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Sunday, May 23, 2004

Supporting the Troops (Literally)

Arutz Sheva: A group of women from the Negev town of Meitar, in cooperation with the Soldier's Welfare Committee and the local Education Administration, organized a convoy of vehicles today to bring snacks, underwear, letters from Meitar schoolchildren and other items to soldiers serving in Gaza. The objective of the convoy, according to organizers, is to "encourage and thank our [soldiers]". "This is totally non-political," leading participant Leah Wolf said, "[we're] just women who want to show our love for our brave chayalim [soldiers] and our disdain for the traitors who try to weaken their morale."
If she had left out that part about "disdain for the traitors," she might have gotten away with the claim of being "totally non-political." And while I admire and am grateful for this act, I think it's a shame to potentially diminish the mitzvah in this way.
Another initiative aimed at supporting Israeli troops serving in Rafiach was organized recently by Chabad-Lubavitch of Gaza. The "operation" involved the distribution of the Torah, Psalms and the seminal Chabad work, known as Tanya, to soldiers on the front lines. The "security kits", as Chabad Hassidim referred to them, were given out to every soldier in Rafiach, along with leaflets published by the Lubavitch Youth Organization. Chabad emissaries also brought tefilin (phylacteries) for those soldiers who wished to don them.

Chabad's philosophy, is conveyed by this quote on their website:
"No Jew should ever be lost to the Jewish people, no Jew must ever be lonely."
Amen. As the entire world is busy condemning Israel, I hate to see Jew against Jew, on any level. It's the last thing we need right now.