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September 27, 2016 / 24 Elul, 5776
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Rav Ovadia Yosef: We Must Pray for the Destruction of Iran


Spiritual leader of the Shas party, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef during evening prayer in his synagogue in Yefe Noff, Jerusalem.

Spiritual leader of the Shas party, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef during evening prayer in his synagogue in Har Nof, Jerusalem.
Photo Credit: Omer Miron/Flash90

With the approach of Rosh Hashana, Rav Ovadia Yosef said on Saturday night that when we eat the traditional holiday symbolic foods, whose names or shapes have a symbolic connection to our supplications to Hashem, especially when we make the blessing over the dates, t’marim, and pray that our enemies be obliterated, we should focus specifically on Iran, the wicked nation which is threatening the State of Israel. “May the good Lord obliterate them, destroy them…”

Tractate Kritut in the Babylonian Talmud teaches that we should eat on Rosh Hashanah, among other fruits, a date – “tamar” – which contains the syllable “tam” or ended, and after eating a portion of it we should say, “May it be Your will, our God and the God of our fathers, that all our enemies and haters and all who plots against us be terminated.”

Also, when we eat a leek (“kreti”) we should appeal to God that our enemies and haters along with anyone who plots against us be destroyed, the Rav clarified that we should focus on the Hizbullah and Iran.

“May God destroy them and wipe them off the face of the earth,” said the Rav and quoted many sources in Psalms referring to the Almighty’s salvation in the face of enemy threats.

“They go by chariot and on horseback and we will go in the name of Our God. They bowed and fell, and we got up and persevered.”

During discussions throughout the previous week, Rav Ovadia referred to the Iranian threat, saying, “There are evil people, the Iranians, waiting to destroy us . . . .we must pour out our hearts in prayer to the Holy One, blessed be His Name. . . .We are in danger, we are all in danger. . . .We have no one to rely upon, except our Father in Heaven. We must pray from the heart with deep concentration.”

The Haredi website Kikar HaShabbat last week reported that General (Res.) Yaakov Amidror, Chief Advisor for National Security, came to Rav Ovadia’s house and briefed him with information of Iran’s nuclear plan.

Jacob Edelist

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