Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Why I Still Reject Kahanism Despite Palestinian Support of Terrorism

You may be wondering the following: If I am blaming the majority of Palestinians for supporting terror in their hearts and with their votes, then why do I still reject Kahanism despite Palestinian Arabic support of terrorism. It's simple, the Bible says that there should be a single law and single ordinance for the stranger and the native of the land (Numbers 15.16). Kahanism removes voting rights from Palestinian Arabs. Not all Arabs would be ejected from Israel under Rabbi Meir Kahane's plan, those who swore allegiance can stay, only without voting rights.

Obviously whoever is chomping at the bit for bloodshed has no place in the Israel of the future. So what Kahanism is effectively saying is that those Israeli Arabs who befriend Israel should be rewarded with no right to vote. The Torah is always current. The Torah is always vibrant. Therefore how can a belief system like Kahanism fit within the context of a Torah nation that exists in an age of democracy? To have less democracy than the Kingdom of Jordan is not the way to honor the God of Israel. Therefore, in my opinion, pure Kahanism is inconsistent with Torah ideals.

That being the case, why do more than a few religious Jews support Kahanism? Because they are grasping at halachic straws out of desperation at the seemingly endless cycle of bloodshed, and we all know how important saving lives is to Judaism. Judaism is all about life (Deuteronomy, Chapter 30). The one thing that is true about Kahanism is that it is an effective method to eliminate immediate danger to the state of Israel by eliminating the policy of accommodation to terrorist organizations like Fatah that recent Israeli governments seem to be willing to put up with. Long term though, where does Kahanism place the friends of Israel? Where is the Jewish Light unto the Nations? Where then is the sanctification of God's Holy Name for which Jews have been willing to be martyred over throughout history? Only by focusing on God's long term plan for the Jewish people can we rise above knee jerk reactions to punish any relatives of our enemies, even if they wish to befriend us. But such a reaction misses a very important concept in the nature of God himself...

We are commanded to emulate the Lord of Yisrael. What then is His nature? Come and see that the nature of the God of Israel is not like the nature of mortals of flesh and blood. What is the nature of flesh and blood? If a man has a mortal enemy he will endeavor to destroy him and any and all who support him, lest they rise up again to cause danger at some later date. But what does God do with His enemy? Which nation is God's greatest enemy in the Bible? Amalek would be a good choice for God's eternal nemesis (Deuteronomy 25.17-19). Now even though there are some nations that were so perverted that God forbade their entry into Judaism, lest they harm the spirituality of His people, God did not prohibit the Jews from accepting a true convert from Amalek. Why? For the Lord is filled with kindness. Also, the Almighty Lord knows that His enemies cannot harm Him. Whereas with the enemies of His people, to those He is not so forgiving of. But of His own enemies? God is forgiving of the truly sincere penitent.

As we are commanded to emulate God (Deut. 28.9), we must accept that it would take a direct prophecy from God or the equivalent in order for Jews to be empowered to reject "true converts" i.e. true friends, from any specific nation. Therefore we must cultivate and not utterly reject true friendships
wherever we may find them. The first step is stopping the violence by eradicating the forces of terror. But then what? We have to plan for the day after victory. You do that with the Will of God toward your friends in mind. I can understand if you may bear skepticism at the likelihood of success, but neither should you reject the possibility thereof.

Today you may think of peace loving Palestinian Arabs as the brothers and sisters of our enemies, and potential enemies of the future. But w
hen we keep our faith in God close to us, it keeps the heart too warm to become cold to our friends. May God bless us with true friendships and true peace speedily in our days.

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