web analytics
August 30, 2015 / 15 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Next Year In ? – An Open Letter to Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod


Dear Rahm and David,

I’m writing this as I sit and watch, live via the Internet, the ceremony marking the rededication of the Hurva synagogue in Jerusalem, in the area you would classify “east Jerusalem,” or “disputed territory,” or perhaps “occupied territory.”

Before asking a few questions, I’d like to describe to you several men who took part in tonight’s celebration.

First, there is Reuven “Ruby” Rivlin, presently speaker of the Knesset. A seventh generation Jerusalemite, Ruby is a Rivlin from both his mother and father’s side, descended from both the Ba’al Shem Tov and the Vilna Gaon.

Rivlin, a seasoned politician, had trouble controlling his voice as he spoke, his words quivering with emotion, as he repeated the words of his great-grandfather, who spoke at the rededication of the destroyed Hurva shul a hundred and fifty years ago.

Also speaking briefly was former Prisoner of Zion and present chairman of the Jewish Agency Natan Sharansky, who described how, in 1992, he convinced the Israeli government to unanimously approve reconstruction of the Hurva, destroyed by the Jordanians following their occupation of Jerusalem in 1948.

But the man who most impressed me was Vadim Rabinovitch, an Israeli from Russia who contributed heavily to the renovation of the Hurva. Rabinovitch spoke briefly, albeit in Russian, and announced that he and his partners, whose financial fortunes built the Hurva, would participate in rebuilding the nearby Tiferet Yisrael synagogue, also destroyed by the Arabs during the War of Independence. These men, who grew up without any Jewish background, and who today barely speak Hebrew, are investing their life’s fortunes in synagogues in Jerusalem.

And you, Rahm and David, what are you investing your lives in?

Rahm, it is said you are the cornerstone of your boss’s policy toward Israel and the Middle East. Since this administration took office, you have been quoted, time and time again, as pushing a two-state solution. “Israel,” you’ve said, “now faces a moment of truth – it can either acquiesce to international demands and in return have its most serious threats dealt with, or maintain the status quo and have those threats persist.”

In other words, Israel’s future as a state, and in large part the continued existence of the Jewish people, is dependent on Israel acquiescing to the demands of the U.S. and Arab terrorists.

And David, just a few days ago you publicly turned Israel over your knee and paddled it, saying, “What happened there was an affront . It was an insult . This was not the right way to behave.” This, of course, in reference to the announcement that Israel will continue to build in Jerusalem.

Is this the behavior of two good Jewish boys who, it is said, love Israel?

Truthfully, Rahm, it’s very difficult to understand your actions. You belong to an Orthodox synagogue in Chicago. You grew up in a Jewish home, with a strong affinity to Israel. Your father was born in Jerusalem and your uncle, for whom you were named, was killed by Arabs in Jerusalem. And you still support a position forbidding Jewish building in Jerusalem?

And David, you too are no stranger to Judaism. Born on the Lower East Side in New York, you always knew you were Jewish. Yet you see fit to push your own people into security situations that jeopardize the continued existence of the Jewish state.

How is it that men like you, whose lives have always been saturated with Judaism, do not comprehend simple truths understood by others who grew up in Soviet Russia knowing almost nothing about their Jewish roots?

Even your names reflect your Jewish souls: David, dating back to King David, and Rahm, meaning “high,” hinting at the Creator, and in your case a form of the word rachamim, meaning mercy. Upon whom do you have mercy, Mr. Emanuel? Perhaps both of you should repudiate your names, changing them, as did Hellenistic Jews in Israel during the time of the Greek occupation. How can you carry such Jewish names yet at the same time assist in pushing your people to the brink?

I have one other question for both of you. I am writing this on the night that marks the first day of the new month of Nissan, the month of geula, of redemption from Egypt. In exactly two weeks we will begin the Passover holiday, commencing with the Seder, the first Pesach meal, when we relate the story of the Jews’ exodus from Egypt.

It is said that last year both of you were invited to the president’s Passover Seder but skipped it, preferring to celebrate with your families, at home. Very touching. But why?

What I really want to know is not how you begin your family Seder but rather how you end it. Normally, Jews finish the night’s ceremony declaring “Next year in Jerusalem” or Next year in the rebuilt Jerusalem.”

Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod:

Do you recite those words at your family table? If so, do you mean what you say, or just repeat the words for custom’s sake?

And would you dare recite these words in public, words mouthed by Jews for centuries as they were tortured and burned at the stake, or sent to Siberia to die, for daring to repeat the fundamental tenet of the Jewish people?

Exactly how do you say it? “Next year in Jerusalem”? Or “Next year in occupied (or disputed, or conquered, or Arab) Jerusalem”?

Isn’t it time you left the White House and came to your real home, in Israel, in Jerusalem, where you too can stand proudly at the Kotel and recite, as Jews have through the ages, “Next year in (Jewish) Jerusalem”?

About the Author: David Wilder is the spokesperson for the Hebron Community.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Next Year In ? – An Open Letter to Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Rabbi Norman Lamm of Yeshiva University
Emes Ve-Emunah: Living Up to the Ideals of Modern Orthodoxy
Latest Indepth Stories
Rabbi Akiva and Layala Males with Israeli soldiers.

Yashar Lachayal’s mission is to learn what IDF soldiers’ need and get it to them when they need it.

Ben Cohen

Corbyn leading the Britain’s Labour Party polls, describes Hamas & Hizbullah as England’s “friends.”

PA Chairman Abbas proudly celebrating with released terrorists.

The convicted murderer was released from Israeli prison with more than two dozen other sociopaths

New Israel Fund

JCF is a donor/supporter of The New Israel Fund which supports BDS & wants IDF soldiers prosecuted

The ‘Peace Industry’ promotes its adherents; weak leaders, both military & political, is the result

The conundrum for US Labor Zionists: Lobbying for Iran deal while Israel’s Left lobby’s against it.

What does the Torah want from our small nation described as “they who struggle with God & with men”?

Mr. Nadler’s support for the deal is a naked political gift to a president who has defied logic in his quest to reinvent international affairs according to his ideological inclinations.

In practical terms, the proclamation surely makes a compelling argument:

BDS activists are not shy about discriminating against Israelis simply because they are Israelis –

A Federal Ct Judge ordered the PA to post JUST $10 million due to interfering letter from State Dept

Osakwe, like many other students at the CAMERA conference, described an extremely hostile campus environment when it comes to the issue of Israel.

Many people view a letter or manuscript by a chassidic rebbe or the Chofetz Chaim as intrinsically holy.

Key Iran Lobby figures had been major donors to both Biden and Kerry when they were in the Senate,

More Articles from David Wilder
He was my friend. He was also a doctor. A very good one. He treated both Arabs and Jews. His trauma treatment was legendary in Israeli medical circles. His on-the-spot diagnoses were, after weeks of hospital tests, found to be 100% on the mark.

The agenda of articles appearing 20 years after the Goldstein episode has nothing to do with human rights or suffering.

Netanyahu shaking hands with Arafat in Hebron.

Seventeen years ago today, the ‘Hebron Accords were implemented.

A few days ago Hebron joyfully greeted back the archaeologists.

Ariel Sharon. He had many positions, and many titles. I will remember him as a monster.

Tomorrow, together with literally tens of thousands here in Hebron and Kiryat Arba, we will read in the Torah how Abraham, almost 4,000 years ago, purchased the Caves of Machpela for us, his children.

A few hours after the murder, the Prime Minister issued a directive to allow Jews back into Beit HaMachpela immediately.

People here develop “antennas” which pick up vibrations in the air, and the vibes were definitely there.

The first time was many years ago. I had just concluded explanations about Yeshivat Knesset Yisrael” which arrived in Hebron from Slobodka, in Lithuania in 1924. The Hebron Heritage Museum at Beit Hadassah features an exhibit about this illustrious Torah-learning academy, nicknamed the ‘Hebron Yeshiva,’ which includes a ‘class picture’ from 1928. As I finished […]

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/next-year-in-an-open-letter-to-rahm-emanuel-and-david-axelrod/2010/03/17/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: