Published by The Freeman Center

The Maccabean Online

Political Analysis and Commentary
on Israeli and Jewish Affairs

"For Zion's sake I shall not hold my peace, And for Jerusalem's sake I shall not rest."



THE 614th COMMANDMENT

by Boris Shusteff 

The Jewish tradition tells us that the Torah contains 613 commandments. This number has become so deeply rooted in Judaism, that even those who question the accuracy of this count nevertheless call the Torah’s system of “mitzvot” the “613 commandments.” The eminent Jewish philosopher Emil Ludwig Fackenheim became best known as the author of the 614th commandment. He developed it based on the deep belief that the Holocaust must be understood as an imperative requiring the Jews to carry on Jewish existence and the survival of the state of Israel. His 614th commandment reads: “Jews are forbidden to hand Hitler posthumous victories.”

Alas, today Sharon’s Israel is only days away from violating the 614th commandment and handing Hitler a posthumous victory by making the Gaza strip and part of Northern Samaria judenrein.

Since the politics of settlement are embedded at the core of Zionism, by preparing to destroy Jewish settlements and expel Jews from their land, the Israeli government is getting ready to announce the death of Zionism. It is preparing to make true the prediction of Nazi ideologist Alfred Rosenberg who wrote in 1922: “at its best Zionism is the impotent effort of an unfit people to achieve something constructive.”

By planning to destroy the flourishing Jewish settlements in Gaza and Northern Samaria Sharon’s government is getting ready to prove true Hitler’s words from “Mein Kampf”,  

“For while the Zionists try to make the rest of the world believe that the national consciousness of the Jew finds its satisfaction in the creation of a Palestinian state, the Jews again slyly dupe the dumb Goyim. It doesn’t even enter their heads to build up a Jewish state in Palestine for the purpose of living there; all they want is a central organization for their international world swindle.” 

Of course the Jews dupe the Goyim, as well as the Jews. How else can any sane person interpret the decision of Sharon’s government to destroy Gush Katif? Gush Katif, whose 800 cows constitute the second largest dairy farm in Israel. Gush Katif, which produces 95% of all Israel’s exports of bug-free lettuce and greens, 70% of all Israel’s exports of organic vegetables, 60% of all Israel’s exports of cherry tomatoes, and 60% of all Israel’s exports of geraniums. Gush Katif, whose total sum of exports from greenhouses constitutes $100,000,000, which is 15% of the total agricultural exports of the whole state of Israel.

Yes, it would be a posthumous victory for Hitler who stated in “Mein Kampf,” that “the Jew is led by nothing but naked egoism of the individual.” It is the naked egoism of the individual that drives Sharon’s policy today. In order to cling to power to satiate his ego Sharon is not only ignoring the principles of the Likud but also trampling on the results of the Likud referendum, which he himself initiated and which he promised to honor (Sharon overwhelmingly lost it).

Moreover, by following his anti-national policies, Sharon had sacrificed on the altar of his egoism a most precious commodity – the unity of the Jewish people. A people that was united in fighting the Al Aqsa war unleashed by the Arabs in September of 2000 has became irreparably split today almost along the middle. It pains one to read articles in Israeli press that malign the “settlers” presenting them as the pinnacle evil and the cause of all Israeli ills. By implicitly approving through promoting disengagement the vitriolic attacks against the “settlers” and dragging Israel to the brink of civil war by means of his policy, Sharon is preparing to give Hitler another posthumous victory.

The Nazi leader wrote in “Mein Kampf”, 

“As soon as the common enemy is conquered, the danger threatening all averted and the booty hidden, the apparent harmony of the Jews among themselves ceases, again making way for their old casual tendencies. The Jew is only united when a common danger forces him to be or a common booty entices him; if these two grounds are lacking, the qualities of the crassest egoism come into their own, and in the twinkling of an eye the united people turns into a horde of rats, fighting bloodily among themselves.” 

Jews expelling Jews from their homes – what a glorious picture it would have been for Hitler’s eyes. He loved destroying Jews with Jewish hands. This is why the Judenraten were established. Bronia Klebanskaya, one of the fighters of Belostock ghetto and later one of the Yad vaShem founders said: “Even if in the beginning the Judenraten had different intentions at the end they became the German’s accomplices. …The Germans created Judenraten so they would serve them. In order to exterminate the Jews, this was their only purpose.”

 One might say that Sharon is not sending the Jews of Gush Katif to death camps so it is preposterous even to try to compare the planned expulsion of the Jews from Gush Katif with the extermination of the Jews during the Holocaust. True, but put yourself in the shoes of those who have planted their hearts and souls in Gush Katif’s soil with only one purpose – to live there. For many of the “settlers” Gush Katif is the one and only Homeland to which they are tied with millions of invisible strings. It is the place where many of them were born and where some of them put their loved ones to eternal rest. In several days their world will be brutally destroyed, and the fire of their communal life will be barbarically extinguished.

Cynics and people without hearts say that the settlers will be compensated with money. As Dror Nissan wrote in Ynetnews.com,  

“True, some people from Gush Katif were already evacuated from the Yamit settlement in the Sinai Peninsula. For them, this is the second round of exaggerated compensation. If they move to the West Bank, it will be Round Three. Does anyone know a more profitable way of investment? Who said tough ideologies interfered with business?”  

But there are things that cannot be bought with money. There are ideals to which some people devote their entire life. And if these ideals are mercilessly crushed life itself loses all sense for these people. One still counts these people among the living, but they, themselves, are already dead. It is only their bodies that are physically present, but their souls are brutally murdered.

It is this “idealistic attitude” that Hitler claimed the Jews do not possess. As he wrote in “Mein Kampf”: “He [the Jew] lacks completely the most essential requirement for a cultured people, the idealistic attitude.” Could there be a better posthumous victory for Hitler than the one that Sharon is ready to deliver to him by destroying the lives of the idealistic Jews?

One of Hitler’s staunchest devotees was the Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin Al Husseini. In 1940 he asked the Axis powers “to settle the question of Jewish elements in Palestine … in accordance with the national and racial interests of the Arabs and along the lines similar to those used to solve the Jewish question in Germany and Italy.” The Fuhrer did not have time to meet the Mufti’s request. However, soon Hitler would be given a posthumous revenge-victory. Very soon, thanks to Sharon’s efforts in accordance with the national and racial interests of the Arabs, additional land in Palestine will become judenrein. And the methods by which it will be emptied of Jews will be along the lines similar to those used to solve the Jewish question in Germany and Italy in 1940.

At that time mass killings of Jews were not happening yet. Jews were mainly expelled from their homes, their property destroyed, their belongings loaded into crates and transported to storage locations. At that time the Germans did not even have Judenraten that were doing the dirty work for them. Just imagine the sparkles of joy in Hitler’s eyes if he were alive today watching Jews evict other Jews from their homes built on the Jewish land, how they tear the children away from the parents, how they brutally beat their brethren.

Does it not make you sick to the stomach to realize that for the second time since Hitler’s rule we will soon witnesses the mass destruction of synagogues? For the first time they were destroyed in Jerusalem by the Palestinian Arabs from Jordan in 1948. In few days the Jews themselves will perform the role of destroyers instead of the Arabs and for the sake of the Arabs.

Even the organization of the “disengagement” itself reminds of the Germans’ meticulous way of doing things and this must bring a chill to one’s spine. The official press release distributed to journalists on July 18 by the Eshkol Regional Council declares,  

    “A communications center will be set up by the IDF spokesman on the grounds of the Regional Council Campus. The Eshkol Regional Council has published a map of the area that includes all main and secondary roads, information on restaurants and entertainment opportunities, as well as additional services that are available during the duration of the disengagement.” 

Have we completely lost our minds? More than 8,500 Jews, and among them more than 4,000 children are to be evicted from their homes. Their houses as well as 24 day-care centers, 35 kindergartens, 7 elementary schools, 2 high schools, 30 synagogues, and 6 yeshivot will be destroyed. And at a time when not only Jewish tears will be more than abundantly shed, but possibly Jewish blood as well, other Jews will be spending time a stone’s throw away in restaurants and enjoying entertainment opportunities? How did we manage to deliver to Hitler such a tremendous posthumous victory? How dare we so unashamedly violate the 614th commandment? 08/14/05

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Boris Shusteff is an engineer. He is also a research associate with the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies.