A delegation of The Rabbinical Congress for Peace (RCP) met with Israeli Science Minister Ofir Okinus this week and presented him with the popular Psak Halacha (Halachic verdict) signed by leading rabbis in Israel and abroad forbidding the surrender of even one inch of land currently under Israeli control because it will lead to bloodshed and instability in the region. This Halachic verdict which was first issued in 1993 carries the signature of hundreds of rabbis living then and rabbis living today with additional signatures added from year to year.
Minister Okinus promised the rabbis that he will act vigorously against the 2-state solution and will vote against it if it ever comes up for a vote in the government. “I will also try to convince other ministers to do likewise because the land for peace formula has proven to be not only an exercise in futility but increases terror and bloodshed,” he said.
Okinus also suggested that the rabbis meet with every minister and present him with this verdict which is based on the Halachic Ruling in the Jewish Code of Law Chapter 329 that was written hundreds of years ago but proves to be timely now more than ever.
Rabbi Joseph Gerlitzky, Chairman of RCP stressed that not only is it forbidden to actually give up Israeli land but you shouldn’t even place it on the agenda of any negotiations because we have seen time in and time out that by only “stating” that Israel will be ready to surrender land precipitates terrorist attacks and increases international pressure.
Rabbi Moshe Havlin, Chief Rabbi of Kiryat Gat mentioned that this verdict is based on the sanctity of human life and therefore determines that it is permitted to even violate the Sabbath and pick up arms to push back the enemy from border towns because this will give them a chance to overrun the whole country.
The rabbis asked the minister to convey to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu their full support of his efforts to thwart the nuclear deal with Iran but added that “this is forbidden to be done at the expense of freezing settlements and surrendering other areas which effects the integrity of Israel and the Jewish People.
“You won’t gain more sympathy from the world in the struggle against the deal with Iran by conceding and surrendering in other areas vital to the security and integrity of Eretz Israel,” said Rabbi Avrohom S. Lewin, Executive Director of RCP. “To the contrary, the more Israel remains steadfast and loyal to its principles and security the more the world will respect Israel’s struggle against the deal with Iran,” he said.
Minister Okinus and his staff took part in the Jewish custom practiced throughout the entire month of Elul preceding Rosh Hashana to listen to the blowing of the Shofar very day. “Elul is the month of soul searching and to amend past mistakes. Now is the time for the government to amend its fatal mistake of continuous concessions that has only pushed peace further away and weakened Israel considerably,” the rabbis said.