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September 13, 2002 - Image 65

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2002-09-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

WITH RATES THIS BIG, WHO
NEEDS A GIMMICKY HEADLINE?

the political process, was resistant to
Zionism. Its leaders felt "land and
territory never united Jews — we
had the Torah." Also, the idea of
starting over again in Palestine just
"seemed like insanity," she said.
Over time, Neugroschl said, the
idea for a Jewish refuge was
"hijacked by other Jews," who saw
messianic purposes in a return to
Eretz Yisrael.
She said Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch
Kalischer (1795-1874) believed Jews
must go to Israel to serve God —
"the Messiah does not come without
effort." A founder of the Mizrachi
movement, Rabbi Yitzhak Ya'akov
Reines (1839-1913), was one of the
first Zionist rabbis. He wrote: "In
the lands of the diaspora, the soul of
our people — our holy Torah — can
no longer be preserved in its full
strength."
Speaking after the Holocaust, •
Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik (1903-
1992) said God was "calling us to
become active participants in Israel
to protect ourselves." His viewpoint,
Neugroschl said, was "Israel is
kadosh (holy), and when you put a
Jew into Israel, everything there con-
tributes to kadosh."
Traditionally, the Chabad move-
ment says that because most Jews
won't be making aliyah, "in exile,
Jews of influence have the opportu-
nity to accomplish something," said
Bais Chabad spiritual leader Rabbi
Elimelech Silberberg. The late Rebbe
Menachem Mendel Schneerson
believed that while Israel has a spe-
cial holiness, "it's not the only place
to be," the rabbi said.
The Rebbe felt Jews must "hold
on to each and every inch of land in
Israel given to us," but he didn't
especially encourage moving there,
Rabbi Silberberg explained.
Looking at the perspective of
Orthodox Jews living in Judea and
Samaria today, Neugroschl said,
"Whether or not a person feels the
growth of the State of Israel is mes-
sianic in nature can determine his
degree of flexibility in terms of giv-
ing up land to the Arabs and
whether there is room for negotia-
tion." She said some of the settlers
also "object to such appeasement
purely for strategic concerns,"
believing that relinquishing land has
not produced peace.
What continues to motivate
Orthodox Zionists in these difficult
times, Neugroschl added, is the concept
of gulch (redemption), living in harmo-
ny with Torah and other Jews. ❑

00/ o *



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