A blog dedicated to investigating events as they occur in Judea and Samaria, in Israel and in the world, and as they relate to global powers and/or to the Israeli government, public figures, etc. It is dedicated to uncovering the truth behind the headlines; and in so doing, it strives to do its part in saving Judea and Samaria, and by extension, Israel and the Jewish People, from utter destruction at the hands of its many external and internal enemies.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I received this post , "A Question from the Front Lines"; and I am shocked by the immense DISCONNECT between this soldier's experience, and THE REALITY ON THE GROUND. What pride? What freedom? What Judaism???

A Question from the Front Lines

As the sun peeks over the snowcapped hills of Samaria, the red-roofed homes of Shiloh begin to glow. We've just spent the night protecting these Jews from the hostile Arab villages surrounding them, and despite the freezing wind whipping at our exhausted bodies, there is nothing we would rather be doing.

Serving in the first Jewish army in almost two millennia, one can't help feeling a part of Jewish destiny. Before departing for our nightly mission, we gathered with weapons slung over our shoulders to pray ma'ariv (the evening prayers), and while these prayers are no different than those whispered by our fathers and grandfathers before us, we say them with a spirit that has been lost for ages. We are living a Judaism stripped of the fear, distortions and complexes that resulted from living in strange lands, at the mercy of the merciless. It's the Judaism that God originally intended, "to teach you the statutes and ordinances that you should do in the Land which you go over to possess" (Deut. 4). Not an exile Judaism, but a biblical Judaism.

For almost 2,000 years, Jews would read the stories of Joshua, Samson, Gideon and King David; feeling disconnected from these biblical heroes -­ lion-hearted men who walked with God while protecting their homeland. How could a Polish Jew, gaunt and pale, trembling at the thought of yet another pogrom, identify with David, a psalm-composing warrior king?

Today, as Israel faces tens of millions who seek our annihilation, we read David's psalms with helmets on, and feel for the first time as if the king's words are our own. "All the nations surround me; in the name of God, I cut them down." Instead of cowering in fear, the Jews of Israel once again stand proud.


While we were scattered among the nations, without a country of our own, all the laws of government and statehood, which are an inseparable part of God's Torah, were regarded as irrelevant. All the concepts of people and nationhood, of leaders and wars, of normal, natural life were filed away. Today with every 18-year-old serving in the army, the laws of war, celebrating the Sabbath in times of combat, and all other issues of Jewish statehood are being revitalized. Finally, Judaism is returning to its true status, not only as a religion but as a nation. New dimensions of Torah and godliness are being revealed every day.

The Jewish dream is being realized: "To be a free people in our land" (from the Israeli national anthem). Every Jew serving in the Israeli army, no matter what background or religious view, is a fulfillment of that dream. Although there are many pious and observant people in the exile, every soldier in the IDF is on the front lines of Jewish destiny, and that collective national bond can only be experienced in the Land of Israel.

On guard duty last night, we had a conversation with a soldier named Shachar. He has long hair, a few earrings, and is scheduled for another session of meditation in India when our service is over. After a heated debate about the political situation in Israel, a debate which lasted as long as our two-hour patrol, Shachar concluded with an idea that has changed us. He said: "No matter who is here doing reserve duty -­ religious, non-religious, left, right or center ­- all of us are ready to give our lives for the Jewish people and the Jewish state, and that is a unity and a love you can¹t find anywhere else."
The State of Israel and the army which protects her has forced us, as a nation, to reassess what constitutes the true spirit of Judaism. The question we must ask ourselves is whether a kippa-wearing, Sabbath-observing Jew in New York is indeed more religious than a "secular" tattooed Tel Avivian who is ready to give his life defending the Jewish People and the Land of Israel.  





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