Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Safest Place on Earth

Once again, rumours of war are abuzz in the Middle-East. Syria and Israel have begun another round of threat trading, even as Hizbullah rearms, Syria receives new shipments of Scuds and Iran makes alliances with other rogue nations around the world. Iran moves perilously closer every single day to achieving a nuclear bomb with which to wipe the State of Israel off the map, G-d forbid. Tensions are rising as Israel and its neighbours prepare for another war. Despite all of this, Israel remains the safest place of Earth for a Jew.

Around the world, Jews are in a very precarious situation. Anti-semitism worldwide has reach uncontrollable levels with Jews being regularly attacked, synagogues desecrated, Jewish institutions vandalized and an overall hostile attitude towards Jews being the norm. On university campuses on both sides of the Atlantic, Jews are demonized and threatened. Anti-semitism, after going into a brief hibernation following the horrors of Auschwitz, is no longer a taboo. In Europe, decades of liberal immigration policies have transformed the streets of London, Paris and Berlin into those of Riyadh, Marakech and Karachi. The demographic revolution in Europe is irreversible as the continent falls under the domination of the sword and the crescent. The assertive and radicalized Muslim populations in these countries have make clear their desire not to integrate but rather to dominate. They have been waging an intifada against the Jewish populations of Europe, abetted by their leftist collaborators, and this conflict threatens to explode against the Jews at any moment. In the United States, the economy teeters on collapse while the president cynically manipulates the Jewish establishment in a political and diplomatic assault on the State of Israel. This administration intentionally twists the words of its top general to make it seem that Israel- the Jews- are responsible for hatred of America and attacks on American soldiers.

Unfortunately, Jews in the Diaspora may find themselves in mortal danger very soon. The perfect storm is being created- a failing economy, the rise in radical Islam, aided by their liberal allies, as well as a resurgent fascist movement in Eastern Europe, and the return of traditional anti-semitism masqueraded as hostility towards Israel. And yet, do these dangers to Diaspora Jewry not threaten the Jewish state as well?

The first answer is simple: If a Jew must be endangered because he is Jewish, it is best to do so as a Jew in his own Jewish country. It is better to be hated as a Jew while one is living in the Jewish state than to be hated as a Jew living in a foreigner's land.

And what to answer to those who point to the existential danger which looms over the State of Israel? What do we say to those who worry about an Iranian mushroom cloud over Tel-Aviv, G-d forbid? We can point with pride and confidence to the soldiers, air force and army of the State of Israel which are committed to protecting the Jewish people. Yet this answer does not satisfy everyone. What if they fail? How can we trust in planes and tanks?

To this I answer: Do not trust in planes and tanks, but rather in the G-d of Israel. It is inconceivable that G-d would bring His people back from the four corners of the earth, reestablish them sovereign on their own land and lead them victorious through several major wars, only to wipe them out. G-d has a plan for the people of Israel and no harm will befall them. "Behold, the Guardian of Israel neither sleeps nor slumbers!"

Throughout the Torah and Neviim, G-d promises that there will never be a third exile and that He will bring His people back to their land to redeem them. Yes- there are plots against Israel afoot. Yes- Iran is building a bomb. Yes- things looks dark and gloomy. Despite all this, I would rather rely on G-d's word. The Torah guarantees us this. “You will dwell securely in your land; I will provide peace in the land; you will lie down and no one will make you afraid.” May it come speedily in our days.

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