A Call to Arms for Jewish Towns in Israel
16 December 2003
It's Been More Than 2,000 Years...
The holiday of Chanukah is approaching. Over 2,000 years ago, the Nation of Israel was called upon to manifest dedication and a willingness to sacrifice in the face of an oppressive world power.
It's already more than 2,000 years that we have been celebrating the great miracle that happened then - the one that began with the Nation of Israel withstanding a great test, not breaking and not caving in.
It's already more than 2,000 years that we have been commemorating the victory not only over the Syrian-Greeks, but also over a traitorous Jewish Hellenistic regime that cooperated and collaborated with the enemies of Israel.
It's already more than 2,000 years that we have been drawing great strength, courage and spirit from the call of Mattathias the High Priest: "Whoever is for the Lord - to me!" - even though responding to this call was liable to cost one his life or those of his family.
It's already more than 2,000 years that the dramatic declaration by Judah Maccabee has been ringing in our ears: "We will defend with our bodies our Torah, our Holy Temple, and our forefathers' inheritance."
It's already more than 2,000 years that the words of Shimon the Hasmonean to King Antiochus VII have been escorting us, as a charge for generations: "We did not conquer a foreign land, nor did we snatch the inheritance of others. We have returned to the inheritance of our fathers that was taken from us unjustly."
In Those Days, At This Time
Just like in those days, so too at this time do we face a world power, together with most of the world, trying to tear us from our forefathers' inheritance, our Holy Land.
Just like in those days, so too at this time we have a weak Jewish government caving in and breaking, cooperating with the treachery against our Torah and our covenant with our G-d.
Just like in those days, so too at this time, we are called upon to show true self-sacrifice in order to defend on all that is precious and sacred to us.
Just like in those days, so too at this time, the great question is whether we will pass the test and go out to defend, bodily, Amona and Migron, Beit El and Hevron, Netzarim and Kfar Darom.
The Big Move Against Yesha Has Begun
There can be no doubt: He who has decided to uproot flowering and flourishing communities with dozens of families such as Amona and Migron, has already decided on the "big move" of uprooting the Jewish settlement enterprise in Yesha (Judea, Samaria and Gaza).
It is clear that the uprooting of Amona and Migron, and the expulsion of their residents, will lead to the immediate resignation of the NRP and the National Union from the government. In order to keep the government going, the Prime Minister will have to include the Labor Party - which demands in return the uprooting of all the communities in Gaza and of dozens more in Judea and Samaria. The transfer of the Jews of Yesha thus begins in Migron and Amona.
To the best of my understanding, it is incumbent upon us to enlist all our forces as early as possible. Those who would push off the "great struggle" until later stages are making, in my opinion, a dire and terrible mistake. At times of shmad (religious persecution), one is obliged to give his life even on matters of "shoe laces," i.e., mere customs. This is because in a fight, one must defend the first fortress; when the fall begins, it is hard to stem it. On the Sabbath, we go out to war even if the threats involve only "straw and sawdust" - because he who gives up on his home and his property will, in the end, lose the entire war.
Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda Kook, of saintly blessed memory, declared, "Over Judea and Samaria there will be a war!" - and the war has started in Migron and Amona.
Hineni - Here I Am!
If we enlist all our human, spiritual and financial resources and power in a determined and uncompromising struggle, we have a chance to win. The Maccabees were an even smaller minority than are today's loyalists to the Torah of Israel and the Land of Israel. Even just a "small flask of oil, signed with the signet of the High Priest" can burn for eight full days and sweep along most of the nation in its wake on the way to victory.
I call upon the former Chief Rabbis, the yeshiva heads, the leaders of the faith-driven public, the Yesha Council, and all those who are loyal to the Torah of Israel and the Land of Israel to declare aloud: "Here, in Migron and Amona, we will defend with our bodies our Torah and our Fathers' inheritance."
I call upon every Jew whose soul longs for Zion to arise and "report for duty" in Amona and Migron, less than a half-hour's drive from Jerusalem, and to say just one word: "Hineni!" [Here I am]. I am with you, ready for any mission, willing to accept any job.
A Chanukah miracle can occur, with G-d's help, in these times as well. We have in fact seen wondrous miracles in recent generations throughout the period of the Jewish People's revival and return to its Land. May it be G-d's will that we will prove to be worthy of the Maccabees' legacy.