Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Israeli Withdrawal - A Sorrowful Day

This is a headline I wished never to see:
Rage and anguish as Israel expels Gaza settlers
NEVE DEKALIM SETTLEMENT, Gaza Strip (AFP) - The last Jewish settlers have been dragged kicking and screaming out of the Gaza Strip as Israel moved to end 38 years of occupation of the Palestinian territory.
(Just so you don't confuse where the bias of this article lies.)
As smoke rose from tyres set ablaze by protestors, emotions were running high with sporadic scuffles breaking out while settlers and soldiers wept tears of rage and anguish at the historic operation that pitted Jew against Jew.
This is something that should never have happened, something that we are all but forbidden to do, something that once, 1935 years ago, brought about the destruction of the Second Temple. The article continues,
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who risked his political career on the pullout and has been vilified by settlers who once considered him their champion, said he had been moved to tears seeing Jews being hauled from their homes. Sharon, once the pioneer of Israel's settlement programme in occupied Arab land, said he had been moved to tears witnessing the Gaza events unfold and pledged settlement activity would go on. "When I see these families with tears in their eyes and police officers with tears in their eyes, it's impossible to look at this without weeping yourself," he told reporters.

Mr. Sharon, please excuse me if I don't believe a word you are saying. I am, however, very disturbed by this:
[...] members of a New York-based ultra-Orthodox movement threatened to commit mass suicide.
They mean Chabad-Lubavitch hasidim, as confirmed here and as can be seen here. The Rebbe must be spinning in his grave! Such action, even the threat of it, goes 100% against the Torah and the teachings of the Lubavitchers' late Rebbe, R. Menachem Mendel Schneerson. This is a chilul Hashem of the greatest magnitude.

I won't lie to you, I am seething and raging in my heart at this situation; I feel my blood boiling both in anger and frustration as I watch my brothers and sisters being vomited by the Land. Though I am quietly typing at work, inside me there is an unending scream rising up to Heaven asking G-d, "WHY?"

And with tears in my eyes, I quietly hear His voice in my soul with the answer, an answer I already know, "Because it is My will, because My children have forsaken My Torah, and because you all need to learn tolerance and love for one another. Only when these things I tell you have come to pass, will you be at peace in the Land I gave to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and to their seed for all eternity."

The greatest irony is that, of all the secular news sources out there, including the Israeli ones, it's the Christian Science Monitor that publishes the clearest picture of the whole situation.

Biblical ties drive Gaza holdouts
NEVE DEKELIM, GAZA – Even as hundreds of Israeli soldiers and policemen broke through the gate of this settlement Tuesday in an attempt to escort out families ready to leave with their belongings rather than be pulled out by force, Mordechai Yaul was cementing blue and azure ceramic tiles to the wall of a new mikvah, for Jewish ritual bathing. Yaul [...] isn't driven solely by the events of this century or the last.

His timeline dates back to the beginning, he says, when God showed Abraham the Promised Land and told him to go into it. And then, a little more recently, about 3,200 years ago, when Joshua bin Nun - who took over the leadership of the Israelites after the death of Moses - led the people back into the land of Israel after their period of slavery in Egypt.

"The Holy One, blessed be He, promised this land to our forefather, Abraham," says Yaul. "When God promises us something, it's not a game..."

And he's entirely correct. As I pointed out before, G-d's promise was that if we followed his commandments, we would have life and a lengthy stay in the Land. Nothing is more frustrating than the truth told plainly and simply. Hashem help us all.


Rafael V. Rabinovich said...

Dear friend,
I don't think that the threat is all that serious. Rather than actually committing suicide, I believe those chabad bochurim are trying to give the world a message: giving land away is a form of suicide. It puts the Jewish people in danger everywhere: in Eretz Yisroel and in Chutz La'aretz.
It was tried in the Oslo "piece" process days'. The result? Not only an eventual second Intifada in Eretz Yisrael, but an immediate tragedy for Argentinean Jewry: the AMIA Jewish-Community-Building Bombing.
The Arabs will not thank Israel for giving them a piece of the land. They will punish the Jews for it! They will start yet another Intifada, they will seek to take over the WHOLE thing.

Another thing: it is important to know that the thing is not over with the fall of Gush Katif. It only begins. A precedent has been set over by the Sharon regime: Jewish, G-d Given Land is relinquishable. We must protest and struggle against that, for the sake of our bretheren, and our own.

Daniel M. Perez said...

Shalom, Rafael.
I understand what the Lubavitcher bocherim were trying to do. Unfortunately, that act, whether intended or not, was still a chillul Hashem; it just gave more fodder to those who critize the "religious" and "ultra-Orthodox" (which I don't consider Chabad to be) to continue with their slander. There are other ways to protest, to send the same message, without dragging the image of G-d-fearing Jews down into the mud.

I agree with the message, though: giving Land IS a form of suicide, and that is why I am opposed to it 100%. I don't think this will bring any kind of peace to the region; quite the opposite, actually, as the terrorist organizations will now have a secure staging ground for their acts. They have been painfully clear that Gaza is just the start, and we gave it to them on a platter, the blood of all those who fell to terrorist acts shed for nothing. And the sad thing is that Israel has, indeed, set a precedent, for in giving Gaza they have shown the Land is unimportant. To those who wish to see the transfer of land continue, there will be no difference between Gaza and Jerusalem, and Israel will have no leg to stand on once that happens, because without the Torah we have no right to the Land.