When I returned home yesterday from the long, heartbreaking funeral of the Fogel family, mother, father and three young children, who were savagely butchered in their home by Arab savages, I was physically and emotionally drained.
Our dear friend and teacher, Rabbi Yehuda ben Eishi, father of the murdered Rutie Fogel, may Hashem avenge the massacre.
There were so many people there, you couldn’t get close to the cemetery in a car, so my wife and I walked along with myriads of mourners down the long hill to Har Menuchah, and then back home with a great heaviness in our feet and our hearts. After grabbing a bite to eat, I rushed off to the nursing home to help Mom with her afternoon exercises. I was so drained by the time I got home, I crashed out for an hour before my Sunday evening hevruta with Rav Mendelevitch. After “Tikun Hatzot” I didn’t have the koach to face a blank white page, so I went to sleep without continuing the blog that I started before the funeral.
In the morning, after exercises with Mom at the nursing home, I took a curious look at the Internet to see how the foreign media reported the funeral and brutal murders in Israel. Maybe I am naïve, but I was stupefied. I could hardly find an article! There were short pieces in the NY Times, and the LA Times, which focused more on potential settler retaliation than on the killings themselves, and nothing on CNN and Yahoo, as if slicing the head off a baby is too ordinary an event to report.
Everything was about the tsunami in Japan, so I’ll say a few words about it, before returning, blee nader, to the Itamar massacre in a future blog.
On Shabbat night in Yerushalayim, before we heard about the massacre, I attended a “Shalom Zachar,” celebrating the birth of a baby boy. Rabbi Dov Begun, the Rosh Yeshiva of Machon Meir was there, and I asked him what was the connection between the tsunami in Japan and the Redemption of Israel? He said that we know that everything that happens in the world is from G-d, especially great outbursts of nature like earthquakes and tidal waves, and that our Sages taught us that everything G-d does in the world, He does for the sake of Israel, but that we would have to wait and see how things developed.
"The power of the L-rd is over the roaring watrers!"
On Shabbat morning, Rav Begun spoke at a kiddush following a bar mitzvah. He mentioned my question, and said he had thought about it some more and that there had to be some hint regarding such a world-shaking event as the earthquake and tsunami in this week’s Torah portion or Haftorah, which is the spiritual Internet of the world. Sure enough, at the very end of the Haftorah, we read:
“Sing O heavens, for the L-rd has done it; make a great thunderous clash you lower parts of the earth; break forth into singing you mountains, O forest, and every tree in it; for the L-rd has redeemed Yaacov and glorified Himself in Israel” (Isaiah, 44:23).
What is an earthquake if not “a great thunderous clash of the lower parts of the earth?”
Didn’t you also see the photos of the forests and trees uprooted and swept along in the tsunami, reminding the world Who is the real Ruler of Heaven and Earth?
"Sing O forest and every tree!"
Richter shmichter. Nature my arse. In seconds, G-d can destroy Japan and Russia and America and all of the arrogant countries of Europe. The earthquake and tsunami was a wake-up lesson for the world – and for us – reminding us that we had better start paying some more serious attention to G-d. He, and He alone, rules the world, and not Japan, Russia, America, and the European Quartet.
So don’t be afraid my fellow Jews! Don’t be afraid, Bibi! The L-rd G-d of Israel, Master of Heaven and Earth, is on our side! Don’t be afraid of UN threats and boycotts and embargos and Obamas and cut-offs of foreign aid! G-d is our aid. “The Heavens declare the glory of G-d, and the Earth proclaims His praise!” “The power of the L-rd is over the roaring waters!” Sing out O mountains and forests and seas of Japan! The Redemption of Israel is near!
PS – Why Japan, you ask?
Japan, the home of Buddhism, Shinto shrines and spirits, is a bastion of idol worship and idol worshippers, perhaps Number 1 in the world.
"Thou shall not worship idols!"
Japan consistently votes against Israel in the UN.
Japan was Nazi German’s ally in World War 2.
I could give you a few more reasons why it was a tsunami, just like in the time of Noah and the Flood, but I won’t mention them here.
The main thing is:
WAKE UP WORLD! THE REDEMPTION OF ISRAEL IS NEAR!