Thursday, January 02, 2014

The Meaning of the Middle East: G-d, Land, Belief

By Tuvia Brodie

If you are Western, then your first exposure (in the 21st Century) to the Arab-Israel debate probably began with morality. This is how modern Man characterizes the Arab-Israel war: it’s a moral conflict.
For Western man, the Middle East is a test. It’s where you go to struggle over the politics of right and wrong. It’s where you are challenged to explain what is just—and what is unjust.
In a Western world where morality means, ‘do anything you want,’ this isn’t an easy task. But that’s precisely the attraction of the Middle East: it makes you think.
Western man loves a challenge. He loves to think. He especially loves a challenge where he is taught what to think.  
Western academicians teach our children what to think. They teach that the Arab-Israel conflict is about ideals. They say it’s about the moral cause of an oppressed people.
Our children have been taught to understand ideals. They have been taught to appreciate morality. They are taught that politics can make things right.   
We pay a lot of money for our children to learn these distinctions.
For Western academicians, ideals mean, you must find an innocent victim.  Politics means, you must support the one who claims he has been wronged. Morality means, you must boycott someone.
We pay a lot of money for our children to learn what to think.
The problem is, the Middle East conflict is not about Western ideals. It’s not about victims or boycotts. It’s not about morality.
The Arab-Israel conflict is not about any of these things because this conflict is not, by definition, Western. The conflict has nothing to do with Western ‘rights’. It has nothing to do with Western justice.
This conflict is about Middle Eastern ideals. Those ideals are clearly etched onto everything Western man sees in the Middle East—but ignores: G-d, land, belief.
Western academicians don’t believe in G-d. They don’t believe in land. They don’t believe in belief.
Our children believe what their professors tell them.
In the Middle East, meanwhile, it doesn’t matter if you are Jewish or Muslim. The recipe is the same: G-d, land, belief.
The Muslim understands this. He understands what this conflict is all about. He understands the recipe.
Listen to his rhetoric. This conflict is about allah. It’s about the land upon which there must be a Caliphate for allah. It’s about removing the Jew from Jerusalem.
The recipe does not change. His rhetoric never varies.
The Muslim knows that if he is to win his war against Israel, he must focus on god, land and belief. His focus on his god must be stronger than the Jews’ focus on their G-d.  
The Jew faces the same challenge. But many Jews—Western by training and outlook—reject such un-Western thoughts. They argue that this conflict has nothing to do with G-d. This conflict, they argue, is about security.
They are wrong.
This conflict was created by G-d Himself. It exists to teach us about G-d, land and belief.
The Arab-Israel war is a battlefield that was defined more than 3,700 years ago—when the G-d of Israel told Abraham to make Aliyah (to leave his land, his home, his friends and go to a place He will show him).
The battlefield was refined more than 1350 years ago when Muslims came to conquer the land for allah their god. The battlefield was then refined yet again 450 years later, when Christians came to conquer the land for their own god.
So it was that the battlefield over G-d was defined and shaped. That’s not coincidence. It’s part of the Design. In the end, this battlefield—this war--will teach Man about G-d.
Islam and Christianity came to Israel for their gods. They came for the land. They came because G-d brought them here.
Today, Christians return to the land. Islam fights for it. Too many Jews couldn’t care less.
Today, too many Jews think this conflict is about the struggle for ‘peace’. They ignore the G-d of Israel. They dismiss the importance of land. They demonize those who believe.
In the face of a Muslim population that knows full well what this war is about, Jews deny—and, by denying, cause their own suffering. Jews suffer because the nations know truth when they hear it; and what they hear from the Muslim is that this battle is about G-d, land and belief.
For such a commitment, G-d makes the Muslim strong.
Meanwhile, the nations see the Jews scoff. For this reason, G-d allows the nations to demonize Israel.
Jews are weak. Jews are uncertain. Western thought misleads them.
When Jews recognize what this war is about, the G-d of Israel will save us with awe and wonders. Why?   Because the ultimate goal of the G-dly Design is to have us embrace the meaning of G-d, land and belief.

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