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Photo: Shaul Golan
Rabbi Ben-Nun
Photo: Shaul Golan
The power of land
Hamas is undeterred by human toll, can only be defeated by losing territory
Eight princes fell, in the name of God, in the war on our existence as a sovereign people in the Land of Israel. Dear parents and bereaved families – hold your head up with pain and tears. This was not a massacre, bur rather, a war; a very long war for our existence as a sovereign people.

 

The evil members of Hamas who are corrupting the land and taking God’s name in vain are not fighting against us as people or as capitulating religious communities that wish to continue the Diaspora here. They are fighting against our sovereignty, which they refer to as the “Zionist regime.”

 

Shifting the arena of blood and war into the library of the Mercaz Harav yeshiva in Jerusalem, named after Rabbi Zvi Yehuda Kook, is incredibly symbolic – it is a blow to the banner of national Jewish sovereignty. This blow joins the waves of frustration with the State and the IDF that we see both in the religious and general public on all directions, as well as the effect of the accumulated weakness among our leadership.

 

However, the enemy is miscalculating. The despaired amongst us do not truly represent the spirit of the people or its internal strength. What is reflected through the Israeli media is no more than artificial panic waves. Eventually, our enemies will force us to rise up like a lion and defeat them, and release the name of God from their impure mouth and murderous hand.

 

The more Israel withdraws and weakens in the eyes of the enemy, the slimmer the chances of peace become. The Israeli Left has been occupied with intensively weakening the State of Israel, because in its view an Israel that is too strong will not be making any concessions, and without concessions there would be no peace. However, in the Middle East things work the other way around.

 

What’s worse is the moral distortion – the gravest crime is murder, not occupation. When we controlled Jabaliya we did not kill there, neither “terrorists” no terrorists dressed as civilians or women and children (today they are being killed accidentally, of course!)

 

When we ruled Gaza, they lacked national rights, but they had work and could make a living, and not by producing Qassams. In Gush Katif too, thousands of Palestinians were making a living through honest work, until some of them started to murder their employers. When we ruled Gaza, no innocent civilians were killed, neither in Sderot nor in Jabaliya.

 

The Left corrupted its own banner, both the chance for peace and morality. The moral distortion started with the legitimization, the “willingness to understand” murderous terror against the “occupation,” and continued with the claims that “controlling another people” is a grave matter that creates all other injustices, and finally, the cynicism that led us to declare that “if they hurt us after the withdrawal, we’ll hit them without holding back.” All of this has increased the bloodshed.

 

More bloodshed not the answer 

Rabbi Zvi Yehuda Kook did not educate his students to be zealous or vengeful. He always said we had no war with “Ahmad and Mustafa,” but rather, with an enemy that seeks to destroy our independence and send us back to the Diaspora. He believed and insisted that our control over the entire Land if Israel is the most moral choice under the current conditions and will ultimately bring peace.

 

Therefore, the proper revenge for the murder at the yeshiva is under no circumstances more bloodshed. This would only serve the evil members of Hamas, who are drenched in blood. The proper revenge is through land, the land of Israel. This is the only thing they understand.

 

We should take over the open areas in the Gaza Strip and stay there at least until Hamas and Islamic Jihad recognize the State of Israel as a Jewish State and lay down their weapons.

 

We should also recognize West Bank outposts as official communities, even if in some cases we would have to establish them on another hill or close to their current locations.

 

Should the prime minister and defense minister continue to think in terms of military retaliation and revenge, they will not be resolving the problem of Sderot and Negev communities, they will not be advancing peace, they will not bring quiet, and they will be unable to defend every corner where Jews live, build, create, and study the Torah.

 

If the IDF is ordered into Gaza, don’t take it out. Hamas perceives the exit as weakness and celebrates it. They don’t care how many of their own are killed. They care about the land and they should be paying by losing their land as a result of the Sderot attacks and yeshiva murder.

 

If we want to have a chance for peace and morality, we must return to our Land of Israel, in line with the belief and path outlined by Rabbi Zvi Yehuda Kook, who headed the Mercaz Harav yeshiva for a whole generation. This is the banner of honesty and peace based on his way.

 

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