Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Chabad's Anti - Zionism


I am not sure if I have already published this article about Chabad's anti - Zionism or if it was in one of my German blogs. Anyway, the subject is always interesting and concerning Chabad, Rabbi Tzvi Freeman from the New York Chabad sent me a great explanation. An aquiantance of my, a Chassid (NOT Chabad !!!) made some additional remarks below.

But first about CHABAD and its anti - Zionism:

Here's some material I've collected on the subject:

Here is an excerpt from a private audience with students in 1961:

Question: Does the Rebbe recognize the State of Israel?

Rebbe: I write letters to Eretz Yisroel and also receive letters with their stamps. My followers in Eretz Yisroel help guard its borders, pay taxes, serve in the Israeli army, and spread Chassidus. Is that enough to be considered recognition?

Question: What I mean is, Can the State of Israel be considered the "Haschalat Ha'geula," start of the Redemption?

Rebbe: No. It can definitely not be considered the start of Redemption. The Redemption must always come together with Torah and Mitzvos. In the holiday Musaph prayer, we say "Mipnay Chato'aynu Golinu May'artzainu" -- because of our sins we were driven form our homeland - hence, the term Redemption signifies a diminishment of sins -- the more Redemption, the less sins.

Unfortunately, in the Eretz Yisroel of today, we are not witnessing a lessening of sins. On the contrary, there are many Jews who before 1947 were Torah-observant Jews, and after 1947, to our great sorrow, became non-observers. As regards these Jews, it can only be said that they went from one exile to a second one. Also to our great sorrow, we cannot say that in Eretz Yisroel there is an upgrade in compliance with Torah and Mitzvos; rather there is a definite decline. The State of Israel cannot therefore be referred to as the start of Redemption.


From another interview, also with students, in 1963:

Student: Do you think the government in Israel is religious enough to be constitutional for religious Jews?

Rebbe: Are you asking whether the government is religious or not?

Student: I mean to ask whether all religious Jews should emigrate there.

Rebbe: We are now only a few days before the holiday of Shovuoth, the festival of the receiving of the Torah. As a preface to the giving of the Torah, G-d Almighty outlined what He expected of the Jewish people, and one point and highlight which is expected of the Jewish people, is that they should be a "Kingdom of Priests." If we find a proper government for a Kingdom of Priests, including every Jew and Jewess, then this government is fit to become the government of every Jew. The main purpose is to fulfill the Torah's institutions, to make the Jews become a Kingdom of Priests. This is not my own opinion -- it is what the Bible says.

Student: Since the establishment of the State of Israel, the American Jew is confronted with the problem of dual allegiance. Which should have priority?

Rebbe: I don't find a contradiction between them. The main thing is spiritual values, then come the secondary ones -- the army, guarding the borders, and all other things.

One's main purpose must be to become a Holy People and a Kingdom of Priests. Do not be afraid: you can become part of a Kingdom of Priests even if you are a professional or a businessman, an engineer or doctor...


Fin ally,
here is a transcript of an interview with an elder chassid many years ago, Rabbi Yehuda Leib Posner:

No. Incidentally I can tell you something; there’s a little political thing, that the Ramash explained to my father about whether there should be a Medinas Yisrael or not; this happened before there was the Medina. And my father came from Pittsburgh because he had to meet with the Rashag about certain Yeshiva Inyanim so-at that point my brother Zalman and I didn’t eat Shabbos by any Baal Habbatim, there were certain Bachurim we ate in the Yeshiva, we made our own Shabbos, you know, whatever we prepared and that was it, so understandably our father wanted to spend Shabbos with us, not with, he could have eaten by Zeyer Sheyne Baal Habbatim…

So Friday night after Davening everybody went home, you know, and the Ramash asked my father to sit down. So he sat down on a bench there in the Zal and my brother Zalman and I were standing there listening and he was asking my father what’s doing in Pittsburgh, various different things, this that and the other. Then my father had a question for him. The question was: yea Medina or not Medina- then there was going on there was the Shalosh Shavous, Lo Yaalo B’Chaima and so on and there in Pittsburgh they had a very strong Mizrachi, Poel HaMizrachi; the question was what kind of a stand should he take.

So I remember he explained and later on, years later I asked my father if I remember correctly and he said yes I remember correctly, he explained it like this. This has nothing to do with Lo Yaalu B’Chaima, nothing to do with the Shalosh Shavous, nothing, it’s a simple question: There is a Medina in the world Vu M’Harget Yidden. Oib M’Vet Machen Ah Yiddishe Memshala Vet Men Yidden Nisht Hargenen-Iz Faran Ah Shaila In Dem? At that time anytime the Arabs would attack the Jews they would start to fight back so the British soldiers would come, you know, you read about that they would come and take away the guns from the Yidden and then they were stuck without anything, they would shoot them.

The Rebbe said like this: The Gemara says like this that before Moshiach comes Lo Yaalu B’Chaima, the jews are not permiteed to go up with strength, to go up with power to Eretz Yisrael, to take it with power. And there is the Shalosh Shavous-the three vows that we gave that we will not do certain things with Eretz Yisrael; that was the argument against having a Medinas Yisrael, having a Jewish Medina. So the Rebbe said this has no connection with that at all, it’s a simple question. There is a certain country in the world where Jews are being killed and if there will be a Jewish government Jews will not be killed, so is there a question over here? Of course you should make a Jewish government; this has nothing whatsoever to do with the Ischalta D’Geula-the beginning of the Geula, it has no connection with it whatsoever.

So over here in this particular case, over here there is situation as it was at time as I remember it from the papers and so on is that anytime the Arabs would come out and attack the Jews and the Jews would fight back so the British soldiers would come and they would disarm the Jews and let the Arabs go on fighting and shooting and they would get killed, they couldn’t protect themselves. If there would be a Jewish government obviously they would be able to protect themselves.

And the Rebbe continued to say, he explained that this has nothing to do with Ischalta D’Geula, it has no connection with the beginning of the Geula. And we Takeh see later on in later years how the Rebbe said Dos Iz Ah Chosech Kaful U’Mchupal-that it’s such a darkness which never was before so it has nothing to do with Geula, it’s just a way to protect Jews from getting killed, that’s all.

Did he say if that was the Frierdiker Rebbe’s opinion too?


And you were there when the Rebbe explained this?

Yea, I was there when the Rebbe explained it.

How old were you at the time?

How old I was, probably around eighteen, nineteen. See I remember it very well also because at that time it was one of the subjects on the…and then later on I was able to comprehend also the Rebbe’s approach to this whole Inyan of Medinas Yisrael. When there was something to criticize he criticized, he didn’t hold himself back. When it came to support he supported; but the truth is the truth. When you have to criticize you criticize, he didn’t cover over anything, like he himself also said later on that it’s a Chosech Kaful U’Mchupal-that this is a darkness that never was before; Ay, there’s a Medina, that has nothing to do with it.

Let me know if this helps.
-- Rabbi Tzvi Freeman
-- Interactivity-With-People Team

Here are some further remarks from a different Chassid:

I know Zalman Posner well, bear in mind when his brother spoke to the Rebbe Z"L that he wasn't Rebbe yet. It is true that even later the Rebbe Z"L did not consider Medinat Yisroel to be the Aschalta D'Geula and despite the fact that he had changed his views on the Geula, he still did not connect it with the Medinah and he never said that Moshiach was here , He also held that Kibbutz Hagaliyos would only occur once moshiach revealed himself and Shelo Yaalu Al Hachoma means by force not through peaceful aliyah. I also know of a family in England that made Aliyah without asking him and he made them leave Eretz Yisroel and go back to England (but did allow them to leave some of their kids to stay in Yeshiva here)
As for the Rebbe the Rayyatz, I know for a fact that prior to the founding of the Medina, he was against it, but once it happened he accepted it and said it was a done deal and we have to support it.
The Rayyatz did visit Eretz Yisroel, but his son in law never did.Also the Lubavitcher Rebbes never supported a particular political party, not even Agudas Yisroel let alone Yahadus HaTorah. They said to vote for whomever each person felt was suitable at that time. I also remember the Rebbe Z"L threatening many PMs that if they made concessions he himself would personally lead the battle to topple the gvt.
Hope this gives some additional insight into their policies.

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