Montana Rabbi to Neo-Nazis: Torah topples hate

As plans move forward for a neo-Nazi march in Whitefish, Mont., Chabad-Lubavitch of Montana plans on “fighting darkness with light.”

Mordechai Sones,

Jewish community members in Whitefish gather for a Torah class with Rabbi Chaim Bruk
Jewish community members in Whitefish gather for a Torah class with Rabbi Chaim Bruk
Chabad.org/News

Neo-Nazis have scheduled an armed march against the small Jewish community in Whitefish for Monday, Jan. 16—corresponding on the secular calendar to Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The march culminates weeks of targeted harassment against members of the town’s 200 or so Jewish families.

“This is a chilling time for members of our community,” says Rabbi Chaim Bruk, co-director of the Chabad House based in Bozeman, which serves the entire state. “Agents of hate are trying to bully Jews to leave Whitefish. They are wrong; the good souls of Whitefish are not going anywhere.”

In response to the march, Bruk has launched the Montana Chumash Project, an effort to give every Jewish family in Montana—some 1,500 households in all—a copy of the Kehot Chumash (The Five Books of Moses). Bruk sees the gift, funded by Jews and non-Jews around the country, as the ultimate act of defiance against darkness.

“We do not consider it our job to protest the haters,” says Bruk. “Instead, we wanted to respond with something they could never compete with. Darkness is allergic to light, and this gift is the ultimate act of light.”

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