Sunday, December 02, 2012

How the Chabad "Tank" Got its Name

A Chabad "tank" in India
On one of the summer nights before the festive 12th of Tammuz, the Rebbe left 770 at about midnight on his way home. Walking towards the car in the driveway, he turned to the street to look at 3 pickups rented from Hertz that the boys would be taking into Manahattan the next day, from which to invite Jews to don tefillin. It was evident the Rebbe drew much pleasure from the view. As his secretary-chauffeur, Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, came to open the door for the Rebbe, the Rebbe said, in Yiddish, "These are tanks to fight assimilation!"

The next day Rabbi Krinsky came to 770 and told the boys the Rebbe called their vehicles "tanks". This news spread quickly and from then on these vehicles became known as "tanks".

... in Manhattan
(Thanks to these "tanks", very many Jews were saved from intermarriage and assimilation by breaking their ties to the foreign Gentile lifestyle.)

A few days later, the Rebbe held a "farbrengen" (chassidic get-together) in 770 in honor of the 12th of Tammuz, and mentioned the "tanks".

He said, that before tanks existed, they only had vehicles on wheels. As such, these vehicles could not traverse terrain that was hilly, ploughed, strewn with rocks or crevices. A tank, however, can handle these landscapes. So, if anyone felt he could not reach some Jews or influence them because of apparent barriers, the "tank" now lets him reach Jews to successfully influence them with sanctity.

He added, that the letters for Tank, in Hebrew, טנק, stand for 3 books by the Rambam, טהרה, נזיקין, קנין
which implies that 1) the boys must be of pure thought, and not think they can gain something from their reachout campaigns, like money, career, honor or "connections" of some kind; and 2) by doing their tasks solely for the sake of the Jew, all "harmful" or negative aspects of that Jew will more easily be eliminated, 3) which will allow the Jew to "buy" or "earn" all things involved with sanctity and Torah.

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