Thursday, August 18, 2005

A Ride with the State's Religious Representative

Leil 13 of the Fifth Month 5765

Mamlachti: Hebrew for "of the state"

--from Re'uven Alkalai's Hebrew-English Dictionary

I grabbed a ride this afternoon from someone in the Shomron, on the way to work in Jerusalem. He drove me a small part of the way, before dropping me off and turning off the main road toward his destination. There I would wait for the next person to pick me up to take me through the next stage of my journey to work.

The driver mentioned that there was a pigu'ah (attack) near Shchem. He continued by saying that a mehabbel Yehudi (Jewish terrorist) entered the area and started shooting Arabs.

I took exception to the word mehabbel, and said it appears that he could be a gibor (hero).

To that he started to go off on how a Jew can't just go and start shooting at individual people who never did anything to him, especially when it involves ger toshav (non-Jewish resident). I was shocked, then realized with whom I was speaking,...a mamlachti Jew.

I suggested that if he wanted to say that this Jew did not have the right to make such a decision on his own...(anticipating the example of Pinhas ben Elazar haKohen)

He interrupted and said if Saudi Arabia went to war against us tomorrow, we should go out and kill them all....!

I asked myself, "So, what's the debate? Is he one of those Jews who actually thinks that there's a difference between Arabs?"

Throughout our interaction, he never once cited hallachah, nor anything related to Torah in the least. In fact, it seems that he did what many non-Orthodox "movements" do. He interpreted ideas, behavior, and events according to feelings, and not through [the often politically-incorrect, yet absolutely correct] Torah.

I did my best to provide him with a clear and concise response to his argument. I never once said anything new. I simply kept with the sources with which I was familiar.

After contending with his constant interruptions, I was finally able to provide him with the following argument:

1) I cited that when a people lays claim to Eress Yisrael, many posqim state that they have the din (status) of the 7 peoples who previously laid claim to the land. The people, in this case the Yishma'elim, are obligated to the punishment associated with this issue (Go look it up. It's not politically-correct.), NOT individuals such as leaders. Only those who publicly state that what their leadership is doing to the Jewish People is wrong, are exempt from punishment. In other words, his argument regarding innocent Arabs was flawed. But, I did not have all of the details of the incident, so how could I even begin form an opinion? My host said that he did have the details. Obviously, he did not, as the incident took place not in Shchem, but rather at the Shilo Industrial Park.

2) Ger toshav? Although there are various opinions regarding who, what, where, when, and how there can be legal, non-Jewish residents in Eress Yisrael, the Arabs, both muslim and christian, do not fulfill any of the set obligations set forth by the Ramba"m, Ra'ava"d, nor the Beth Yosef. (I won't go into detail here.)

My host did not allow me to finish. That did not matter, as we had reached my stop on the road. My words seemed to go in one ear and out the other anyway.

During the ride, I saw his wedding ring, glaring at me, yet another dvar mamlachti, and one of my personal pet peeves.*

(*For the sake of simplicity, for the time being, let's just set aside all North American men, and men who are new to Torah, with regard to this issue of wedding bands.)

I told him that one of the reasons I may want to leave Tapu'ah [eventually] is because of all the mamlachtim.

He didn't get it, of course. There just doesn't seem to be any talking to these people.

One of the reasons, amongst many, I left my previous town of three years was purely because of physical safety. Fifty Arabs, including those with orange (non-citizen) ID's, as if that matters, continue to come into this town on a daily basis. A defacto, mini-parking lot for workers can be found next to the town's entrance. It's filled with white & green (PA) tags, and orange (PA) taxis, as if that matters.

Just how much tochahah (rebuke) can I give?

I am expected to fight for Eress Yisrael, and help prevent another Azza-like expulsion. But am I expected to help people protect their homes, when they themselves are not interested in protecting their homes. These mamlachtim are just the type to get on the bus without resistance, just like those arrested in Azza yesterday got on the bus without resistance. I do not believe they were even handcuffed. They just went along with the Judea, Samaria, & Azza [YeSh"A] Council directives or the spirit there of.

The "religious" Judaism of mamlachtim seems to be based more on socialism than Torah. Yet, there undying loyalty to the state has an element of fascism to it.

As long these "religious" Jews continue to believe that there is actually room for discussion when deciding between whether to follow Torah Law or a corresponding, contradictory mandate of the Israeli Government, pieces of Eress Yisrael will continue to be stripped away from us,...with ease.

As long as these "religious" Jews yell over giving away land, yet "get on the bus" without resistance, and as long as they whisper or even ignore concerns over Shabbath desecration, selling pork sales, or sexual free-for-alls, this country has little hope for hanging on to any of its Jewishness, as long as these mamlachtim are allowed to remain in power in YeSh"A or involved in government in any way, shape, or form.

When I got out of the car of the mamlachti who gave me the ride this afternoon, I said HaShem yishmor otchem (May God watch over you). He said, "You, too."

I doubt he understood the full impact of my final words. If these people continue on their same numb path, then they will put themselves in serious, physical, not to mention spiritual, danger. They must wake up to the reality that even from a practical standpoint, allowing non-Torah ideas and powers that be to supercede Torah has never worked for the Jewish People, aside from the fact that it's wrong.

This kind of mentality has always gotten us into trouble,...and always will.

No comments: