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Orthodox political action

Reader comment on item: The Orthodox Future of Judaism

Submitted by Steve Klein (United States), Feb 2, 2005 at 08:12

You wrote: "Aguda's executive vice president for government and public affairs, David Zwiebel, notes that, "With our growing numbers and the maturing of the community and the greater self-confidence that comes with that maturity and those numbers, there's no question that we need to at least recognize that there may be certain responsibilities that now have to shift to our shoulders.">>>>>>>>>>>

To me, it is paramount that people of faith be politically involved, especially committed people of faith. I am speaking here of this 'clash of civilizations', the potential ceding of Israel's historic and Biblical heartland to her enemies and the like. The land is central to the Torah, and the Middle East is where modern civilization began, and thus is the dominant theme in our Bible.

Committed Jews and Christians know this and consequently the world's foucus of attention on this part of the earth is no big surprise.

I have found that all too many Orthodox Jews and their Rabbis withdraw themselves from any political involvement, preferring instead to confine themselves to the Yeshiva or Synagogue liturgy, ritual and ceremonial observance, ect., which is fine in and of itself but not nearly enough.

Many know what happened in Hitler's Germany as a result of the Catholic church's "voluntary" withdrawal from any social and political action as a result of Pope Pius XII, Eugenio Pacelli's initiative; as contrasted with the German Catholic defeat of Bismarck's Kulturkampf (culture war) only sixty years earlier.

We also know that many rabbis in Germany and eastern Europe spoke against immigration to 'Palestine' in the late 19th century and early 20th century, considering Zionism a wicked and idolatrous scheme. "I will not move from my place. I will not ascend for the sake of the Zionists." (Zadok of Lublin; 1823-1900) And we all know the end of this terrible misapprehension of the times.

The results of Orthodox Jewish withdrawal from political action might be catastrophic.

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