Wednesday, May 02, 2007


There is an interesting quote from the Yated Ne’eman in an article on Y-net. It was written in the context of how much Torah learning goes on in the State of Israel and was published just ahead of Yom Ha’atzmaut

“This blessed prosperity in the yeshiva world after the Holocaust of European Jews has nothing to do with the state and its authorities. It does not exist because of the state. It exists in spite of the state."

In spite of the State!

Will they never learn to appreciate what the State of Israel has done and continues to do for their benefit? Can they only look at the bad? And if one is objective one can easily say that some of what they see as bad… is really quite good.

I’ve of course written about this many times in the past. But every time I see it, it upsets me. I’m neither going to rehash all the benefits the Israeli government bestows upon the Torah world nor am I going to repeat all the misinterpretations and “spin” that Charedi mouthpieces like the Yated has written about the motives of the Israeli government. Been there and done that.

But, just once! …I would like to see a little appreciation for the contributions the Israeli government has provided to the Torah word. Contributions like money, army exemptions, military protection, a modern state providing a relatively high standard of living… and much more.

But… no! The Yated prefers yet another round of bashing.

I don’t know who Rabbi Levi Brackman, the author of the Y-net article is, but I totally agree with him.

When will the Torah world in Israel finally recognize what the government has done and continues to do for it? When will it express the Hakaras Hatov, that the State of Israel deserves? I don’t begrudge them their legitimate complaints. Only their illegitimate ones. But let them complain where they feel an injustice has been done to them by the government. It is their right. But that has to be accompanied with Hakaras HaTov as well. It is simple Mentchlichkeit. Without it, the Torah world comes off as just a bunch of ingrates that doesn’t deserve what it gets.

If the Yated wants to know what Torah learning would be like without the State, let them look at what it was like in pre-Zionist Palestine or even pre-State Israel. How was it? The Rogatchover was quoted as saying that in essence Torah learning was nearly non existent. I’m pretty sure that pre-Ponevezh, that’s largly true. (Yes, I know there was learning there in the Yishuv HaYashan, but that pales in comparison to what’s there now.)

Better yet, let them move all their Yeshivos to Gaza. I wonder how much funding for Yeshivos the Palestinian Authority would give them?