A War We Have No Chance Of Winning

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Despite the fact that unity should be the common denominator of our people, we still find reasons to be divided in the debate about the need for a ground attack in Gaza.

The shooting continues and the unilateral cease fire did not lead to anything. What is more, it didn’t lead to the support of the world.

We would like to hear voices saying that we have tried so hard and that, now we are forced to act firmly, but no. We are not popular like we were before, although no other country would agree to have enemies attack its citizens.

What is more, we see a dispute in the government. The deputy minister of defense was fired by the prime minister following his strong criticism of the government policy. In addition, every minister has his own opinion about the situation, and it is clear that they do not agree with one another.

If wars in the past led us to unite, today we are separated under the rocket attacks. What should happen so that we will truly unite?

I will bring an example from our life. During the siren alert, a strange woman came into our shelter since she was near our building at the time. When she was at the doorway, she hesitated, wondering if she should go back to her car since she left her handbag with her purse in it and forgot to lock the car.

In fact, she wasn’t sure which she should fear more, the coming missile or the fact that someone might steal her bag from the car.

So, of whom are we more afraid, of ourselves or of the enemies on the outside? It is a very painful dilemma.

Looking at our current situation, we find ourselves over and over again in the awkward situation of those who are forced to shoot in a civilian neighborhood where the enemy hides their arsenal, and each time, we are accused of killing innocent people. No matter what we do and how hard we try not to hurt people, no one shows any understanding.

The result is a paradoxical situation. We either don’t protect ourselves, or protect ourselves and feel uncomfortable. So, there is no choice, and we always come out as the guilty ones.

In addition, if, in the past, we could talk about unity in times of trouble, today everyone feels that there is no unity and consensus among us. Even the “missile steamroller” is not enough to bring us together anymore and forge us to one another as it used to be in the past.

Answer: I suppose that this time the people are reacting differently and in a new way to what is happening. The point is not the current conflict itself. Of course, the attitude of the world toward the Jewish state is getting worse, while the Jews abroad are reluctant to be in contact with Israel so as to avoid the accusation meant for Israel.

As to Israel itself, people are greatly divided. In the past, everyone united in times of war and tried to avoid criticism and even feared to express criticism since the result was social banishment. However, today, people feel powerless, hopeless, and helpless, and acknowledge the fact that there is no real solution. In the past, it seemed that we had a solution, but now we are sure that there isn’t one.

This brings the people to a totally different state. For the first time, we are up against an enemy whom we have no weapon to fight. What is more, we have no weapon against the enemy inside us. When there is no general solution for the nation of Israel in the land of Israel, people are divided and each one looks for his own private solution.

For the first time, the question about what is really important awakens internally, but it seems that people don’t want to think about it yet. After all, according to what is going on, we have no future here. Logically, all the means we have are futile when the pace of events grows. We are facing a situation with which we cannot cope. It seems that there is no solution.

This feeling penetrates the nations and makes us feel helpless and desperate. The conflict over the ground operation in Gaza was because no one actually had any real answers. There is no solution, and we are beginning to realize it more and more.

The Jewish people, whose survival throughout history is a wonder, live in an artificial state. It isn’t clear what it lives on, and its state is insoluble. Everything is gradually sinking into a mist of hopelessness.

Question: If we look more closely at the Jews all over the world, we see quite a gloomy picture. If in the past the Jews abroad used to unite with the people in Israel in times of trouble, today we see this much less and even the opposite inclination. Most Jews abroad, if not all, actually agree with the general international opinion that Israel is wrong in the current conflict.

For example, the founder of J. Street in the US came to a conference in Israel and said that the military policy and strategy in the occupied territories are wrong and a blow to Hamas, and the civilians in Gaza surely will provoke the hostile response of different countries in the world. As evidence, he brought up the example of the boycott of the Presbyterian Church of Israel. What is more, J. Street actually promoted this decision of the church during their convention.

In the meantime, a Jewish member of the Iranian parliament said the Israeli policy in the occupied territories is identical to the policy of Nazi Germany.

Jews who live abroad publish clips that encourage pressure on Israel on the part of Christians, openly expressing their disagreement with the Israeli policy.

We see similar phenomena everywhere. This is not the first time that we have seen that, and on the whole, it is a sign that something very bad is going to happen. The situation was very similar before the command to expel the Jews from Spain. The same thing happened in Germany after Hitler’s rise.

Now, the same picture is reoccurring, an internal erosion of the nation’s unity that seriously weakens our ability to exist as a state. The point isn’t military power but the fact that we simply don’t know what to do with ourselves.

The only ray of light that I see is the fact that our illness—being a divided nation—is already visible. A significant part of the people feel that the current war is different from those that preceded it since we are not united. The right diagnosis is the guarantee for healing.

Let me give you an example: A friend of mine was called to army reserve service at the beginning of the operation and he told me over the phone that he is actually overwhelmed by the people who left their homes and their families and are ready to protect the state and are filled with a sense of pride, mutual guarantee, and self sacrifice. However, on the other hand, the military reality is rotten. The nice words the army uses evaporate when we look at things from the inside. What is most painful is to see the gap between the wonderful people, the fighters of elite units and the rotten establishment, a mechanism that is outdated, including the media, and destroys the unity between us, setting different parts of the nation at each other.

What should we do about this hopelessness? Is there really no solution? How can we advance?

Answer: It is impossible to advance with what we have. This is not advancement, but regression. There is nothing to hope for in our current state.

If we want to talk about the new state, we must prepare for it, ascending to a totally different level of recognizing what is going on.

We must look at things generally and see what the Israeli nation has come to. It is impossible to demand that the world should treat us as if we are like everyone else. No, we cannot be like everyone else. We are a special people, a special state, and our state in the world is unique. However, we pretend that there is no difference between us and the others, and this, of course, doesn’t work.

It isn’t by chance that the Jews abroad speak against us and that they want to detach themselves from us and have nothing to do with the Israeli nation.

However, the real reason for what is happening is that the Israeli nation, the state of Israel, is not on the level that they should be.

Question: What is this new level of consciousness? What should the Israeli nation turn into so that they will have hope again?

Answer: According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, we must be united and become as one man in one heart. This has nothing to do with religion. The point is that if we are united, we are a nation, and otherwise, we are simply a collection of immigrants from different countries that were given a certain length of time to correct themselves and unite, and if not, we will be dispersed again.

The connection between us is the pre-condition for entering the land of Israel and for conquering it in order to live here exactly like the nation of Israel in the land of Israel. If the connections between us are cut off, and, instead of “love thy neighbor as thyself” we shift to unfounded hatred, we will be thrown out of here and cease to be a nation, and, instead, will be dispersed all over the world, while the other nations do whatever they want with us.

This is our fate, and there is nothing we can do about it. It has led us throughout our history, and the 21st century hasn’t nullified its demand. So eventually the question is whether we are able to unite or not.

Question: What should we do if we have disagreements?

Answer: It makes no difference. We must unite above them. We are a developed nation, and so our opinions are totally different. Sometimes, they are similar, and sometimes they are opposite to one another. There is no other nation that is so divided in its perspective. What is more, each of us has several different perspectives.

Therefore, we must learn to unite above all the differences and the disagreements. It is possible if we implement the method of connection that the wisdom of Kabbalah teaches us. Then, we will be one nation in a united state, and the entire world will come to us to learn this method.

After all, the world needs it, too. The state of the world is no better than our state. It is in the midst of a terrible crisis, and doesn’t know which way to go nor how to advance. The confidence in the future is gone; events overwhelm humanity; missile attacks are not the worst thing that may happen.

It is a natural phenomenon, a natural law, that the nations of the world blame the Jews for their troubles. It is clear that Israel is the source of all the troubles in the world. When Israel is not united, there is no unity in the world. We disrespect one another, don’t join one another, don’t reach love and unity, and ignore the basic principles of “That which you hate, do not do to your friend,” and “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”

To live as one man in one heart is the formula of the existence of the Jewish nation. Otherwise, we are not a nation and, accordingly, neither are we a state. After all, a state needs to be established by the Jewish nation according to its inner attributes, when everyone is attracted to unity, creating the external conditions to support it. All the government institutions and mechanisms, including the education system, must be based on this approach. The basic commandment of one man in one heart and to reach mutual love must be the basis for everything.

All this is described in our sources, and there is nothing to look for anywhere else. We should only understand the writings according to the wisdom of Kabbalah. Otherwise, we will miss the opportunity to live in this land and to build ourselves. After all, this is an opportunity we have paid for with the lives of six million people who were burnt in the holocaust.

This opportunity actually was given to us by the nations of the world, but, in the meantime, their attitude toward us is changing, and there isn’t one nation that supports us.

Question: Indeed, in 1967 when the Six Day War broke out and Israeli tanks went into the Sinai, even the Germans supported us, and one of the major newspapers published a headline, “They are rolling!!!” How everything has changed since then.

Answer: Let’s ask ourselves why this is happening. There is no point in being nice guys in the eyes of the world, and they don’t even demand that we do so. They demand something else: that we should be an example of the connection of the world.

After all, the current crisis includes the entire world. It is a human crisis that is taking place in human society and from there, affects nature. We can fix it only by a positive connection among everyone and cooperation between the nations, and only we can set an example of connection and have the power to fulfill it.

This is actually what the nations of the world are saying: that, by being divided, we invoke all the evil in the world. It makes no difference what they blame us of. Behind every accusation that they make, there is one idea. We are a pain in the neck for them, and we are responsible for the fact that the world is in such a bad state.
From KabTV’s “Talk on the Current Situation in Israel” 7/16/14

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