The Credo of the Hilltop Youth

The following is an OpEd that appeared in Arutz7  on 29 May 2015

The credo of the “hilltop youth” is expressed in this article whose subject is the undercover police operation at Kochav Hashachar and the story of Elad Selah, an IDF soldier who has been jailed for alleged spying for the hilltop youth.

Meir Ettinger is a Jewish activist. He is the grandson of Rabbi Meir Kahane, H”yd, and the unofficial leader of the hilltop youth. He sent this article to Arutz Sheva and we present it to readers so that his opinion is heard.

The Nationalist Crimes Unit was created three years ago by Tzipi Livni and graced with a huge budget. It’s purpose was to eradicate nationalist crimes, i.e. actions of what are known as Jewish “rebels” who, for their part, feel that they are acting to prevent the further deterioration of the state of Israel.

The officials in this unit harass those they suspect and try to put as many as possible behind bars. They claim repeatedly (and inaccurately) that the Jewish activists hinder them from focusing on the major security problems on which they would prefer to focus, but it is they who decide to expend their energies that way.

Heading Tzipi Livni’s unit is a man who prefers to remain behind the scenes, but who must be exposed in order that we recognize what the face of what we see as modern day Jewish self-hatred is like. His name is Udi Levi, a man who has dedicated the past 15 years of his life to fighting Jewish settlement in the land of Israel and protecting our enemies.

Many prefer to believe that the police and Israeli Security services do not really want to fight Israel’s own youth, and that the expulsions, harassments and arrests are done unwillingly for the good of the public.  But two recent episodes – that of the IDF corporal Elad Selah (the soldier from Bat Ayin accused of ‘spying’ for revealing information to Jewish ‘settlers’) and most tellingly, the undercover operation in Kochav Hashachar (where police pretended to be Arabs encroaching on the town in order to provoke Jewish residents to confront them) should serve as a lesson. It is evidence of how much energy and effort the security services exert in order to thwart the desire to expand the ‘settlement’ movement. Incredible resources are also utilized to eliminate any effort that may encourage stronger responses to spilled Jewish blood.

For several years there had been an unspoken agreement between Jewish residents and the security services – the authorities would ignore new construction in Judea and Samaria as long as Jewish protests after terror attacks were muted.  Unfortunately, most Jewish residents have not yet noticed that the rules of the game have changed. The establishment has made the hilltop youth and Jewish “settlers’ their major focus, escalating their actions to the point where it is a war against our very survival. This is why officials found it proper to destroy the “Chazon David” synagogue near Hevron on the same night Arabs perpetrated two terror attacks.  It is also the reason they felt that the correct response to the run over murder of Shalom Cherki in Jerusalem by an Arab driver was to provoke the Jews in Kochav Hashachar and arrest them on the spot.

And then there is the story of Elad Selah. While this is not the first time a Jew has been accused of ‘spying’ on behalf of the ‘settlements’, it is the first time the security services have explicitly defined Jewish hilltop settlers as the ‘enemy.’ This was done matter of factly, without any uproar, as if declaring part of the Jewish population in Israel as an enemy is a light matter! The fact is that the security services have been acting for a long time now as if the main enemy of the State of Israel is Jewish children who move to the hills of Judea and Samaria (‘Hilltop Youth’) and that helping these youngsters is akin to treason.

It seems as though their raison d’être is to fight against us, Jews who dare aspire for a true Jewish state. The situation has become so dire that the security services leave no stone unturned to seek out such people. As part of their efforts, they meticulously plan how to prevent Jews from settling unauthorized hilltops. They go from hilltop to hilltop threatening new towns that they will destroy their homes unless they receive the proper paperwork from the Civil Administration and the Regional Councils. When a Jew’s blood is spilled in a terror attack, they go from yeshiva to yeshiva, town to town, to insure that there will be no response, other than an op-ed column by a family member.

A pure and righteous Jew is sitting in jail for helping his fellow righteous Jews. Has the Israeli establishment declared war on all idealists who dream and strive for the Jewish Redemption? Those who condemn Elad Selah and those who condemn the ‘radical’ Jews he helped are explicitly helping in this war against holy Jews.

One day following the murder of Shalom Cherki, Udi Levi decided it was time to fight what he seems to feel is the real enemy. A police officer dressed as an Arab along with an actual Arab shepherd, approached the hill of Maale Shlomo and began screaming and cursing in the hopes of provoking Jewish residents to respond. Waiting to catch the resident in the act were dozens of police officers hiding a few hundred meters away.

What exactly did the police expect Jews to do when they saw Arabs approaching their town – call the police from the Nationalist Crimes Unit? Who can expect the police to chase the Arabs away, when it is they themselves who are bringing them to the area?  Remember, Arabs scope out a town before plotting a terror attack as was the case with the Fogel family. Obviously Jewish residents will protect themselves and chase away the Arab encroachers. In any case, this unconscionable plot led to the arrest of five Jews for ‘attacking’ the Arab shepherd.

Though it may be clear to the vast majority of the nation that the land of Israel belongs to the Jewish people – to the police, the security services and the courts, sometimes one cannot help feeling that the opposite is clear. Can it be that the police couldn’t care less if an Arab seems to be threatening the lives of Jewish residents? What the town of Kochav HaShachar considers despicable provocations, the courts view as appropriate policy.

What is the answer? The Unit has declared us the enemy, preventing us from settling new hilltops, and is arresting us for defending ourselves. Must we give up on our dreams, give up on settling the land? Must we walk around in bulletproof vests since we are not allowed to protect ourselves and we cannot rely on the police?

We must ponder carefully these recent events and understand why the State is so frightened of what they term ‘nationalist crime.’  How is it that despite the fact that we want the best for our fellow Jews, we are somehow considered the ‘enemy’?  There is much to write in regards to this question yet I would like to reflect on the arrest of Elad Selah and hopefully also answer the above questions.

The indictment of Elad Selah reminds me of what happened to me a few years ago when I was also accused of ‘spying’ and ‘treason’ for warning ‘settlers’ about impending evacuations of their hilltops.  In the end, due to legal technicalities I was found guilty of the less serious charge of “gathering classified information”.  The week I was interrogated for these charges was the same week we read the Torah parsha where Joseph accuses his brothers of arriving in Egypt to ‘spy’ and the brothers struggle to prove their sincerity. They say “kanim anachnu“, meaning “we are truthful people“.  This strange story in the Torah, together with the exaggerated charges against me, along with the long hours I spent in interrogations led me to consider what G-d wanted of me and what He was hinting to me with this accusation of ‘treason.’

What is the difference between ‘spies’ and ‘truthful people’? To be a spy means to hide one’s true intentions while being part of an existing system. Another form of  ‘spying’ is to participate in all sorts of activities, yet hide one’s true thoughts in order to succeed. In contrast, “truthful people” are those who state their true desires openly and work to advance them.

One can also relate to the Nationalist Unit in one of these two ways. Knowing that the interests of the Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria are not always in line with the interests of the Jewish residents, it is obvious that we cannot blindly rely on them.

This type of dilemma also faces us when we reach the army. Many join the army out of love for the country, but decide to only follow orders that coincide with the Torah position, hoping that by doing so they will be able to advance projects that are good for the Jewish people. But this is the way of a ‘spy’, for such a person is hiding his true intentions and goals. The second option is to be a “truthful person” – state openly that our goal is to live in all of Eretz Yisrael and that we are loyal first to Torah, even if it doesn’t always coincide with government policy as reflected in the army.

The story of Joseph teaches us to act like ‘like truthful people’ as opposed to spies. If Elad Selah is accused of spying, he must accuse those who arrested him of betraying their people.

When we behave like ‘spies’ – hiding our true intentions and that our loyalties lie with G-d, the Jews of Judea and Samaria and the Torah, then the authorities will view us as an enemy from within. The army correctly demands absolute obedience to its authority.

Our goal must be to act “like truthful people” (kanim anachnu) – to openly state our beliefs. We must declare unequivocally that we demand a Jewish State, and our foremost obedience is to G-d. 

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More are With Us than with Them: Meir Ettinger opens a blog

The following is a translation of Meir Ettinger’s opening blog post. It was published on 20-3-2015

It Looks like There Are Not So Many of Us
but in Truth, More are With Us than with them

After receiving administrative orders, I, Meir Ettinger am opening a blog on Kol HaYehudi.

מאיר_אטינגר211Two weeks ago, I received administrative orders to stay away from Yehuda and Shomron, plus a few other boundaries that I am forbidden to cross. I was placed in an interrogation room, into which entered a man who called himself Shoham. He brought with him the document detailing my restrictions. Shoham began to talk to me in a tone meant to frighten me. The truth is that I didn’t manage to bring full attention to what he was saying because I was a little bit busy with thoughts of where I would go in order to continue to progress with my work. Also I was thinking about how I could be effective once I am outside of Yehuda and Shomron. But, mainly I remember that Shoham was pressing me about my writings that were published on Kol HaYehudi. It seemed like Shoham, or whatever name they are calling him, does not like Kol HaYehudi. It was in this moment that I accepted upon myself to open a permanent blog on Kol HaYehudi.

Among the many directives that were in the administrative orders, such as not to go to Yehuda and Shomron, as well as other restrictions on where I can go, was the requirement that I visit the police station every week, to sign that I am still alive. This is the reason I thought, that to make their work easier, I would try to publish something here once a week so in case there are some problems with the computer, and Shoham will not get the update that I am still alive, he can see my blog post here and continue sleeping b’shalva, without worrying about my peace and personal security.

HaShem told him to curse

There has been a debate for years as to how to deal with administrative orders. In the last years, we have seen this phenomenon of administrative orders becoming a daily thing. It looks like the government is becoming more and more afraid of the people.

We can learn much from the deeds of Dovid HaMelech, detailed in the story of his escape from Abshalom. In the middle of the escape and while on the road, Dovid HaMelech met Shimi ben Gera, who cursed him with many curses. Avishai ben Tsruya wanted to kill Shimi but Dovid HaMelech told him no, saying HaShem had placed the curses in his mouth.

The Jews from the pitiful anti-Jewish department in Shabak, who are signing these administrative orders, all of those who took on the names Aidan, Itama, Shoham, Avichai, Dan or whatever name they are using, all of them are poor of nefesh and are like children growing up among wolves. We have to remember that from their side they are absolutely certain that they are helping Am Israel and they really think that we are threatening the broken reed upon which they are sitting. Of course, none of them is clean from cruelty and evil. And each one will be brought to judgment by HaShem. But, for now the majority of the government is sure about the correctness of its way.

The possibilities we have in our hands to fight against these orders are limited and we are “speechless” like the “sheep before the shearer.” Right now it is very hard to imagine that we can succeed in explaining to and convincing people so far away from HaShem and from His Torah. And even for those among them who are keeping the mitzvot, they are so deeply corrupted by the governmental structure that it is hard to open their eyes to their mistake. B’ezrat HaShem in time our efforts will work and the realities will change. We will also reach them and they will, in the end, be at the head of the camp.

The tzibbur in general is nearing fatigue from this struggle and for those who are ready to carry on, it is a shame that he should be taken off his main task in life. Instead of fighting the orders, it is more worthwhile to be focused on our main task which is teshuva—personal and for Am Israel. Because of this, in relationship to the orders and to those who are giving them, we must focus on the pasuk, “HaShem said to him curse.” We shall continue in our work wherever we are or wherever they put us—to call in the name of HaShem and disseminate Jewish ideas. When we will be successful in our deeds the orders and restrictions will be canceled as a consequence.

More are with us than them

The King of Aram issued an arrest order for Elisha HaNavi. In the morning the servant of the Tzaddik awakened and saw that the entire city was surrounded by heavily armed soldiers. With worry he asked Elisha HaNavi, “You my Lord, what will we do?” Elisha answered him simply, “don’t be afraid because more are with us than with them.” Elisha prayed and said, “HaShem, open please his eyes to see,” and HaShem opened the eyes of the boy and behold there was a mountain full of horses and chariots of fire surrounding Elisha.”

For most of us our eyes are a little bit tired and we feel lonely in the battle against the crushing powers of MOSAD. We have to pray intensely that HaShem will show us all the Jews who are with us—more than with them.

The privileged ones already see and know of the miracles that HaShem is doing and will do each and every day. They see how He is escorting His trusted soldiers. Those who are not yet privileged to see can for certain ask others in Anshei Yehudi, because they know all the miracles better than anyone else.

We, b’ezrat HaShem, have been privileged since we received the last orders to see how many Jews are with us, how great is the warmth and love with which we are surrounded, how many gifts we have received, and telephone calls all of which makes us stronger. We see the simple love of our close and far-away friends. We see how many good Jews want to help!

More are with us than with them.

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Meir Ettinger’s Words to the Court: In the end you will repent

The following are the words of Meir Ettinger said during his hearing on Sep. 10th, 2015. This hearing was the third and final hearing that the court will hear before officially approving his administrative detention. It is important to note that receiving the approval of the court is a mere formality for administrative detention and does not involve an actual trial.

I would like to speak before the court and have my words recorded in the minutes. At the same time, I reiterate that this is not because I recognize the authority of this court. I don’t recognize the validity of laws that are against the Torah and I see no reason to defend myself against accusations based on false laws that were created by man today and will be changed by him tomorrow.

Rather, because of our sins, instead of having a court based on the holy Torah, the word of G-d, we have been taken captive by false courts. These captors are the prosecution, the media, and the false courts of today that have waged war against the land of Israel, the Torah of Israel, and those who fear the G-d of Israel. Their goal is to foster the growth of a foreign culture in our midst to replace the way of the Torah and service to G-d in the land of Israel.

It is therefore a Chazakah [predetermined]what this court will decide in this hearing. One way or another, the results are known in advance and I therefore have no desire to play a part in this game. It is merely a pathetic attempt by the government to pretend that their decision is based on justice and democracy. 

Nonetheless, this hearing provides me the right to speak and I will exercise the right to tell you what bothers you so much, what you are fighting, and what was the reason for my arrest.

I cannot discuss in this short time all of the ridiculous media stories. According to the media, I am somehow the number one target of the Shabak.

It should be noted that the targets of the Shabak are not established in order to preserve public safety or ensure calm, but instead are based on a political agenda and focus on protecting the culture of ‘equality’ that they force down the throats of the public.

Therefore, instead of discussing ‘public safety,’ I will explain my activism and why my actions are so upsetting to the confused establishment.

In their accusations they used the phrase, “changing the regime.” So what does that really mean? What exactly is this mysterious ‘group,’ which I supposedly lead, doing to further that goal? The truth is that we are dealing with very basic statements that were made freely available to all. Yes, I admit it- I, like many other Jews, have dreams, hopes and desires of establishing the Kingdom of Israel. The ‘group’ I am a part of, was founded during the exodus from Egypt and the receiving of the Torah on Mount Sinai. There the Jewish people were chosen to be a nation of priests and a holy people in the land of Israel.

So what is this ‘Kingdom of Israel’? For 2000 years in exile, Jews around the world said in their prayers “Let me witness the return to Zion” and concluded with the words, “blessed is He who restores His glory to Zion.” These Jews did not merely want to return to the land of Israel to build fields and buildings. They wanted more. They wanted to restore G-d’s presence in the land by creating a state that would spread the name of G-d throughout the world.

In the current ‘Jewish’ state, there is complete democratic freedom for all sorts of crazy ideas, except for Judaism alone which is declared illegal. In Israel today, the Torah’s solution to security problems is racist, the Torah’s views on international relations are incitement, and anyone who supports the Torah’s opinion over the laws of the state is an anarchist. Those who struggle with love for the land of Israel are arrested and their homes are destroyed.

In the State of Israel today we have leaders who do not understand the Torah and no one dares explain to them what a true Jewish state looks like, why the Jewish people to the land of Israel, and what right the Jewish people have to the land. Not only are we victims of this unfortunate situation, but you are too- you, the judge, and the prosecutor. All of us are captives of this reality. Each of us has a G-dly soul that wants to live a Jewish life and we all feel alone in our opposition to the state.

Administrative detention orders were issued against me and other Jews not because of a concern for the good of the public as you [the government]have claimed. It is actually you who place no value on Jewish blood and thereby harm the public. You released terrorist murderers and removed checkpoints, both of which have placed many Jews in danger. One could hardly accuse you of caring for other Jews.

We all know that the incident in Duma is merely being used as an excuse for dictatorial actions by a supposed democratic government. Fortunately for you, the public is so accustomed to your lies that they don’t bother refuting them.

Not for nothing did you gather all of the media to inform them before carrying out the orders. In truth the administrative detention orders are not meant to silence me, but to silence yourselves, to silence the Jewish voice emanating from your heart.

Your hysterical actions and discrimination against Jews in enforcing the law, your shocking neglect for the values of democracy when dealing with Jews who love the land of Israel, appears strange to many people. However it is not strange to anyone who recognizes that these actions are done in order to silence your inner, yearning Jewish voice. This is part of your general schizophrenia.  It is obvious that these actions will backfire and have the opposite result. You will not manage to silence the voice inside you, anymore than you could expel your Jewish soul from your body. In the end, even you will repent for your actions and your Jewish soul will take over to help bring the redemption.

[taken from HaKol]

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