July 4, 2008 3:08 pm at 3:08 pm #587886
This July 4th take a moment to think how much hakara hatov we owe the US government for the tens of millions of dollars it pays towards helping many frum families stay afloat. While medicare, food stamps, section 8 housing, and early intervention programs were not set up only to help Jews there are thousands of our brethren, both full time bnei torah and even some full time workers, who could not survive without these programs. May HKB”H bless our generous country with continued success.July 8, 2008 2:56 pm at 2:56 pm #634021
Aleen1, I agree, we need to be makir tov to the USA for all the good that its protection, for the good that it stands for and for allowing Yiden the opportunity to observe the Torah.
The Jewish community should especially keep this in mind when government forms are submitted and in our business dealings. What is the message to our government and the citizens we interact with everyday when our prisons have frum populations requiring glatt kosher, minyanim, daf yomi?
However, that said, there is also no kiddush hashem to accept all the government handouts you mention, as a regular source of income. This is not what Hashem has in mind when we ask for osher v’chovod. With Hashem’s assurances, frum families and bnei torah live(d), survive(d) and stay(ed) afloat with dignity without these programs – poseach es yadecha u’masbia…July 9, 2008 6:54 am at 6:54 am #634023
Awesome post Aleen1! – as a plus i live a block from where they were doing the fireworks in Lakewood, it was pretty cool & funny watching people scrambling to find parking spots all over our block.July 9, 2008 6:37 pm at 6:37 pm #634024
We could also add Medinas Yisroel to the list of greatest financial supporters of Torah in the world, as well. They deserve the same hakaras hatov as does the wonderful USA.July 16, 2008 3:02 am at 3:02 am #634027
We could also (but most of us would not have the courage to) add Medinas Yisrael as one of the greatest Macharivei Torah in recent history and in the present. ViKal Lihavin, despite the welfare state that is gradually disappearing in there.
Those who live in Israel and benefit from them do owe them hakaras hatov for that; but let’s be quite clear: An American Jew owes hakaras HaTov, gratitude, to the United States of America, under whose protection, and on whose land, that Jew lives. That same America Jew owes NOTHING to the State of Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Turkey, or any other foreign sovereignty, unless that person has benefited from that State.July 20, 2008 7:50 pm at 7:50 pm #634028
Hakatan, once again I ask you to back up your statements with facts. Is the Israeli gov’t of “macharivei Torah” as bad as the Nazis, the communists, the crusaders, the cossacks, the Romans, etc. etc. etc. in terms of the number of shuls and yeshivas they destroyed? How is it that the number of yeshiva bochurim in Israel now is more than possibly at any time in history? Is the Israeli army short of weapons so that they don’t have enough bombs to blow up all the shuls and yeshivas that you claim they would really like to. Could they not shutter every shul and yeshiva in one day, if they were actually macharivei torah as you describe. What is holding them back?
After a while, one can’t debate you, because you simply have been so force fed a diet of sinas chinam that you can’t see the simple emes that every child sees, that because of the benevolent policies of the Israeli govt, and their constant assistance, they have been partners in a rebirth of Torah learning and the blossoming of the klal and the land to an extent not seen in 2000 years. What actually is the biggest bracha you nebach interpret as a klala. I feel sorry for you, because while my heart is bursting with joy over what the medina has accomplished (of course at the same time mourning the 23,000 kedoshim, who are the soldiers and terror victims), you live your life in a deep depression over all kinds of imagined wrongdoings without any clue as to the gadlus of our nation. This gadlus is the medina’s concern for each yochid (Mrs. Goldwasser), the elderly, our establishment of countless shuls and yeshivas, our building of universities where top level research in physics, chemsitry, biology, and engineering takes place. Our use of this technology to provide a state of the art military, economy, health system and agriculture right smack in the middle of a dessert. The fact that her citizens are for the most part very happy, despite all the hardships.
Let us dance for joy at the RBSH’s gift, and let us daven for continued siyata deshmaya, and may an infectious sense of hakaras hatov and simcha spill over to the nonfrum, as well, so the nation joins together singing and dancing b’ahavah g’murah in a complete teshuvah, and may we see no more tzaros.July 21, 2008 5:28 am at 5:28 am #634029
Pashuteh Yid, Nobody in this forum (or elsewhere, as far as I’ve seen) ever said the Israeli goverment wanted to blow up shuls and yeshivas, though if you speak to the administrators there (and listen to the ones who come to collect here), the government seems to be doing whatever it can, financially, to shutter those mekomos hakedoshim.
But that was not really why I labeled Zionists “Macharivei Torah”. A few select reasons might be the following: The early Zionists directly and intentionally stripped their newly acquired citizens of as much Yahadus as they possibly could, using various wicked means. ViRabbim Od KaHeinah ViKaheinah. Those early citizens’ children and grandchildren are so far removed from Judaism, all the while being born and bred in a nominal Jewish State. Is that not enough of a tragedy? Was there not enough of a loss of Torah from that alone?
In any event, a good Zionist was quoted as having said that “Anti-Semitism will become our friend…a useful tool”, meaning, he would hope for Anti-Semitism so he could use the EXPECTED SYMPATHY GAINED AFTER THE SHEDDING OF INNOCENT JEWISH BLOOD, G-D FORBID, to use in creating their State. Another Zionist said, “One cow in Palestine is worth more than all the Jews of Europe.” Yet another prominent Zionist said during WW II, “If I had a choice of saving all the Jews [from the Nazi death camps] and bringing them to another country and saving only half and bringing them to Eretz Israel, I would undoubtedly choose the latter.” That was then, a matter of historical record. And now? The whole suicidal “peace process”, a folly unparalleled in recorded history? And the brutalization and expulsion of its citizens in Gaza, who are still homeless, depressed, jobless and struggling with other assorted related issues years later? Much of that is on YouTube, so you don’t even need to study history to learn about the modern-day atrocities. Does the above not make those responsible for that, “Machrivei Torah”, CH”V?
If, after understanding the above (and more), you’re still able to wax poetic about how the medina is so concerned with each yachid (really? when, as widely reported, it let a Druze soldier guarding Kever Yosef bleed to death on the battlefield when they suddenly and cowardly withdrew and allowed the Arabs to deface and disgrace that holy site) and feel that Israel’s great advances in technology, science and other fields are more important than the above and that the existence of the many Yeshivos and shuls is somehow a great credit to Zionism as opposed to them having their own motivations, then I suppose we are dealing with different morals, or maybe just different ground rules, so to speak.
Of course, as you correctly imply, Jews are free to be religious Jews in Israel, and the Israeli government is certainly not like the communists who outright denied the Jews the opportunity to worship, nor like the others you mentioned that persecuted Jews just because of their religion. Nor does the government love its religious Jews, either, of course. But, again, there is much, much more to the story, so a comparison based on that alone would lie somewhere between simplistic and false.
With all due respect, it is not I who has been force-fed a diet of anything (unless you consider basic historical knowledge and an open mind, to be “force-feeding”). You, however, Pashuteh Yid, as an Israeli, cannot seem to see past whatever lifestyle you maintain there, to the many wrongs that were perpetrated there on our fellow Jews by their fellow Jews, in a nominal Jewish State.
Incidentally, that your fellow citizens are, for the most part, happy, like you claim (despite half of their children living below the poverty line, and in such an advanced country, to boot) is a testament to the gadlus of the Am HaNivchar, not to their Zionist rulers. Since you live there, I am not denying your reason to be makir tov to the Zionists under whose protection you live. But, again, in the balance of things, I would place them, overall, far to the opposing side of machzikei Torah. And nowhere have I called it sinah, and as I mentioned above, it is certainly not for chinam. That’s to set the record straight.
As to your question: aren’t there lots of shuls and yeshivos there? Yes. Does the Israeli government deserve any special credit for that? I don’t think they have done anything particularly praiseworthy, and I do think that the ever-increasing lack of funding is one that raises questions, to say the least.
While, in light of the above and more (like the gedolim’s almost unanimous call against the State’s establishment), I would, therefore, certainly disagree that this “gift” is one worth dancing for joy over (since doing so would be, at best delusional, despite the silver linings in the cloud that undeniably exist), however, I do join with you in hoping that all of our people come together in serving Hashem and bringing the redemption speedily in our time.July 21, 2008 1:27 pm at 1:27 pm #634030
Hakatan’s points are self-explanatory common sense. (An d obviously correct.)July 22, 2008 4:02 pm at 4:02 pm #634031
Hakatan, a rebuttal.
First, you seem like a sincere individual, but it is propaganda that you have been fed that has affected you. It is unfortunately rampant in the Yeshiva World, and you are not the only victim. Second, I live here in the comfortable USA.
Regarding your points:
1) The govt being short of money and choosing not to support yeshivos, does not mean it is trying to shutter them, any more than if a meshulach comes to me and I can only give him a meager amount for his yeshiva does not mean I am trying to shutter his yeshiva.
2) Regarding the lack of yahadus. Please show me anywhere in the world where the percentage of frum Jews is higher. The vast majority of Israelis today make a seder and I believe even fast on YK.
3) The reform movement began in Europe long before the Zionists and the medinah existed, and had already made a big percentage, possibly even the majority, of Jews to be non-frum. If chinuch was so perfect in Europe, how did this happen?
Regarding the statments of the zionist leaders during the holocaust, they are all lo maaleh vlo morid. The holocaust was perpetrated by the Nazis and the local anti-semites and tHere is not a single thing the zionists or anybody else could have done. Those statements by the Zionists are offensive and childish, but are essentially meaningless. I used to be bothered by them, and I read the Unheeded Cry by Rav Weissmandl, but I later came to believe nothing could have been done anyway. Let me explain. Supposedly there was some crazy deal that one could bribe the Germans and buy them trucks, and then they would save some Jews. Do you really believe this? EVery thing the Nazis did was based on deception and lies. Hitler violated every agreement he ever signed. In addition, the Nazis would always try to win confidence and then stab in the back. They would say before an aktion that everybody needs to assemble in the town square and leave their homes unlocked, and we are only going to take a census or something similar and anybody not showing up will be shot. SO they would all show up, and sure enough the Nazis would deport the group, and then raid their houses and plunder.
When they got to the camps, they were told they should remove their valuables for a shower, the Jews complied and then were gassed. Countless examples.
It is quite logical that the Nazis after receiving the 1 million dollar bribe for trucks would likely use those same trucks to go after even more Jews, now gaining more money plus more dead Jews in the process. Who in the world would trust a Nazi. In retrospect, maybe we should be glad that that bribe money was spent building up EY or for other causes, remaining in Jewish hands, rather than supplying the Nazis in some dubious deal.
So the Zionists, despite whatever they supposedly did or did not say, had absolutely no control over the killings, even a ki hu zeh.
Regarding Gush Katif, I felt terrible and totally opposed the expulsion, and had friends there. But nevertheless, there was a legitimate argument put forth that why should 30,000 or more soldiers be at risk to protect 8,000 people? It is not for me to decide, as majority rules in Israel, and they elected Sharon with full knowledge of what he was going to do. My only taynah was that if you don’t want to protect them, at least let them stay at their own risk, and don’t expel them. Why this was not done, I don’t know.
However, keep in mind that supposedly Rav Shach said that one should give up land for peace, and Rav Ovadiah Yosef supposedly wrote the same thing a while back, as well. So leshitascha, the right thing was done, anyway. The fact that it wouldn’t lead to peace was obvious to me, but could not be proved before the expulsion.
4) I am not saying everything the govt does is right. It has a long way to go, but you need to see the tremendous matanah the RBSH gave us that we have any Jewish gov’t at all over there. We have a beautiful land and country and beautiful people being moser nefesh to build and improve it each and every day.
5) Even the nonfrum in the govt have a pintele yid. I just read in Mishpacha magazine that Levi Eshkol every Shabbos would sit in a special chair and sing his father’s and grandfather’s niggunim.
6) You need to read Rav Teichtal’s Eim Habanim Smechah, where he excoriates the frum community for not working together with the Zionists to build a frum state. INstead they operated with their usual cherems and bans, and the Zionists were left to do the work alone. It is no wonder the state is not frummer. Finally, he brings a shtarker raya that the zionists have tremendous zchusim. We know that the land will vomit out sinners. Since the land hasn’t vomited them out, it is a rayah that they are chaviv in the eyes of the RBSH.July 22, 2008 5:02 pm at 5:02 pm #634032
Your whitewash of history hardly excuses the Zionists collaboration with the Nazi’s ym’s in exterminating European Jewry to furtherance their goal of a State.July 22, 2008 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm #634033
Adolf Eichmann himself said that the assistance provided to him by the Zionist Rudolf Kastner was immeasurable in keeping Hungarian Jewry quiet before deporting them to Auswitz.
Kastner hid the Vrba-Wetzler report (which was a report from 2 Auswitz escapees) from Hungarian Jewry, who he helped lead to believe that the death trains were merely taking them to resettle. He knew (unlike the rest of Hungarian Jewry) that they were death trains.
Kastner (to quote a Zionist/Israeli court) “sold his soul to the devil” by selling the lives of half a million Hungarian Jews to Adolf Eichmann in exchange for his crony train.
I can quote you from Jews directly involved in the rescue efforts that will testify that the Zionists were working in cahoots with the Nazi’s ym’s against the rescue and helping the Nazis keep the Jews on the way to the camps quiet. [i.e. Rabbi Chaim Michael Dov Weissmandl and others.]
I can quote you from Nazis directly involved working with the Zionists that will testify that the Zionists were working in cahoots with them (the Nazi’s ym’s) and were immeasurable in the assistance provided. [i.e. Adolf Eichmann]
I can quote you from other Zionists that will testify that the Zionists were working in cahoots with the Nazi’s ym’s. [i.e. Ben Hecht and the Zionist Judge who tried Kastner]
And after the war, Kastner testified in Nuremberg in SUPPORT of several Nazis, in their war crimes trial. He got some Nazi’s ACQUITTED.
And of course the Zionists derailed the trucks for Jewish lives deal by tipping off the British authorities to arrest the Jewish emissary sent from Europe to the middle east to facilitate the deal.
The Zionists have millions of Jews blood on their hands in their efforts to establish their State.August 1, 2008 3:27 pm at 3:27 pm #634034
well, I am kind of coming into this late, as I was not able to read most of these postings this past week but allow another member of the “pro’freikeit” brigade to add a few words to this argument. Pashute Yid gave such a wonderful original posting and another extraordinary rebuttal that I have little to add. History , fashioned by the Being who leads us all, the Bashefer, will prove which side isa right. For now, the ones who are on the side of those “terrible Tzionim” is winning hands down. As mentioned, we are back in our “Eretz Hakodesh”, being able to do mitzvos in a real, true Yiddish atmosphere. At least 25% of the Klal is fully observant and probably another 50% traditional. Not bad for a place that the extremists consider a place of “macharivei Torah”. I will not comment on the last posting, in reference to Kastner. Sheker has many legs and runs fast but ,ultimately, the Emess will come out.However, I do want to address “Hakatan”‘s mention of the sayings of some Zionists. btw,how about giving us some real sources for these quotations, rather than some imaginary anonymous quote?. I can remember some very offensive quotes by some people that you consider “gedolim”. Who said that Chabad is not part of Klal Yisroel and you cannot be “meshadech’ with them? (No prize for the name of this Gadol)
Who called good Jews kofrim because their “sin” was to believe that it was time to go back to our own homeland? (Again , no prize for his name).
Whose opposition to the medinah has brought some of his supporters to join hands with the most evil and dangerous sonei yisroel? (no prize there either)
If words and phrases would be so insulting, we can find plenty of terrible words on the extremist side too. Forget the words, look at the facts, and reality, being a sign from the Almighty, for now, is on our side , the Tzioni side.August 1, 2008 8:51 pm at 8:51 pm #634035
1. Torah Jews were in Eretz Yisroel LONG before the tziyonim. Torah Jews started (And kept continiuing) to settle Eretz Yiroel as far back as the late 1800’s. The tziyonim get not thanks for the Torah in Eretz Hakodesh. They have only been an obstacle.
2. The tziyonim are losing. Their philosophy is dying. Their adherents are leaving. Zionism is rotting and dying from within.August 3, 2008 2:35 am at 2:35 am #634036
rabbiberlin; the Zionists are trying to TAKE AWAY money from the Yeshivos and Torah Jews (who pay more in taxes than they receive back) in Eretz Yisroel.
If you have any defense to the crimes that the convicted mass murderer Kastner did, I can only pity you.
Meanwhile since the advent of Zionism, we must deal with more terrorism and killing in the holy land than the time preceding the Zionists. (Is that the “winning” you are referring to??) Before they turned the Arabs into full-time Jew-haters we lived relatively benignly in Arab countries (unlike the constant mass murder and harrasment the European/Chrtian countries constantly subjected us to.) Now they are in a constant war, losing Jewish soldiers every day since their founding.
Did anyone mention to you their history? Like cutting off the payos of the Yeminite yidden and kidnapping their children?August 3, 2008 4:00 am at 4:00 am #634037
well bogen, Your answer is so far devoid of reality that I should not even answer you but i am fighting “michamos hashem”, so allow me to answer you.
First, before i answer your comment no.2, who are the “tzyionim’you are referring to? is it R’chaim Shmulewitz zz’l? Or the Ponevitzer Rav zz’l? OH, maybe it is the heiliger Vishnitser rebbe, the “imrie chaim” ,zz’l? Nah, you probably mean the Gerrer rebbe, the Bies Yisreol, zz’l. After all, al lthese past gedolim did was livein Eretz yisreol, build it and participate in the nasty “medinah”. So, before i answer you ,please tell me which Tzyionim you are pointing to.
Second, as far as number 1, Torah jews (and others) were indeed in Eretz Yisroel from the early 18th century. But they had no way of being “mefarnes’ themselves excdpt by charity, they had no way of defending themselves from the enemies and lastly, if you think that they would prosper under Arab rule, then you are truly hallucinating.
I will not even address the silly remark that the “tzyionim’ get no thanks for Torah In Eretz Ysroel. Check how much money is spent every signel year on Moisdois hatorah. It might ,at least, make you keep quiet and not say stupid things.August 3, 2008 6:01 am at 6:01 am #634038
berliner – Those Tzadikim were anything but zionists. Bad attempt to win an argument using falsity.August 3, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am #634039
shalom in IsraelMember
Unlike the other posters here, I do live in Israel. I am not going to whitewash everything and say that everything is wonderful, because it isn’t. The yeshivas are struggling; the kollels are struggling; families are struggling, there is definitely an anti-hareidi sentiment in the knesset, but you know what – even if the Israeli government gave us a fraction of what they give now – we would still be obligated to have hakaras hatov.
We have to understand that the majority of people in Israel (and in government) are not Rashaim – they fall into the category of tinok sh’nishbar. They have no appreciation for authentic Torah – they fail to understand that Israel can’t survive only by physical power. It’s sad but facts.
We have to also understand that H’ in his ultimate wisdom has deemed that the dire financial situation is what we deserve right now. Perhaps (and I don’t claim to be a “Nasi” here), if there was less sinas chinam, there would be less financial problems.
As of right now I know of 5 good kids, from good families who don’t have yeshivas for next year – all of them Sephardim. How many tears can a Mother weep? How much begging of Roshei Yeshivas can a Father do? How many families are being forced to changed their names – Dagan becomes Fisher; Ben Lulu becomes Lobenstein; how much already? How much suffering do these good families have to bear?
Ahh – perhaps the answer to our initial point of “What can the Country to for you” lies in our attitude to lack of hakaras hatov, and too much sinas chinam.August 3, 2008 2:42 pm at 2:42 pm #634040
The government in Israel takes more money from frum Jews than it gives to frum Yeshivas. Break the relationship like Brisk (and Satmar and others) does. Don’t take their dirty money and don’t pay them taxes. We’ll be better off.August 3, 2008 9:59 pm at 9:59 pm #634041
If only people had listened to the Gedolim…
If only people had listened to the Gedolim…
All these troubles could’ve been avoided…
History has proven the Brisker Rav, the Satmar Rebbe… right…August 4, 2008 2:51 am at 2:51 am #634042
UJM, very interesting. Let’s hear the proof. BTW, let’s honestly consider some facts. The chareidim claim that the zionists cost lives with certain policies during WW2. The zionists claim that the chareidim cost lives by not listening to them to get out and go to EY long before. (Just saw on web from the wife of one Rebbe, that her last words were that we should have listened to the zionists, but I can’t corroborate.)
Since neither you nor I are historians and we have no way to be machria, let’s leave it even steven. It was not the fault of the chareidim, and it was not the fault of the zionists. You know whose fault it was? It was the Nazis.
So given a 50-50 doubt, how do you pasken? The answer is on the side of ahavas yisroel, and you befriend the zionists, and work together with them, instead of this anti-zionist sinas chinam which pours forth from the chareidi world.
You want to know something else. In the two yeshivas where arguably the most anti-zionist sinah and vitriol emanated, one from the chassidish world, and the other from the chareidi world, there have been major splits, and members of each have fought each other right on the Bais Medrash floor, and this lovely scene has made the papers over the last few years. Do you want to know why this has happened? Because when there is a problem with midos, it eventually causes problems from within. Had midos tovos and ahavas yisroel been the focus, instead of gayvah and sinah, this would never have occurred. Even the thought would have been so impossible as to be ridiculous.August 4, 2008 2:40 pm at 2:40 pm #634043
Pashuteh, There has been no acrimonious splits in Brisk. Please get your facts straight before spewing any vitriol loshon hora. As far as factions that have had splits, all of Klal Yisroel has experienced acrimonious splits since galus started. (Beis Hillel/Beis Shammai as well as less noble splits with Tzidukim, Karaites, Reform, etc.) Its a tzara we have unfortunately always have had to deal with. (And btw, how many multiple times have your zionists buddies split. Count them. They’ve been splitting one faction with another throughout their history.)August 4, 2008 4:25 pm at 4:25 pm #634044
well, count me squarely on the side of Pashute Yid and his very reasoned comments. I have littel to add to these true sentiments. to will hill, these zaddikim may not be “tzyionim’ in howc you understand zionism, but they were fully zionists in my eyes. The Vishnitzer rebbe zz’l went to the ballot box to vote with shirah, the Ponevitzer Rva zz’l put up the Israeli flag up on Yom ha-atazmaut, R.Chaim Shmuelewitz zz’l called ALL those who died in the YOm Kippur war “kedoshim” and the gerrer rebbe zz’l, the “imrei emess” encouraged his chassidim to move to then-Palesine and so saved gerrer chassidus from oblivion. To me, they were all zionists because they saw the kedusha in Eretz ysorel and lived there, built it and saw the good in all Jews.
Chuck Schwab’s comments are so ridiculous that they do not even merit a reply. The “good” Arabs indeed! He must be smoking that illegal, hallucinating stuff.August 4, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm #634045
berliner, participating in a necessary evil, which all the tzaddikim acknowledge it is, does not make them an accessory to the zionists.August 5, 2008 1:15 am at 1:15 am #634046
Instead of everybody offering THEIR own opinion, why not rely on the gedolim’s opinion on the matter?? If the gedolim took an opinion, who is anyone else to differ??
Frankly if you look at either the quality or quantity of the Rabbonim, you will see that they lean heavily in opposition to zionism. I don’t mean whether to participate or not in Israeli elections. I mean zionism itself.August 5, 2008 2:47 pm at 2:47 pm #634048
well, will hill, we will have to agree to disagree. I think that Eretz Yisroel today is a manifestation of the hashgacha perotis and you think it is evil. The lines are drawn pretty starkly. As the years go by and Eretz Yisroel , IY’H, grows stronger and better, we shall see who has the correct opinion on this.
to bogen, as we don’t have a sanhedrin, there is no compulsion in counting the various views. You are fully entitled to your opinion and me to mine.The future, and actually the present,will prove one of us wrong. Right now, I am putting a small wager on Eretz yisroel being a manifestation of the Eibershter’s will.August 5, 2008 3:37 pm at 3:37 pm #634049
Joseph: I was not referring to Brisk.
Rabbi of Berlin: Thank you for your kind support. We “apikursim” must stand up for each other.August 5, 2008 5:03 pm at 5:03 pm #634050
It’s amazing that this blog was supposed to be about how thankful we are to America, and now we are once again debating Zionism. Nice try anway, Aileen.
Be that as it may, here are my two cents worth.
Firstly, Rabbi of Berlin, you are slipping again with your mocking of Mr. Schab and unjustly accusing him of smoking …Just reminding you of your sincere commitment not to do that anymore. Personally, I thought Schwab made good solid points. Sorry you don’t agree. No reason to hurl false accusations though.
Joseph, Will Hill and Bogen ,(and the others that posted here explaining the chareidi position) I agree with all your points. The bottom line is that we follow our gedolim in theirattitudes and perpectives, in fact they shape our thinking, so nothing Poshut or Berlin will say can make the slightest difference, but to shake our heads sadly at them.
To Rabbi of Berlin. Why discuss the gerrer and vizhnitzer rebbe when you have a much better raya. The greates zionist of all time was none other than MOSHE RABBEINU. No one loved and desired eretz Yisroel as much as he. Thos tzaddikim and Rebbes you mentioned are the same type of “tzioni” as Moshe rabbeinu. The thing is that the prevalent understanding of the term “zionist” refers to people who, though Jewish, sought to conquer the land for protection and desire to have autonomy. NoT to fulfill the mitzvah of yishuv eretz yisroel, because if they did, they would recognise that one doesnt choose one mitzvah and discard 612. The zionists of the time when the state was in its infancy did all that they could in their power to throw away Torah and yiddishkeit, and be “modern”. They have unfortunately succeeded in pulling away untold numbers of yiddishe neshomos from yiddishkeit. This is all documented and esily verifiable. This is part of the reason why the gedolim were in oposition, besides for the crux of the issue which was may we, al pi halacha, “force” the geulah to come by taking over eretz yisroel. The zionists of today continue in that path, but I think with much less idealism because hakol modim that “zionism” is a dying movement, in its death throes. Just look at all the children of those ardent zionists. They are in America, in Brazil, Europe, all over but in EY. Zionism went the way of every other false “ism” conceived by manAugust 5, 2008 5:58 pm at 5:58 pm #634051
Opposing Zionism (which nearly all Gedolim bzman hazeh are) is a separate issue than whether to participate in Israeli politics (out of a necessity, perhaps.)August 5, 2008 6:45 pm at 6:45 pm #634052
Hakattan’s post was more like a masterpiece, with such obvious truth, that i urge you to read it again with an open heart and mind
A rebutal to your rebuttal, (cuz you seem to be a sincere guy, though you were nebach force fed false information over the years.)
1. You state that by the medina not supporting yechivos it is like you not giving a meshulach. False comparison, because the “government” is not supposed to be biased. You have no onligation to any particular yeshiva. But If the US govt would privide money to all private schools except for yeshivas you would see that they are being unfair? The govt. is sinking alot of money into other “more worthy” secular pursuits, without giving the fair share to the yeshivos. In that way they are subtly trying to shutter them up. It has gotten worse in recent years as they cut more and more of their funding. Is it any wonder that you see pehaps ten times more meshulachim from EY in the last decade than you ever have?
2. Regarding yahadus: Just one point. It has recently been reported that the majority (dont remember exact percentage) of secular israeli youth does not recognise the name “Moshe Rabbeinu”. Lehavdil, which american child does not know George Washington? Is that not a churban?! To deny these kids our own history??? The fact that many fast on Yom Kippur is one of the last few vestiges of “culture” that has stayed with them. May it be the mitzvah that will ultimately bring them back.
3. I hear your point about it having been a waste to send money to the nazis. Its hard to debate a point in history when you dont really know for sure what would have been. There definitly were cases of bribes to the nazis that worked. But the question is, at what cost the risk?? Let me put it to you this way: Imagine chas vesholam a child of yours was kidnapped for a ransom. The kidnappers demand one million dollars. Would you take the risk and send it to them? After all, they have no chezkas kashrus at all, and might just take the money and c”v! “elimiante the evidence.” Of course you would take any chance, whatever the cost to save your child and not save the money!!! We are talking about yiddish lives over here that weren’t worth 100 bucks to these people. Additionally, there is ample evidence of them not only not trying their best but even aiding and collaberating with th nazis y”s. That makes them partners in the murder machine which was Germany.
You say the zionists had no control over the killings?? I am not a history buff, but I have heard of stories where they would send back boatloads of jews as they reached the port of Palestine, knowing full well that it would lead them to their doom.
But you know, though the Zionists were definitely guilty of shedding innocent Jewish blood in the name of “zionism”, the main charge we have against them is their trying to destroy yiddishkeit, the way it has been practiced over the ages. As is well known, to destroy our guf is not as bad as to destroy our neshamas. There are countless examples in the Torah for that. And therefor, even one who SUPPORTS zionism with money is guilty of the evils they perpetrate. (see midrash says, footnote in parshas Pinchas about this, where he makes this point regarding why we treat the midianim much harsher than the mitzrim)
4. i do feel it is a tremendous matanah to be able to live and visit eretz yisroel. But Do you think if it would have stayed in british hands we would not have been able to? Modern planes and such have given us this availability. Not the medina
5. No One denies that a non-frum has a pintele yid. The problem is that the zionists try to extinguish it while the chareidim try to fan it into a glowing flame.
6. I can not comment on what Rav Teichtal says, but the fact that you say that since the land has not vomited the sinners it shows that they sre not sinners is so off! Are you trying to say there are no sinners?August 5, 2008 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm #634053
well, think BIG had time today for two long postings and I will try to engage the debate in a civil manner. By the way, what I said about chuck schwab was surely a “milse debedichuso” and I would tell him that personally if I ever would meet him. Sometimes, a hint of humor says more than an angry posting. it is not really an insult…But I digress.
The tragedy was that secular zionims grasped the moment and we. as frum yidden, did not.Imagine what would have happened if , at the turn of the 20th century, the Polish rebbes and their chassidim, the Litvishe Roshey yeshiva and their yeshivos would all have made alyah en masse.They would have founded a dozen Bnai berak’s and they would have been at the forefront of the government. And yes, they also would have had to fight as soldiers and work as farmers, like our own ancestors did. However, this is what we neglected.
Today, we are playing catch up and, boruch hashem, we are winning. More and more jews in israel are shomrei torah and the majority of olim are frum. The political scene is still troubled but we are making progress. My contention is that frum yidden should absolutely be enaged in political zionims and be engaged in the medinah-whether as soldiers or workers or farmers or just living there.
I am absolutely convinced that the majority of frum yidden in Eretz ysroel, the ones who vote for the agudah, are secret zionist in thier hearts. THat is, they want an independent, vibrant and free Eretz Ysroel under OUR control. I cannot say the same about degel hatorah,but it is clear from all waht the agudah oilam is doing that they are political zionists at heart. Not enough yet, because there are still problems with army, education and so on…but I call them zionists. On a personla level, I think that the kippah serugah machaneh has it right, but this is a debate for another time.
I will finish with the 800-pound gorilla in the room, and this is, of course, the shittah of Munkatch and present-day Satmar. This shitta is what you point to and what others on this website espouse. It is exclusively built upon the sugyah of sholos shevuos at the end of kesubos.
In his sefer “chibas Zion”, written in the early 1850″s, way before satmar or munkatch was even born, R’Zvi Hirsh kalisher gives an absolutely convincing rebuttal to this. If you wish, I’ll be happy to post the shakla vetarya.
Anyway, my point is that, in Eretz ysroel today, the rebbes and their chassidim , many of the roshei yeshiva and their talmidim have become crypto-zionists. They may not say hallel on yom ha-atzmaut or sing the hatikvah, but they all suscribe to the notion of an independent Eretz Yisroel, under our control. And this is only the right wing of the chareidim. As you move to the other camps, the sefardim, the kippah serugah oilam, the hesder yeshivos, this becomes even more pronounced.
Hakodeh boruch brought us back to our homeland for a purpose, and surely this is to stay there as the am hanivchar.August 5, 2008 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm #634054
If you want a broad-minded and incisive overview on the zionist vs. anti zionist issue, Rabbi Berel Wein has a brilliant series of tapes called “Schisms and Controversies in Jewish history” (or something like that). the last tape in the series deals with our topic. Also, one of the tapes deals with chassidim and misnagdim.August 5, 2008 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm #634055
Your discussion of what amounted to mass murder by the zionists during the holocaust, is effectively a whitewash that you decline to discuss.
Be that as it may, the Netziv, R’ Zvi Hirsh Kalisher, the Talmidei Besht, etc. that you mention desired to SETTLE in Eretz Yisroel. This is a high madreiga that anyone, from Brisk to Satmar to Agudah completely agrees with. That is not zionism. Zionism is CONTROLLING (i.e. governmentally) Eretz Yisroel. This is something the aforementioned Tzadikim expressed no desire and indeed would not contemplate taking control of the land from the Ottomons, the British, or whoever else controlled it. Provide me any source you have indicating that these Gedolim proposed CONTROLLING (governmentally) Eretz Yisroel.
THAT IS THE QUESTION.August 6, 2008 2:37 am at 2:37 am #634056
Rabbi, as you said I did enough long posting for one day, so i will keep this one short. I liked your post, the way you broke it up, though I would not arive at same conclusions. I have no time to debate you ,but dont think that your question is the central or only issue. It is but one small practical question.
Your assumptions about “zionists at heart” is plain funny. They are doing the best they can under the circumstance. since the state is a fact, we will try to gain the most out of it. doesnt mean they believe there should be a state, or agree with the way the state runs.
The fact is that many people were against it, prewar. but once the war happened, many jews were so broken, it was almost like now lets just put our convictions aside, and go home. may we all be zoche to go Home bekarov together with moshiach tzidkeinu.August 6, 2008 2:39 pm at 2:39 pm #634057
Earlier in my postings, I refused to address “joseph” because he called the medinah a nmae that only our enemies call it. Well, I’ll have to bend my rules a bit, otherwise it might be construed as ‘shetikah kehodoah” if I don’t answer his postings.Reb yid,your first paragraph (mass murder by the zionists during the holocaust)is so intemperate that I am tempted to revert to my earlier promise, but I’ll wait a bit.Your total obsession with the “genocidal zionists” (my characterization of your words)and poor Kastner borders on the pathological. Friend, get yourself to a doctor. No one has the full truth in that and most of what you read is an attempt at “whitewashing” one’s own shortcomings in the war. There was enough blame to go around for everyone, and sadly that includes our own Rabbonim, the leaders of American Jewry (mainly reform), FDR, even some of those “evil zionists”.No one came out of this catastrophic era in our history blameless. Some individuals did better than others (Rav Kalmanowicz comes to mind)and there were some real heroes , like the Japanese consul in Vilna (I think) who gave out thousands of visas, Wallenberg, of course, and many many individuals, both Yidden and gentiles, who saved some “seridim” form the all-consuming fire.The true “genocidal murderers” were the Nazis jemach shemom and the blame lies 99% with them. NO, one hundred percent, because they were the brutal criminals who murdered six million of our brothers and sisters and caused the world to go up in flames.So, dear friend, spare us your obsessive comments about the evil zionists and kastner. They serve no purpose except making you feel good. It will not change history one bit and only our G-d in heaven knows the truth.The other “cause’ you have espoused is that the “medinah” is illegitimate, “treif” and that everyone agrees with you.Sorry to say, but very few people agree with you. By the way, you say that satmar agrees with the ‘settling” of Eretz Ysroel. Check “Vajoel Moshe”, the Satmarer Rov zz’l did not agree with this statement but I digress.
To say that the Zaddikim of previous doros, or today, did not desire taking control from the Ottomans, the British (your words)flies in the face of reality. What do you think all the rebbes and roshei yeshiva today are doing? They vote, they participate in governmemnt, they pay and take taxes, they build in Judea and Samaria…Do you sincerely believe FOR ONE SOLITARY MOMENT that they wish they would be better off under Ottoman (arab) rule? Or even Britsh rule? What do you think the zaddik of jerushulaim, R’aryeh levin zz’l, was doing visiting the prisoners? agreeing to british rule??
One must be blind,,deaf and illiterate to think that all the leaders of Orthodox Jewry in Israel think we would be better off under a different rule.This is a fantasy and all you have to do is to be in Geulah for one Friday afternoon to see that the chareidim thrive under that so-called zionist rule as never before.
It is not a perfect world anywhere and there is still a lot to do in Eretz ysroel but to deny that ,boruch hashem, we are thriving in our own homeland as never before is to be totally blind to reality. And yes, if this is what you think, there is nothing I or the facts on the ground can do to open your eyes.
As far as the Gedolim of past years and their opinions. It all started with wanting to go back to eretz yisroel and indeed this was the catalyst. You cannot bring any “rayos” from the nineteenth century about independence because the big empires of the day were still in existence. If you know a bit of history , you will know that it took over 150 years for the many nations of the world to become independent. The British,Austrian, Russian, French, Ottoman empires (and other colonial states) lasted well into the twentieth century. Clearly, in due time, Eretz Ysroel would have become independent. The question was, would it be OURS or ,chas vesholom, under arab rule?
I think that Hakodesh boruch huh guided us in the right direction.August 6, 2008 4:13 pm at 4:13 pm #634058
As is typical, you failed to address the points that were raised. But that is entirely understandable, since you have no logical factual response so you revert to your unreadable run-on hogwash.
YOU referred to the aforementioned Tzadikim as “Zionists.” Of course that is a lie. If anyone asked them if they were Zionists, they would’ve become sick at the thought someone could even ask such a question. And you know that.
And of course you brought no sources, as requested, that the aforementioned Tzadikim supported CONTROLLING (governmentally) Eretz Yisroel, as opposed to the age-old yearning by all Jews (non-zionists) to SETTLE in Eretz Yisroel. The reason you brought no sources, is because you have no sources. And the reason you have no sources, is because there are no such sources. And the reason there are no such sources, is because (as you are intuitively aware) IT IS SHEKER.August 6, 2008 6:46 pm at 6:46 pm #634059
Joseph, vey well put.
Rabbi of Berlin, may i attempt to give you different perspective?
You and Poshut keep saying we have our facts wrong about what happened during ww2 and the founding of the state. We think you have your facts wrong. Its simple. Did you ever hear of the play-on-words, that history is HIS STORY? It is probably safe to assume that both sides are emphasizing (exagerating?) what they want to and ommitting what they dont want known. Every reporter is going to use his own bias to cover the story the way he wants to.
So all we have is to look to our gedolim to understand how to view the war, the zionists etc. Their perspective of daas torah is what counts, not what the “reporters” choose to report.
Btw to insinuate that the tzaddik visiting the prison in any way shows his support of zionism is about as far fetched as can be. What about visiting them to be mechazek them because they are jews?August 6, 2008 7:21 pm at 7:21 pm #634060
yup, reb yid joseph, I did not address your points about the second world war. if you read my posting you will see why.
As far as zionism- I wish you would read my posting more carefully. You have become a prisoner of your own propaganda and are frozen in old terms that have no meaning today.
In the nineteenth century, dozens of nations were under they yoke of the many empires. It took over a hundred years for all of these to become independent. Sooner rather later, Eretz Yisroel would have become an independent country. If you think that it would have been better for Yidden to live under foreign rule- arab, syrian,palestinian-opposed to today’s “medinah” then, bemechilas kevodcho- and with apologies to think big- you must be smoking some good illegal stuff.
Do me favor and ask ANY Yid in Eretz Ysroel if they would give up their sovereignty to their “good’ neighbours, the Arabs. Make sure to book a hasty flight out after you get kicked out of Jerushulaim. Your position is lunacy.August 6, 2008 8:53 pm at 8:53 pm #634061
A yes or no answer will suffice:
Are yidden better off with Eretz Yisroel under the Arabs or under the Jews?
No draying cup please.
(I vote Jews) :-)!!
Of course this can not be compared to Moshiach (b’mhara b’yamaynu), but for the time, it is better.August 6, 2008 9:02 pm at 9:02 pm #634062
As I finish my work day- a quick reply to think Big. I just cannot continue, at nauseum, to discuss the events of WWII and the Holocaust. I don’t think that anyone really knows the ultimate truth. If you believe the worst about someone, you are welcome. I will accept the worst about FDR, because he truly had the jechoiles but I will not accept the worst about jews. And, btw, I have also defended in various forii (plural of forum) our own poor brothers and sisters on why they did not fight back. I am a true believer in “al todin es chavercho at shetagya limkomo”. Not only don’t we know the truth about events in those dark days, who knows how we would have acted ourselves? So, dear think Big and reb yid Joseph, this is my last comment on the Holocaust.
You have actually hit on the head the point where you and I differ when you say that “it is their perspective of daas torah that counts”. This, to a large extent is at the crux of why I have different views on Eretz Yisroel and other issues.
There are two issues here : WHICH gedolim do we follow? I may well have my own and you have yours.
The second point is to what extent is one “mechuyev’ to be “mekabel daas torah”. In an earlier posting I did say that what goes on now as “emunas chachomim’ is a twentieth century invention and I stand by it. The chiyuv of “lo sossur” is for halacha and was never really invoked for “milei de-alma”. For reasons I will not discuss now, this changed in the past generation or so. Suddenly, everything a Godol says is “kodesh kodoshim” and must be adhered to. This view, I suggest, is truly modern and was not the case in our past history. And, because of that, I do not feel that I am bound by ceertain sayings about zionism, or Eretz Yisroel, or college, or kollelim…and a host of other issues.
I predict that,because of that position, Reb yid joseph and jent 1150 and others will call me….guess what..a koifer ! Well, so be it, but you ‘ll have to prove to me where it says that in “milei de-alma’ I MUST follow certain opinions.August 6, 2008 9:54 pm at 9:54 pm #634063
Berlin, Ok. But even the tziyonim are moide what a rasha and rotzeach Kastner is. Ben Hecht was a tziyoni. And the court that tried, and found Kastner to have been a Nazi accessory, in the libel case was a zionist court. Even the Israel supreme court which tried to belatedly cover up Kastner was forced to admit he tried to falsely save his Nazi friends from being convicted in their Nuremberg war crimes trials.August 7, 2008 4:29 am at 4:29 am #634065
Rabbi of Berlin your question is not a fair or valid question for the following reason: Essentially You are asking can it be that we would be better off under Arab rule if it was switched back today. The answer is obviosly no. But that is a very simplistic view.
But as Chuck (yes, chuck) pointed out earlier, for many years the Arabs were benign rulers. Listen first!! Dont shake your head yet!
It is a known fact that in Yemen and other arab ruled countries yidden lived with much more peace with their rulers than did the ashkenazish communities who lived under christian rule. Moslem rule was historically kinder to us than christian rule. You want proof? Just look at how you cant find a single ashkenazi community that survived in one place for more than like 300 years. There were constant expulsions, pogroms,inquisitions, etc. The yidden were never safe. Whereas in Yemen and other places under Arab rule, they stayed in the same place for centuries. (I read that The yemenite community is the oldest jewish community in existence until recently when the majority came to EY. They were in the same place since the first churban!)
My point is that when the Zionists went and created a state, the arab nations BECAME OUR ENEMIES out in the open. So the entire equation is changed. If theoretically speaking, we could turn the clock back to before the state, do you think the Arabs would be our # enemies like they are today? I think not. The entire world history was shaped by the fact that the State was founded. Now the Arab terrorism is the order of the day.
Obviously this point is moot because this is how HaShem willed it and planned it that the Yishmaelim should be the final enemy in this long Galus.
Also, Berlin, would you stop with the smoking illegal stuff business, please? It is as childish as any of the other degrading nonsensical insults on this blog.
To answer your second post today, yes the issue of daas torah is at the core of all of out arguments. To address the two issues you raised:
Which gedolim: If you follow a gadol who is a godol in Torah and Yiras shamayim and respected by other gedolim who hold sdifferently on these issues, good for you. You have on whom to stand. (remember, all true gedolim respect each other, while maintaining their different views)
What extent are we mechuyav: we already discussed this issue at length in another blog (i think the farginning one) if you are really interested in my opinion, and i dont know why you should be, you can read it there.August 7, 2008 3:29 pm at 3:29 pm #634066
“My point is that when the Zionists went and created a state”
Think BIG: I would actually date that to the advent of zionism, when they started angling to get their State and riling up the Arabs (even prior to their getting their State.)August 7, 2008 5:29 pm at 5:29 pm #634067
Think BIG, thanks for your input. BTW, a little humor can be a lifesaver…..without being insulting…
Anyway, in many ways, your position (if it is close to the agudah view)is a lot closer to mine than you imagine. All the talk about zionism is truly a moot point now. Today, we have- beli ayin horah and ken yirbu – over five million Jews in Eretz hakodesh. They vast majority of frum yidden are involved in the “medinah” and I could not care less if you say hallel on yom ha-atzmaut or wave the flag as long as you live in Israel and participate fully in its daily life. Yes, I have problems with the multitude of kollelim and the fact that most (not all) chareidim do not become part of the army and other facets of Jewish life. But that is a different quibble. All in all, you and I do not live there and for that I have tremendous respect for every Jew who lives in Eretz Yisroel.
The argument about Arab rule is also a misnomer. What did you want, that the jews in Russia and Poland and Lithuania continue to suffer under the tsar? or go to the (then) treife medinah?? Obviously, the talmidei habaal shem tov and also the talmide hagro moved to Eretz yisroel because of the mitzvah and because they were able to escape the terrible conditions of then Europe. So, the historical perspective is quite different if you look at the actual conditions that ruled Jewish life in Europe.
My point is simple. Unless you suscribe to shittas Satmar that the medinah is illegal, treif,etc..the argument about classical Zionism is in the past and only of historical interest. As time goes on,the Heimishe yidden in Eretz Yisroel will become more and more part of the fabric of Israeli society and the old arguments about zionism will die out. We will have new challenges about HOW the medinah should be fashioned but then,what else is new?
And, as I am always interested in intelligent opinions so I will check out your writing about emunas chachomim.August 7, 2008 5:35 pm at 5:35 pm #634068
Forget for a moment what Kastner collaborated with Adolf Eichmann. Explain why Kastner testified FOR THE DEFENSE at the behest of Nazi war criminals in Nuremberg (and got at least one acquitted)?
Why was he defending Nazis AFTER THE WAR?August 7, 2008 5:51 pm at 5:51 pm #634069
will hill, you will have to show me the actual testimony of Kastner or tel lme where I can see it. Only then can i answer your question.August 7, 2008 7:40 pm at 7:40 pm #634070
rabbiofberlin: Check the Israeli Supreme Court transcripts from the 1950’s. What Will Hill mentioned is verifiable & factual history.
It is also discussed in the book written about the case by (the zionist) Ben Hecht, called “Perfidy.”August 7, 2008 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm #634071
rabbiofberlin: Read the portion discussing Kastner testifying on behalf (and getting an acquittal) of the Nazi Kurt Becher at http://www.hirhome.com/israel/leaders4_5.htmAugust 8, 2008 12:12 am at 12:12 am #634072
Rabbi of Berlin:
“Yes, I have problems with the multitude of kollelim and the fact that most (not all) chareidim do not become part of the army and other facets of Jewish life. “
Why, pray tell, do you have problems with the multitudes of kollelim?
And how can you have problems with chareidim not being part of the army if you can’t even understand their position?? Believe me, Rabbiof Berlin, if this was Milchamas Hashem they were fighting, the Chareidim would be in the front lines!!
Your second paragraph showed that you unfortunately misunderstood my point again. (Am I being unclear or is is you??? Can someone please help me figure this out?)
The talmidim of the Besh’t and the Gr”a came to settle in EY to fulfill the mitzva of yishuv EY, and not because of the difficult hardships of Europe. Beleive me, the conditions in EY were far more difficult, and it was with such great mesirus nefesh that they came! In fact, the conditions were so unbearable that many ended up moving back within a short time! But that has no bearing on the discussion whatsoever, so i’m not sure why you brought it up.
My point simply was that once (secular)Zionism reared its ugly head, the Arabs began to terrorize the people in EY. Before that, the Moslems/Arabs were not so fanatical about wiping us out. In fact, for centuries the yidden got along relatively fine with them . (relative to how their cousins under christian rule were faring.)
SO, to ask NOW the question you ask, would we be better off if it switched to arab rule, who can even fathom such a scenario? Because the entire equation has changed. We don’t know what history would have looked like had the zionists not done what they did, thus causing the arabs to retaliate the way they do…Now do you understand what i’m saying?
Also, you write, “unless you are like satmar that believes the medina is Treife”…Guys, please correct me if I’m wrong because I’m not the most familiar with this, but to my understanding, ALL chareidi leaders beleive that the medinah is treife! That’s the crux of the whole discussion here, isnt it? The thing with Satmar is that they take it a bit further by actively propagating the idea to its adherents (meaning it is a major focus of their belief system) and in prohibitting their chassidim from benefitting in any way from the zionists, as in visiting the kosel, Kever Rochel, etc. Reb Yoel zt”l was on the forfront of the whole anti-zionist movement.
The rest of us, while believing that what the Zionists did/do was against Torah, and that the founding of the State of Israel was against halacha (thereby making it treif) don’t have a problem benefitting from what is ours, despite the fact that the zionist war helped us get it.
Thats how I understand it, but I stand to be corrected.
Joseph: I hear your point. Thanks for the correction.August 8, 2008 12:39 am at 12:39 am #634073
Thank you for putting it so well.August 8, 2008 1:22 am at 1:22 am #634074
Think big, I appreciate your replies. before I address yours, allow me to write a quick posting to joseph and wil lhill. I did write it earlier today but it seems not to have been posted.
I have to tell you both , in reference to Kastner, that I knew many yidden who absolutely did not agree with YOUR characterization of him as a collaborator….etc.
My own father, zichroinoi livrocho, knew him well in the war and clearly thought that his actions were lishmo. Additonally, here in Monsey, I personally know TODAY a grandson of one of the Poskei hador who , together with his brothers, was saved by Kastner and was on the train. So, it was not only his family but also many,many other people who were saved that day. I don’t want to dwell upon this matter too much because you will continue thinking yours and I will continue saying that no one knows the whole truth.
Concerning his postwar testimonies, I will try to find an exact description of this testimony in Nurnberg. If the transcripts of the Supremne Court have it, this will also suffice. I am saying this because Will hill’s question about postwar testimony is indeed a valid accusation and has more weight than questioning the very nebulous events of the war.
As far as think big’s questions. I will do “punk kapoir” and answer al acharon first.
As far as I know- and I grew up in an agudah environment- none of the Gedolim of the past dor -except the Satmarer Rov zz’l” thought that the medinah was “treif”. You surely know that Reb Itshe meir Levin z’l , the brother-in’law of the gerer rebbe zz’l signed the Declaration of Independence. You also know that the Ponevitzer Rav zz’l put up the Israeli flag on Yom ha-atazmaut. The kloisenburger Rebbe zz’l made alyah to Eretz yisroel to found kiryat Sanz because he wanted a better environment for his chassidim. The same goes for Vishnitz, Belz and others.None of them ever said that the medinah is treif. Their original argument was with secular Zionism which clearly had an idea of a Torah-less medinah, chas vesholom. On this, they united to fight it. Once the medinah was established, no one that I know ever claimed that it should be dismantled ,chas vesholom. Even today, the chareidim have problems with many of the things happening in Eretz Yisroel ( as i do,btw) but they sit in the Knesset or run towns like Bnai brak and Jerushulaim to try to better it.
I don’t know of a bigger proof that they tacitly agree to the medinah and would be aghast if anyone would call it treif. I am not going to address your contention that the founding of Israel was against halacha,due to the constrictions of space. Only the Satmarer rebbe felt that way and I can show you plenty of rebuttals to the question of sholosh shevuos.
IF the medinah would indeed be “treif’ then not one Godol or rebbe could participate in its leadership. Yet- the opposite is true. Quod est demonstrantum, the proof lies in the eating of pudding, you can only believe your own eyes..etc..meaning that the facts show otherwise. Once the medinah was established, the question of sholosh shebuos, of secular zionism ,all became moot. What was ,and is ,important is to build a land where ultimately “umoloh hooertz deah”.
As far as your other questions. I suspect that we will agree to disagree on the question whether it is ‘milchams hashem’ or not. I squarely believe that it is (check the Rambam on this)and because of this, I think that everyone should participate in the defense of Eretz Ysroel. As you might know, there is now a nachal charedi and I say to them, jasher kokachem. (This was tried by the Vishnizer rebbe zz’l fifty years ago but he was cowed by the roshey yeshiva in abandoning the plan. Check your history).
As far as kollelim go, as you know, under your influence , I have decided to be careful with my words, so all I will say is that kollel should be for the best and leave it at that.
Lastly, you and I look at the arab/jewish question from different perspectives. I don’t know if conditions were that much worse in Eretz yisroel than russia,etc. but whatever the facts, it was inevitable that Eretz ysroel would become independent from the ottoman empire, just like Syria, Iraq, Jordan, etc…If you espouse the view that without Zionism, there would now be a paradise-or at least a benign- regime in Eretz yisroel where Jews would prosper, then I beg to differ greatly. Look at saudia Arabia, where no Jews can live and it has nothing to do with Israel. Look at Syria, where the jews were oppressed from way before Zionism, and also others,including Yemen by the way.
MY point is that Hakodesh boruch huh sees the future and He made sure that we could live in our homeland under our own rule, because without us being ‘baalei batim” there we might not have a yishuv there at all. You may disagree with that but history is the only true emess, and it is so because it is guided by the Eibershter.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.