Tuesday, November 07, 2006

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Cracking Heads, Trampling Torah

Early morning Israel time, R. Nati and I spoke. He was there and has these tidbits to share...by R. Nati

The West Bank has been stripped of security forces, all have been allocated to Immoral Pride Parade protection. But, that's Friday and the forces are gone since yesterday! Scattered towns have reported odd attacks or attack preparations. Itamar was hit by a rocket, possibly a Kassam (in the West Bank). Maaleh Levonah was hit with an anti-tank missle. Ignored, not reported, no one to respond.

Meah Shearim and Geulah are the ancient ultra-orthodox neighborhoods of Jerusalem outside the old city. It's cramped living conditions but more Torah per block than any other place in the world. It's not near the 'new' parade route, nor near the secular district nor near the immoral organization's that are planning this event. It's actually bounded by Arab neighborhoods and business districts. So when they protest, they go to the local square, shout for a while, and go home. There's one main road that goes through the area, in a heated protest they'll go to the intersection and shout at passing cars. (When this happens, police will just reroute traffic for a while.)

Last night, they were protesting. But rather than reroute traffic and let them vent, or rather, let them exercise their democratic right to assembly and speech, the storm troopers (because it's not the regular police) charged the neighborhood. Black or grey uniformed, on huge horses, with shields and helmets and clubs, in they came swinging. And they were there to injure and kill. Never in my life have I seen such vicious violent attacks.

They targeted the small, the weak, those separate from the crowd. I saw a teenage boy, maybe 13, beaten just walking past on his way home. I saw a women beaten who had the nerve to walk out of her house. Beaten and beaten and beaten until unconcious, and still beaten. I was shaken by the pure rage shown by the troopers. True inhumanity on display.

But the neighborhood young men were not just going to stand there and let the blood flow. Large groups charged back chasing off the troopers. The weak charedim sitting quietly in shul and being stepped on were not to be found this night. Strong, arms locked, holy fire in their eyes, they went to defend Torah, their neighborhood, and literally the lives of the weak.

It was a battle, and it was terrible. But these people are no pushover, and even if the full security forces of Israel are brought to bear as in Gaza, they outnumber them 10:1.

Much of what I saw was right out of the navi, midrash, and holy words of the gedolim of the past. I fully believe that we're literally living the words of the prophets. But I'm too shaken right now to track down the references.

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