27 of the Third Month 5771
The Religious Zionist community has been outraged by yesterday's arrest of Rabbi Dov Lior shlit"a (Hevron-Qiriyath Arba) for questioning.
Rabbi Zalman Melamed (Beth El) condemned the arrest, saying...
“Rabbi Lior Shlita’s arrest, more than it affects his dignity or that of Torah, detracts from the dignity of the State of Israel and even more so, of the police and prosecution,” he said, adding “A police force that arrests a great rabbi because of his agreement with a book – an arrest that in no way helps the police gain any new knowledge – is a shameful and despicable act that besmirches the police, the prosecution, and all who had the ability to prevent it and did not do so, be they in the Ministry for Public Security or the Ministry of Justice.”Known mamlakhti (undying State loyalist) Rabbi Ya’akov Ariel (Ramat Gan) stated that this was not a matter for the police.
“I have two words for these people: for shame!”
(IsraelNN.com) “It is no secret that I oppose the book and I think Rav Dov Lior should not have given the approbation [to it]," Rav Ariel told Arutz Sheva in Hebrew, but that is another plane: an internal Halakhic one. Even if this or another Halakhic edict is wrong, it is no police matter. [The authorities] could have turned to the Chief Rabbinate and it could have published an opinion disavowing the Halakhic soundness of The King’s Torah"Mamlakhti rabbis from the Tzohar organization joined in condemning the arrest, even though they too often disagree with the rulings of rabbis like Rabbi Lior.
Members of K'nesseth (MK) from the National Union, Jewish Home,and Sha"S Parties also condemned the arrest.
Yesha Council Chairman Danny Dayan pointed out the double standards at play here.
(IsraelNN.com) “Did the police arrest the lecturer from Ben Gurion University who called to break the necks of the celebrants of Jerusalem Day? Are there investigations against other leftists who incite against the State of Israel on a daily basis?”It seems as though the mamlakhtim are concerned about rabbinical autonomy, even though they are often the defenders of the Israel Government's policies which contradict Torah Law.
Members of the Sha"S Sefardi Religious party must also be wondering who will be next andc how long their spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef shlit"a's ties with members of the politically-correct Labor Party will continue to keep him insulated from similar persecution.
But, with all these illusions of Ahduth Yisrael (Jewish Unity) presented before us, many in the Religious Zionist camps have still missed the point.
The Federation of Higher Yeshivas, an organization not unwilling to criticize the government, chimed in.
(IsraelNN.com) “a sage and yeshiva head has been publicly shamed.” It decried attempts “to block freedom of opinion and rabbinical halakhic rulings.”The Rabbi Melamed, Rabbi Ariel, the Tzohar rabbis, and the Federation of Higher Yeshivas all avoid the most important point in the conflict. They use "democratic"/Western logic to defend their position, not Torah logic.
The Hesder Yeshivas Federation expressed shock at the arrest and called it “an offense to the Torah and its students and an attempt to block rabbis’ freedom of expression through severe, unacceptable and anti-democratic means.”
Their same logic also defends the rights of the left to call for removal of Jews from their homes, and the turning of Jewish land over to Arabs. Their logic also defends calls from the Left to use violence against the residents of certain Jewish towns in Yehudah & Shomron (Judea & Samaria).
There is a right and a wrong. Why are they so afraid to say it? They afraid of frightening Jews away from Torah, so they hold back. They "good intentions" cause them to use logic which they believe the masses can understand and accept better than the ultimate truth, the Torah.
Yigal Walt comes much closer to understanding the real conflict here, more than the Federation of Higher Yeshivas, or any of the other community leaders who have condemned the arrest of Rabbi Lior.
(YNETNEWS.com) The hundreds of religious rightist protesters who blocked the entrance to Jerusalem, burned tires in the capital’s streets and raided the Supreme Court, made their views clear: The Torah, as they interpret it, takes precedence over law and order. Israeli courts have sent a former president to jail and are currently hearing a case against our former prime minister, but a rabbi is above the law, we are now told.The true conflict emerging in Israel is the conflict between the Torah and the State.
Walt may come closer to understanding this, but he still misses the boat.
The Torah does not take precedence over law and order; the Torah IS law and order.
"as they interpret it" - is Walt's way of denigrating Torah interpretation according to halakhic sources. He appears to be more comfortable Torah interpretation according to feelings and the sentiments of Western Golah (exile). There is just one problem with this. That kind of Torah "interpretation" is not Torah, and thus not Jewish.
I have written this so many times, I will no doubt sound like the broken record of the beating of a dead horse.
We Jews must make up our minds. Do we want to live in a Jewish State? Or do we want to live in a State where the Torah, and thus Judaism, is being continually picked away?
When are we Religious Zionists finally going to accept that we cannot have our cake and eat it, too. We can have the Torah or an anti-Torah state, but not both.
The conflict between the two becomes greater with the passing of everyday. I pray that we make up our minds soon, before it is too late.