Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

8 Adar 5759 - Feb 24, 1999 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly







Opinion & Comment
Our Next Step . . .

The most important thing that we can do is certainly to fulfill the mitzvos as they are incumbent upon us: remembering Amolek, and feasting on Purim.

We have problems in the Holy Land. We accept them as our own, and we see them as our own, but they do not all affect us materially.

If the High Court allows the kibbutzim to open their businesses on Shabbos with a cynical interpretation of the law, it has little or no financial effect on us.

If the High Court takes the Western "values" that come from and are most reflective of the long golus and attempts to enshrine them as normative for Israeli society, it has no direct effect on our social environment.

If the High Court forces the Chief Rabbinate to allow halls to make kosher New Year's Eve parties, we are likely to never know the difference.

Even when the High Court insists that Meretz is entitled to have the Reform represent them on the Religious Councils, it is not something that will affect our own lives very much, if at all.

And no matter what the High Court says about bris mila (the next hearing is scheduled for April on a suit to stop it that was initially brought about a year ago) we are confident that brissin will continue.

What these have in common is that they are an assault on kvod Shomayim and that is our cause.

It was a brash assault on us when we stumbled spiritually that marked the entrance of Amolek onto the world stage. Amolek swung "the Esav-sword with a mighty fist" (quotations are from Collected Writings of Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, Vol. II, p. 380) that did us real damage. But Hashem showed us that it is the "raised hand of Moshe" that combats the Esav-sword. It is prayer and keeping our eyes focused Heavenward that enables us to overcome the challenge of Amolek.

This is clear from Scripture. "There is a war of Hashem against Amolek throughout the generations" (Shemos 17:16). "World history is the sum total of G-d's battle against the Amolek materialism. G-d's leadership assures the ultimate victory of spirit over matter." (Rav Hirsch)

It is clear that in Israel the real struggle is with those secular Israelis who cannot stand us and use every means they can to harm us in any way. The Reform and Conservative are only used by them as objects to disturb us. The Reform and Conservative presence in Israel is so small that it would otherwise be insignificant. In America their numbers and influence are also greatly exaggerated, though it is certainly much greater.

Yet we bear no fundamental ill will to anyone, and certainly not to the masses of Jewish followers. Our message to them is simply, "Please brothers, do not push things too far."

Cut our funding, reduce the construction of classroom space and force our children to study in overcrowded and uncomfortable prefabs. Reduce our transfer payments, tax us deep into the poverty level. Take away billions in "rescue plans" and scream about thousands that we might get as "blackmail." You can even make us wear a yellow star.

But don't trample our faith. Do not try to force us to live a life that is alien to us. Don't force any Jew in the Holy Land to live according to non-Jewish values.

This is what we say and pray as we prepare to do the mitzvos hayom: to remember Amolek and to read the Megilla and to feast on Purim.

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