Friday, January 30, 2015

Rav Soloveitchik on Amalek

In light of this morning's Washington Post article on Hamas terror day camps quoting children training to kill Jews, and with the reading about the war with Amalek in shul tomorrow, I thought it appropriate to share the powerful, chilling words of Rav Soloveitchik on the topic of the identity of Amalek today. He said these words in an address over fifty years ago which was then published in his monumental work, Kol Dodi Dofek. His thoughts ring especially true today.
In the crisis that the Land of Israel is [at present] passing through, Providence is again testing us. Iti is fitting that we openly state that this matter does not just involve Israel's political future. The evil intentions of the Arabs are not only directed against our national independence but against the continued existence of the Jewihs presence in Israel. They aspire to exterminate (God forbid) the Yishuv [i.e. the Jewish community in the Land of Israel] – men, women, children, infants, sheep and cattle (see I Samuel 15:3). At a meeting of the Mizrachi…I repeated, in the name of my father (of blessed memory) that the notion of “the Lord will have war against Amalek from generation to generation” is not confined to a certain race, but includes a necessary attack against any nation or group infused with mad hatred that directs its enmity against the community of Israel. When a nation emblazons on its standard ‘Come, let us cut them off from being a nation so that the name of Israel shall no longer be remembered’ (Psalms 83:5), it becomes Amalek. In the 1930’s and 1940’s the Nazis, with Hitler at their helm, filled this role. In this most recent period they were the Amaleikites, the representatives of insane hate. Today, the throngs of Nasser and the Mufti have taken their place. If we are silent, I do not know how we will be judged before God. Do not rely on the justice of the "liberal world". Those pious liberals were alive fifteen years ago and witnessed the destruction of millions of people with equanimity and did not lift a finger. They are liable to observe, God forbid, the repetition of the bloodbath and not lose a night's sleep. (Kol Dodi Dofek, Chapter 11 - pp. 78-79)