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Thursday
Aug222019

“Hawkish” in Security & “Dovish” in Respect

Teaches that Israel is the safest place, yet obsessed with concern for Israel’s security.

 The Rebbe specifically stated that Israel was the safest place on earth and encouraged people to go there when the Gulf War threatened to bomb Israel with chemical weapons.

The Rebbe’s claim that it is the safest place is rooted in the Torah itself. The Rebbe therefore stated that this position cannot change since it is based on Torah.

Yet, the Rebbe was obsessed with Israel’s security and strongly advocating against any compromise that would make Israel vulnerable. The Rebbe predicted that if the government makes the so-called “land for peace” a reality it will lead to terrorist activity in the heart of Tel Aviv. 

The Rebbe was, in effect, saying that our enemy cannot harm us, only we can cause harm to ourselves when we make ill-fated compromises.

***

Is considered a “hawk” in matters of security yet demonstrates a true respect for the Arabs and their humanity.

The Rebbe is arguably the most vocal critic of the Israeli government’s peace processes which involved compromise with regard to giving up land. This is based mostly on the threat to security that would come from the Arabs.

Yet, when a discussion of birth control for the Arabs was discussed, the Rebbe was a “dove” and strongly opposed this effort at curbing their growth because populating the world is an obligation for all humanity. 

In addition, the Rebbe would argue that the flawed peace deals that would endanger Israel were bad for the Arabs as well. The Rebbe expressed sincere concern for the wellbeing of every human being.

The same argument the Rebbe made with regard to intermarriage that it was destructive for the non-Jewish partner as well.

***

Never physically ever went to Israel yet loves, lives and breathes Israel and unyielding in his opposition to any compromise of Israel’s integrity. 

The Rebbe was never in Israel; not even for a brief visit. Over the years, the Rebbe gave several reasons why he chose not to go. 

However, he loves, lives and breathes Israel. 

The Rebbe was intimately involved in virtually every issue that related to Israel, working publicly and behind the scenes to help support and strengthen Israel’s security, economy, spiritual state, unity etc. The Rebbe sent special emissaries to help strengthen Israel and has tens of thousands of Chassidim that live there and serve in the army etc.

One of many stories illustrates this point of the Rebbe’s familiarity with Israel.

Professor Yirmiyahu Branover brought a map of Jerusalem to the Rebbe to decide where to locate a new neighborhood intended for scientists who emigrated from the former Soviet Union. The Rebbe put the map aside and began to discuss the various locations that were proposed expressing the pros and cons of each neighborhood!

***

Supports Israel’s military defense, but also denounced the sense that it “was my power that did all of this.”

There are two diametrically opposite views concerning Israel’s defenses: 

There are those who believe in and trust Israel’s power to defend itself because of its sophisticated training, courageous and moral military, and superior technology. These people will refer to Israel’s might and that we can only depend on ourselves for our defense and survival. 

The opposite view held by some is that we should not put much credence to our military prowess; rather it is the study of Torah that solely protects the Jewish people.

The Rebbe was the staunchest supporter of the Israeli military; often even contributing to its strategy and how to perfect its equipment. The Rebbe was in close contact with Israeli generals who were amazed at the Rebbe’s intimate knowledge of all aspects of the military. 

Yet, the Rebbe was vocal about the evil in proclaiming “My strength and the power of my arms performed this valor for me.” Without Divine assistance and outright miracles we could never have survived. The Rebbe also attributed some defeats and casualties to that arrogant view that we are powerful. 

***

Apolitical, yet politicians come to him and he affected the political situation in Israel and other countries.

 The Rebbe never endorsed a candidate in U.S. elections or in Israeli elections, although the Rebbe strongly urged us to vote.

This was not just a tactic and a safeguard against government intrusion, but it was the Rebbe’s insistence that Torah transcends political views and differences. 

The Rebbe cited his father-in-law, the Previous Rebbe, that all systems have some good in them and that all the good of all the systems is rooted in and derived from the Torah which is the epitome of perfection.

Nevertheless, the Rebbe is sought after by politicians of all stripes here and in Israel. The Rebbe affected the outcome of the elections without endorsing any one candidate.

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