Almost 26 centuries ago today, the 10th of Tevet, King Nebuchadnezzar began his siege on Jerusalem, which eventually led to the destruction of the first, and most magnificent of the holy Temples, and an exile of the Jewish People from Israel that lasted 70 years. We are told that just before the walls were breached, G-d’s Schechinah left the Temple (and didn’t return to the second Temple) and will not return the the Temple is rebuild after Moshiach comes.
Its Ironic that Saddam Hussein, who was hanged yesterday in Baghdad modeled himself in many ways after Nebuchadnezzar. In his book “Saddam Hussein, the Stairway to Heaven and the Return of Planet X,” William Henry writes, “Saddam is saying he is the reincarnated Nebuchadnezzar… He is attempting to recreate and outdo the feats of the biblical king… It is well known that he has connected himself with Nebuchadnezzar, spending over $500 million during the 1980s on the reconstruction and the re-establishment of ancient Babylon, the capitol of Nebuchadnezzar.”
Also ironic is the fact that the county that toppled Nebuchadnezzar, and eventually allow the Jews to rebuild to Temple was Persia (today its called Iran).
Our sages tell us that one of the reasons that the Temple was destroyed is that we lost our way and forgot G-d.
Twenty-six hundred years later, Jerusalem is once again besieged. This time the names aren’t Nebuchadnezzar and Babylon, they are Hamas, Fatah,Iran, and Hezbollah, they are Abbas, Chirac, Nasrallah, Haniyeh and Ahmadinejad.
Just like Nebuchadnezzar, each one of them in their own way are trying to destroy Israel. Some are even trying to take over the entire world.
Ben Franklin once said “those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it” The Israeli government has not learned the lessons from its past, ancient and recent.
Before Babylon laid siege to Judea, she made a pact with Egypt. Jeremiah (the prophet not the bull frog) warned the king about making alliances with a country such as Egypt. The road to the destruction of the second Temple began when the ruling family couldn’t get along so they brought in Rome as a mediator. Soon Rome was king and the rest is history.
The Oslo process was a disaster, Israel tried very hard for peace made concessions that no body thought she would make and in return got war.
Israel’s leaders, the Olmert Governmet, is forgetting the past ,she is making one sided concession to the terrorists. Essentially Olmert is making “pacts with the Pharaoh” and “inviting in Rome” At the same time Israel’s government is forgetting about the real deed holder, G-d.
As a Jewish state certain things should be sacrosanct about public institutions, they should be Kosher and they should be Shomer Shabbos. Notice I said public institutions. Privately owned businesses should not be forced to observe. Observant and non-observant people should have the right to support those institutions that have their level of observance.
When Labor MK Ophir Paz-Pines can propose a bill that would prevent adults from placing pressure on anyone under the age of 18 to increase or decrease their religious involvement. Something is wrong. If you can’t have a table on the streets of Jerusalem teaching kids how to put on T’fillin, then the country has forgotten that G-d, is the deed holder of the land and it is by G-d’s will that we keep it.
Twenty Six Hundred years ago, we lost our homeland because we made alliances with the wrong countries and we forgot all about G-d. Today we are once again besieged…but there is still time.