For personal reasons, there will be a hiatus in these postings – with new ones put up only sporadically for the next two weeks.
Stay with me. I look forward to resuming in due course.
The Torah reading for Shabbat yesterday included the incident of the spies. Moses sent one man from each tribe to check out the land of Canaan, given to the children of Israel. The spies returned — and with the exceptions of Joshua and Caleb — reported negatively. They told the people, "…it is too strong for us!….it is a land that devours its inhabitants." And the people became afraid to proceed.
Joshua and Caleb implored them: "…The land is very very good! If Hashem desires us, He will bring us to this Land and give it to us, a Land that flows with milk and honey…you should not fear the people of this land."
But it made no difference and the people remained afraid.
What they did was counted by Hashem as a sin.
As I read this, it spoke loudly to me of what is happening now: Our people are afraid. They have not the courage to stand up for what is ours. I think of those within "leadership" positions in our government ready to consider negotiations with Syria — and give them the Golan! — because Assad is making war-like gestures.
Were we to do that (in the final analysis I believe we will not), it would be disastrous for Israel. Not simply because this is strategic property, but because the Arab world would know we are afraid. This we cannot afford.
And the same principles must be applied in other places if the Western world is to remain free. Recently I wrote about the thinking within the American government that Iran should not be attacked — even though it is on the verge of going nuclear — because Iran might help stabilize matters and allow the US to leave Iraq. Fear of Iran is in the air, with a statement such as this. This the US cannot afford.
Now Senator Joe Lieberman (bless him!) on Face the Nation (TV) has said that the US should bomb Iran:
"…if there’s any hope of the Iranians living according to the international rule of law and stopping, for instance, their nuclear weapons development, we can’t just talk to them.
"If they don’t play by the rules, we’ve got to use our force, and to me, that would include taking military action to stop them from doing what they’re doing.
"…they can’t believe that they have immunity for training and equipping people to come in and kill Americans, We cannot let them get away with it. If we do, they’ll take that as a sign of weakness on our part and we will pay for it in Iraq and throughout the region and ultimately right here at home."
Thank Heaven someone gets it.