Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Neturei Karta Placard

On the 26th July, the Blogger "Snappedshot" reported that on the 23rd July, a young member of the tiny anti-Israel Neturei Karta sect, was photographed by Reutors holding up a poster next to a Palestinian flag during a weekly demonstration in Sheikh Jarrah in east Jerusalem.

The placard reads in Hebrew "Jews are not Tzionim"

I suggest that this guy should have paid a bit more attention to Megilas Eicha (Lamentations) which we read in shul last Tisha beAv (a week ago) where the navi (prophet) Yermiyahu refers to the Jews of Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) as "Tzion"

Eicha 4:1-2

א אֵיכָה יוּעַם זָהָב, יִשְׁנֶא הַכֶּתֶם הַטּוֹב; תִּשְׁתַּפֵּכְנָה, אַבְנֵי-קֹדֶשׁ, בְּרֹאשׁ, כָּל-חוּצוֹת. ב בְּנֵי צִיּוֹן הַיְקָרִים, הַמְסֻלָּאִים בַּפָּז--אֵיכָה נֶחְשְׁבוּ לְנִבְלֵי-חֶרֶשׂ, מַעֲשֵׂה יְדֵי יוֹצֵר.

1. Alas! The gold (the people of Jerusalem – Rashi) is dimmed! The finest gold (people) is changed! Sacred stones are scattered at the head of every street! 2. The precious children of Tzion (the children of Jerusalem) who are comparable to fine gold – alas they are now treated like clay jugs, the work of the potter.

The Chazon Ish (ZT"L)

No one knew The Neturei Karta better than Rav Avraham Yishayahu Karelitz (ZT"L) – better known as The Chazon Ish.

You could certainly not accuse the Chazan Ish of being a Zionist but this is what he had to say about Neturei Karta: (taken from the Chareidi Internet Site "Dei'ah veDibur")

When people from Neturei Karta came to the Chazan Ish from Yerushalayim and asked him to issue a protest against the Ponovezher Rov, he castigated them and said, "So you come from Yerushalayim and presume to teach us [in Bnei Berak] what to do?"

His bochrim relate how one young member of the Neturei Karta delegation spoke arrogantly with such chutzpe to the Chazon Ish. This young man did not live out the year.

Maran the Chazn Ish, voiced his opinion of Neturei Karta; "They are Jews from before the Giving of the Torah . . ." What he meant was that their hashkafa (outlook) was not guided by the ways of the Torah.

Maran R' Yitzchok Zeev Soloveitchik of Brisk (ZT"L)

Another Godel from that period, Maran R' Yitzchok Zeev Soloveitchik of Brisk (ZT"L) would battle against the secular Zionists and the Zionist establishment and was not any less uncompromising and extreme than that of Neturei Karta. But he employed different tactics.

R Soloveitchik's words to Neturei Karta regarding their demonstrations are often quoted.

"Would you have dared demonstrate against the government in such a manner back in Russia? Why, you would have feared for your very lives! Why then, here, in Eretz Yisroel, do you demonstrate against the Zionists? It just goes to show that you believe that the Zionists wouldn't treat you as the Russian government would have! If so, then in your heart of hearts you are no more than Zionists, yourselves . . ."

Here are some pictures of members of this little sect that justify support for Arab terrorism and the murder of all Jews (who are not part of Neturei Karta I suppose?)

The three Shevuos (Oaths).

The corner stone of Neturie Karta's anti-Israel stance is a Gemora in Kesubas.

In meseches Kesubas קי"א the gemera talks of three shevuos (oaths).

1. Upon Am Yisrael: From the churban (the destuction of the Beis HaMikdash) the Jewish people must not return to Eretz Yisrael "like a wall" on mass and recapture the land by force.

2. Upon Am Yisrael: Not to rebel against the nations of the world.

3. Upon the Goyim: That they should not make Am Yisrael's life unbearable in chutz la'aretz (outside the Land of Israel).

Neturei Karta use this gemara (based on the psak of the Megillas Esther - R. Yitzchak De Leon, Lyon/Toledo/Castile, died 1480s) as a basis for their psak that bizman hazeh, it is forbidden to establish a Jewish state in Eretz Yisrael.

Rabbi Yissocher Frand, maggid shiur in Yeshivas Ner Yisroel in Baltimore, MD, points out that this position is very difficult to understand. (He is being diplomatic).

The section of gemara which the Megillas Esther brings is agada (a story brought by the Talmud) and not part of a halachic discussion. Rav Frand points out that you cannot bring agada as a basis for a psak halacha (a halachic ruling). Moreover, no one else brings this as halacha including Ramba"m, Shulchan Aruch etc.

Despite the above, Rav Frand asks for argument sake that if this agada could be brought as halacha, are the Shavuos (oaths) binding upon us today? The shavuah states that we must not go up on mass and take the land by force. This says nothing of each individual's obligation to settle in Eretz Yisrael.

However one could argue that the establishment of the State of Israel was accomplished by Jews returning to Eretz Yisrael on mass and taking the land by force. Therefore, according to the Megilas Esther's psak, this would be forbidden. This is indeed the shita of The Satmah Rebbi, Rav Yoel Titlebaum.

Rav Frand continues that with respect to the Satmah Rebbi, it is clear that after World War I, Britain, who had just taken control of Eretz Yisrael accepted the mandate from the League of Nations to establish a Jewish homeland in Eretz Yisrael. (See the Balfour Declaration of 1917). The goyim had given their permission for Jews to return to Eretz Yisrael on mass and thereby cancelled the shavuah. Even if one does not accept this, after World War II, no one could argue that the goyim had kept their side of the shavuah by not making our lives so unbearable in chutz la'aeretz after the events of HaShoah (the Holocaust)! The goyim thereby made the shavuah null and void.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you Reb Mordechai for explaining the religious law aspect of NK. Its just what i was searcing for. I live in NY (orig from UK) and see NK on the streets hand in hand with our enemies. I am not religious and could not argue with them when they said that Jewish law in on their side. Well now I know it isnt.