No Hitchhikes? No Israel!

by Shmuel Sackett

International Director, Manhigut Yehudit

Tamuz 5766 (July, 06)

What's more dangerous in Israel? To walk? To drive? To take a bus? To hitchhike? All of the above? How do we break out of the vicious cycle that forces us to desperately change our mode of travel as the terrorists change their methods of murder?

Following a series of terror attacks in recent weeks all centered around hitchhiking, politicians and rabbis in Israel have called upon Israelis to stop hitchiking. Some politicians have even gone so far as to call for legislation making hitchhiking illegal. While I understand their concerns, I have several questions for them.

1. Instead of hitchhiking the people will be forced to use busses. In the last few years, over 300 Jews have been murdered on busses in Israel. Why is that not dangerous as well? As an aside, allow me to point out that when American Jews send their kids to Israel to learn in Yeshiva and Seminary, they forbid them from taking busses. Because of the dangers on Israeli busses, these kids take cabs all over the place. So what will be accomplished by taking busses instead of hitchhikes?

2. Since Israel abandoned Gush Katif, over 800 missiles have landed in Sderot. These missiles can -- and have -- killed many people. They are deadly. Why not issue a declaration against living in or visiting Sderot? Wouldn't 800 missiles -- and dozens more each day -- qualify as a danger?

3. Hundreds of Jews have been killed in Israeli hotels, coffee shops, restaurants and markets. The Park Hotel in Netanya, Sbarro Pizza shop in Jerusalem, Apprapo restaurant in Tel Aviv, as well as restaurants and coffee shops in Haifa, Afula, Karnei Shomron, and of course Ben Yehuda. These areas are still on high-alert and are considered significant risks. Should these areas be off limits as well?

4. Students on their way to school have been killed across the country. A good friend of mine's 17 year old daughter was killed outside her school in Kfar Saba. Yeshiva students were killed on school grounds in Itamar. Four boys were killed inside the Yeshiva in Otniel. Dozens were killed by the school in Ramat Eshkol and many were killed outside a school in Afula. Maybe we should call upon students to stop going to school? After all, it can be seriously dangerous!

5. And finally, with all the pain in my heart I must state the fact that today, for a Jew, the most dangerous place in the world is Israel. More Jews die, are wounded and are attacked -- because they are Jews -- in Israel, than anywhere else in the world. This is sad and my chest hurts as I write these words but it is true. So why not call upon all Jews to leave Israel and move to Monsey until further notice? After all, if our concern is safety and avoiding danger, why shouldn't we all just pack up and move en masse to New Guinea?

Based on this, you can see how this line of thinking is quite tragic. All people have to do is take the logic of "avoiding danger" to the next step, as I did in my examples above, and they will come to the conclusion that Jews in Israel had better run for their lives! Jews in America, prepare your homes! Millions of Israeli refugees will begin fleeing the country and you will need to take them in.

What our leaders should be stating is that the Israeli government and IDF are guilty of shedding Jewish blood! They should have called Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz MURDERERS as they recently gave 1,000 automatic rifles and 1,000,000 rounds of ammunition to the enemy. These weapons have ALREADY been used against Jews several times. Every responsible Jewish leader should DEMAND that the Arabs be dealt a serious blow and that the IDF blow up all Arab villages that pose a danger to Jews. The only problem is hitchhiking? What happened to the core issue of letting a cancer grow in Israel with nobody seeming to care?

I work with people. I speak across the USA to tens of thousands of people each year on the topic of Israel. I never allow myself to focus on the negative because if I did, there is simply nothing but depression at the end of the line. I never focus on the dangers because if I did -- I would lose. I always focus on the positive and never allow myself to repeat the sin of the spies who slandered a beautiful, G-d given country.

Here, then, is what true Jewish leaders should be saying:

Israel is a beautiful country and every Jew must immediately come home. The tragedies suffered by our people in the past must never again be repeated. The IDF will begin to fight as the Jews did in the days of Joshua and King David. No peace-deals, treaties or compromises will be made and great amounts of pain and suffering will be inflicted on any person or village that attacks a Jew or his property. The government of Israel is obligated to sanctify G-d's Name at every moment of the day and all of its actions must be done to further this one-and-only goal. Only a government using these guidelines can ensure the safety and security of the Jews in Israel and throughout the world and we obligate all officials to act exclusively in this manner.

Dearest readers; I promise you that the day will come when Jewish leaders will speak of growth, not death. When they will lead with courage and not with fear and when little Jewish children will happily dance freely in the streets of Shechem, Hebron, Bet Lechem and on their way up to the Temple Mount.

Come to Israel and help build that kind of country. Join with us as we live freely, without fear, in all parts of the Land of Israel. Help us defend and grow in this land and watch it blossom right before your eyes! The future of the Jewish people is ONLY in the Jewish Land that was promised EXCLUSIVELY to the Jewish Nation. Be a part of the excitement. Don't let fear or danger cloud your mind. 70 years ago the Jews in Europe felt very safe but where are they today? Israel is our home and we will take over, not only all parts of the land, but all parts of the LEADERSHIP as well! We are just a short time away from turning Israel into a proud, mighty and REAL Jewish State! Don't be discouraged! Get involved and make this dream come to fruition. Am Yisrael Chai!

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