Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Jewish Faith

This week's Torah portion (Chukat-Balak) tells about the first wars of the Jews on their way to The Land of Israel. They had to fight against the nations therein as well as against those who tried to prevent them from reaching their inheritance. The Torah alludes to the might and valor of Sichon, king of Emori, and of Og, king of Bashan. But the Jews handily defeated them - knowing G-d wrought them these victories.

This faith is lacking today. Incessantly they present us with pressures and problems we must face up to; Some of which are true, and some but illusions. All the while they cower with timidity. These political circles have only one type of solution to every problem - our surrender. Were we to take a stand on some vital issue, some real concern, these polititicos would immediately jump up and declare, "The Arabs will never agree to it." This leads to the usual solution; That we must further compromise, retreat and fold.

We need to know - we did not succeed in returning to the Land of Israel, and in freeing up large territories thereof, with our own strength. Far from it. By the rules of Nature, we had no such realistic possibilities. We prevailed against 7 Arab nations only because The Creator of the universe served as our right arm. Anyone who participated in the wars of Israel can tell stories of multiple miracles that occurred during the battles. Only due to the protection of Our Father in heaven did we survive against all odds.

A Slippery Slope

This is the crux of the matter. Without faith in G-d we keep sliding down with more compromises and more retreats - which will never end. This, after all, is today the Arab enemy's mindset. Having realized they can't beat us in war, they resolved to nip and tear at us over and over again; By tearing away more and more property, by wanting to infest us with tens of thousands of refugees - they mean to enfeeble us and, eventually, to beat us.

Unfortunately their strategy is working. You doubt it? Just sum up everything all Israeli administrations accomplished in the last 25 years and you'll see how each one contributed another step, one bigger one smaller, to this slippery downward slide. The Arabs did not move even one millimeter. But we always feel the need for more "progress" (read: compromise, retreat or fold).

When we decided to go through with that awful operation of uprooting the Gaza Strip and handing it over to our worst enemies, at the expense of critical property and of Jews who lived there (and nearby) for generations, some Israelis thought a sweet end would justify the cruel means. These people thought we'd then be able to solidify our hold on Yehuda and Shomron with American sanction. That Israeli administration explained the expected "achievement" for our self-sacrifice; The iron-clad claim on Yehuda and Shomron would be our reward for driving out tens of thousands of citizens from their homes and properties.

Today it's clear just how flawed was their argument. America today deems the West Bank settlements as illegitimate. We may have gotten some letter and signature for the Yehuda & Shomron issue, but it's only a worthless piece of paper (added to many such collections of paper). The American administration now is tightening the screws to stop all building in the West Bank. Also included in the American ban is construction in various areas and neighborhoods inside Israel proper, including Jerusalem! Again we retreated and folded - and got nothing in return.

A Brief Response

If, G-d forbid, we submit to American demands and freeze construction in these areas, the dismemberment of Israel will continue. It's not for nothing the Arabs are going all out in this direction, for Yehuda and Shomron is the only single area where we actually laid stronger foundations in the Land of Israel, despite the retreats and compromises.

We have to do all we can to tell the Americans, "NO!". It's high time Jews tell the world that the holy Land of Israel is ours, Jerusalem the holy city is ours - and we will continue to build and lay roots there. If we speak clearly, firmly, and out of faith - we will be victorious.

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