As the current Israeli government seems to be gasping its last, the people of Israel are drained and disheartened. The coalition that bragged of its diversity, inclusion and unity was in truth born out of hatred. Hatred not just of one particular man, but hatred of an entire diverse group of people who all shared in common the belief that Israel's Jewish character takes precedence over its democratic one . This group, which happens to be the majority, became the enemy of the government and its greatest victim. Instead of defeating terrorism, the government decided on defeating the Chief Rabbinate, changing its kashrut system and conversions standards and diluting Judaism.
The Jewish character of the state was never under such relentless attack. The majority of the people of Israel have never felt so abandoned by their leaders nor have they ever thirsted more for a return to real, authentic, Jewish leadership.
While there are many outspoken, talented politicians who have their priorities straight, few have the modesty, charisma and the courage needed to bring the people of Israel on board for a bold program of national andor religious rejuvenation. If such a leader were to emerge, he would inevitably be subject to endless scrutiny and criticism which would make leading difficult.
The ideal leader would thus have to have demonstrated loyalty and self sacrifice for the Jewish people in order to be accepted and respected by the masses. This respect and acceptance is what would enable him to take the courageous actions that are required to get this country back to where its supposed to be- a Jewish state that is a light unto all nations.
Perhaps there is no one today who fits all of these criteria more than Jonathan Pollard.
His reputation for self sacrifice for the Jewish people is beyond critique. His knowledge of what a Jewish state is supposed to be combined with his eloquence and courage in expressing those understandings make him uniquely suited to lead the Jewish people. Israel needs a leader who is not afraid to say loudly and unequivocally that this land was given by God to the Jewish people and it belongs to us. We have no right to relinquish it. We must take pride in it and must do everything we can to continue to deserve the right to live here- by following the Torah.
Many Jewish leaders, even well intentioned ones, are restrained by what they perceive to be practicality and "realism". We need a leader that has no such limitations. We need a leader who believes that nothing is impossible, that miracles do happen and that G-d can and will protect us as long as we have faith and do what we are supposed to do. Jonathan Pollard's entire life was a testament to these facts.
Perhaps some would say that Pollard's inability to speak Hebrew would prevent him from a leadership role, but I would say quite the contrary. The greatest Jewish leader of all time- Moses- had a speech impediment and was unable to speak directly to the people- he had his brother Aaron as an interpreter and he did just fine. Furthermore, in a highly polarized and caustic political environment, not speaking the language could be an asset. Only a truly cruel person would have the heart to attack a man who sacrificed his entire life for this country and who doesnt even speak Hebrew, but is highly articulate in his mother tongue.
The Jewish people are going through a uniquely difficult period of time, with exceptional challenges that confront us from every direction. The very people and institutions that were created to help us, protect us, and support us have turned against us and have made Judaism into an enemy. Never before has true Jewish leadership been so desperately needed, and perhaps never before has there been someone whose talents and life circumstances made him so well suited to get the job done. I just hope he hears the call or someone in an appropriate leadership position turns to him with an offer he can't refuse.
Avraham Shusteris is an accountant in Ramat Beit Shemesh. He made aliyah from Monsey with his family in 2018.