Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Esther Factor

As so many others do, I feel such sadness over the children and Rabbi who were murdered in Toulouse. After the murder of the Fogel family, perhaps I naively thought that nothing could match the magnitude of that tragedy. I was wrong. But beyond sadness, I feel anger too.

Of course it's no surprise that the world would express a moral equivalence between seeking out Jewish children to murder in cold-blood versus Palestinian children getting killed in the crossfire of Israel defending itself, just as the EU's Baroness Ashton was so quick to do. But what bothers me even more so is Jewish leaders' reaction to the tragedy.

Yes, Jews across the world were quick to express outrage and sadness at the tragic events. But then what? The status on PM Netanyahu's official facebook page today was in regards to the cost of cable TV in Israel. Really? That in itself made me want to go sit in a corner and cry all day. Jewish children are gunned down by a wild beast masquerading as a man, and the Israeli government seems to be back in a "business as usual" mode.

"We must now wage war against these fundamentalist political and religious groups that are killing our children, that are killing Christian children, Christian young men, young Muslim men and Jewish children." How I wished these were the words of the Israeli government ready to wage a real war against every enemy of the Jews, no matter where they exist. Instead they are the words of French politician Ms. Marine Le Pen. Jewish leaders in France were quick to distance themselves from Le Pen's viewpoint. Joining in the appeasement and political correctness charade they pointed out that the gunman was a lone extremist.

How can Jewish leaders, who I assume just recently read the Book of Esther, forget how the story ended? Did it end with Esther believing and stating that Haman was a lone extremist? Esther asked for the blood of ALL those who were against the Jews. And she got what she asked for - the deaths of over 75,000 anti-Semites. She understood the words of her ancestor King Solomon. She understood that there is a time to kill.

I have pondered for a few weeks a quote in one of the Temple Institute's articles about Esther. It is a bold, audacious quote that stands out in this day and age of appeasement. Deriving from the actions of Esther the article states, "Torah teaches us that violence must be met with violence. Passivity and victimhood do not bring peace. Strength and victory bring peace."

Esther seemed to have understood that principle. When will the Jewish leadership understand it again?

It is hard to hear of the deaths of children. It is even worse knowing details. It is said that the animal masquerading as a man chased down 8 year-old Miriam Monsonego, pulled her by the hair, and put a gun to her head. The gun jammed though. So the animal switched guns and then shot her in the head. The switching of the gun only took a second. But it is agonizing to think of the fear running through little Miriam's mind during that split second.

Miriam Monsonego is Klal Yisrael. She was corned by an animal and killed. It seems as if Israel is in that same corner. When will Israel decide to fight back? And how do we maintain hope that Israel will decide to fight back when Hashem says, "For a day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redemption has come. I looked, but there was not helper, I was astounded that there was no supporter." I suppose in writing that I have just answered my own question. Ultimately, there is no one to put our hope in other than Hashem.

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