Much of the conflict has
been centered in the holy city of all, Jerusalem, described in the
Bible as the city of peace.
In the Middle East and around the world, national leaders have
repeatedly, over the last century, attempted to solve this conflict
and bring peace to the region. All their attempts have failed. World
empires, including those of England and the Ottoman Turks have been
drawn into this conflict. Today the former is a shell of its former
self, while the latter no longer exists. Yet, the conflict which
dogged them goes on and on.
I’d like to pose to you this morning two very basic questions.
1) What is the conflict in the Holy Land really about? 2) What has
caused it and can it be alleviated?
I hope to answer these questions this morning, but first we have
to offer a few definitions.
It is a commonplace in the media to speak of a Jewish-Arab, or
Jewish - Palestinian conflict. Others even refer to a Jewish -Islamic
In our view, all these descriptions of the Middle Eastern troubles
are false. Very dangerously false.
We maintain that Jews and Judaism have no conflict with Arabs,
Muslims, Palestinians or any other group.
This misunderstanding arises from the lack of a clear definition
of Judaism and Jewry. Rav Saadya Gaon, a ninth century Babylonian
Jewish scholar wrote, “Our national identity is the Torah.”
This is the starting point for any discussion of Judaism and therefore
We are a people by virtue of the Torah.
We are bound to obey G-d, as it is written in the Torah. We understand
our national destiny as it is written in the Torah.
We view our suffering or prosperity as it is analyzed in the Torah.
We look forward to the Messiah and universal brotherhood as it
is foretold in the Torah.
Any political, social or historical viewpoints we have, must be
rooted in the Torah and certainly never be in conflict with it.
This is the way all Jews, up until recent centuries, viewed their
Jewish identity. They had one national and individual project. It
was complete obedience to the Will of the Creator.
Thus, when Jews viewed the destruction of their Temple in Jerusalem
and subsequent exile among the nations, they saw it through the
eyes of the Torah and the prophets. That vision was a clear one.
The people had sinned and, thus, forfeited their claim to the land.
Their exile was a punishment. Only G-d Himself could end the exile.
He would do so when the people’s sins were expiated and they
had learned the lesson of total obedience to G-d.
At that time, without any human intervention, all nations will
together serve G-d.
To attempt a human escape from exile; to, so to speak, shoot oneself
out of a Divine decree was seen as ludicrous and supremely impudent.
In fact, the Talmudic Sages foretold, on the basis of various sources
in the Prophetic books, that an attempt to effect a premature ending
of exile, would result in untold bloodshed and suffering.
This was the approach of Jewry throughout the ages. Jews lived
humbly. They sought good relations with all men. They strove, when
allowed, to be patriotic citizens. Their task was to live quiet
lives of piety and modesty, thus sanctifying the L-rd’s name
with their conduct.
In the nineteenth century many segments of European society began
to throw off the yoke of heaven. Assorted heretical movements grew
up, which attracted both Jew and Gentile. Communism, evolutionism,
Bible criticism, assorted forms of religious and secular liberalism,
the Jewish Reform movements and scores of others, lured millions
away from G-d and His law.
Born of this spirit of Godlessness, severed from all links with
the Torah and Jewish tradition and in opposition to the nearly unanimous
voice of Rabbis and Sages, we find at the end of the nineteenth
century, a new movement that became known as Zionism.
This movement was the direct antithesis of everything which believing
Jews had maintained for thousands of years. By calling for a human
end to exile, it denied Divine Providence over reward and punishment.
By summoning Jews to return en masse to the Holy Land, it violated
one of the fundamental terms of exile as explained in the Talmud.
And, lastly by putting its followers in a position from which it
was inevitable that war result, it condemned to death the thousands
of victims of those wars -- soldiers and civilians -- Englishmen,
Jews, Palestinians and other Islamic peoples. Of, course, these
wars, declared and undeclared, should have come as no surprise.
They were the result of a wicked heresy let loose in history.
From Zionism’s inception, the traditional religious leaders
of all segments of Jewry were virulently opposed to it. In nation
after nation, its appeals were only accepted by those elements of
the population whose attachment to their faith had already been
weakened and whose knowledge of its basic doctrines was minimal.
It was only after the second world war when Jewry emerged from the
Holocaust leaderless and emotionally shattered, was Zionism capable
of making serious inroads among some observant Jews.
Throughout the twentieth century, Zionists sought to drive masses
of Jews towards Palestine in order to conquer the land by immigration.
In incident after incident, they provoked the indigenous population
as well as the British Mandate administrators. Often their aggressions
flared into civil wars of various degrees of intensity. Many were
those who were killed in this era from all three peoples.
Prior to the arrival of the Zionist immigrants beginning in the
immediate pre World War I years, small pious and anti -Zionist Jewish
communities lived in Jerusalem, Hebron, Safed and Tiberias. They
had no desire to achieve political sovereignty over the land nor
to flood it with Jewish immigrants. They were largely Rabbis devoted
to study and prayers with a small number of shopkeepers and workers
included. They were never subject to any harm or persecution by
the local Palestinian people. Of course, both Jew and Palestinian
at times suffered under Ottoman rule.
Those Jews who live today in the Holy Land and around the world,
whose ancestors recalled those tranquil years, speak of the friendliest
of relations between Jew and Muslim or Jew and Christian in Jerusalem
and throughout the entire Holy Land.
This good will built up by pious Jews over the centuries has been
very much endangered by Zionist actions and propaganda. The Zionists
seek to demonize all Palestinians, all Arabs and all Muslims.
One of the greatest tragedies that Zionism has brought about is
the identification of Zionism with Judaism and Zionists with Jewry
in the popular mind, both Jewish and non – Jewish.
The takeover of the Hold Land, the dispossessing of its people,
their constant persecution, insensitivity to their calls and claims
for justice have all been done in the name of a so called “Israel”,
as if this monstrosity set up to deny and defy the norms of G-d
and man, has anything to do with the sacred task of Torah true Jewry.
Of course, the mainstream media operating under heavy Zionist control
and mainstream politicians, with their careers always threatened
by the likes of AIPAC and the ADL, are reluctant to ever question
Hence, the equation of Zionism with Judaism continues.
This takes place, despite the efforts of anti –Zionist Jews
for the last fifty two years to get our message out. Even large
rallies attended by tens of thousands, in protest against the existence
of the state or any number of its vile deeds, are routinely ignored
in the media.
I personally have participated in many newsworthy protests and
demonstrations against the Zionist state. They are rarely if ever
mentioned. We have published many books which are routinely ignored.
This opportunity to speak to your group this morning is a wonderful
opportunity to step outside of the media created prison and speak
some simple truths about Zionism and Judaism and Jews and the Palestinians.
My friends, hundreds of thousands of Jews around the world, in
New York and Montreal, in Jerusalem and London, in Antwerp, in Safed
and Tiberias are Orthodox Jews who completely reject Zionism.
They realize that Zionism has denied G-d, created a rogue state
which has usurped the name of “Israel” and subject the
Palestinian people to a century in Hell.
Therefore, in answer to the questions I raised at the start of
this talk, namely, 1) What is the conflict in the Holy Land really
about? 2) What has caused it and can it be alleviated? We are now
capable of offering answers.
The conflict in the Middle East is fundamentally about the abandonment
of Torah Judaism by the Zionists and their subsequent rejection
of the Divinely imposed, exilic agenda of peace, humility and piety.
The immediate cause of the conflict is the vicious dispossession
and disenfranchisement of the Palestinian people by Zionist military
Lastly, this conflict and all its subsequent suffering cannot be
stopped according to current understandings of it.
We are grateful to many well meaning Gentiles from the UN and in
the United States and former Soviet Union and elsewhere for their
attempts at negotiated settlement.
We can assure them, though, that their ideas will never succeed.
Middle Eastern turmoil is not caused by faulty peace plans or (G-d
forbid) a lack of so called Israeli firmness!
Middle Eastern conflicts are caused by one thing, Zionism.
When Zionism will end, then and only then will peace come to that
It is our hope and prayer and we trust the hope and prayer of all
good men everywhere that this change may be brought about without
loss of life.
Of course, given the givens at present it is difficult to imagine
how this happy ending to our story may come about.
But, suffice it to say that the Creator has Powers and abilities
which go way beyond those of mortal man’s understanding. And,
above all else His Mercies are upon all His creatures.
May we live to see the day when all men in a true spirit of brotherhood
will acknowledged their Creator.
Thank you a-salem aleikhim.