Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz: Back To Gaza


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lipschutz.jpgThe news from Eretz Yisroel fills our hearts with worry. We see Israel pounding its enemies in Gaza. Every day more rockets rain down on Israeli towns and cities. We think of the Lebanon War of 2006 and fearfully wonder where all this will lead.

It’s déjà vu all over again. Once again the tiny country of Israel feels that it has no choice but to fight back against a neighbor whose unremitting acts of terror give it no other choice. After standing by and absorbing kassam after kassam in quiet acquiescence, the elected leaders of the country are now pounding their murderous Gazan enemies.

For too long, they permitted the lethal terrorist organizations to build up an awesome arsenal of rockets and artillery. Now the time has come to admit the failure of the Gaza eviction and rid the place of its ability to wage war against the innocent citizens of Israel.

The entire world, including both the friends and enemies of the Jewish people, had claimed that if Israel were interested in peace, all it had to do was clear out of the Arab territory it was occupying.

In Lebanon they did just that and vacated the security buffer zone they had set up on Israel’s northern border. The move was certified by the United Nations, which passed a resolution calling on the government of Lebanon to disarm Hezbollah and take over the border area. It goes without saying that the resolution was ignored.

In 2005, in an act that defied logic and history, every inch of Gaza was turned over to the Palestinian Authority. Democratic elections were held; the Palestinians’ supposed dream for Gaza was fulfilled. Thousands of Jews were mercilessly thrown out of their homes in the pursuit of a policy which guaranteed that such radical moves would bring relief from the constant terror.

To say that the misguidedness of that policy is self-evident is an understatement. The idyllic Jewish towns in Gaza were taken over by terrorists and are now being used as bases of terror. Daily barrages of kassam rockets rain down on nearby towns. Finally, with elections fast approaching, the Israeli government decided that they must act if they have any hope of beating back Netanyahu. For them, he is more dangerous than Hamas, for he can evict those in power from their thrones, while Hamas can only terrorize the poor people who live within the ever-expanding range of their rockets.

What is the world’s response? Even after witnessing countless atrocities at the hands of Islamic terrorists, the world condemns Israel for fighting back. Self-righteous voices call upon the beleaguered country to halt its actions.

President Bush stands out among all major heads of state for championing Israel’s right to defend herself.

Our brothers in the Israeli army have always denigrated their Arab enemies and proudly viewed themselves as being intellectually and militarily superior in the series of wars with their enemies.

Going back to the war of liberation in 1948, though the lone sheep has been surrounded by a pack of wolves, with all the odds stacked against survival, Israel has successfully beaten back enemy armies and emerged triumphant. Religious people recognized the hand of G-d in each of Israel’s victories; countless soldiers had miraculous tales to retell when they returned home. The Six Day War of 1967 had such an obviously miraculous outcome that it spawned a teshuvah revolution whose repercussions are still felt today.

The world ignored the gathering strength of Hamas much as it does nothing about Iran’s race toward nuclear capability. A ruthless, cruel group of murderers with no regard for human life is defended by spokesmen of civilized countries who play into the hands of these barbarians. Armed to the hilt by Syria and Iran, they have developed a fighting machine trained to kill Jews.

As the world condemns Israel for its “disproportionate” and “excessive” response, it cares not a wit that Israel was attacked by a group bent on destroying the free world.

It is so predictable.

I must admit that it is very hard for me to feel bad for the people of Israel this time around. Yes, they are our brothers and sisters, yes, they are suffering way beyond what any innocent human being should have to suffer. But why can’t they learn their lesson? How long will it take for them to realize that they are going down the same failed path, time after time? How can it be that Livni and Barak have even one percent support in their bids for the premiership of the lonely Zionist state?

Meanwhile, innocent people suffer, more Jews are cut down senselessly and there is no end in sight. Feckless politicians operate for the cameras and for public opinion. They keep the army on a leash, and don’t allow it to deliver the knockout blows necessary to finish off this menace. Let’s bomb here a little, bomb there a drop more and then let’s sit back and hope that the Arab mentality has changed and they will decide to welcome us with peace.

They fool themselves into thinking that a few bombs on a few buildings will effect a change on the entire Arab psyche and mode of thought. They are still impressed with what the UN says and what the president of France has to say.

When will they return to their senses and act responsibly with the good of the country, rather than their own personal political careers, uppermost in their stratagem?

When will they study the patterns of Jewish history and recognize that without Divine intervention there is no hope for victory?

When will the truth become their guiding light?

Shallowness and complacency are dangerous for the human spirit even in peacetime, but in times of combat they are even more perilous. No matter where we are and what we are engaged in, we must be wary of allowing superficial considerations to guide us.

Proper focus and clarity of vision are essential for every aspect of existence. Nations will topple without a vision and political leaders can fall to the most inexperienced challengers when their vision becomes skewed.

Superficiality and small-mindedness combined with myopic focus on our own interests without seeing the big picture can be catastrophic.

As Asarah B’Teves approaches and we watch this Gaza operation unfold while we chart the daily economic declines, we must never sink into yiush, despair. We must never give up hope. We know that everything that transpires is part of Hashem’s master plan. History has shown that pain and tragedy often give birth to nechamos.

May we merit to see sustained peace and the fulfillment of the comforting words of Yeshayahu Hanovi speedily in our days.

May we merit to see these days of mourning and sadness be transformed into days of happiness and celebration speedily in our day.


  1. Horrendous article. What in the world do you want Israel to do? You condemn the country, say to rely on Hashem, yet give no practical advice on how to proceed. Shameless.

  2. An excellent article. But let us all remember, and remember always, that bottom line it depends not on Barak, Livni or their like; rather on our T’shuva, T’filla & T’zdakka.

  3. What is your position Rabbi Lipshutz??? State of Israel bashing one minute, State of Israel’s military tactics lauding the next! You’re implying the State of Israel has a right to exist, fight wars, kill Arabs, protect itself as the “lone sheep” etc, etc… but then you’re implying that the very same State of Israel ie the Zionists anti-Torahniks, never learns from its mistakes and needs to rely on Hashem. Well of course they need to rely on Hashem but then make up your mind on where you really stand. You can’t have you cake and eat it. Sorry Rabbi but your words are simply religious, airy rhetoric and your article is empty of real substance and devoid of chiddushim. Take heed from Yehudah in this week’s parshah. He stood up for what he believed in and put his entire life on the line.

    May Hashem urgently bring Mashiach and our redemption and may the Jewish receive the bracha that we be miraculously united in Eretz Yisrael and in Chutz L’Aretz b’shem Hashem.

  4. #2 you are so right. I consider mtself “yeshivish” but when I cried out for leasdership by the Aguda during the Disengagemnt from Gush Katif I was branded as an apikores. “The Agudah and their leadership kno what they are doing” and I have no right to doubt their wisdom in not speaking out is what I was told by Aguda staff people. Now the whole world sees what simple Jews like me were able to forcast years ago.

  5. Our brothers in the Israeli army have always denigrated their Arab enemies and proudly viewed themselves as being intellectually and militarily superior in the series of wars with their enemies.

    I WONDER HOW MANY ISRAELI ARMY SOLDIERS PINNY PERSONALLY KNOWS, TALKS TO AND ASSOCIATES WITH. This is the most ridiculous article written swaying from left to right, back center, throwing small grenades at the Zionists, government, IDF and a lack of support or care for our brothers and sisters in the holyland.
    A typical written response from one who is not clued in to the facts on the ground with conceit.

  6. NeveAliza..thanx for your vote of confidence. FYI..I did refer to Chareidi leadership in the beginning of my submission. But you must be a shtickel yeshivish too which is what forces you to refer to “Chareidi Leadership” and not Gedolei Yisroel