War in Israel – Holy War

  • Hamas has thrown over a thousand missiles at Israel.
  • Hamas has declared a holy war.
  • Israel wants a few years of peace and quiet.

The war in Israel – Palestine continues for the sixth day. Israel has done tremendous damage to the properties belonging to Hamas. There have also been casualties but Israel has fought the war within the boundaries of International law. Hamas on the other hand has thrown over a thousand missiles at Israel’s populated areas including the major cities Tel-Aviv and Central Israel, Ashkelon, Beer Sheva, Kiryat Gat, Ashdod and even Jerusalem.

Arabs on the roof of Al-Aksa.

Areas close to Gaza like the city of Sederot and southern settlements are under continuous missile strikes; the people are living in shelters. The intention of Hamas is to win the war through killing Israel civilians. Israel is fighting a war to defend the right for Jewish people to live in their homeland. Hamas is fighting to destroy the nation of Israel to wipe it off the map.

The war began during the Islamic holiday of Ramadan. Hamas like ISIS is using the Koran as a tool to arouse the Islamic people living in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel to fight a holy war. They claim that they are fighting a war over Jerusalem which is the place of their holy temple Al-Aksa.

Jerusalem is the third holiest place in the world for Islam. For the Jewish people it is the most holy place. Hamas refuses to accept defeat. It requests martyrdom from its people who are suffering and homeless. Islam considers martyrdom the highest level of devotion for God – Allah.

Not only Islam which was a nation created by Mohammed through the Koran, all nations in the world have the right to defend their borders. Each nation has a specific border even though in the world there are many border disputes. One of these border disputes recently caused a war between Armenia and Azerbaijan in which many soldiers lost their lives.

America will defend its borders if they are under attack which they demonstrated under the leadership of President John Kennedy in his blockade on Cuba. Breaching the respect for borders is a cause of war. Hamas breaches on the borders of Israel when they shoot missiles in Israel territory. Attempting to gain territories through war is today an international crime.

Israel has developed as a nation in its short history of 73 years. Hamas and Palestine are nations starting up which have not yet received independence. The aggression of Hamas is called terrorism, not legitimate even though they claim that it is a war for independence. The future of Palestine which is today a two-state solution cannot be achieved through violence but through negotiations. Israel does not believe that a two-state solution is possible for many reasons including national security but the future of the two state solution is for future negotiations. President Trump approached the solution of a two state solution by strengthening Israel’s right to Jerusalem and living in the West Bank but left the total picture of Israel – Palestine for President Joe Biden’s new administration.

Israel was once a Jewish nation whose capital was Jerusalem in Biblical times. Jews retained their connection to Jerusalem and the holy land through their religion. The Torah the five books of Moses identifies the homeland of the Jewish people the children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as the land of Israel. This connection was always part of Jewish communities living in the diaspora.

In 1948 when the British released their mandate on Palestine, Israel became a Jewish state. The State of Israel awarded to the Jewish people in the war of Independence was not the whole territory which was part of the Biblical Nation of Israel conquered by King David. In 1966 in the six day war Israel succeeded to conquer the whole land of Israel. The land of Israel was divided between captured territories and Israel central.

As the population of the Jewish people grew in Israel, they spread out their communities to include areas of the captured territories Judah and Samaria, also called the West Bank. These captured territories are still in question. Hamas exploits the question of ownership of the West Bank to make a holy war with Israel. As long as these territories are in question, wars continue. This recent war is called by Israel “Shomei Chomot” which means “watching over the walls”.

As long as there is no final solution in the future will continue to be wars between Hamas and Israel. Israel is working to prolong the period between this war and the next war. Hamas is showing their loyalty to Mohammed to fight for Palestine. For Hamas it is a war of independence to build another Islamic state in the Middle East. For Israel it is to fight for their homeland, the land designated by God to be the Jewish homeland. Islam has in Palestine several holy landmarks including Al-Aksa. Mohammed instructed his people to pray toward Mecca and not to Jerusalem to prevent a conflict of interests over Israel which was given by God to the Jewish people. The Torah does not obligate Jews to live only in Israel but in all places where they can practice Judaism. There is flexibility on both sides of scripture, the Koran and Torah.

Rockets from Gaza.

However, there are extremists on both sides Islam and Judaism. These extremists call the war over Israel – Palestine a holy war. A holy war instructs the nation to fight and die for the mission of God. Jewish extremists instruct religious Jews to fight and die for the entire land of Israel given to them in the Bible. The Koran interpreted by ISIS teaches to spread Islam to the four corners of the earth. To Israeli extremists the present war Shomer Chomot is a holy war. These extremists on both sides will never stop and will continue to fight to the end.

The modern State of Israel is a democracy with partial separation of church and state. It supports Judaism as the religion of the Jewish people but also gives credit to Islam and Christianity. Israel has a World Conscience with the desire not to interrupt World Peace. Jewish extremists do not accept the authenticity of Islam and Christianity. For this reason the Modern State of Israel is called an enemy to Judaism by Anti-Zionists. Amongst Muslims there are also less extreme factions like those from UAE and Bahrain. Muslims consider religion important to their people. They may not consider the existence of a Palestine state essential to the belief in Islam and the Koran. Netanyahu cannot deny the free rights of Arabs to pray at their holy sites. Jews still live in Arab nations like Morocco, Iran, Azerbaijan and are allowed to practice Judaism.

Religious extremists have only one conscience that which they interpret in their holy scriptures. The scripture teaches to fight for Islam. They are soldiers for Islam. Judaism the Torah teaches to be soldiers of God to fight for Judaism. Judaism lives in many places in the world, although Israel is the center of Judaism where was built the holy temple. Besides having a conscience for the word of God in scripture Koran or Torah, there is a universal God whose name is peace Shalom, Salem. Religious extremists only have the word of God written on parchment but not the Word of God written in their hearts which was with God and his creation from before Mohammed and Moses. Finding God in your heart is more important than following the teachings of scriptures especially in sensitive times like today when mankind has developed weapons of destruction.

There is a Universal Faith, a new consciousness which is being taught in the world. In Judaism, the Universal Faith is taught in the Zohar a book attributed to Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai whose tomb is in Meron, Galilee. Recently on the holiday of Lag Bomer 45 holy Jews died in a stampede at a happy celebration at the Tomb of Bar Yochai. The Zohar teaches that the number 45 is related to the name of God of the Universal faith. These Jews died for the Universal Faith which teaches that peace Shalom is above everything.

The faith of Baha”i was founded by a Moslem living in Acre during the Ottoman empire who preached the universal faith. He was imprisoned for preaching Universal faith. Christianity once claimed to be the Universal Faith, Jesus the Trinity. Today Pope Francis is preaching Christianity to be a connection to the Universal Faith together with Judaism and Islam. Religion is important for family life and family purity. Modern Society has placed more emphasis on health and science. Religion is fighting for family purity. The battle for family purity is not more important than the Universal faith, which teaches that the name of God is peace written in the hearts of every human being.

The Jewish people are celebrating on Monday the holiday of Shavuot commemorating the giving of the Torah Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai.

David Wexelman

Rabbi David Wexelman is the  author of five books on the topics of World Unity and Peace, and Progressive Jewish Spirituality. Rabbi Wexelman is a member of the American Friends of Maccabee, a charitable organization helping the poor in the United States and in Israel.  Donations are tax deductible in the USA.

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