Rabbi Binyomin relates that fifty years ago, when he was a
bochur, he boarded in the house of his Rosh Yeshiva.
Every week on Motzaei Shabbos, all the family gathered in the
living room for some sort of family meeting. Burning with
curiosity, the young Binyomin decided to try and see what
went on behind those closed doors. One time, when the coast
was clear, he stood close to the door and tried to hear what
was going on. He was surprised to hear the Rosh Yeshiva
reading the news from a regular newspaper. After each item,
the Rosh Yeshiva gave a short dvar Torah explaining
how some sort of ethical lesson could be learned from that
Since those days, the moral standards of non-Jewish
newspapers has degenerated but instead, we have kosher
newspapers such as Yated Ne'eman. However, even so, it
is not necessary for children to be exposed to politics and
distasteful news, especially if there is any risk that it
will disturb them or distract them from their learning.
Nevertheless, politics is "in the air" and even if protected,
many children pick up various snippets of news and politics
from their friends. Often, the versions they hear are
distorted, and sometimes they can become frightened by them.
They will then need to discuss it with you so that you can
explain it to them and allay their fears.
When you explain the news, if possible, try to derive some
sort of lesson. Sometimes you can show the news or politics
as a direct lesson for us. At other times, you can use the
news as a moshol for some sort of moral lesson.
For example, we can derive an amazing lesson from the present
The Palestian Autonomy was formed by Israel. Most of its
income, electricity, water, gas and other essential
requirements come from or through Israel. Israel also first
supplied the guns to arm the Palestinian police. And,
logistically, Israel is sufficiently powerful to be able to
wipe out the Autonomy whenever it wants and return the
situation to what it was before it was formed.
Apart from being ungrateful, plain common sense dictates that
it would be the worst thing for the Palestinians to
antagonize Israel. Now, members of the Autonomy are attacking
Israel and even using the weapons and training which Israel
gave them against Israel.
Tactically, Israel is strong enough to wipe out the Autonomy.
Not only is it not doing so but Israel is continuing to
supply many of the essentials which the Autonomy needs.
The sefer Tomor Devora uses such a situation as a
parable to explain the relationship which someone who sins
has with Hashem. On the one hand, Hashem made us. He is
supplying us with all of our needs. At any moment, if He
wants, He can withdraw any of our essential needs. He can
wipe out any individual and even return the whole universe to
nothingness. Apart from being ungrateful, plain common sense
dictates that it would be the worst thing for someone to
disobey Him. And the sinner's chutzpa goes even further
because he is using the energy and the means which Hashem
gave him to rebel and go against His wishes.
This moshol extends even further, because it is so
difficult to understand how the Leftist extremists, who are
so anti-chareidi and so intolerant of religion, can be so
tolerant of terrorism and continue to plead on behalf of the
terrorists and try to make peace with them.
However, the Tomor Devora explains that when someone
sins, the accusing angels call for his destruction, while the
defending angels plead on his behalf and ask for mercy so
that the sinner can have time to repent and change his
The extreme anti-religious Leftists are, therefore, echoing
their own situation in which they need their defending angels
to plead for them for beyond- reasonable mercy and patience,
because that is what they need so desperately.
So, from the political situation we can see our own situation
very clearly. The Palestinian confrontation is a magnified
version of what we do when we sin. The situation is a lesson
for us so that we can serve Hashem better.