Even the kibbutz secretary obviously felt that some red line
had been crossed. The rosh yeshiva of the hesder
yeshiva in Shiloh said that he usually tries to keep a
low public profile, but felt that he simply could not keep
silent about what had happened. We feel that it shows the
true nature of what we have to deal with daily, but this time
there are no excuses.
As reported in last week's "Israel News," every year on Yom
Ha'atzma'ut, the Shiloh hesder yeshiva goes for a trip
to some part of Eretz Yisroel. This year they went to the
Golan. At lunchtime, they asked permission of Kfar Charuv, a
leftist kibbutz affiliated with the United Kibbutz Movement,
to use their lawns, which was granted.
Soon after settling in, a 19-year-old resident of the kibbutz
came over and asked them to leave immediately. Rav Brum
explained that they had the permission of the kibbutz
authorities to be there, but this did not satisfy the youth.
He began to curse them, saying, "All our problems are because
of you--the religious! It is a shame you did not all burn,
all of you, in the Holocaust!"
The young man then called his friends to usher the group off
of the kibbutz premises. Rav Brum asked if they could at
least finish eating, but even this was denied, and they were
forced to leave immediately.
The story reached the electronic media where, for a change,
it was allowed to be presented in its full severity without
any immediate attempt to "balance" the sad affair. Reached by
phone for comment, the secretary of the kibbutz seemed
genuinely shaken and sincerely apologetic. Another member of
the kibbutz also called up and apologized and said that the
affair made him consider if he could remain in a community
that could produce such rotten fruits.
Though any chareidi who is exposed to the secular Israeli
media knows that such outbursts are periodic features of the
Israeli scene, this incident seems to have shaken up some
people more than others. There was no way to write off the
motive in this case to the "usual" religious criticism: the
knitted-kippa-wearing yeshiva students included several in
their army uniforms, and clearly not "draft dodgers." Kfar
Charuv itself, located on the Golan Heights, cannot cast
stones at anyone for being located on Arab land.
The upshot is that the only explanation for the awful
outburst, unnecessary and completely unprovoked, is pure
hatred for religious Jews. However, it is clear that the
youth is not an original thinker, but rather learned his
approach from others.
The Hebrew Yated wrote, "It is not enough to apologize
publicly, they must search their souls to discover how such
antisemitic children can grow up in their midst. Until they
identify the roots of this deep hatred that led to the
expulsion of the group from the lands of the kibbutz, the
people of the United Kibbutz Movement cannot say they have
cleansed themselves of the stain . . . "
Members of the kibbutz responded to the criticism in the
Yated, and this is perhaps the only positive glimmer
in the entire story.
Although it is clear that anyone imbued with a true Torah
spirit could never even think such sentiments towards a
fellow Jew, we should not miss an opportunity, especially
during sefiras ho'omer, to strengthen our own
awareness of the deep bonds that bind all Jews and make them
precious parts of the Am Hashem.