July 16, 2024
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July 16, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Dear Jewish College Student

I, along with millions more, are deeply pained at the atrocious pre-WWII images and horrors you have been dealing with since October 7. Please know that we are with you, and when one Jew is hurt we all feel it. The massacre opened our eyes as the face of antisemitism reared its ugly face against the Jewish people. No amount of proof, logic or reason can battle the hate and ignorance that is pervading the world at large. Seriously. What territory in Poland, Germany, Italy, Austria, Russia and countless other countries were six million Jews “occupying” that required their extermination? Martin Luther King, Jr. saw through the rhetoric, prompting him to equate anti-Zionism with antisemitism.

Mark Twain once noted that no amount of evidence will ever convince a fool. French philosopher and novelist Jean-Paul Sarte said it best: “Never believe that antisemites are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. Okay. They hate us. So now what? With your kind permission, I would like to offer a religious Torah perspective to the events we are enduring as a nation.

  1. The most important message is that every single Jew is connected, regardless of our affiliation. Hitler and Hamas don’t discriminate between us. They view us as one entity and so should we. But make no mistake because this is where our strength actually lies. Kol Yisroel arevim zeh lazeh. All of Israel is responsible for one another. When we are one, God is with us.
  2. Unlike most conflicts, this war is not politically or financially motivated. This is a religious war between the powers of good versus evil. America dealt with this problem when the Axis of Evil attempted to destroy the world with Nazism back in World War II. Pharaoh, Amalek, the Babylonians, Nasser, Khomeini, Hussein, Achminahajad, Bin Laden, Arafat, ISIS, Hamas, Hezbollah and many others represent the powers of evil. But here’s the good news. They never win.

Sure, they make headlines for a while but let us remind ourselves that Hitler ended up with the self-inflicted bullet hole to his head, because he lost the war. Eichmann, Goering and the Nazi machine thought their power would last forever, but instead, were executed for crimes against

humanity. The same fate awaited Sadaam Hussein, while Bin Laden was lucky enough to be executed by Navy Seals in the comfort of his own bedroom. Billionaire drug lord Pablo Escobar was killed on a rooftop, while his pal El Chapo sits in prison for life. These guys had it all but forgot that in the end, justice always prevails. Why? Because justice is the execution of goodness which stems from God, the source of everything.

We are truly in the middle of a historic moment where the Jewish people are united as one. Without exaggeration, there are countless stories of non-observant Jews throughout the world all taking on a mitzvah like tefillin, Shabbos or keeping kosher. It’s really an amazing testament to the constitution of our people. In the face of evil, we are telling God, “God, we are turning to You to protect us and bring us victory.” During the Six Day War and Yom Kippur War we were united and witnessed unprecedented miracles as God blessed the IDF who crushed them. The Byzantine, Mandarin, Chinese, German, Austria-Hungarian, Ottoman Turk, Japan and British empires all faded into nothingness. But this little Jewish nation of ours endures—and flourishes no less!

  1. Every single Jew can do something. I have friends who have flown to Israel and are fighting on the front lines, while my neighbor brought 20 duffle bags full of equipment for our soldiers. Many have opted to pick a mitzvah like Shabbos, tefillin, kosher, lighting Shabbos candles, reading Psalms…in honor of a soldier. In a time of darkness, let us be the light and in that merit, may God bring us victory soon. Am Yisroel Chai!

Avi Ciment lives in Florida and is a longtime columnist for The Jewish Press. He lectures throughout the world and has just finished his second book, “Real Questions Real Answers.” He can be reached at www.AviTalks.com.

Help an IDF soldier without spending one cent and commit to a mitzvah of your choice!

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