Friday, October 22, 2010

Obama-friend of my enemy #2-- a call to Teshuva?

On January 24, 2009, I posted an article entitled, Obama- friend of my enemy. The idea was that Obama, because of his cowardice or hypocrisy, would mismanage the phenomenon of an Iran in pursuit of nuclear weapons. Israel, because of her dependence on US friendship for her existence, would be asked to sacrifice her security, to appease Arabs into an anti Iranian coalition, by the US. The 2009 article is worth a review, in light of recent events, and President Shimon Peres' remarks, from today's Jerusalem post. Certainly, this might have been a lucky guess, it might also be, a productive first hypothesis worthy of further development.

Much as we might agree with Peres' political assessment that Israel currently depends on US friendship for her survival, we should also view this as a Tzara, and a call to Teshuva on our part. Why are we not asking ourselves, how did we get to be in this situation of dependence upon frienship? Should we not be seeking a realistic way out of this dependency based upon our Mesorah? Obviously, there is no simple answer to the question, Teshuva begins with almost impossible questions. Yet, we are obligated to ask the question:

הלכות תענייות פרק א  אבל אם לא יזעקו, ולא יריעו, אלא יאמרו דבר זה ממנהג העולם אירע לנו, וצרה זו נקרוא נקרית--הרי זו דרך אכזרייות, וגורמת להם להידבק במעשיהם הרעים, ותוסיף הצרה וצרות אחרות:  הוא שכתוב בתורה, "והלכתם עימי, בקרי.  והלכתי עימכם, בחמת קרי" (ויקרא כו,כז-כח), כלומר כשאביא עליכם צרה, כדי שתשובו--אם תאמרו שהוא קרי, אוסיף עליכם חמת אותו קרי.

 Jpost October 22, 2010
President Shimon Peres said that Israel cannot survive without the help of the United States, at a Jerusalem conference of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute on Thursday.

Peres said that, "for our existence, we need the friendship of the United States of America."

Speaking of how Israel can give back to the US, he said that just "as the US is trying to understand the security needs of Israel, we Israelis ourselves must understand the security needs of the US." He continued, "We cannot give back to the United States what the US is giving us, but in our own small way, we can be of help."

Connecting two of the largest issues on the Israeli - and American - agenda, the president said Israel could be of help to the US by enabling an "anti-Iran coalition in the Middle East, and the contribution will not be by declaration, but if we stop  the secondary conflict between us and the Palestinians," in order to allow the US to focus on the Iranian threat.