism was for Jews to forsake the lands of the exiles and build a Jewish state in the Land of Israel. However, the ultimate idea of assimilation was not lost: instead of being good socialists in their home countries, they would build a good socialist state in Israel. The socialist Zionists hoped that in Israel they would create a new Jew, cut off from the ties of the past, a build a secular, socialist society. This new Jewish state would be accepted among the brotherhood of nations as an equal member.

In a great irony of history, after having returned from 2000 years in exile, cut off from our Land, the leaders of Israel today are busy carving the Land up. They are planning to expel 100 000 Jews from their homes, G-d forbid, and to give Judea and Samaria, the Biblical homeland of the Jewish people, up to its enemies. They have fought against traditional Jewish education and raised an ignorant and rootless generation, unattached to Jewish customs, history and practice. The Israeli Left is displaying suicidal tendencies in an irrational drive to surrender and retreat. They put their own people at risk in a desire to withdraw from land and transfer it to the Arabs. What is this insane desire? Israel, an extremely tiny state, could not survive a hostile terror state carved out of its belly. Another Arab state in Judea, Samaria and Gaza would put every singly major Israeli city within rocket range. Ben-Gurion international airport would be under constant threat and if one plane were to be shot down, aliyah, trade and tourism would be effectively over. It seems that despite any logical reasons to the contrary, the Left wants nothing more than to give up as much territory as possible. The spineless and corrupt leaders constantly bow before international pressure in order to appease the rabid anti-semites in the UN and the EU. What is the reason for these self-destructive impulses?

Just like the assimilated Jews of Europe when confronted with brutal hatred, the leftist establishment in Israel is reminded of its Jewish identity by the two-fold force of Jewish history and international rejection. The Israeli Left, inheritors of the secular, socialist vision of the new Jew, want nothing more than to escape Jewish history. All of their policies represent an attempt to flee from their own identity. After the 6 Days' War, Israel found itself in possession of an extremely large amount of territory, central to Jewish history. Instead of liberating Jewish holy places and settling the newly conquered land, the government attempted to return control to the Arabs. What nation would return land conquered in a defensive war, especially land so precious to the Jewish nation? The answer is simple: Judea and Samaria, with its holy sites and biblical locations, reminds the Israeli Left of their Judaism. All of the stories of the Tanach took place in Judea and Samaria. Avraham and David did not walk down Shenkin street, neither did they cruise down the trendy Tel-Aviv hotspots. They did, however, live and die in Judea and Samaria, in places that still exist today. The Israeli government has decided to evacuate settlers from Hebron. Hebron is the foundation of Judaism, where our Patriarchs and Matriarchs are buried. If they are able to free themselves of Hebron, so they believe, they will not be reminded of Judaism.

One could hardly think that the Jewish nation survived oppression and persecution, pogroms and Holocaust, and was returned to its own land simply to bar-hop or go to the beach. The Jewish nation has a destiny to keep the Torah and to become a light unto the nations. Judea and Samaria remind the Left of this. When they see Jews sacrificing themselves to live in these lands, Jews pouring out their souls at the Kotel, Mearat HaMachpela, Kever Rachel and all of the tombs of our forebearers, they cannot forget their mission. They know deep down in their souls how there is more to the Land of Israel than sunshine and hummus. And they cannot abide this. However disturbs their good life must be expelled.

In the past, the Jews had no choice in their identity as anti-semites were quick to point them out. When overt anti-semitism began to fade, assimilation and intermarriage became rampant. Similarly, the hatred of the United Nations and the international body towards the State of Israel lets the Left know that the are still Jews. Israel is the Jew among the Nations. That is behind the intense desire to for peace. Peace, peace, peace. Peace at any cost, any price, any sacrifice. For, according to the Left, if peace is achieved, Israel will be accepted by the world and nobody will dare remind them that they are Jews. If 100 000 Jews need to be thrown out of their homes, so be it. The end result will be acceptance by the world. The condemnations and denounciations of the United Nations has taken the place of the discriminatory restrictions against Jews. Even if they choose not to practice Judaism, the hostility towards them is enough to let the Left know that they have not fully assimilated.

The Jewish nation has a destiny. It was chosen by HaShem, the G-d of the Universe, to bring His Torah to the entire world and to make this world a dwelling place for Him. Such a perfected world necessitates a chosen people living in a special land according to a holy law. Those who oppose such a plan try to divorce Israel from its biblical heritage and mandate by force. However, Israel's identity catches up with it always. When the Jews try to flee from who they really are, the angry nations of the world are quick to remind them. We must remember our divine calling as the Navi says (Isaiah 42:6) "I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and have taken hold of thy hand, and kept thee, and set thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the nations; To open the blind eyes, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, and them that sit in darkness out of the prison-house." Let us embrace our destiny rather than having it forced upon us unwillingly.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree. The "secular Jews" are not Jews at all. Its time to stop making a secular argument for Israel. This only gives comfort to our enemies. In every secular sense Israel is wrong. We are immoral, we have stolen another people's land, we have committed genocide, and we are guilty of war crimes. Of course, this is all irrelevant, all that matters is G-d's will and we have that on our side. If we chose to argue for Israel in a secular sense we will be defeated, we are without a case, but we do not need to conform to the accepted cannons of man. The opinions of men do not matter they are powerless against G-d. To ensure Israel's survival we need to honor G-d's will and nothing else! Let us keep G-d on with us and not even try to persuade any one else They have always hated us and they will always hate us, even when we do conform to their ideas of "morality.