Sunday, May 16, 1999

-------------Day of Judgement------------------

-------------Day of Judgement------------------May 16, 1999
Monday is a day of Judgement - a Day of Awe. It is a day when
the Israeli People must make a choice - one of the most, if not the
most, important, critical, fateful decisions made by a public body, a
Jewish body, ever. Most decisions are made by a small group of people, in
the heat of a crisis. Who decides war or peace, who decides life and
death? Usually a few leaders, if not only one - who sits alone, pondering
the future of his people, weighing the lives of his soldiers, the fate of
his county, of the world.
Elections may generally be important, but usually, the outcome,
in spite of differences between the candidates, is not
earthshattering - it doesn't have an immediate effect on the
existence of a People, on the future of a Land.
Monday, in Israel, without trying to be overly melodramatic, the
truth is, that this is exactly what we are facing. Does this mean
that if Barak is elected 'we are done for?' No - of course not. Nothing
or nobody has been able to eradicate the Jewish People and nothing or
nobody ever will. Israel is eternal. The prospects for the immediate
future will not be easy regardless of the results of the election. If
Barak wins, he will continue on his chosen path until the bubble bursts -
until the Arabs have so much that even he will have to say stop - and by
then it will be too late. The resulting war will be barbaric and bloody,
but it will have to be fought and won. And if Bibi wins, - we mustn't
live under any illusions. Our experiences of the last three years have
taught us a lesson about Binyamin Netanyahu.
Where does this all lead? Is our future all black? Almost all of the
reporters who arrive in Hebron ask me the same question "What will you do
if Barak wins?" There is only one reply Hebron existed before Barak and
Netanyahu. Hebron will continue to exist after Barak and Netanyahu. We
are staying in Hebron, regardless of who wins the elections. That is our
right and our obligation. "And what if... what if... what if..." There
are so many hypothetical possibilities, it is impossible to prepare
contingency plans for them all. We hope and pray that most all of them
will never materialize, that we will never have to worry about them. And
if and when IT should happen - we'll worry about it then. We have to do
what we know and believe is right, not for us, but for the Jewish People,
of past, present and future.
That is, of course, a tremendous responsibility. But if we have been
so privileged as to be where we are, when we are, we trust in G-d that He
will give us the tools to make the right decisions at the right time.
Such it is, not only with Hebron, but with all of Israel - the Land and
the People. We don't live in easy times. But we, the citizens of the
State of Israel, have been given the privilege to participate in the
dream of the Jewish People, to be a part of the return to Israel after a
2,000 year exile. We believe with all our hearts that we weren't brought
back here only to be thrown out again - and we won't be. How the dice
will fall, how it will all work out, is a great unknown - but in the end,
it will work out. There may be different directions to go in, there may
be easier routes and more difficult ones, but in the end they all lead to
the same place.
So Monday's Day of Judgement isn't a question of
survival or destruction - it is rather the road we will take to ensure our
survival - whether it will be easier or harder. We have, to some
degree, the possibility to determine our own future. But regardless of the
results we will survive - in Hebron, in Jerusalem and in Eretz Yisrael -

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