Saturday, December 17, 2016

Where Is Shimon? Where Is Levi? 1989

Kahane on the Parsha
Rabbi Meir Kahane- Parshat VaYishlach

"Shall he make of our sister a harlot?"- Genesis 34:31

Some 3,500 years ago, an abomination was done to a Jew in Shechem. Dinah, daughter of Jacob, was raped by Shechem, the son of Chamor. Upon hearing of the obscenity, Dinah's brothers- Shimon and Levi- went into the town and slew every male.

Last month, an abomination was done to a Jew in Shechem. A Jewish soldier was murdered when an Arab dropped a huge rock on his head from a rooftop. Upon hearing of the obscenity, Dinah's brothers- Chief of Staff Dan Shomron and the general in charge of the Central Command, Amram Mitzna- toured the scene of the murder, swore that the Arabs would pay "a high price" (the exact words of Shomron were: "There is no doubt that we will react in this area in a way that will make it not worthwhile for local people to throw stones and the price will be heavy. Every reaction is possible. You will see this in the days to come")- and then proceeded to blow up the upper roof of the building from which the rock was dropped and brick up windows overlooking the alley.
As they did so, Arabs in adjacent buildings whistled and shouted, "Allahu Akhbar, Allah is great," and former Mayor Hafez Touqan said: "This has no deterrent effect whatsoever."

Where is Shimon? Where is Levi? Where is the Jewish knowledge that an abomination against a Jew has been done here and it must be dealt with in the only way that Jew-haters understand? When Jacob heard of the act of Shimon and Levi, protested- not because it was immoral, as so many foolish Jews say- but because of practical concerns: He feared the retribution of the people of the land and told his sons, "You have brought trouble on me to make me odious among the inhabitants of the land...and since I am few in number, they will gather themselves against me and slay me" (Genesis 34:30). No, not a moral argument, for there was nothing immoral about the act of Shimon and Levi. Jacob was simply afraid of the reaction of the gentiles around him.

And the reply of Shimon and Levi resounds throughout the ages: "Shall he make of our sister a harlot?" And Jacob is silent. There is no answer. For his sons are right...
Chillul Hashem! To defile a Jewess and treat her as a harlot! Such a thing CANNOT BE!
And as far as Jacob's fear is concerned, the Ohr HaChaim comments, "If the nations see that one low person ruled over Jacob and did as he pleased, the Jews would not be able to survive among the nations. It is through [the killing of the people of Shechem] that the fear of the Jews will be on the nations and they will tremble before them."

Indeed, the way of Shimon and Levi not only leads to the natural terror of the gentile but also to G-d's approval: "And the terror of G-d was upon the cities that were round about them, and they did not pursue the sons of Jacob" (Genesis 35:5).

The fact is that when G-d commanded the tribes to choose special and distinctive flags that they would fly proudly as they camped and travelled in the desert, "Shimon had a flag whose color was green and had drawn on it the city of Shechem" (Bamidbar Rabba 2:7).
The city of Shechem? This was the flag of Shimon as commanded by G-d? This was what the Almighty wished Shimon to wave on high for all to see? No, hardly a sin, but rather, as in the commentary of the Maharzu on this Midrash: "Because of their bravery and self-sacrifice in Shechem. And even though Levi was with him, Shimon was the older and the main one. And this [flag] is his praise for his zealousness against the abomination of immorality."
Maimonidies explains the actions of Shimon and Levi (Hilchot Melachim 9:14): "The sons of Noah are commanded to uphold laws...and because of this all the people of Shechem were worthy of death since Shechem stole [Dinah] and they saw it and knew of it and did not try him."

The Ramban gives his own reason as follows: "The sons of Jacob wished to avenge themselves on them with an avenging sword since the people of Shechem were wicked and blood for them was like water. And they killed the king and all his servants who were obedient to him."

No, those who dare raise their hand in abomination against Israel, whether through rape of Dinah or murder of a soldier, have raised their hands against the people of G-d, hence against the Almighty Himself. It is a Chillul Hashem that demands vengeance and punishment. Shimon and Levi destroyed the desecrators, and forever did the flag of Shimon eternalize the act.

But there is no Shimon and Levi today.
There is only Shomron and Mitzna and Shamir and Arens- small people, unworthy to carry the flag of sanctification. Their pitiful reaction is worse than nothing. It adds to the humiliation, to the Chillul Hashem. It spits in the grave of the murdered soldier and guarantees that others will follow him.

The casbah where the soldier was murdered should have been razed to the ground and all the inhabitants of the city told that blood is on their heads and to flee before the sword of Shimon and Levi returns. OUT! OUT OF THE LAND! Shall our sister be treated like a harlot? Is the blood of our brother the soldier cheap? We need a Shimon and Levi today. We need a government in Israel that understands that this is precisely its role.
The Jewish Press, 1989
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