Great news! Haven’t you heard? The international public protests were successful. Here’s proof that the world has a heart. The campaign to save Anne Frank’s tree, the one she saw from the window of her hideout, was a success. It reminds me of the hysteria of an idealistic anti-settler sentiment, after they discovered that some of the Jews who had been forcibly evicted from their homes in Gush Katif and northern Samaria – due to an anti-settlement disengagement plan – had “cruelly and irresponsibly abandoned their pet dogs.” Of course, those very same “humanists” didn’t think it cruel that the government had evicted those same innocent Jews from their homes, destroyed their businesses, farms, trees and gardens. Minor details, like the dog owners’ being homeless – most temporarily housed in small, no-animals-allowed hotel rooms – didn’t excuse them.
Why is that diseased tree in Amsterdam more valuable than the ones lovingly planted by Jews in N’vei Dekalim? There were beautiful trees and gardens in the communities destroyed in the name of Disengagement. There were excellent schools in the communities destroyed in the name of Disengagement. There were successful businesses in the communities destroyed in the name of Disengagement. Where were the international protests – Why is that a diseased tree in Amsterdam more valuable than the ones lovingly planted by Jews in N’vei Dekalim, Homesh and Atzmona ?
Before Disengagement, I was in New York for family reasons, kibbud av v’em, and I spent Shabbat in a couple of active and prominent Orthodox communities. My various hosts, whom I have known well for decades, were all 100% against Disengagement, so I was shocked that the issue and its danger to the security and existence of the State of Israel was ignored in their rabbis’ sermons. I must tell you what really hurt the most. There we were during the Three Weeks leading up to Tisha B’Av, when we’re mourning the destruction of our Holy Temples due to the sins between man and his fellow man, and the theme of the sermons was Darfur. The poor unfortunate Darfurians. The only acts of charity many rabbis could think of concerned African refugees. They weren’t concerned that thousands of innocent fellow Jews in Israel were soon to be made homeless, unemployed refugees. American Jews I spoke to knew nothing of any protests. Why does that tree mean more to people than all the vibrant Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria? Why do people ignore the dangers to the State of Israel?
Batya Medad and her husband made Aliyah from New York in 1970, two months after their wedding and have been living in Shiloh since 1981. Batya’s a wife, mother, grandmother, writer and photographer.
Editors comment: This article was edited by JTVC in keeping with the Revival Theme of encouraging non-political events and activities aimed at strengthening Jewish bonds in the Diaspora and Israel. The article clearly underlines the depth of despair that politically oriented policies can place on a Jewish community comprising of many non-political residents, including the old and very young.