Minister Rabbi Benny Elon Of Blessed Memory

Dr. Joseph Frager,

לבן ריק
לבן ריק
צילום: ערוץ 7
Dr. Joseph Frager
The writer is a leading American pro-Israel activist who sponsors and coordinates many Zionist events. He is clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine (Gastroenterology & Liver Diseases) at the Einstein School of Medicine as well as a practicing physician.

It was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of one of the Jewish People's great leaders and rising stars, Rabbi Benny Elon of blessed memory. I had the privilege of meeting Rabbi Benny Elon when he had just opened up the Beit Orot Yeshiva on the Mount of Olives over 30 years ago. He was the rare Rosh Yeshiva that actually entered the turbulent and complex Political world.

He could have remained an incredible Rosh Yeshiva. He felt that it was crucial for men of Torah to enter Politics. He was not afraid. He was determined and focused. He became a profound and vibrant force in making the Jewish Heartland of Judea and Samaria grow, expand, and thrive. He is one of the pioneers that made Biblical Israel come to life with close to one million people.

I once told him that the entire Knesset looked up to him for guidance and success. He was a shining light in a difficult environment. Many of the changes one sees today in the Knesset were made possible by RabbiBenny Elon. I remember a photo of him in the New York Times before he entered Politics fixing a telephone poll in Judea and Samaria. He did it all. He spread Torah in an erudite and scholarly manner.

He became the right hand man of assassinated Minister Rechavam Ze'evi ("Gandhi"). He assumed the leadership of Gandhi's Moledet Party after the assassination. He became Minister of Tourism 2001-2004 under Ariel Sharon. He wore the badge of courage for having been fired by Ariel Sharon for protesting the PM's plans to expel 10,000 Jews from Gush Katif. He was not able to stop one of Ariel Sharon's worst decisions but he made a statement and a stand that will last for eternity. The Land of Israel including Gaza belong to the People of Israel.

Jews will some day move back into Gaza. It is just a matter of time. His protest and defiance may well have been one of his finest moments despite how hard it was for him. If it had not been for his illness he may well have become the first Religious Prime Minister of Israel. His life was tragically cut short but he accomplished a tremendous amount. He is responsible for the rebuilding of the entire Mount of Olives Jewish Community.

He is responsible for the rebuilding of the Shimon HaTzaddik Neighborhood in Jerusalem. He was a role model for all who wanted to make a difference in the Land of Israel and particularly Jerusalem. His passage right before Israel celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Reunification of Jerusalem is not a coincidence. He made the Reunification a reality in word and deed.

He is Jerusalem here and in heaven.  Every fiber of his being was dedicated to the Jerusalem and the Land of Israel. He single handedly changed the face of the nation. All who love G-d Almighty ,Torah, the Land of Israel, and the People of Israel should aspire to become like Rabbi Benny Elon of blessed memory. He will be sorely missed. May his family be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Yerushalayim.