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All We Are Saying is Give War a Chance

Sometimes war is the answer. In the case of Israel and her enemies, war is the only answer. That comes straight from the Torah.
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October 26, 2023
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War is Hell on earth. People die during war. Many of those deaths are innocent civilians, including young children. Many more people are permanently injured, unable to walk, speak, see, hear or smile. Others suffer mental traumas ranging from nightmares to paralyzing hallucinations and delusions. 

At least the deceased see their pain end. For the surviving family members and other loved ones, there is eternal agony. The pain never heals. Parents who bury their children die every day they live. War is truly hell.

For these and many other reasons, singing “Kumbaya” or “Give Peace a Chance” has a powerful allure. Unfortunately, this approach often leads to more war and more deaths. Evil actors see this kindness for weakness, inviting more aggression.

So as Israel prepares for a lengthy, painful war with Hamas and Hezbollah, it is imperative to dismiss calls for an immediate ceasefire. Sometimes war is the answer. In the case of Israel and her enemies, war is the only answer. That comes straight from the Torah.

The Torah does not say “Thou shalt not kill.” It says “Thou shalt not murder.” The Torah also says that a Jew can take any steps necessary to save a life with the three exceptions: Adultery, idolatry and murder.

Judaism is not a religion of surrender. The Jewish holiday of Hanukkah is a celebration of a military victory. The Greeks tried to wipe out the Jews, and the Jews led by the Maccabees forcefully and successfully fought back. 

Judaism is not a religion of surrender. The Jewish holiday of Hanukkah is a celebration of a military victory. The Greeks tried to wipe out the Jews, and the Jews led by the Maccabees forcefully and successfully fought back. During the Holocaust, members of the Warsaw Ghetto fought back. Many Jews died, but some of them were saved. They eliminated many more Nazis than expected.

War freed the slaves. War saved the world from Nazism and fascism. War preserved freedom in South Korea.  

Sometimes there is no peaceful solution. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, FDR was willing to do anything to preserve the American way of life. His successor President Truman’s use of nuclear weapons was so shocking that it ended Japanese involvement in World War II.  JFK was willing to wage war and risk Armageddon during the Cuban Missile crisis. The Russians backed down. After the September 11th attacks, George W. Bush led a Global War on Terror that routed the Taliban and removed Saddam Hussein from earth. Donald Trump kept his word and smashed ISIS to pieces.

Self-defense and defense of others is more than justified to save innocent lives. Saving lives is not just mandatory according to Torah law. Saving lives is Torah law. 

Self-defense and defense of others is more than justified to save innocent lives. Saving lives is not just mandatory according to Torah law. Saving lives is Torah law. That is why if a loved one — God forbid — has a heart attack on Shabbos, the only course of action is to immediately telephone 911 or drive them to the hospital. 

Saving lives sometimes involves ending other lives. Such is the case with terrorists. For humans to survive, civilization must be preserved. Barbarism is contra to civilization. Raping, torturing and decapitating innocent civilians is not compatible with civilization. Israel’s enemies have repeatedly used such brutal barbaric tactics against innocent Jews. The terrorists even thrust barbarism upon their own people. Any society that utilizes suicide bombers is a society that is incompatible with civilization. 

Suicide bombers render diplomacy useless. Wars end or are avoided in one of two circumstances. Either one side realizes victory is hopeless … checkmate … or both sides come to that conclusion that neither can gain a complete victory… stalemate. Death is usually a deterrent. America avoided a “hot war” with Russia, China and even North Korea because none of the people running those governments wanted to die. The Russians wanted blue jeans and Beatles tapes. The Chinese leaders are like J.R. Ewing from “Dallas.” They want to buy everything. 

A culture that encourages suicide bombers is impossible to reason with. People willing to kill themselves while killing others need to be physically stopped before they self-detonate. 

All diplomatic options in Israel have been exhausted because both sides still have hope of victory. Hamas and Hezbollah are unwilling to stop murdering innocent Jews. They can only be stopped by superior firepower. 

This means collateral damage. This means more parents will weep openly as they bury their beloved children. This is awful. This is also necessary. The alternative of endless war and death is far worse.

So to those demanding a ceasefire, only one retort is necessary. If you truly want the closest thing to permanent peace, ignore John Lennon’s advice. Unleash the Israeli Defense Forces. Give war a chance.


Eric Golub is a retired stockbrokerage and oil professional living in Los Angeles.

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