Shchem – Where Is Shimon? Where Is Levi?

“Shall he make of our sister a harlot?”
(Genesis 34: 31)
Some 3,500 years ago, an abomination was done to a Jew in Shchem.  Dinah, daughter of Jacob, was raped by Shchem, 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 Shchem. 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 Touquan said: “This has no deterrent effect whatsoever.”
The shame of Israel, the Hillul Hashem – desecration of the Name – lies in the fact that today there is no Shimon, there is no Levi.  There is only Dan Shomron who – as Chief of Staff, to our dishonor, and thus committed to crushing the intifada whose aim is to wipe out Israel – instead tells the news media that “the intifada cannot be defeated since it comes from nationalist roots.”  There is only Amram Mitzna, the disgrace of a soldier who, in the middle of the Lebanese war and following the Sabra and Satilla massacres of Arabs by Arabs, condemned the Israeli Defense Minister before a press conference in Beirut and then left his post and went home to his kibbutz, Ein Gav.  
What a “high price” the Arabs of Shchem have paid.  A roof, two houses blown up and windows bricked up and an area sealed – and the Arabs laughing and happily shouting Allah is great!  “High price.”  What a fraud, what a lie.  And how it typifies the entire government of deceit.  They have no policy, they have no answers.

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 the Jew-haters understand?  When Jacob heard of the act of Shimon and Levi he protested – not because it was immoral, as so many foolish Jews say, but – for practical reasons: He feared the retribution of the people of the land, saying, “You have brought trouble on me to make me odious among the inhabitants of the land … and I being few in number, they will gather themselves together 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 . . .
Hillul Hashem!  To defile a Jewess and treat her as a whore!  Such a thing cannot be even if there is danger, because in the case of national Hillul Hashem, danger is set aside.  And this was even when the Jews were a small minority in the midst of many gentiles.  Even then, the demand to wipe out Hillul Hashem transcended danger.  How much more so, when there is a State of Israel and an army that controls the city of Shchem!  And how much greater is the Hillul Hashem that we bring on ourselves by our humiliating refusal to do that which we should – wipe out the terror by killing the murderers and driving out all the rest.
And the Or HaChaim in his commentary goes further: “To the contrary, there will be danger for them among the nations; when the latter will see that one low person ruled over Jacob and did as his pleasure, then the Jews would not be able to survive among the nations.  And it is through this [the killing of the people of Shchem]  that fear of the Jews will be on the nations and they will tremble before them.”
Of course. It is only true punishment and a heavy hand of Jewish terror that is the way to terrify the nations who would otherwise wipe out Israel.  It is the way of Shimon and Levi that not only leads to the natural terror of the gentile but also to G-d’s approval: And the terror of G-d was on the cities that were round about them and they did not pursue the sons of Jacob” (Genesis 35:5).
What the pathetic and humiliating policy of Shomron and Mitzna and their employers – Rabin and Shamir and Arens – has done has been to lift terror from the Arabs and give them confidence and contempt for the Jews.  By this deadly and terrible policy, so couched in gentilized and Hellenized concepts of “morality” that is, in fact, repulsive murder, we guarantee the future blood of Jews.  Because there is no Shimon and Levi, the Arab is unafraid and he thus will murder more Jews tomorrow, secure in the knowledge that the pathetic kibbutznikim of the army and the Hellenized political leaders of Likud and Labor will speak loudly and then do nothing to crush the Arab.  It is the Arab who threw the rock that murdered the soldier but it is Shamir and Arens and Rabin and Shomron and Mitzna who are the accomplices.  Their Jewish hands are red and filthy with Jewish blood.
And finally, a comprehensive understanding of Shimon and Levi for those who claim that they sinned when they killed the people of Shchem and were therefore cursed by their father.
The fact is that their father (as mentioned above) never castigated them on moral grounds but only out of practical fear of the nations.  The fact is that they replied to him and he was silent, accepting their cry that no gentile could make of their sister a harlot.  The fact is that G-d did not punish them but, to the contrary brought terror on the gentiles around them.
And 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 traveled in the desert, the Rabbis tell us (Bamidbar Rabbah 2): “Shimon [the tribe of Shimon] had a flag whose color was green and had drawn on it the city of Shchem.”
The city of Shchem?  This was the flag of Shimon as commanded by G-d?  This was what the ALL Mighty wished Shimon to wave on high for all to see?  No, hardly a sin, but rather, as in the commentary of the Maharzu: “Because of their bravery and self-sacrifice in Shchem.  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.”
And Maimonides explains the actions of Shimon and Levi (Hilchot Mlachim 9:14), and his words are brought down in the Ramban (Breishit 34:13):  “The sons of Noah are commanded to uphold laws . . . and because of this all the people of Shchem were worthy of death since Shchem stole [Dinah] and they saw it and knew of it and did not try him.”
And the Ramban gives his own reason as follows: For the sons of Jacob, since the people of Shchem were wicked people and blood for them was as water, wished to avenge themselves on them with an avenging sword.  And they killed the king and all his servants who were obedient to him.”
In any event, since it is clear that Shimon and Levi not only did not sin but, indeed, followed G-d’s law, why then did Jacob apparently, curse them when he said: “Instruments of violence are their swords.  Let my soul not come into their council . . . for in their anger they slew men, and in their self-will they uprooted an ox” (Genesis 49:6)
The answer is that, again, their actions against the people of Shchem, who had acquiesced in the abomination against Dinah, were totally justified.  And that is why Jacob, after first protesting and then hearing their reply, was silent and agreed.  But later, after learning that the same two sons had also intended to kill Joseph, and Shimon threw him into a pit that was teeming with snakes and scorpions (see Breishit Rabbah 84, and Rashi on Genesis 49:6. Who explains the words “And in their self-will they uprooted an ox.” As referring to Joseph who was symbolized as an ox in Deuteronomy 33:17. “The firstling of his herd grandeur is his, and his horns are like the horns of a wild ox”), he then realized that their motivation in all that they did was violence and anger for its own sake.  That is why they sinned – not because of the act itself but because their motivation was violent anger and this was manifested even against their own brother.  And so he cursed, not them but their anger and their self-will.
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 ALL Mighty Himself.  It is a Hillul 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 Hillul 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 as a harlot?  Shall our brother the soldier be as one whose blood is cheap?  We need a Shimon and Levi today.  We need a government in Israel that understands that this is precisely its role

Written 1989  Reprinted in
Beyond Words: Selected Writings of Rabbi Meir Kahane,
1960-1990, Volume 6

Beyond Words” is a  seven volume collection of Rabbi Meir Kahane’s writings from 1960 – 1990 that originally appeared in The Jewish Press, other serial publications, and his privately-published works.


These excerpts were taken from an article written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTUQ"L, HY"D (may he be remembered for his goodness, may he be a blessing in his holiness, and may his blood be avenged by G-d) published in Kahane magazine, Nov. 1985

Why, surely it is the issue that, unless raised and discussed and answered, will guarantee yet another and another national catastrophe. Surely it is an issue that goes to the very nature of the Jewish People, its meaning and role in life, its direction and fate.

What is the fundamental issue that must be met and grappled with?

Why surely the one that asks the question: Where was God? How could He have permitted it?

Our failure to grapple with this issue (instead we corrupt our souls by the terrible reply: It is a question no one can answer) has caused us to be silent accomplices in the worst of all Jewish sins and crimes - Hiruf v'giduf, blasphemy against the Lord; open insult and attack on His Name - Hillul Hashem (cursing G-d).

How dare we sit by quietly while Jewish ignoramuses and blasphemers speak of the "death of God", and His Name is dragged through the mud of a theology and philosophy of heresy?

How dare we allow Him to be blasphemed and our children to be turned down the path of apostasy and atheism because our reply to the attacks of the blasphemers is: "No one can answer the question!"

Of course there is an answer! It is a Jewish answer. But, of course, it is the kind of answer that the irreligious Jews, the secularists, the impossible Reformers and Conservatives simply cannot cope with.

It is an answer that can only come from a Jew who believes fully and completely and it is the answer that can only enter the mind and soul of a Jew who believes fully and completely.

And since the non-Orthodox Jew is essentially an atheist (though lacking the courage to admit it), the answer to the Holocaust is simply impossible for him to accept.

And as for the Orthodox Jew, in such great measure, he is responsible for laying the groundwork for the inability of Jews to understand or accept the Jewish answer to the Holocaust. Let me explain and you, dear reader, study the words carefully, They will pain you, but they can also save you.

The reason for the Holocaust, the Jewish reason and answer, is the one that rises out of the fundamental of fundamentals of Torah. What happens to the Jewish People is dependent on their actions and they way they live their lives.

The Jewish People is a Chosen people; chosen for a mission it cannot avoid or escape. At Sinai, the covenant bound us to a life of truth or falsehood, of life or death. "See, I have set before you this day, life and good, and death and evil... And if thy heart turns away and you will not hear... I tell you this day that you will surely perish... I call heaven and earth to record this day against you that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse; therefore choose life, that both your and your seed may live. [Devarim/Deuteronomy 30:15,17,18,19 selections therein]

The clear, direct mission and warning to the Jewish people. The open message of reward and punishment. If the Jew will obey the Torah in all its ways, he will have life, glorious and majestic. If not, he will have death, terrible and

Of course we can answer it; but the irreligious Jew, the one who does not accept the Divinity of Torah, refuses to accept an answer that lays the blame upon him, upon the Jew who - knowing of the warning - ignored it and disdained it.

No, since it is impossible to accept the relationship between Jewish suffering and failure to obey the Law, one must blame God. One must create the image of Jewish people in Europe that was saintly and pious and observant, and thus one must ask how the modern God, a beaming Santa Claus who would never take serious our desecration of mitzvot (commandments), could do such a thing. And, of course, using that as a premise, "there is no God..."

And the Orthodox Jew joins in. He creates a picture of European Jewry that must lead to agonized and perplexed questioning of God. He creates a picture of saintly men that must lead to a vision of a God that is a cruel God who punishes a people who, for the most part, were religious and observant and if so, how could He do such a thing unless He does not exist or "there is no answer..."

The picture that is handed down to the American Orthodox youth, of the yeshivas of an East European Jewry that was pious and traditional and observant is one that must be destroyed because it is false.

It is an image that the yeshiva world gave us in its desire to negate the present material western one. But by their falsely idealizing Man, they have laid the groundwork for the desecration of God.

By painting the East European Jew as a saint, they designed a God of cruelty and irrationality. And that most terrible of sins must be ended: We must save God and sanctify His Name by telling the truth about European Jewry in the years preceding the Holocaust. Then and only then will we be able to tell our children and all Jews the truth of the Holocaust.

The false idealizing of the Jewry of Eastern Europe is worse than foolishness. In the words of Kohelet (Ecclesiastes), "Say not: 'How was it that the former days were better than these?' For it is not out of wisdom that you inquire concerning this." [Kohelet/Ecclesiastes 7:10] Then and only then can we save God from blasphemy and ourselves from future horrors. Then and only then can we honestly and truly say: "All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep His covenant and His testimonies." [Tehillim/Psalms 25:10]

Of course we know the real truth of the situation and from that comes the answer, if we wish to be honest. Then and only then can we reply to the wicked and the honestly confused both - honestly. For in the words of Tehillim: "The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him, and His covenant to make them know it" [Tehilllim/Psalms 25:14] and Mishlei/Proverbs: "Men of evil will not understand justice but those who seek the Lord will understand everything." [Mishlei/Proverbs 28:5]

Yes, as the nineteenth century passed into its third quarter, the Jew of Russia and Poland was, indeed, observant. But what else could he be?

The overwhelming number of Jews lived in a Pale of Settlement that restricted them to the shtetl, the village, where they were isolated from the gentile world, barred from participating in anything else except the society of the shtetl. And that society was religious in toto.

What Jew, even if he wanted to, was prepared to rebel against the society that laid down the religious rules of life?

Who was prepared to accept the ostracism that would be his inevitable punishment if the dared to throw off the halacha that was more than religion in the shtetl, but the entire social fabric of the life of the Jew?

And so, of course, the Jew was "religious". He had no other choice.

But once that choice arrived, look at what happened! And in such a short span of time! The Enlightenment that began to arrive in Eastern Europe in the last third of the nineteenth century swept away, in a relatively few years, a society and structure that had been built up for centuries. The great Torah centers spawned, overnight, a rebellion and revolution that uncovered the reality of Jewish "religiosity".

The same Vilna that had become a byword for piety and Torah learning, the home of the Gaon, the "Jerusalem of Lithuania," now gave birth to' the Jewish labor movement, the Bund, a bitterly anti-religious and anti-nationalistic group that saw Jews, who just yesterday were "religious", flocking to its ranks to spout atheistic socialism.

The Poland and Russia and Lithuania and Galicia, the areas of the Va'ad Arba Ha'aratzot (Council of the "Four Lands" of the 17th Century Kingdom of Poland), the places that had given us the Rama and the Shach and Chassidism and the great yeshivas, overnight gave birth to Jewish communism and socialism and secular Zionism and assimilation. The door was barely opened to enlightenment and emancipation and the Jew rushed to be a Universalist and to throw away Judaism.

This was "religion". This was a "pious, saintly, committed Jewish community" that was cruel and unjustly allowed to be slaughtered by God? Hardly. The Jews who, arriving in America from centuries of "religion" and who threw away their tefillin (phylacteries) and their Shabbat at the first opportunity, symbolized so many other Jews who remained behind. It was not "religion" that had marked them but a social system of ritual that was observed by most only because the outside gentile world refused to allow them entry to it, and there to throw off the yoke of heaven.

The moment the barriers dropped, the Jew rebelled. This was the reality, and the fault dear Jew, lies not in our God but in ourselves.

And there was of course, more. There was the terrible class struggle within East European Jewry.

There was the terrible oppression of Jewish workers and proletariat by the wealthy Jews, the parnessim, the communal leaders.

Not for nothing did the Bund and communism succeed so easily in attracting poor Jewish workers to their ranks.

The low wages and horrible working conditions in the factories owned by Jews are epitomized in the classic story told in the name of the saintly Rabbi Levi Yitzchak of Berdichev who once visited a matzah bakery on the eve of Passover.

There, he saw the terrible conditions from dawn to dusk. "Dear God", he said, lifting his eyes unto heaven. "What liars are the gentiles! They accuse us of using gentile blood in our matzah. It is not true. We use Jewish blood..."

And too few know of the black chapter of the Hatufim, the kidnapped Jewish children of Czarist Russia. When the Czar decreed that Jewish children be drafted as "Cantonists" in the army for 25 years, the rabbis declared that the quota imposed on each community be filled by casting lots to see which child would be drafted.

Tragically, the wealthy communal leaders would hire gentiles to kidnap the poor Jewish children, lock them in the synagogue and keep them to be turned over to be Czarists.

The lack of Ahavat Yisrael, love of Jews, cried out to the Heavens! Was this "religion"? Was this a saintly Jewish community that was cruelly and unjustly slaughtered by God? Hardly. The fault lies not in our God, but in ourselves.

And this lack of unity and love was epitomized, too, in the incredible number of machlokes, of bitter arguments and splits within the Jewish community, a sinat chinam, a needless hatred that split communities and families into warring camps of enemies.

What we have seen in the disgusting attacks of hatred between Satmar and Belz or Satmar and Lubavitch is only a small portion of the bitter hatred between misnagdím (religious Jews who disagreed with Hassidism) and Hassidim and between Hassidic groups themselves, in Europe.

The bitter divisions between Jews was told to me as a child by my father, of blessed memory, who described to me the bitter split between the Sanz and Rizhin, a hatred that reached its climax with Hassidim going to the Western Wall to put the Sanzer Rebbe, the great Divrei Chayim, into herem (a term similar to excommunication). And at a Shabbat seuda shlishit (third Sabbath meal, eaten shortly before the prayers ending the Sabbath), a Hassid attempted to stab the Divrei Chayim...

Families were broken up because of disputes. Needless hatred ran through East European Jewry as a thread, and the classic example of the Munkatcher Rebbe declaring, concerning the Pressburger Yeshiva founded by the Chasam Sofer: V'hivdilanu min ha'toim - "and He has separated us from those who err," even as the Pressburger Yeshiva refused entry to any baHur (student) who was a member of the

And this terrible, terrible hatred was long ago, set up by the Rabbis as an unpardonable sin with a terrible, terribly clear and precise warning:

"How severe is maHloket, division and split! The Court of Heaven does not punish until one is over the age of 20 and the court on earth from the age of 13, but in the dispute of Korach, children of one day were burned and swallowed up by the earth..." (Tanchuma, Korach 3) And the Rabbis in Shabbat (33b): "When there are righteous in the generation, the righteous are caught for the sins of the generation. When there are no righteous, then little children are caught for the sins of the generation (this is the explanation for the million and a half Jewish children murdered by the Nazis in the death camps). Let each of us think long and carefully about this. And let us search our souls.

And let us remember, on top of all the sins and the reality of Jewish crimes, the refusal to grasp the Land of Israel to our bosom. "And they despised the desirable land," is the Biblical condemnation of the generation of the desert and its great scholars and leaders who preferred to return to Egypt rather than go to the Land of Israel.

Their actions led to the night of "weeping for generations," Tisha B'Av. What shall we say about the rejection of Eretz Yisrael in the decades preceding the Holocaust by so many great religious leaders in Europe? That, too, must be added to the reality of East European Jewry.

It is time to put an end to the nonsense of "we cannot know the reasons". That answer guarantees the turning away of Jewish youth.

It is time to bury the myth of East European Jewry that was pious and saintly. That insures the creation of a Jewish God who is senselessly cruel.

It is time to put an end to the indictment of God, to hiruf v'giduf, blasphemy against the Lord.

A Jewish People that clings to the Law, truly and completely, will be saved from Holocausts.

And one which rejects it and which turns it into a ritualistic sociological fraud will suffer for it.

And until we learn this, that which was will, God forbid, be again.

But do not blame God. He remains the One whose duty compels us "to declare that the Lord is just, He is my rock and there is no unrighteousness in Him." [Tehillim/Psalms 92:15]


What is the fundamental issue of the Holocaust that we avoid speaking about and that, when mentioned, is dismissed with a curt and swift non sequitur?

Collected by Bob Martin


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(Editor's note: There is, generally, a gap of three weeks between the writing of this magazine and its publication. Because of that, when these words are read two events will have already taken place. The elections for the Knesset will be over and the results already known. And the effort to have a groundbreaking ceremony for the first Jewish settlement in ancient Shchem since the Exile began, will have been made.)

At the moment of writing, however, neither event has taken place and I do not know whether on May 18, after the two events have occurred, I will sit in the Knesset or in an Israeli prison.  What is clear, however, is that the two events are intrinsically bound, one to the other.

Daily tours to Caesarea

The trip to Shchem is part of the drive to – once and for all – establish the principle of Torah law over contradictory secular law, when the latter attempts to prevent Jews from obeying their obligation to the former.  It is part of the drive – once and for all – to do away with the humiliation and desecration of huge parts of the Land of Israel that are nominally under Israeli control, but in fact dominated and arrogantly possessed by Arabs.  It is an effort to stop the Washington plan to force Israel into suicidal concessions and the Israeli preparation to give in to at least a large part of the American demands.  It is part of the hope that a tempest will be planted in the hearts of enough Jews so that they will join the call to the Israeli government: We will not allow you to give up the land and we will refuse to obey orders to retreat if we are soldiers and join a campaign of civil disobedience if we are civilians.

That is why I plan NOT to ask the government for permission to go to Shchem, for no permission is needed for a Jew to go anywhere in his country.  That is why I plan to ignore the order barring me (sic) from the liberated lands that has been issued by the army.  That is why I plan to call upon the troops, if stopped, to refuse to violate Jewish law by barring a Jew from the Land of Israel and to disobey the illegal orders given them.

That is why I do not know where I will be listening to the Knesset election results.  And as to what the people of Israel will do – who can say?  There are many things I might not have said that would have gained me votes.  But doing that would be turning into a politician and making the Knesset more important than the reason for wanting to be in it.  The Knesset, for me, is nothing more than a forum, an opportunity to have my voice heard – and that is vital.  But the voice itself and what it says is even more vital and when one begins to compromise and rationalize that compromise by thinking that the end of entering the Knesset justifies the means of compromising – then there is never an end

to the deceit.  Then one does the same once he is in the Knesset so that he be re-elected or become a cabinet minister.  No, the truth is not a thing you play with.

Earn up to $7500 for one sale!

The truth has been said in this campaign: That the Jewish people is the Chosen people of G-d and that “what will be” depends on their cleaving to the concepts and the mtizvot of Torah; that the fundamental concept is the faith and belief and trust in G-d that is measured in terms of the difficult sacrifices and dangers embodied in such yardsticks as rushing to the aid of a Jew, refusing to violate Torah by giving up sacred Jewish land, refusing to place one’s trust in allies and Washington, leaving the exile with its impurity and prohibition to live there and coming home to the Jewish land, removing the specter of the Arabs who, by their refusal to recognize the Jewish right to Israel, desecrate the name of G-d.

The truth has been said and I have preached and practiced.  That I will sit either in the Knesset or prison is clear.  Which one, what will be – only the Jews of Israel can decide.  By the time you read this they will have decided and you and I will both know.


The pressure on Israel to withdraw totally from the liberated lands will mount with every passing week following the elections.  The demand will be that, in return for a spurious and nebulous “peace” Israel accept a fraudulent and non-existent people and state known as “Palestine”.  It is important to know exactly what the map will look like in case such as state should ever come into being next to Israel.

Along the coastal strip, Arab guns and troops will be 22 kilometers (some 15 miles) from Tel Aviv; 15 kilometers (11 miles) from Netanya; 14 kilometers at the narrowest point between Netanya and Herzeliya.  They will naturally be right next to Jerusalem which will return to being the border and will return to 10 kilometers (some 6 miles) from Beersheva and 8 kilometers (5 miles) from Afula.

Not a plane will get up into the air over the costal strip without facing the withering fire of the SAM missiles that Arafat and his people will set up all along the border.  The Israeli cities on the coastal plan (Tel Aviv, Holon, Bat Yam, Ramat Gan, Benei Brak, Givatayim, Petach Tikva, Herzeliya, Netanya) will become prey to ceaseless bombardment in any “war of attrition” begun by the “Palestinians” and their Communist block, Cuban, Asian and African allies they care to invite in as “volunteers.”  One who knows what happened to the Egyptian cities along the Canal during the 1970 War of Attrition knows, too, exactly how Jewish cities may look, G-d forbid, should the front lines be shifted from the Canal, the Golan and the Jordan to the heartland of Israel.

The prohibition against giving up Jewish land will either be obeyed or not.  We will either trust in G-d or in man.  If we prove to be faithless Jews, divine punishment will come in its most natural form.  We will suffer the natural consequences of our actions – the scenario I have described, above.  “Not one inch” is more than a theological point.  It is tragically practical.  
By Rabbi Meir Kahane - What Will Be? - 1977

From "K A H A N E”
The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea
May 1977 – Sivan 5737

Three Transgressions (1977)

“For three transgressions of Judah…” (Amos 2)
And so it begins and 1977 comes early.  We are a people that dearly loves to fool itself and we look away from reality in the hope that it will go away.  But though we look away it will not go away and illusion is but the father of delusion and myths are no substitute for answers to reality. The irony is that every time a Jew speaks up as a Jew and discusses the issues in Jewish terms and Jewish solutions, he is derided as “mystical,” and “impractical,” and “unrealistic.”  We are at that unprecedented age when the Jew who speaks of history and events in terms of G-d and Divine direction, is mocked and looked upon as an embarrassment or worse.  Non-believer and “religious” believer, alike, become diplomats and geopoliticians and the one never thinks of G-d while the other leaves him behind in the synagogue where he “belongs” since, when it comes to politics, we must be “practical.”  
Well, 1977 will show just how impractical and absurd are the secularists and the “religious” allies who reject the mysticism of the truly religious and turn with “cleverness” and “cunning” to Washington, F-15 planes, Lebanese Christians and other “practical” allies and saviors.  Those who trust in Man and mock the unrealistic Jew who follows the ancient and time-honored Jewish way of faith and self-help will learn quickly enough who is the truly practical and who the absurdly ridiculous fool.
We may struggle against wanting to see the truth and we may twist and turn our heads from looking at it, but the realities will never go away and we had best understand them even as they move ominously closer and closer with their threat to Jewish survival.  The realities cannot be denied and they are, starkly and simply:
For Israel, no change.  There remain tens of millions of Arabs, all dedicated to one thing: The elimination of any Israel, of any size or shape.  There are no moderates – there are only Arabs like Sadat who are cleverer than those others who openly say what Sadat means.  And so the Egyptian meets Congressmen and piously speaks of “peace” and “justice” if only Israel will retreat from the lands which Egypt had in its possession in 1967 and which did not stop her from going to war anyhow – for what purpose??? And the pathetic Ribicoffs stand and praise him as a man of “courage and peace” (as did so many Jewish and Israeli leaders in 1975) and the Arab deserves a medal for holding back his laughter…
And the reality remains.  A United States whose interests are so different and so opposed to those of Israel and a Carter and a Ford differ only in accent, as far as Jews are concerned.  America seeks oil, Arab business offers, Arab investment and non-involvement in any confrontation in the Middle East in this post-Vietnam era.  America seeks to continue the very successful (from its point of view) Kissinger policy.  The German Jew (Kissinger) was a tragedy for Israel, but for the United States – he drove the Russians out of the Middle East influence they once had.  And this was done only by promising the Arabs that Washington could do for them, which Moscow could not – force Israel to retreat.  If Carter does not do that, the Russians will return and American materialistic interests will be threatened.  Only the “practical” fools, the gentilized Jews, prefer to believe that America will support Israel because it is a “democracy.”  (Of course, America’s yardstick for supporting nations is whether they are democracies, witness Franco Spain, Salazar Portugal, Greece’s Colonel, South Korea…).  American policy is and always has been the Roger Plan, total Israeli retreat from ALL the liberated lands in return for an Arab piece of paper.  THAT IS THE REALITY for all the gentilized Jews of “practicality.”
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The reality is that the sudden burst of Sadat “moderation” and PLO “change of heart” concerning a “Palestine” state in Judea, Samaria and Gaza are both aimed at making things easier for America to abandon Israel.  Indeed, Washington has long pleaded with the PLO to make “de facto” moderate statements so as to allow Washington to support the “Palestinian” cause without seeming to abandon Israel.  We are seeing a coordinated Egyptian-Syrian-PLO-Washington plan to get a Geneva Conference that would set the ground for an overall “Peace Plan’ that would demand from Israel complete retreat from the liberated lands and place the onus for further Mideast conflict on Israeli “stubbornness” and “intransigence.”  It will set the stage for more American “reassessment” and delay in arms and money shipments.  It will set the stage for serious and permanent change in American policy towards Israel with a “clean conscience” and a massive sigh of relief from American leaders and people alike.
The reality is Israeli total isolation in the world as it joins South Africa and Rhodesia in the “pariah” class.  And the irony will be that those who so derided and scorned Jews who said to trust alone in G-d will be left with neither G-d nor the Man they so avidly wooed…  The reality is a retreat from lands on which a “Palestine” will be built that will sit a few miles from Israel’s heartland with its missile covering Israeli air space and “volunteers” from the Soviet Union, East Germany, Poland, Pakistan and North Vietnam moving up to the shadow of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.
All this is the very real and practical result of the policy of the gentilized Jews who run both Israel and American Jewry.  The ones who never allow the name of G-d to pass their lips, the ones who mock the truly religious, the ones who pompously pontificate on the need for practical thinking and allies.  Well, there are no allies and the Jew who is “practical” today in the same un-Jewish sense that his forefathers were when they scorned the impractical Isaiahs and Hoseas and Jeremiahs and turned with fawning and flattery and prostration to Egypt and Assyria – will find that Assyrians and allies of our time will betray him as swiftly as they did in times of yore.
And the reality for American Jewry is that the Galut, the bitter exile of the Jewish people, did not stop at the western shores of the Atlantic and was not barred from entering the United States.  The exile – that bitterest of all curses, punishments and sins – cannot and will not ever be a sweet refuge.  
And the reality for American Jewry is that the Galut, the bitter exile of the Jewish people, did not stop at the western shores of the Atlantic and was not barred from entering the United States.  The exile – that bitterest of all curses, punishments and sins – cannot and will not ever be a sweet refuge.  The curse of the Tochach (admonishment) will never be changed even though Reform and Yeshiva men alike rip out its pages from their Torahs.  “And the L-rd shall scatter thee among all peoples… and among these nations shall thou have no peace.”  How we ignore those Torah parts that disturb our tranquility! How superb we are at rationalizing them away! How angry we become at those who persist in speaking about it.  How we prefer to create the myth of American Jewish bliss that nothing can disturb since “it cannot happen here!” but, the reality is that it will because it must, because the All Mighty knows full well that unless we are forced to, we will never go willingly back to the Land.

And the reality of Soviet Jewry is that never since Stalin have they faced such a potential for pogroms and physical threats.  The illusion was that public protests and demonstrations could only hurt and when Jewish militants disproved that, the myth arose that it was really the twice-a-year establishment picnics and the respectable protests that had been the true cause of the sudden emigration flow and that became a delusion that everything would always remain as a permanent victory.  But, the reality is that Jewish refusal to mount ever-greater attacks on d├ętente and Jewish betrayal of Henry Jackson and now the worst perfidy of them all – the Israeli and Jewish treachery and selling out of all Soviet Jews who will not go to Israel – are all things that are aiding a potential Holocaust for Soviet Jewry. Where is the sense of urgency, where is the note of emergency? They are the realities and in the delusion that is born of such apathy, we prefer not to see the danger and be forced to act and do unpleasant things.
We are a people that dearly loves to fool itself and deeply resents those who refuse to allow us to.  But the reality is here and it is clear.  Jewish destiny and Jewish history are not things of chance, of permutations and combinations.  They are directed and ordained and we cannot avoid that which shall be unless we do that which should be.  A refusal to be Jewish under the pretense of being “practical” will only make us un-Jewish and the most impractical of peoples.
Faith.  Only this is the key to the redemption and salvation of the Jew and how tragic it is that from one end of the spectrum to the other, from the secularist and Marxist Jew to the pious, practitioner of ritual in the yeshivas, real faith and real understanding of this era and the call of Jewish destiny is so lacking.  It is the era of the final redemption that can come so quickly and so magnificently if only we are prepared to believe in the G-d of history, the Jewish Creator of all and director of that which will be.  There is a Jewish destiny that awaits us and this is ours for the asking and taking.  The Messiah knocks and the door waits to be opened if only we turn the key.  The key is faith; real faith.  Faith based on courage and boldness and sacrifice.  Faith that is more that lip service but is measured by three intensely practical concrete yardsticks:
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1)    Faith and courage in knowing that the rise of the State of Israel is the decree of the L-rd and the end of the humiliation of the exile.  That every victory won by Jews is proof that the L-rd, G-d of Israel, is the true Creator and the Decreer of history.  That every retreat and defeat is a retreat to that Hillul Hashem that saw two millennia of humiliation for the Jew and his G-d. That retreat from Jewish land, from any part of Eretz Yisroel is a Biblical prohibition and is more than a retreat from land.  It is a retreat from Kiddush Hashem, a retreat from redemption, a retreat from faith in G-d, a retreat from Jewish Destiny.  “Not one inch” is not a political or military imperative – it is a theological and Torah cry.  If we stand firm and call out to the L-rd, rejecting fear of man and rejecting need of man if that need is based on prostration and fawning flattery – then we will have been true in one aspect of our faith.  Then we will have rejected the stupid, impractical and unrealistically mystical belief in the gentile – in Man – and returned to the practical realistic, Jewish believe in trust in the All Mighty.
2)    Faith and courage in leaving the comfortable Exile with its fleshpots and luxuries that so tempts us and seduces us.  The strength to leave comfort for duty, obligation and -commandment.  The courage to choose to fulfill the difficult mitzvah of living in the land rather than wallowing in the impurities and spiritual filth of the Exile.  The faith in G-d that allows us to admit that we, irreligious and religious alike, small and great together, have sinned against the land.  Rejection of the rationalizations and false “pilpul” that helps us to stay and rot in the inevitable graveyard that the Exile will become.  Faith in the land, strength to go home.
3)    Faith and courage in doing what we must for fellow Jews.  Feeling the pain of each and every Jew who is in pain and the readiness to sacrifice and suffer with him, to save him.  A rejection of apathy, a throwing off of indifference, a burial of fearful contemplation and selfish interests.  Massive and powerful demonstrations and attacks on the Russians – clear warnings at what awful thing could happen should Soviet Jewry be under physical attack. 
          Massive and powerful protests now, even before the full United
          States pressure begins against any possible US strangulation of Israel.  
          Jewish action instead of reaction.  Massive and powerful demands
          that American Jewish leadership become democratized so that the poor 
           and the elderly and the weak will be aided so that Jewish funds go only 
          to help Jews.  Faith and courage to consider what the gentile wills 
          say  and to reply:  Who cares?  Faith and courage to know that if we do  
          what the All Mighty wishes – the love or hate of the gentile is irrelevant.
Three acts of faith that can absolve us of our three transgressions.  Only thus can we be practical, realistic, pragmatic.  Only by being Jewish can we stop being ridiculously mystical and believe that our salvation lies in the hands of the gentile. We are a people that is different, that is chosen, that is great, that can never be destroyed.  Why do we persist in refusing to recognize ourselves?  Why, if we are giants, do we insist on being dwarfs?

By Rabbi Meir Kahane
“ K A H A N E”
The magazine of the authentic Jewish Idea
Tevet 5737 January 1977 

The Wall Is Tumbling

The massive tumble of the great financial Wall Street on the week of Sukkot was such a clear clarion call and such a glaring object of warning, that only the people of whom the Prophet (Isaiah 42:19) said, “Who is blind but My servant, or deaf my messenger,” could neither hear, nor see, nor understand it.  As the Wall Street came tumbling down, sending all the investors – including the newly rich in Flatbush, Staten Island, Monsey and Teaneck – fleeing from the tax shelter; and as three Texas banks collapsed in one week, and as the dollar continued its spectacular plunge; and as the United States trade deficit continued its stupendous gallop; and as more and more U.S. jobs were permanently lost to the Third and Fourth and twelfth Worlds; and as personal debt in the U.S. climbed over the five trillion mark and tens of millions sand deeper into a  quicksand of debt that they can never escape – the Jew saw nothing.  

He neither saw nor understood; he did not wish to see or understand that the American Exile he so confidently claimed “different” and the American fleshpot (Chinese? Glatt?) he knew would never lose its succulence and the new Jerusalem which he had made into a gigantic “Mikdash ma’at” was collapsing.  As it must.  As the All Mighty decrees.  The same All Mighty who too many of His dutiful worshipers really take to be a jolly sort of relic to whom one prays three times daily as to keep Him satisfied so that He gives us a good Galut.  A solid Wall Street.

The Exile can never be anything but a punishment and a curse for us, and for those who “despised the beloved land” (Psalms 106:24), the wall will come tumbling down, taking all the Jewish humpty dumpties with it.

And that is the ironic truth.  The Exile of America that is so symbolized by a Wall Street is, indeed looked upon as a wall of permanent strength and tranquility by the Jew – including, G-d help us, the practitioner of Jewish ritual, that irreligious Jew who goes under the title “Orthodox.”  And Israel, on the other hand, is seen as the Sukkah it really is: In Judah is G-d known . . . in Shalem  [Jerusalem] is set His Sukkah, and His dwelling place is in Zion” (Psalms 76:2-3).  But it is seen as a Sukkah in the worst sense  - a weak, temporary, shaky structure, threatened by evil winds that can topple it.  And so they choose the Wall – the gentilized wall of Galut.  Foolish Jews.  Faithless Jews.  No wall of Exile can ever survive for the Jew.  For him there are, in the end, only ghetto walls, walls of Warsaws.  The Galut was made as a punishment, not a place of comfort and stocks and bonds and shares and futures.  There are no Jewish futures in the Exile.

It is walls of Galut that come tumbling down.  It is the Sukkah of Zion that can never be destroyed.  For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those that escape” (Joel 3:5).  Jew, come home.  That is the ultimate lesion of the Wall Street. 

 “Beyond Words” is a seven volume collection of Rabbi Meir Kahane’s writings that originally appeared in The Jewish Press, other serial publications, and his privately-published works.



It is crucial during these days of "peace and security" to stress the central message of Succot. And what is the message? Security or Bitachon in Hashem, even in situations where such trust seems totally illogical to the naked eye!

Rabbi Binyamin Kahane teaching in English

But there is something about the succah itself that arouses curiosity. Here we are thanking G-d for sheltering us in a succah in the middle of the desert, and King David, too, praises G-d by proclaiming, "He will hide me in His sukka." And the question that begs asking is: Why is the succah, which is by its very nature a flimsy and unstable structure, the symbol of G-d's protection over us? Would it not be more appropriate to sit in a "fortress" in order to portray G-d's ability to safe-guard His people?



Indeed, precisely in this succah there is a tremendous lesson to be learned, a lesson which we must internalize during these days of "peace" that have come upon Israel. After all, what really motivates them to turn over territories and succumb to the enemy's demands? One thing only: Fear. And at first glance, they are right! Here we are, sitting in this tiny country, a lamb amongst seventy ravenous wolves who do not hide their teeth, their tanks, their airplanes, and the millions of soldiers they have at their disposal to march on Jerusalem. And then there is us. With all the talk about our "strong army", what are we really? How many tanks do we have when compared to their huge arsenals? How big is our "qualitative advantage" versus their gigantic quantitative advantage? How many more wars can we expect to hold out against them? They can lose a hundred wars, but all they need is one victory to fulfill their dream of liquidating us and finally ridding themselves of the "Jewish Problem" in the Middle East.



The arguments of the secular nationalists have always fallen like a house of cards when matched against the above contentions. How feeble and ineffective have the bitachonist (security-related) arguments of Bibi, Sharon, and Raful always been when relating to the Arab problem. The left is 100% correct when they say that the right wing is out of their minds for insisting to live by the sword, thinking Israel can hold on forever against hundreds of millions of Arabs. This new "nationalist" government has proven that even the secular nationalists themselves see the absurdity of their own argument, as they, too, capitulate to the enemy.


Nu, have we become leftists in our old age? Have no fear of that. We will continue to fight in the front lines for our land as our forefathers did, and as the generation before us did. It's just that our reasons for "the Greater Land of Israel" are entirely different than the reason given by Bib and Company.



HaKadosh Baruch Hu sends us out to sit in a flimsy succah which is vulnerable even to a strong wind. He does this in order to tell us: Jew -- to protect you, there is no need for fortresses or even a regular house. A succah is enough! This is what the Holiday of Sukkot is all about.


One can say to a certain extent, that G-d in this generation sent us to sit in a succah! G-d took a battered and humiliated people, gathered us from the four corners of the earth, and placed us in the middle of a volcano - surrounded by millions of Arabs who dream and lust to wipe us out. And then, G-d comes and demands of us: bitachon! With all their power and intimidation; with all their weaponry and massive armies, they are not capable of moving you. And the test is: Will we, in our "Sukka", feel secure enough not to be intimidated by those who attempt to frighten us from outside our succah and from inside as well?


Chag Sameach!


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