Settlement or dominance and discouragement

Parsha and its Implementation - Parashat Vayetze - Rabbi Eliezer Shenvald - 5769

The text describes the meeting between Jacob and Rachel at the well: " … Rachel came with her father's sheep; for she tended them. And continues… And Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted up his voice, and wept.  And Jacob told Rachel that he was her father's brother, and that he was Rebekah's son… (Genesis 29, 9-12). According to Chazal, it is already here that Yaakov is "proposing" to Rachel to marry him:

"He said to her: מינסבת לי? (would you marry me?) אמרה ליה: אין! מיהו אבא רמאה הוא ולא יכלת ליה (Yes, but my father is a fraud and will not be able to). אמר לה: מאי רמאותיה? (He said, what is his deceit) אמרה ליה: אית לי אחתא דקשישא מינאי, ולא מנסבא לי מקמה (I have a sister older than me and will not marry me before her)) אמר לה: אחיו אני ברמאות! I can also cheat). אמרה ליה: ומי שרי להו לצדיקי לסגויי ברמאותא? (Is it permissible for the righteous to be deceitful? אין! . ((Yes, since it is written): "With the pure Thou dost show Thyself pure; and with the crooked Thou dost show Thyself subtle. " (II Samuel 22:27), and a previous verse says: " With the merciful Thou dost show Thyself merciful, with the upright man Thou dost show Thyself upright". In other words, with an honest man, you have to behave honestly and with a deceitful person you have to behave accordingly as not to fall into his net.

From the very first moment Yaakov understands who Lavan is. And how he should be handled. Lavan is the master of manipulation and deceit who did not hesitate to cross red lines and "sanctify all means" in order to realize his own interests. Jacob was an innocent man but not naive! If necessary, he can conduct himself 'his brother in deceit'. Jacob's basic assumption was that Lavan would not abide by the agreement and would violate it as soon as it would serve his interests. In an agreement with Lavan, he had to provide an effective response to his fraud. Yaakov entered into an agreement from the beginning with his hands on the bottom, as 'lacking everything' who came to a foreign country and asks for a home. Jacob's options were limited. Lavan was in a position of control and Yaakov has no means of deterrence. So, he gives signs between himself and Rachel and brings to the agreement a detailed and precise definition: "your youngest daughter Rachel". (See Rashi, Genesis 29:18).

Despite it all, he managed to deceive him, and Jacob learned his lesson from this when he ran away from him at the end of the Parashah.

These things take on a current significance in light of what is happening this week in Gaza. Hamas is a terrorist organization with a fundamentalist Islamist ideology. Its purpose is not only control of Gaza and Judea and Samaria, but also the destruction of the State of Israel - the 'occupation' within the borders of the 1948 borders. Throughout the years, the State of Israel has held the position that there is no negotiation with a terrorist organization.

The pursuit of the current arrangement is a strategic change of policy. Which legitimizes de facto Hamas as a sovereign state. The 'arrangement' puts the State of Israel and Hamas on the same plane. Even though the State of Israel is in a position of control and Israel has a huge strategic advantage. According to supporters of the arrangement, the alternative to Hamas will be worse. Even though this is a claim that cannot be proven.

But they also believe that if Hamas is a sovereign body, we should deal with them the way we fight a country, not a non-state organization. According to Hamas' Islamist conception, the 'settlement' and' hudna' in the first place were meant to be only' time-outs' in order to reorganize themselves for the next opportunity, and it is permissible and even necessary to deceive the enemy. On the other hand, the State of Israel will undoubtedly stand by every sign of the agreement, and the world will examine every move we make.

They also believe that the State of Israel, which has the power, must produce painful concessions in any agreement that will deter Hamas from breaking the agreement.

Only then is there a chance that the agreement will be respected over time.

Don't have an account yet? Register Now!

Sign in to your account