by Tamar Adelstein, coordinator
Crown Heights Women for the Safety and Integrity of Israel
Two weeks ago, “Crown Heights Women for the Safety and Integrity of Israel” organized a press conference in response to the news that Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Cabinet had voted to release 104 Arab terrorists as a goodwill gesture with the intention of enticing Israel’s enemies, the Palestinians, into a new round of peace talks.
Held on Second Avenue across from the Israeli Consulate in Manhattan, representatives from all of the well-known pro-Israel activist groups were present delivering speech after speech denouncing both the folly and the dangers involved by, once again, caving into Arab and foreign pressure on Israel to concede its welfare and security.
Because we are proud followers of the Lubavitcher Rebbe and believe the positions he reiterated throughout his leadership about Israel’s security are not only Halachically correct but have proven prophetically true over and over again, we were shocked to learn that last Thursday evening American Friends of Lubavitch joined other major Jewish organizations at an invitation-only meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry about the “peace process”.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe consistently advised Israeli and Jewish leaders not to engage in negotiations, let alone actually concede territory.
Additionally, the Rebbe warned that even raising the possibility of surrendering land would place Jewish lives in danger.
Who among Lubavitcher Chassidim does not recall the Rebbe’s public gathering on Shavuous in 1967 just days after the miraculous victory of the Six Day War.
Then the Rebbe cried out that Israeli politicians were busy convincing an incredulous Washington that Israel had no interest in keeping the liberated territories and was ready to return every thing it had won.
At the time no one could possibly understand what the Rebbe was talking about. The very idea of it was simply preposterous.
But, indeed, that was what was taking place and since then successive Israeli and Jewish leaders have waged a campaign of dangerous concessions that have only served to increase opportunities for the enemy to foment war and terrorism.
Israel’s policies have culminated in the tragic loss of life and maiming of its Jewish citizens not to mention millions of dollars in property damage. In addition, thousands upon thousands of Israelis suffer from varying levels of post trauma and stress disorders.
Moreover, Israeli concessions like the utterly evil expulsion of Jews from Gush Katif in 2005, did not bring about the vaunted peace they claimed it would nor did it produce greater respect from American and European world bodies. Instead it brought Hamas and Al Qaeda to the Gaza Strip, caused two more wars, and increased terrorism a hundred fold against Jews living in Southern Israel.
At times the Lubavitcher Rebbe was so distraught over Israeli concessions that he proclaimed “one should bang his fist on the table if necessary, because the very lives of Jews are at stake.” (from 19 Kislev 5743/1982 gathering)
How then can it be that American Friends of Lubavitch attended the meeting last week with Mr. Kerry? At the “off the record briefing”, the Secretary of State along with National Security Adviser Susan Rice and special envoy Martin Indyk told the group that it was a “strategic imperative” to arrive at a deal soon for if not he “feared” for Israel’s future should no deal be reached. Mr. Kerry asked for American Jewish organizational “support” for this diplomatic effort worrying that without it, Jewish and Israeli right wing parties might sway Netanyahu away from a deal.
John Kerry’s “strategic imperative” will place the welfare and security of the millions of Jews who live in Israel in jeopardy and could easily cause negative repercussions for the millions of Jews abroad, G-d Forbid.
Withdrawing from Yehuda and Shomron will leave the entire surrounding areas like Tel Aviv, the Galil, the southern coastal cities and the Negev vulnerable immediately to attack and terrorism.
Israeli politicians are well aware of this and yet they deliberately ignore what every military expert has confirmed: that political solutions endanger lives! Yet, “even though they already ceded land, all is not lost for they can still take it back – by stating firmly the truth that their compromises and concessions have eroded the country’s security and harmed the welfare of all its Jewish citizens – (excerpts from a public gathering given by the Rebbe in Tishrei 1979)
Familiar to every Lubavitcher is the Rebbe’s unwavering belief that establishing Jewish communities quickly and all at once in a quiet but determined manner – especially in those places most disputed is the only way to negate the on-going pressure (19 Kislev 5739/1979) and bring true peace to Israel and the Middle East.
How then can it be that American Friends of Lubavitch attended last week’s meeting? What justification can these individuals, who represent Agudas Chassidei Chabad and have been prominent shluchim for decades, give for going there? Their presence may have given the false impression that the Lubavitcher Rebbe and the rest of Chabad/Lubavitch Chassidim changed course and now endorse land for peace and “goodwill” gestures like the release of Arab killers of Jewish children, women and men, r”l!
Their participation certainly leaves the good Jews living in Yehuda and Shomron disheartened and confused for they know the Rebbe was always their biggest supporter. And what of the family and friends of the victims murdered by these evil Arab killers – can we even begin to imagine their pain, r”l?
And, finally, American Friends of Lubavitch participation undermines the P’sak Din issued by Lubavitcher Rav Yosef Gerlitzky and his Pikuach Nefesh Rabbinical organization in Israel. Their ruling stipulated that it is forbidden to release the 104 Arab terrorists, to engage in negotiations, and calls on HaBayit HaYehudi to immediately quit the government.
It is our sincere hope that American Friends of Lubavitch will distance themselves from any efforts that undermine Israel’s security. We encourage American Friends of Lubavitch to join forces with Rav Gerlitzky, Israeli shluchim, and groups like ours in standing by the welfare of the Jewish People and promoting the Lubavitcher Rebbe’s recommendations for true peace in the Middle East.