Sunday, March 28, 2010

Dangerous Exit from Comfort Zone: Imminent Passover Offering on Temple Mount

By Moshe Feiglin
Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel, and said unto them: 'Draw out, and take lambs according to your families, and kill the Passover lamb.
24 And you shall observe this matter for an ordinance for you and your sons for ever.
26 And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you: What do you mean you by this service?
27. And you shall say: It is the sacrifice of G-d's Passover, for He passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses.' (Exodus 12)

Soon, with G-d's help, we will establish Jewish leadership for Israel. Please be forewarned that when that happens, our familiar, comfortable Pesach holiday will be radically changed. We will have to forget about the Pesach seder with the extended family at the home of the family balabusta. Instead, we will be face to face with the Korban Pesach (Passover offering) at the Temple Mount.

For those who have forgotten, the Korban Pesach is a positive commandment, equal in its importance to the mitzvah of brit milah (circumcision). The mitzvah of circumcision is a personal covenant between a Jew and his Father in heaven. The Pesach offering is the national covenant between the Jewish Nation and its Father in heaven. These two commandments forged the Jewish People as the unique nation of the Creator – both as individuals and as a collective.

Today, a Jewish policeman stands at the entrance to the Temple Mount and explains to the Jews that they are prohibited from praying there. A request to bring a sacrificial lamb is out of the question. When we will finally establish Jewish leadership for Israel, though, the same policeman will stand at the entrance to the Temple Mount and cheerfully explain what you need to know, ensuring that you are well-versed in the Jewish laws that must be observed during your momentous visit.

In truth, it is not the policeman who blocks our entrance to the Temple Mount. It is the observant Jews whose Torah and faith are still in exile. They/we feel more comfortable when our covenant with G-d remains exclusively in the realm of the individual. It's great to be religious in your home and "Israeli" in public. The people subscribed to this mode of living will go to great lengths to avoid being a complete Jew in the complete Land of Israel – both in private and in public. In other words, at some level, all of us have a little policeman in our hearts, blocking the entrance to the Temple Mount. That is why we have a full-sized, flesh and blood policeman at its gates.

When we establish Jewish leadership for Israel, all of this will be distant memory. The prime minister and his cabinet will ascend to the Temple Mount with their sacrificial lambs. The entire national mentality will change, and there will be no more lame excuses for not bringing the Pesach offering.

Instead of sitting in the comfort of our living rooms and chewing on matzah that symbolizes the Pesach offering, we will joyously sit in the streets and alleys surrounding the Temple Mount, eating our roasted sacrificial lamb.

The international uproar will be deafening. How will we be able to conduct "peace" negotiations when the entire Jewish Nation is at the Temple Mount with their Pesach offerings? And who will protect us from Iran? And what will Obama do? And how will Russia react? And what about the European Union? What will we explain?

27. And you shall say: It is the sacrifice of G-d's Passover, for He passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses.'

Happy Festival of Freedom

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ouch! It's my Jewish Identity!

By Moshe Feiglin

9 Nissan, 5770
March 24, '10

Translated from the NRG website

"Israel's problem is its public relations," people reason as they attempt to explain how it is that Israel is always at the receiving end of the world's criticism and hatred. "Israel simply doesn't know how to highlight all of its positive points."

But the problem is not simply lack of budget for public relations, as the Foreign Ministry would like us to believe. There is also no dearth of eloquent Israelis and fluent English speakers who could take Israel's case to the world. The problem is that instead of explaining its own position, Israel explains the position of its enemies.

When is the last time that you heard an official Israeli representative simply state that this is our Land – without ifs, ands and buts? Simply, "The Land of Israel belongs to the Jewish Nation, period." Has the prime minister made such a statement? Any minister? Perhaps an ambassador?

All the torrents of claims against Israel can be distilled to this one simple question: Whose land is this, anyway? But here's the caveat: It is impossible to say that this is our Land without falling back on our Jewish foundations. To avoid that unthinkable eventuality, Israel trades it ultimate playing card for paltry claims that its soldiers are the most humane in the world – and endangers their lives to prove it - and that it is the most democratic regime in the region.

The world, though, doesn't really care if Israel's armed forces are humane. What determines if you are right or wrong is if the ground under their feet belongs to you or not. The most courteous intruder is still an intruder who belongs in jail.

The refusal to admit that this is our Land - or in broader terms, to re-connect as a state to our Jewish identity - has brought Israel to its diplomatic knees. Netanyahu's senior ministers have arrest warrants waiting for them in Israel's capitals and the assassins of arch-terrorist Mabhouh are wanted all over the world while mass-murderer Ahmadinijad is invited to lecture at Columbia University. The modern-day Amalek does not tell the world that he is humane. He explains that he is right. The world accepts this as fact because Israel's leadership plays straight into his hands.

Just like the first Amalek, who attacked Israel when the entire world was afraid to initiate a fight with the nation that had just defeated the Egyptian empire, so Ahmadinijad publicly declares his intention to destroy Israel and proceeds with his technical preparations basically unhindered.

It may be difficult to understand why, instead of losing his legitimacy, Ahmadinijad has managed to place a flashing and threatening question mark over Israel's head. The reason is that the "State of all its citizens" (as per former Chief Justice Aharon Barak) or the "Singapore of the Middle East" (as per President Shimon Peres) or the "place under the sun" (as per PM Netanyahu) is incapable of standing proud and firm behind its identity and justifying its existence. It really is not right to establish another Singapore at the expense of the "Palestinians." And there is plenty of place under the sun on the Canary Islands. It comes at a more reasonable price and will not drag the entire world into endless wars.

For those readers who do not understand the critical implications of our Jewish identity for our very survival, I would like to quote the following story:

In the first Lebanon War in 1982, the IDF essentially forced the PLO terror organization out of Lebanon and into exile in Tunisia. The PLO was in complete disarray. One of the prisoners in the Israeli detention camp, Ansar, was a senior terrorist, admired by his henchmen. His name was Salah Taamari and he was a broken man.

In the book about Taamari, Mine Enemy, penned by Israeli journalists Amalia and Aharon Barnea, Taamari told Barnea of the transformation he underwent in Ansar. While in prison, he had completely despaired of any hope that the Palestinians would one day realize any of their territorial dreams. He was ready to renounce the struggle and was well on the way to convincing his prison-mates that they would never defeat Israel.
Then, one Passover, he witnessed a Jewish prison guard eating a pita. Taamari was shocked, and asked his jailer how he could so unashamedly eat bread on Passover.
The Jew replied: "I feel no obligation to events that occurred to my nation over 2,000 years ago. I have no connection to that."
That entire night Taamari could not sleep. He thought to himself: "A nation whose members have no connection to their past, and are capable of so openly transgressing their most important laws, has cut off all its roots to the Land."
He concluded that the Palestinians could, in fact, achieve all their goals. From that moment, he determined "to fight for everything - not a percentage, not some crumbs that the Israelis might throw us - but for everything. Because opposing us is a nation that has no connection to its roots, which are no longer of interest to it."
Taamari goes on to relate how he shared this insight with "tens of thousands of his colleagues, and all were convinced."

Taamari did indeed convince his co-terrorists and breathed new life into the war against Israel. It is hard to exaggerate the damage done by the pita in the mouth of just one Israeli prison guard on the holiday of Passover.

What does this have to do with the current Jerusalem imbroglio? Here is another story – short and current. This story is not about an anonymous soldier who is disconnected from his Jewish roots, but about the prime minister of Israel, who is estranged from his. On his recent trip to Russia, Binyamin Netanyahu chose the non-kosher restaurant, Pushkin, as the venue for his meeting with Greek PM Papandreou. The whole world was able to watch as the leader of the Jewish nation dined heartily on the finest that non-kosher cuisine has to offer.

One pita in the mouth of an anonymous soldier was enough to sow the seeds of defeat in Israel's triumph in Lebanon. What damage will we suffer from the unkosher food in the mouth of the prime minister of Israel?

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Leader in a Bunker

By Moshe Feiglin

From his hiding place, the leader of the Israelis sent a pre-recorded message to the dedication ceremony of the Hurva Synagogue at the Jewish Quarter in Jerusalem. Political observers explained that Netanyahu was not interested in putting in an appearance in "East" Jerusalem, potentially incurring the wrath of Obama once again. Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz even admitted that he and other senior ministers in the Likud and the government do not cross the Green Line.

Bibi's videotaped speech is only too reminiscent of the behavior of a wanted international terrorist somewhere in the mountains of Afghanistan, or the head of Islamic terror somewhere in Lebanon. Never before has Israel had such fearful leaders. Leadership that does not rely on G-d has nothing to lean on. Its certain collapse is only a matter of time. And that time is now.

After apologizing to the US for building in his capital city, Bibi had to appease his home front. His power base is still the national camp. He knows that he must continue to sedate the Likudniks, the Right and the Religious Zionists. After all, it is only thanks to them and their endorsement after the election that he is the first Israeli prime minister to rule despite the fact that he lost the race.

And so, in his typical flip-flop fashion, Bibi announced that he will continue to build in Jerusalem. He will say almost anything to confuse the Jews so that they will leave him alone – allowing him to continue selling our country out. When it comes time to actualize his sale, he can always kill the old horse – the nationalists – and ride on a different horse, just as Sharon did before the Expulsion. It's a simple method. First, use the Likud and the religious public to win the elections and to rule. Afterwards, add the Labor party to the coalition and then dispense of the Likud and create a new party, like Kadimah, made up of all the political defectors and opportunists.

Nothing is hidden behind pretty words anymore. Jerusalem is on the table. But the naïve Jews still support Bibi. Like a small child with a violent father or a woman suffering with an abusive husband, they have no alternative. They are incapable of imagining themselves standing on their own two feet. That is the source of Bibi's hold on power. That is also why Feiglin is the greatest danger to his continued incumbency. Not Ahmadinijad and not Nassrallah. In the past weeks Netanyahu has invested more energy trying to ensure that Feiglin does not gain additional power in the Likud than he has in dealing with the Iranian threat.

For the time being, Israel has apologized for building in Jerusalem. Afterwards, it will be Acco and Ramle, Lod, Haifa and Be'er Sheva. This past week reminded me of the days following the handshake between Rabin and Arafat. Then, I thought that the public would never allow it to happen. After all, all Israeli governments had spurned the arch-murderer. All of them had vowed not to negotiate with him – it was a principle written in stone. But as soon as Rabin shook Arafat's hand, everybody almost magically toed the line. Those who continued to oppose talks with him suddenly became strange, illegitimate extremists.

Today, Jerusalem enjoys a widespread consensus. But now, possible retreat from our holiest city is a topic that is publicly debated. How did that happen? Years and years of leftist-engendered doubt have been gnawing away under the cloak of declarations of loyalty to Jerusalem. Israel's media, the leftists of the justice system and other powers-that- be prepared the delegitimization campaign against the settlers years before the destruction of Gush Katif. They are using the same methods now.

There is one major difference, though. Today, we can do more than protest. Today we have created an alternative to Netanyahu's leadership. Thousands of people loyal to their Jewish identity are registering for the Likud. Netanyahu knows that loyal people will prefer a loyal leader. There is still time before Bibi sets his abandonment and destruction plans into motion. We are positioned to establish loyal, Jewish leadership for Israel. With G-d's help, that is exactly what we will do!

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Temple in Jerusalem: Our Raison d'etre

By Moshe Feiglin

At this week's dedication ceremony for the newly re-built Hurva Synagogue, Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger made the following disturbing statement:

Chief Rabbi: Talk about new temple a lie
"Pay no attention to malicious slander. All we are doing is resurrecting the 'Hurva,' which was destroyed 60 years ago. We have no intention of rebuilding the temple, not this week – unless the Almighty God descends it from the heavens," said the chief rabbi during the inauguration ceremony. (Ynet: March 15, '10)

All of Rabbi Metzger's prayers, blessings and Torah learning revolve around the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. Are they all lies? The Chief Rabbi - and all the rabbis who work in an official state capacity on the condition that they leave the Torah in its current state of exile – will not tell the truth.

The truth is that we have every intention of building the Temple! The debate as to the actual construction of the Temple – if it will be built by humans or if it will descend from Heaven or if it will be a synthesis of both – has nothing to do with the basic desire of every Jew to build the Temple.

"And they shall make a Temple for Me," G-d directs us in Exodus 25:8.
He does not instruct us to simply dream about a Temple. He does not instruct us to merely pray for a Temple. G-d commands us to build the Temple.

The Nation of Israel exists to make a dwelling place for G-d on earth. That is why the State of Israel exists, as well. Our mission as Jews is to perfect the world in the Kingdom of Heaven - to crown G-d as King of the world. The geographical location where this mission will manifest is the Temple, on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

The world knows the truth. That is why the forces of evil do battle with our grasp on the Land of Israel and on Jerusalem. They are fighting against the universal conscience that threatens to triumph. "The Jew is the conscience of the world and thus must be destroyed" (Hitler, may his name be blotted out). That, in a nutshell, is the battle that Ahmadinijad, Obama and the Europeans are waging against the Nation of Israel. They wish to destroy the Jew and his reshaping of reality into G-dliness – the reality that is grounded in the Land of Israel, via Jerusalem and that necessarily leads to the Temple that Rabbi Metzger insists on relegating to the realm of dreams.

The struggle against the building freeze in Judea and Samaria and the stranglehold closing in on Jerusalem all stem from the same, fundamental question: Will the Jewish People fulfill their mission and live or will we distance ourselves from it and become extraneous, G-d forbid?

All the Torah portions of the previous weeks provide us with the technical specifications for the Temple, bringing it closer to reality. Only the Chief Rabbi and his ilk alienate themselves from the precious charge deposited in our hands, explaining that it is all a lie.

Our weekly Torah portion, though, gives us hope for the future. The entire portion revolves around the service of G-d in the Holy Temple. Near the end, the Torah expounds on repentance. Because in the end, all the Jews will return to G-d. The leftists, the official rabbis, everyone. There are moments, like after the Six Day War, when the Jewish heart opens and longs for the Temple. May we merit to build it soon. All the Jews, together.

Shabbat Shalom