Friday, May 31, 2013

What is it All About? 1975

 K A H A N E
The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea
Cheshvan 5737 – November 1976

(This article was written when Rabbi Kahane was incarcerated in Federal Prison, Manhattan, May 7, 1975) 

What is It All About?

The problems of Israel are many; that us a thing that is hardly new to the Jewish people.  What is new is that for the first time in 20 centuries, Jewish leaders have not the slightest concept of why these problems exist and what the only solutions are.  They are totally and absolutely off the track; their frame of reference is completely wrong!  They have not the slightest understanding of the historical process that is taking place; they are intellectual goyim of the first class; they wander about hopelessly lost, with no sense of direction and not the foggiest notion of what the Jewish crises today is all about.

Their plans, their programs and their ‘solutions’ are impotent and irrelevant and, above all, tragic because they bring down with them the Jewish people.  Once cannot find answers if he does not understand the questions; one cannot find solutions unless he perceives the problems.  One cannot understand the Jewish destiny if he is, intellectually, a gentile.

All that is happening today – the problems afflicting the Jew in Israel and the problems that envelope the Jew in the Exile – all these are one.  It is time that we understood what it is all about.
When Moses first entered the palace of Pharaoh and said to him: “Thus saith the L-rd, the G-d of Israel; Let my people go…” the Egyptian monarch, supreme ruler of his land and of the greatest empire of its time replied:

 “Who is the L-rd that I should hearken unto His voice to let Israel go?  I know not the L-rd…”

The course of human history has been that of G-d’s effort to make man “know the L-rd.”  The purpose of man is to rise to holiness through the bending and subjugating of his will, his ego and his self to the L-rd.  Man, the animal, becomes man the creature “a little lower than the angels” only through humbly making his will subordinate to his Maker.  The knowing of G-d, the recognition that there is a G-d and that he is the L-rd, the G-d of Israel, is the first step to the smashing of one’s ego with all its ugly and sordid selfishness and its obsession with self and self-gratification.  To be free, and to do “one’s thing” and to cast off restraint is not to know G-d but to place oneself on a divine pedestal from which one can be worshipped.
To know G-d and to know specifically the L-rd, the G-d of Israel, is the way – the only way – to create a human race which is humble and small, holy and good.  It is the only way to understand the concepts that comprise holiness, the ultimate goal of man. It is the only way to understand the methods that lead to the attainment of that holiness which will put an end to the self-centeredness from which stem all the evils of the world.

The Jewish people is the instrument of G-d, chosen by Him to teach the world to “know the

L-rd.”  It is the Jews who were directed to practice the theory of holiness, to bring into reality the Man that is just “a little lower than the angels.”  Jewish history begins with the election of the Jew, with his selection as the Chosen People.  Jewish history is the story of the success and failures of the Jew in his mission, and the rewards and punishments of G-d.  It is a history that is filled with the tragedy of both gentile and Jew seeking to escape from the yoke of heaven, denying the existence of the authority of the L-rd, stating: “I know not the L-rd…” and choosing self-gratification over humble holiness, with all the selfish and sordid evils that stems from this.

The end of this historical trek is told a thousand times over in the Bible and the Talmud.  The end of days will see the earth “filled with the knowledge of the L-rd.”  The ultimate future will be one of, “on that day, the L-rd will be One, and His name One.”  The destiny of man is to ultimately know the L-rd, G-d of Israel, as the Omniscient and Omnipotent, and conversely to know himself – at long last – as the created, the finite, the humble being who stands eternally at the mercy of His Maker.  How that will come about is dependent on the Jew understanding his historical and immutable destiny   

“I am the L-rd, in its time will I hurry it (the redemption).”  The words of Isaiah (60).  And the rabbis explain:  “If they, the Jews, merit it, I will “hurry it.”  If they do not merit it, it will come “in its time.” (Sanhedrin 98).

The final redemption can come in one of two ways.  Either through the Jew meriting it and acknowledging the L-rd, shouting out “I know the L-rd” and “I accept His will and His commandments,” or refusing to.  In the case of the former, redemption will come swiftly and with majesty and G-d will show His truth and reality and Omnipotence before the world as He brings awesome and speedy victory for His people Israel, a victory that will lead the nations of the world to acknowledge and “know” him and His sovereignty.  In the case of the latter, of the refusal to bow to G-d; in the case where the Jew will not merit redemption, that redemption will, nevertheless, come but not before the wrath of G-d will bring tragedy and disaster upon the Jewish people – terribly and needlessly.  The moment of truth and the time of choice are at hand.  The final era is upon us.

The end of days, the era of final redemption, shows its signs all about us in our time.  What is happening today is part of a Divine plan, part of a directed destiny.  The Jew has entered the period of atchalta d’geulah, the beginning of the final redemption.   It is an era that has seen great prophecies begun to be fulfilled.  The terrible holocaust, the incredible resurrection of a Jewish State, the breathtaking return of Jews from the four corners of the earth, the awesome military victories and liberation of Jewish lands, east, north and south.  These mark the determination of the All Mighty to make His name known and His power felt and His truth evident.
The Jew must understand that everything that is happening today is part of the Divine decree.  Everything!
The crises for Israel and the Jewish people,  the worsening situation in the world, the turmoil among the nations, the  ascendancy of the forces of aggression and despotism, the movement of the brink of nuclear warfare, all these are coming  to make a mockery of the plans and certainties of man.  All that he proposes begins to crumble as the One whom he refuses to “know”, ultimately disposes.

The Jew must “know the L-rd” and know what the L-rd demands of him in these days. We have an America committed to the Roger Plan and UN Security Council Resolution 242 to force Israel to give up all the liberated lands; a Lebanon which will be free of PLO pressure only because it has become a Syrian protectorate, which is a far greater menace to Israel than the PLO could ever be .  An Israel which sees its own people split on the issues of foreign policy and which knows that American Jewry – fearful of the fallout from anti-Semitism in the event of an Israeli-Washington clash – will pressure the Jewish state to make concessions; and Israel with a growing problem of Arab rioting and bloodshed in the liberated lands and demonstrations against the state by Israeli Arabs which will bring Israel to the brink of a Northern Ireland; and Israel in grave danger. 

Reality is the Exile growing ever more untenable – a graveyard for Jewish hopes, Jewish souls, Jewish bodies.  Assimilation and alienation rage even as the Jew sups noisily from the fleshpots of Galut.  And overhead, the skies darken and cloud grows bleaker as the threat of physical anti-Semitism becomes more real with every passing day. Whole communities face the threat of elimination; Rhodesia, South Africa, Argentina.  They are the next dominoes in the inevitable and immutable process of the liquidation of the Exile and MUST be because it is ordained in the Book of the Righteous.  And America?  Bicentennial or not the Jew will not escape the fate of the others.  This is the reality.

But how swift is the possibility of redemption!  How near it is to us and we need only touch it, open the door for it.  It seeks to embrace us.  As a bride seeking her lover so does salvation seek the Jew who need only give her the dowry, the dowry that shall bring salvation.  That dowry?  The payment?  Faith, “And thou shalt be betrothed unto me with faith, and thou shalt know the L-rd.”  Faith.  Such as simple thing, such a difficult thing.  Real faith; the one that demands of us courage and strength and the ability to throw off our fear of man to do the bidding of the

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Friday, May 17, 2013

The Unheeded Cry 1974

By Rabbi Michael Dov Weismandel
By Rabbi Meir Kahane
On May 15, 1944, in a cave near Lvov, Poland, a man wrote a letter to the world — especially to his fellow Jews in the free world, and, most especially to the huge, wealthy and potent community of Jews in America. The man was named Rabbi Michael Dov Weismandel and he sits today in Paradise in a special corner reserved for only the purest and most saintly of men. He lived the entire Holocaust in Slovakia and Poland, and if someone who saves one life in Israel is considered as having saved an entire world, then Michael Dov Weismandel saved galaxies and universes.  He combined incredible ingenuity with awesome courage to save the lives of countless Jews, plucking them from the circle of death, as the blood of Ahavat Yisroel coursed through his veins. No man did more and no man knew more about the stinking crime of Jewish silence and refusal to do what had to be done, and his cries to heaven against the beasts of Germany were hardly louder than his agonizing screams and indictments of his fellow Jews.

And in that cave he wrote a letter on the day following the beginning of the deportation of Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz. In the letter he described in meticulous detail the camps, the cyanide gas, the ovens, the murder of TWELVE THOUSAND JEWS EACH AND EVERY DAY. And he stared at the Jews of the free world through his letter, each word eye-burning and condemning, staring the free world Jewish community in the soul, crying out against the silence, condemning “because you sit with folded arms and do nothing though you could stop or delay the murder of Jews at this very hour.” And he looked his fellow Jews in the heart shouted: “Our pleadings affect you less than the whimperings of a beggar. Murderers! Madmen!

He concluded his letter with these words:

Indeed, we have already told you several times what is really happening. Is it possible that you believe the wicked murderers more than you believe us, the murdered; is this possible? May G-d open your eyes and grant you the privilege of rescuing, in this final hour, the remainder of the survivors.

And in a pathetic letter of anguish written in the late spring of 1944, the tragic figure wrote:

Our brothers, the Children of Israel! G-d has placed the lives of hundreds of thousands of the remnant in your hands. Do not lose the opportunity, do not waste time with vain discussions among yourselves. Put aside for a few days all other business, all other conversation . . . DO DEEDS! DO DEEDS! For the sake of G-d, His Torah, His people — DO DEEDS IMMEDIATELY . . . . Do not waste even one moment . . .

Murderers, madmen. Bitter, harsh and stinging words. Unfair? Were the Jews to whom the angry prophet Weismandel wrote really deserving of such words? Yes, deserving. Both those leaders who knew the truth and, for various reasons, that in their eyes seemed to be logical and reasonable, refused to do what had to be done, as well as those masses who followed their leaders because “the fathers know best . . . .” Both, ALL, madmen and murderers, and the crime is etched into their souls, and there can never be absolution for the dead of Auschwitz, the dead that need not have died.

Rabbi Meir Kahane
March 1974

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Shavuot Divrei Torah - 1977

The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea
Shavuot, Sivan 5737  -  May 1977
We are told that when the L-rd desired to give the Torah to the Jewish people, instead of choosing some lofty and majestic mountain, He selected Sinai, a small, humble little mount barely more than a hill.  His purpose in this symbolic act was to show that man must turn his back on overbearing pride, must reject a false ego.
It is related in the name of the Gerer Rebbe:  G-d’s intentions are indeed laudable.  Yet, if He intended to show that man must not be a mountain and must turn down false pride, why was the Torah not given in a valley?
The answer is clear, the answer is bold:  It is not enough to reject overbearing pride.  Too much humbleness is, itself wrong.  Man should, man must possess some pride in his being – otherwise he is not a man
I never cease to be amazed that we continue to be valleys.  I never cease wondering at our choosing the way of the meek.  One would imagine that after all the “help” we have failed to receive; we would have remembered the lesson of the mountain.

These are sad times when we must still – just for the moment – the voice of Jacob, and for the sake of Jewish honor, of Jewish protection, don the hand of Esau.

Vandals attack a Yeshiva – let that Yeshiva attack the vandals.  Should a gang bloody a Jew, let a Jewish group go looking for the gang.  This is the way of pride – not evil pride, but the pride of nation, of kinship – the pride of the mountain.

There are those who will protest:  This is not the Jewish way.  And yet since when has it been a Mitzvah to be punished and beaten?  Since when is it a Kiddush HaShem (Sanctification of G-d} to be spat upon and smeared with vegetables?  It is not a Kiddush HaShem, it is quite the opposite.  It is a disgrace to the pride of our people, our G-d.  More important – there is a rule in the hoodlum jungle:  The more the victim backs away, the more the hoodlum moves forward.
The same holds true for all other areas of Jewish persecution, Jewish teachers are being harassed and forced from jobs; Jewish merchants are robbed, looted and driven from their business establishments.
Is the way out to bow to extremism and Nazi tactics?  Can one buy his freedom and life from the psychotics and extremists?  I think not!

Up from the valley and up to the Mount, Jewish rights are not cheap and Jewish defense is not wrong.  This is the lesson of the Mount.

Israel and deep desire for the dismantlement were obvious to all who wished to see.

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The Permanence of the State of Israel 1990

K  A  H  A  N  E
The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea
September – October 1990     Ellul 5750 – Tishrei 5751
Divrei Torah
The Permanence of the State of Israel

It is a Torah axiom, first brought down in the Tanach (Bible) and elaborated upon by the Talmud,  that the final redemption will climax with the enormous battle between the Jewish people and Gog and the nations of the world who come up with him against the land of Israel.
But this entire concept is understood only superficially by the average yeshiva student and certainly the place of the State of Israel and the return of the exiles in the context of Gog is, at best, vague.  And in this connection is the question that is asked by numerous Jews again including yeshiva students:

What guarantees us that the state of Israel will survive and is it not possible that, G-d forbid, it will be destroyed?

Since the yeshiva world, unfortunately, studies little Tanach and less Midrash, so much of Jewish concepts and attributes are closed books with all the subsequent loss of understanding of the totality of the Jewish Idea. In any event, the question is asked and the answer follows.

The Prophet Zechariah (13:8) states: “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the L-rd, two parts therein shall be cut off and die, but the third shall be left therein.”  And our Rabbis declare (Tanchuma, Shoftim 9):  “They (Israel) shall not be settled in their land until the third redemption.  The first redemption is the redemption from Egypt.  The second is redemption of Ezra (from Babylon).  The third will never end.”

And the Rabbis say, again (Psikta Zutrata): “To give (the land) unto them and their seed after them…’Rebbe says: ‘Unto them’ – those are the ones who came into the land from the desert (from Egypt); ‘and their seed’ – those are the ones who came up from Babylon; ‘after them’ – those are the times of the Messiah.”

 From both of these one can see that the third coming up to the land, coming back to the land from the Exile, is the one that is of the times of the Messiah and which “will never end.”

And concerning the verse in Hosea (6), “After two days He shall revive us, in the third day He will raise us up and we shall live in His sight” the classical Biblical commentator, the Radak, writes:

“This speaks of the future.  And ‘after two days’, refers to the two exiles, the Egyptian exile and the Babylonian exile.  ‘On the third day,’ refers to this, the third exile, from which He will raise us up ‘and we shall live in His sight,’ and we shall never again be exiled.”

 And concerning the same verse, the commentator Metzudat David writes: “In the third period, the future redemption, He will raise us up from our fall and we will live before Him forever for we will not go into exile again.”

One brings down the clear words of our Rabbis and gedolim of past and greater times because one is appalled at some of the statements that come out of the mouths of various students and circles in the yeshiva world.  Rather than worry and fear the clear warnings of the Torah and Rabbis of the Talmud concerning the ultimate and inescapable horrors that I will afflict the Jew in the exile (and of which I have written again and again in a vain attempt to get Jews to understand the tragedy that hovers over the heads of the Jews of that exile), they utter all manner of incredible arguments that both humiliate Eretz Yisrael and the Almighty, may we be forgiven.

The incredible rise of the State of Israel and all the miraculous events that surround it become things of little consequence for the overwhelming numbers of Orthodox denizens of the exile.  Not only does Eretz Yisrael become “galus” in the perverted concepts that have caused them to twist Torah truth, but Israel becomes a possibly temporary thing that could be destroyed, G-d forbid.  Do these people not realize what they do?  They do nothing less than mock the Almighty!

The State of Israel as a temporary thing that could be destroyed?  Do we then mock the Almighty and make from Him and His events a joke?  Do we take the stupendous miracles that we have seen in our days and make of them meaningless things?  Does the Almighty then bring back a huge part of the Jewish people to its land from the four corners of the earth after 2,000 years and give them an independent state, and give us breath-taking wars of liberation and survival, only to then plunge us back into destruction after 40 or 50 years?  Does the prophecy of Zechariah (8) mean nothing when he says: “Old men and women will yet sit in the streets of Jerusalem… and the streets will be filled with boys and girls playing there?”  Does all that we have seen and realized in our times become a game, a meaningless thing that can disappear tomorrow because the denizens of the glatt kosher fleshpots of exile must find yet another rationalization for not coming back and fulfilling their religious obligation to live in the land?
The State of Israel is G-d’s hand and the fact that its leaders and governments are the worst of the scoffers and deniers and corrupters of Judaism has no relevance vis-à-vis the meaning of the state in the prophetic vision of the era of the redemption.

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