Monday, February 07, 2011

Our Strategy and Goals

Elder of Ziyon has a great article that may be eye-opening for some.  He talks about Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, and asks a simple, but overlooked question:
The question that Western observer need to be asking is: what are their goals?

They are very explicit in answering that question. Their main goal is to restore the caliphate, creating a single state run according to Islamic precepts that would stretch from Spain to Indonesia.
He adds:
To Islamists, the Crusades were an unfortunate century or so, which they rectified. They look at Israel the same way - as an anomaly that will inexorably be destroyed in the coming decades, due to their current strategy of picking away at it piece by piece and enlisting clueless Westerners to rally to the cause in the name of "international law" and "human rights" that the Muslim world itself utterly rejects. Their patience and ability to take the long view is their strength.

The important word is "strategy." The Islamists have one - a long term plan - and the West does not.
He makes crucial points in how to deal with Yishmael. However, when he says "the West does not", does that include us? Do we have goals? Do we have a strategy?

Those who do not believe in the coming of Mashiah can be lumped in with the rest of the "West".  There is no difference.  These people have no real goal, nor do they have a viable strategy.

To those of us who believe in the coming of Mashiah, our goals are clear. We strive for the building of the Beit Hamikdash, the coming of Mashiah, and a rectified world. These goals are what unite us all.

Our strategy of reaching those goals, on the other hand, are what divide religious Jews most prominently. We cannot seem to reach a consensus on fundamental Hashkafic matters.  This wouldn't be a problem if we would be tolerant of each other's viewpoint, but, alas, this ideal seems distant.

If we want to be able to defeat Yishmael, the world's biggest challenge of our day, we need 2 things:
1) more Jews to get on board with our goals
2) a more unified strategy

The Muslims have many divisions too.  However, they decided long ago that if they unite under a "Brotherhood", the caliphate can take over the world.  Our goal is similar, but not quite.  Actually, we want Hashem to take over the world:

וְהָיָה יְהוָה לְמֶלֶךְ, עַל-כָּל-הָאָרֶץ; בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא, יִהְיֶה יְהוָה אֶחָד--וּשְׁמוֹ אֶחָד
And the LORD shall be King over all the earth; in that day shall the LORD be One, and His name one.
Our strategy must be that those who share our goals should form our own "Brotherhood", as it says:
הִנֵּה מַה-טּוֹב, וּמַה-נָּעִים--    שֶׁבֶת אַחִים גַּם-יָחַד
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!
As my father often says, "Unity need not mean uniformity," but it must mean tolerance of one another's Torah-based viewpoint.  This is our best strategy of defeating Yishmael, and it looks like it will be a crucial one in the days ahead. 


At Mon Feb 07, 03:36:00 PM 2011, Blogger merachefet said...

great point. there has been so much in the news the past few days about our own rifts. may am yisrael find strength in our unity.

At Mon Feb 07, 07:46:00 PM 2011, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

First we need an accurate poll of the Egyptian people. John Zogby, the most accurate pollster in the world, needs to go there and do one of the scientific polls for which he is known. He is an Arab. So the mob will not beat him over the head for also being an American. He can ask if the Egyptian people will vote for the Muslim Brotherhood if given the chance to vote. Will they continue to uphold their security obligations in the Peace Treaty with Israel? This is important information that cannot be left open to chance before one comes to terms with their newly found "democracy". Of course the Brotherhood might just take over without a vote, but they are supporting El Baradei for at least one free election. Of course, they probably would not support him if they did not think that they would win. But no one knows for sure until Zogby gets in there and does one of his accurate polls.

At Tue Feb 08, 04:29:00 AM 2011, Blogger merachefet said...

50% support Hamas (which is the outgrowth of the Muslim Brotherhood in Gaza), and that was when it was banned:

At Tue Feb 08, 06:01:00 AM 2011, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Thank you, Merachefet. So at least 50% of Egyptians support Hamas, probably more. Now we see that the Arab world wants to elect Amalek to lead them as opposed to Ham. So now is a good time to prepare. Hopefully all those who supported the evacuations from Gaza, including those who enabled the evacuations by joining Sharon's government for whatever reason, need to do teshuvah now. For only Teshuvah will ameliorate the effects of the bombings from Northern Gaza and Lebanon that will begin as early as this summer. I am trying to get a letter in to Rav Eliyashiv that he will actually read for this purpose. If anyone knows how that can be done as soon as possible, I would appreciate it. Time is of the essence in this matter. Rav Ovadia Yosef regretted supporting Oslo and Wye in a public apology in late 2002, but only after he saw how hundreds died as a result. So there is a precedent for this, but it would be better for everyone concerned to get the apology before the bombs start to fly. I have held my peace for 5 1/2 years about this, but we are simply running out of time. I wonder if the Admor of Sadigura would approach the Rav about this matter. His entire dynasty including himself has consistently displayed love for Klal Yisrael in Eretz Yisrael.

At Tue Feb 08, 06:34:00 AM 2011, Blogger משה רפאל said...

"Rav Ovadia Yosef regretted supporting Oslo and Wye in a public apology in late 2002, but only after he saw how hundreds died as a result."

Please provide the text of the apology.

At Tue Feb 08, 06:48:00 AM 2011, Blogger merachefet said...

Dov - great idea. While I mourn the arrest warrant of HaRav Dov Lior, a public plea for global teshuva might be a better strategy than Torah HaMelech, which does not address the underlying problem - Am Yisrael's need for unity and direction as a klal.

At Tue Feb 08, 09:41:00 AM 2011, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

I do not have the text of the apology by Rav Yosef. It appeared as a half page ad in the United States in the American edition of Yated Ne'eman sometime between July 2002 and the Israeli elections in early 2003. One might have to do a microfiche search at one's local library in America to find the ad. I know that in his personally written statement, he said that he had hoped for a true peace to emerge from negotiations with Arafat, not the peace of the Al Aksa Intafada. I am sorry. The edition of Yated Ne'eman belonged to my neighbor. I could not ask him for it to keep it. It was his.

Anyway, whatever letter is composed for Rav Eliyashiv and the Gerer Rebbe should contain as much kavod as possible for the Rabbaim and as little acrimony as possible. As far as the arrest of Rav Lior is concerned, it appears that a great war with the Erev Rav has already begun. I believe that HaShem will decide that matter as early as this summer when bombs start flying up and down the Left Coast. The same people who pay homage to the worldview of HaAretz, Ma'ariv, and the Last Idiot will be the ones who burn the offices of HaAretz to the ground after Tel Aviv is bombed. The right will not have to lift a finger. We just have to daven and do our own personal teshuvot before the end of the fearsome year of Hoshana Rabbah for everything that we can recollect in our lives that we have done wrong. I have a really good, positive sense about what is going to transpire in 5772 if we do. 5772 is the year of Shmini Atzeret and the blessings from it are specifically for Klal Yisrael with an emphasis on bracha for Eretz Yisrael.

At Tue Feb 08, 02:03:00 PM 2011, Blogger משה רפאל said...

"he said that he had hoped for a true peace to emerge from negotiations with Arafat, not the peace of the Al Aksa Intafada."

Isn't that obvious?

A true apology for Oslo by Rav Ovadia would have been so well known that one would easily be able to find the text by googling for it...

At Tue Feb 08, 02:26:00 PM 2011, Blogger yaak said...

Page 3 here is likely what R' Dov Bar Leib is referring to.

At Tue Feb 08, 02:34:00 PM 2011, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Sooo Moshe Refa'el, I did just that. And here is the link:

When one is in doubt, just Google. His quotes are between the question marks in each paragraph. The main thing that I got wrong was that he refers to the Al Aksa Intafada as the "current situation" which in Hebrew is HaMatzav which everyone knew at the time was the Al Aksa Intafada.

He kept his word by the way. When given a chance to join Sharon in the Disengagement Government, he declined vociferously.

At Tue Feb 08, 03:48:00 PM 2011, Blogger משה רפאל said...

Note that the letter was written at election time. It was published for election reasons. I saw how it was used by Shas.

Again, is the rabbi not saying the obvious? Of course he wanted real peace. The question is whether he admitted that he should have foreseen that Oslo would not lead to real peace. Ultimately, the bothering question is whether the Rabbi could support an agreement that differs from the "current situation." It would be rather wrong to base the answer only on this letter. The rabbi has said and written much more on the subject than just this letter. I followed him very well. I am sure he still stands by his Psak.

At Tue Feb 08, 04:26:00 PM 2011, Blogger yaak said...

Moshe Refael,

I love you as a fellow Jew, but your anti-Hareidi bias is showing in too many of your postings. This is exactly the type of thing that my post is rallying against.

Yes, Rav Ovadia holds land-for-peace theoretically is ok when we have a true peace partner. No, he doesn't agree to use it in the current situation we are in and he regrets using it in the past. If this psak is too left-leaning for you, you are free to disagree with it without demonizing the Gadol Hador or any other Gadol BeYisrael.

Why must you bring this up over and over and over again? While R' Dov talks of reconciliation, all I hear from your comments are accusations. If you truly forgive, I'm sure Hashem will forgive the few iniquities you have as well. Not forgiving is one more thing pushing off the geula.

At Tue Feb 08, 11:34:00 PM 2011, Blogger משה רפאל said...

Ya'ak, I love you also. You have no idea how much. Where did I accuse? Regarding the use of the letter for election purposes? That is what happened. I give the context, because it is important for interpreting the letter properly. I felt obligated to give my assessment. In my view, R' Dov is reading and was remembering this very superficially. And naively. I must respond because there is danger here, national danger. Rav Ovadia never retracted a thing. This is obvious to who followed the Rabbis deeds and words, written and spoken, over time. In practical terms, if Olmert and Livni would have reached an agreement with Abbas, Rav Ovadia would very likely have agreed. He could also well have agreed with the expulsion from Gaza if it had been based on an agreement.

Dear Ya'ak, Jewish unity will have to be around the truth. Things that happen are Birurim of truth. The Oslo agreements and the ensuing loss of life happened. This was a huge Birur of truth. Likewise, the Disengagement was a huge Birur. Your comment leaves me shocked. You shoot the messenger for his message. If you insist you do not want to hear, I will sadly leave you blog.

At Wed Feb 09, 12:23:00 AM 2011, Blogger yaak said...

Moshe Refael,

You're lacking the proper respect for Rav Ovadia, which will not be tolerated on this blog. Go take that message which you call "truth" and I call "Bizui" and "Motzi Shem Ra" to some other blog. Believe me, there are plenty of places on the Internet that will eat that up. Other than that, I encourage your input on this blog.


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