Monday, June 11, 2012

The Source of Their Hatred

I don’t care what side of the religious divide one is on. It doesn’t matter if one is secular, religious, Orthodox, Reform; gentile, atheist, Chasidic, Charedi, or Modern Orthodox - left wing or right. I don’t believe that there is a single human being that would not condemn in the strongest possible terms what happened in Yad VaShem - Israel’s Holocaust Museum last night. FromThe Times of Israel:
Anti-Semitic graffiti was found sprayed on the entrance to Israel’s Holocaust museum, Yad Vashem, Monday morning. Police suspect the vandalism was perpetrated by anti-Zionist ultra-Orthodox extremists and have formed a special investigation task force to track down the perpetrators.
Vandals scrawled the words, “Hitler, thank you for the great Holocaust. Only because of it did we receive a state from the UN” in spray paint on the Jerusalem museum site. 
These people are inhuman. They have no shame. They do not care one whit for the rest of humanity. Elderly survivors of the Holocaust may as well be nonexistent.  What these savages have done is torment the tormented. They are criminals of the highest order - murderers of the soul!

Holocaust survivors that have lost entire families - parents, children, brothers, sisters, grandparents aunts and uncles… have been told by these savages that Hitler should be thanked for their place of refuge, the State of Israel. People that have survived some of the worst tortures by man imaginable have been struck in their collective hearts by a giant dagger that was forged in the Satmar Rebbe’s cauldron of anti Zionist hatred.

That’s right. I said the Satmar Rebbe. This is the philosophy of the Satmar Rebbe taken to its ultimate extreme.

I want to be absolutely clear about this. The Satmar Rebbe, had he been alive would have been one of the first to condemn this act. He was probably more sympathetic to Holocaust survivors than most other Jews – having been a survivor himself. Legend has it that he once said that anyone with tattooed numbers on their arms has already assured themselves a place in Olam Habah – even if they are no longer religious. Quite a statement – if true.

And yet I blame him for the philosophy that generated this violence. It is his hateful attitude about the illegitimacy of the Jewish State that has been burned into the brains of every single Satmar Chasid and other Chasidim that see him as their philosophical leader. Like Toldos Aharon and Neturei Karta.

Make no mistake about it, the vile and disgusting creatures who did this, used the Satmar Rebbe’s attitudes about Zionism as justification for their actions. The legacy of hatred and antagonism toward the Zionist State left by the Satmar Rebbe is one of their most sacred beliefs.

This of course does not mean to say that every follower of Satmar would do or condone anything like this. As I said at the outset – they are probably as upset about what happened as anyone else and condemn it just as much.  But their philosophy of hatred against Zionism stands as a pillar of faith among them all. It does not take all that much to convert some of that hatred into action. From simple anti Zionist rhetoric at one end all the way to the kind of thing that happened here.

Again, I want to be absolutely clear. Although I strongly disagree with them, I nonetheless have no problem with the Satmar view that considers the existence of the State of Israel illegitimate. As a theological issue, they are entitled to interpret the Gemarah they base this view upon as they best understand it. Elu V’Elu Divrei Elokim Chaim.

But the vehemence the Satmar Rebbe expressed at Zionism in his writing combined with his descriptions of how the Sitra Achara (evil incarnate) is from its very inception to the continued existence of the State is behind what drives savages like this to go to such extremes. This hatred is evident all over the place in Satmar-like enclaves like Meah Shearim.

Although nowhere near the extremes that happened at Yad VaShem, one can nevertheless see the hatred of Zionism in virtually every reference to Israel.  It is in the air. It is palpable. Things like the big banner I saw crossing the main street of Meah Shearim declaring that “All Torah Jews support the peaceful dismantling of the State” are but one of many demonstrations of this attitude.  Or in greater extremes like those evil Jews from Neturei Karta that hugged Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at his Holocaust denial conference. Or when Rabbi Amram Blau’s widow, Ruth, cultivated a relationship with Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini calling him a holy man.

Although I believe in individual responsibility and these disgusting pieces of trash are indeed responsible for their own actions, one cannot ignore where they are coming from. To say that the Satmar Rebbe does not share any of the blame for generating the type of hatred that desecrated Yad VaShem would be the same as saying that Pope Urban the 2nd does not share the blame for the atrocities of the Crusaders.

There are no apologetics to be made here. Believe it! It is the Satmar Rebbe’s angry and hateful attitude for the State that is the justification behind the attacks of these savages.