In his “Epistle to Yemen,” Maimonides discusses how the nations have tried to destroy Israel and the Torah. In each era they employed a new method: first, by brute force, for example, Amalek, Babylon, Rome.
When force will not avail, try…
A second and more refined method was “argument.” The Greeks sought to demolish the Torah by philosophical controversy. Then
there arose a sect which combined the two methods, conquest and controversy … because it believed that this procedure would be more effective in wiping out every trace of the Jewish nation and [its faith]. It, therefore, resolved to lay claim to prophecy and to found a new faith, contrary to our Law, and to contend that it was equally God-given [but that it superseded the Torah].
None of these methods, says Maimonides, has succeeded in destroying Judaism or in thwarting the will of God. The Jews survived and remained loyal to their Torah.
In modern times, a fourth method has been used to undermine the Torah – “biblical criticism,” which denies the Torah’s divine origin and the chosenness of the Jewish People. This method, which began with Spinoza in the seventeenth century, was amplified by the nineteenth-century German school of bible critics. These critics tried to prove, by literary analysis, that the Torah is the human product of multiple authorship. Although this method has often been refuted, most recently by computer analysis of the text, it remains in vogue. Indeed, its skepticism shaped the mentality of Israel’s founders, unlike those of America.
Today a new method is being employed to destroy Israel and its Torah, that of “peace.” Some preliminary statements are necessary.
Israel gives away its victory
Ever since the Six-Day War of June 1967, when Israel miraculously gained control of Judea, Samaria, Gaza, the Sinai, and the Golan Heights, the nations have sought to roll Israel back to its pre-war borders. Israeli governments have yielded to this retreat by the policy of “land for peace.” This policy culminated in the Israel-PLO Agreement of September 1993. Israel gave land, the Arabs gave terror. So Israel gave more land and got more terror via the “unilateral disengagement” policy, which was implemented in August 2005 when 10,000 Jews were expelled from Gaza and northern Samaria.
That Israeli governments agreed to this territorial contraction is bizarre, given the Arab’s unrestrained Jew-hatred animating enormous military expenditures. Most observers attribute Israel’s adherence to the policy of “land for peace” to American pressure. But the effectiveness of that pressure surely depends on the fortitude and wisdom of Israeli prime ministers as well as on their confidence in the justice of Israel’s cause as well as on their belief in the world-historical function of the Jewish people. Alas, these qualities have not been conspicuous in Israel’s last six prime ministers. Indeed, they have only the most superficial understanding of what “Shalom” really means!
True meaning of Shalom
In his commentary on the Torah portion Pinchas (Numbers 25:12), the illustrious Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch defines “Shalom” as a state of the most complete harmony, and not only between man and man, but between man and God. God’s “Brit” or covenant of Shalom with Pinchas represents God’s promise that peace will ultimately reign over the whole world.
Rabbi Hirsch emphasizes that “True peace of men with each other rests on the peace of all of them with God” – meaning the God of Israel. He points out that “he who dares to wage war with people who are against the Torah, is actually fighting for the Covenant of Peace on earth.” Conversely, “he who, for the sake of so-called peace, quietly leaves the field to people who are at variance with God, his love of peace is at one with the enemies of the Brit Shalom on earth” (italics added).
Hirsch’s commentary has shocking implications. What is shocking is not that the policy of exchanging land for peace has nothing to do with true peace. That should have been obvious to any intelligent and forthright student of Arab-Islamic culture. It is simply idiotic or dishonest and cowardly for Israeli governments to pursue a policy of land for peace with Arab despots, no less so than it was for England and France to have pursued such a policy with Nazi Germany at the expense of Czechoslovakia. What is shocking is that the dishonest and cowardly quest for peace by Israeli governments applies not only to its secular parties but also to its religious parties!
When peace is not peaceful
According to Hirsch, those who oppose the Torah – hence Israel’s secular parties – do not seek true peace because true peace requires making peace with God. But as Hirsch has emphasized, he “who, for the sake of so-called peace, quietly leave the field to those who are at variance with God [like those secular parties], his love of peace is at one with the enemies of the Brit Shalom on earth”! This suggests that the religious parties, which have acquiesced in the policy of land for peace, are no less blameworthy for Israel’s degradation and her distance from the Shalom promised by God!
Indeed, nothing has so degraded the Jews as the “peace process.” This was precisely the intention of Arafat’s terrorist war. Arafat was the Amalek of this generation. Ponder Rabbi Matis Weinberg’s commentary on the Torah portion Bishlach, which refers to Amalek’s war against Israel: “Amalek’s attack does not take the form of anti-God argumentation. In fact, it takes no intellectually overt form whatsoever; their entire focus is on perception, not reason. They were willing to suffer [great losses] in order to strike a blow at the perceived godliness and prestige of Yisrael …”
Weinberg then quotes from another commentary: “Yisrael left Egypt and God split the sea for them and destroyed the Egyptians; and everyone was in awe of them. Until Amalek attacked. They suffered terrible losses, [but] they deflated the image of Yisrael in the perception of the nations.” Weinberg continues:
Defamation as the aim
A terrorist organization may take enormous risks to carry out an operation whose only strategic value is damage to the government’s aura of invincibility. The Amalekites do the same. They are the image breakers; they play to the media, utilize communication to manipulate perception. The name of their game is defamation in the literal sense – to defame, tearing down esteem and maligning fame.
Philosopher Emil M. Fackenheim writes: “The whole purpose of the [Nazi] program was to reduce Israel to excrement. That program included the God of Israel.” This, in effect, was the program of Arafat. We see this in the Arabs desecration of the Temple Mount and their suicide bombings which reduced Jewish women, men, and children to body parts – all the while flying the banner of peace. This peace is burying the State of Israel.
So what is to be done?
First, know that any Jew who supports the Government’s policy of land-for-peace with the descendants of Ishmael is not merely a demonstrable fool. Such a Jew is actually fighting against peace, or what Rabbi Hirsch calls the “Brit Shalom” on earth. This applies a thousand-fold to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who advocates a Palestinian state. One does not have to read Maimonides’ Epistle to Yemen to know what that philosopher wrote about the Arabs with whom he was thoroughly familiar. He said this about the Arabs: “Never did a nation molest, degrade, debase, and hate us as much as they. Therefore when David, of blessed memory, inspired by the Holy Spirit, envisaged the future tribulations of Israel, he bewailed and lamented their lot only in the Kingdom of Ishmael.”
Second, denounce Israeli academics and journalists who obscure the genocidal program of Islam, so obvious in the Quran.
Third, make known that Middle East expert Dr. Daniel Pipes, who originally supported the Israel-Egyptian peace treaty of March 1979, admitted in a New York Sun article of November 21, 2006, that its “Time to Recognize the Failure” of that treaty in view of the obscene hatred of Jews and of Israel spewed by Egypt’s state-controlled media and of Egypt’s “clandestine” supply of arms to Arab terrorists.
Fourth, know that Likud leaders pose like nationalists during election campaigns but invariably adopt leftwing policies once in office, as did Ariel Sharon and Benjamin Netanyahu, which means they are unprincipled or perfidious politicians.
Get the word out
Fifth, form neighborhood groups to reveal how many Jewish men, women, and children have been murdered, maimed, and traumatized as a result of the Israel-PLO Agreement which no Israeli prime minister had the courage to abrogate. Similarly, reveal the deadly consequences of Sharon-Netanyahu disengagement policy.
Sixth, form a lecture bureau of eminent Israelis to enlighten the public about the irrationality and mendacity of the “peace process,” and show how this policy was fostered by Israel’s leftwing-dominated media quite contrary to objective polls of public opinion in Israel.
Seventh, and finally, citing David Ben-Gurion, show how Israel’s parliamentary system of Proportional Representation actually disempowers the people: how it fragments the nation, divides the government into rival political parties, which increases political corruption, promotes political instability, prevents the pursuit of coherent, resolute, long-term national policies, and thus undermines Jewish national identity.◙
 Ibid., p. 115, from What is Judaism (New York: Macmillan Books, 1987), p. 289.
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