40 Years... Time's Almost Up[?]

[For all those of you who have not read "40 Years" by Rabbi Kahane I would very much reccomend it (it's a very small book and a quick read).]

In his book "Forty Years," Rabbi Meir Kahane z"tl h"yd suggested that since the founding of the "Third Jewish Commonwealth" (or the current State of Israel) a "40 year grace period" during which we could get our act together to save ourselves from disaster and bring the Mashiach, was being offered to us by HaShem, just like we had experienced on several other occasions in our history. We had the same during the first two "Jewish Commonwealths," (back then we failed to take the opportunity to avert catastrophe,) and on other occasions we see the number "40" repeated as some kind of period of cleansing or "kaparah" - "atonement;" e.g. 40 years in the desert, 40 days and 40 nights of rain during the great flood, etc

The Rav began his count from 1948, but to be honest I dare say that with the benefit of hindsight it seems much more likely that it was 1967 - when we actually gained control of Yerushalayim and a proper, strong hold on E"Y - when the clock began ticking.

And if you think about it, it makes perfect sense. Between 1948-67 we didn't really have a chance to breathe. We had only just woken up from the long sleep of Galut and we were still "like dreamers." And then there was the Sinai War and the War of Attrition with Egypt. To be honest, we still had a pretty good reason to not have gotten our act together - we hadn't really yet had the chance. G-D is Merciful after all, and to expect perfection straight after the trauma of the Holocaust and the expulsions and trauma suffered by the Jews in Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Egypt etc, would have been asking a bit too much...

In addition, we didn't even have full control over our Land, in particular most of the Holy City of Yerushalayim - including the Holiest of Holies, the Temple Mount.

It was in 1967 that we really blew our chance. In 1948 we fought tooth and nail and still only had a partial control of the Land. The key factor was that we didn't have the Temple Mount, and as we know and as it has been said: "he who controls the Temple Mount, controls all of Israel." It was in 1967 that we finally re-conquered the Old City and the Temple Mount in Yerushalayim, it was in 1967 that we re-conquered Hebron, Shechem, Beit Lechem, Yericho, and so many other key Holy places that we had never had before.

1967 was the chance we had for "Shleimut" - completion, wholeness, perfection - that we didn't really get in 1948. We blew it in '67, after the short-sighted fool Dayan gave the Arabs the keys to the Temple Mount and Ma'arat Hamachpela, and after he ordered that the paratroopers encourage many fleeing Arabs to return by cutting them off before they could escape the country.

It was in 1967 that we really had the chance to "kick off," as a potentially viable, complete (potentially Torah) State - but it instead it was in 1967 that we chose to make so many stupid decisions, and literally only the day after, we began the process of turning the Miracle from Heaven on its head, and into a Chillul HaShem and a dangerous situation for our fledgeling state.

So if that is the case, very soon we will experience the end of that period of Heavenly Grace.

This is obviously not for sure and simply a case of trying to see through the haze of galut without really being given too much information about the ge'ulah, so it could all be wrong. But think about this:

Since 1967 we've had other chances to win. Of course, every day was a potential day of ge'ulah - a day to expel the Arab menace and establish a trutly Jewish state. But there were certain key moments, for example the Yom Kippur War. And just as a side-point we should take note of what what day it fell on. Such a Divine Message and Opportunity presented to us that it was time to do Teshuva, and that it was still not too late. A day when HaShem is blatantly watching and judging. A day when you would expect even our stubborn nation to do the right thing...

Then there was also the Peace for Gallilee war, and the "intifadas" both in Yesha and southern Lebanon.

But don't you find it strange that davka this year we were subject to such a pivotal war once more? We know that with the Almighty in charge there is no such thing as "coincidence," and every event is preordained, and its date is set for the perfect moment for that event.

Was there ever an event since 1973 so bursting with huge potential to make or break our future? This last war changed the face of the Middle East completely, and it had the potential to do so either way.

Were we to have taken the opportunity and destroyed Hizbullah, even bombing Nasrallah as he was in the Iranian embassy, imagine what events that could have triggered off. In doing so, we most probably would have provoked the wrath of the surrounding nations, who could only take a certain amount of slaps in the face before going to war without losing face. It certainly would have provoked the "wrath" of the UN and EU, and the nations of the world would have been in uproar. But, had victory been achieved we would have been in a stronger position than ever before. With this defeat, however, the Arab leaders are almost as confident as they were prior to the Yom Kippur war.

And think about the manner of the war that was just fought. A complete reversal of all the others before it. Here, the "mighty" Israeli army, were beaten by the "underdogs," Hizbullah. As a result, such a defeat is even worse than suffering losses to a proper army in terms of deterent... It is a blatant display by the Almighty directed towards us, showing us that without Him we are doomed no matter how "strong" we are physically.

Is it a mere coincidence that such a conflict broke out in the 39th year of the cycle? I wonder... But if it is more than just that, we may be approaching the end of that 40 year window empty-handed, G-D forbid.

That having been said: it's not over 'till it's over, and there is still some time left. If we can just show HaShem that there are many people willing to do His Will, even if the Hellenists are too strong for us to succeed fully, then perhaps we will trigger an action of Divine Mercy and not Divine Anger at the end of all this. We must bring Mashiach "in haste," otherwise we could G-D forbid be heading towards the most frightening era of the arrival of Mashiach "in it's time" in it's final stages, about which the Sages of the Talmud said "let me not see it."

But it's not too late, for Mashiach can come "today, if you Listen to My Voice."

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