Boruch Hashem, many in Klal Yisroel have been supporting the needs of soldiers defending Eretz Yisroel against attacks and those looking for the kidnapped victims in Gaza. Hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of ceramic bullet proof vests, helmets, tefillin, tzitzis, backpacks, combat boots, drones and so many needed items have been sent.
However, the safety situation of numerous communities and yishuvim in the heartland of Eretz Yisroel also concerns many. Many of the men from these yishuvim are either in Gaza, the south of Israel or on the Lebanon border. And the terrible events of October 7, highlight the need to upgrade the security plan of each community and yishuv. These communities do not have adequate local law enforcement within a reasonable distance, nor IDF protection.
These communities need thermal cameras for every open area. The cameras can detect a person for more than a kilometer and can be zoomed in as needed. They also need communication devices, drones, training, first aid beds, first aid kits and so much more. Many communities also need the ability to jam explosive laden drones controlled by terrorists.
This is an issue of pikuach nefesh, saving a life, as well. But even aside from this, it will help relieve the stress and anxiety of many people living in Eretz Yisroel. The Rambam lists eight verses that one violates if one ignores rendering assistance to those in need, referring to captured Jews. The jump to prevention of capture is not so great a leap:
Lo saametz es levavcha, do not tighten your heart (Devarim 15:7).
V’lo sikpotz es yadcha, nor shall you tighten your hand (Devarim 15:7).
Lo saamod al dam rayacha, do not stand idly by your brother’s blood (VaYikra 19:16).
Lo yirdeno beferech leainecha, do not let him go down in excessive labor in front of your eyes (Vayikra 25:53).
Pasoach tiftach es yadcha lo, you shall surely open your hand for him (Devarim 15:8).
Vechai achicha imach, and your brother shall live with you (Vayikra 25:36).
V’ahavta lerayacha kamocha, love your friend as yourself (Vayikra 19:18).
Hatzel lakuchim lemavais, Save those taken toward their death (Mishlei 24:11).
B’ezras Hashem a program is being launched entitled “Adopt-a-Yishuv or Community: And Help Upgrade Their Security.” The plan is to have shuls in the United States adopt a yishuv or community and raise money for their adopted yishuv. They are reaching out to shuls across the United States with a list of communities and yishuvim that would like to be adopted to help upgrade their security needs. The rabbi and/or president of each shul will choose from a list of communities and yishuvim to adopt and will form a team within their shul.
The program will be overseen bymyself and Kobi Cohen in Eretz Yisroel. Mr. Cohen trains Shabak in security matters. The program has the endorsement of Rav Eitan Feiner, shlita, Rav Yaakov Feitman, shlita and Rav Shmuel Fuerst, shlita and Rav Herschel Schachter, shlita.
Rabbi Pesach Lerner, the head of Eretz HaKodesh, will open up unique accounts for each of the communities and yishuvim that will be adopted and credit the security team in each of communities and yishuvim.
The Adopt-a-yishuv or Community program suggests that each security team make two lists:
- The most necessary items that they need for the first $15,000 raised.
- Their needs for the next $35,000 to be raised.
Please speak to the rav or president of your shul to reach out by email at [email protected] to indicate that your shul is interested in adopting a community. We are also working with an organization that will train each of our communities in the use of these sophisticated drones. Many sganei rosh ha’ir have reached out to be adopted. The situation is very serious. In Beitar Illit, for example, the matter is particularly urgent—but every location not protected by the army needs help.
May Hashem bring us yeshuos and nechamos, salvation and comfort, soon.
The author can be reached at [email protected].