Eretz Yisrael Time

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Monday, March 05, 2007
Come Purim, a lot of discussion arises regarding both the identity of Amalek and the mitzvah to destroy all memory of them entirely. The question arises if Amalek still exist as an identifiable race or just as an identifiable ideology. The question arises as to the morality of committing genocide against a race (or ideology) committed to committing genocide against us first.

Purim shows us what happened after King Saul had mercy on the Amalekite King Agag (allowing him to father a child with his wife, who then escaped pregnant)– when Mordechai (King Saul’s descendent) had to obliterate Haman (King Agag’s descendent) before Haman wiped out the Jewish people (or at least tried).

Rav Soleveichik apparently said at one point that the Palestinians are the ideological descendents in this generation (hattip: Jameel), but perhaps they (or some of them) are also the actual descendents too.

Jewish tradition describes Amalek as the antithesis of the Jewish people. Their first crime was in being the first to attack Israel, but their real crime is in their ideology in that they stand against God and what He represents. Attacking Israel is the symptom of the disease.

True, there are and have been many anti-Semites that fit this description, and there is no reason to not expect that the descendents of Amalek also spread out over the world, just like the Jews did (and if we describe them as the antithesis of the Jews, it makes even more sense that they did so too).

I find it difficult to attribute the Palestinian genocidal attempts against the Jewish people to mere ideology. True, ideology is strong, but to be happy to have your son or daughter kill himself if only he can kill a Jew along with him seems to go far beyond a belief system.

It may very well be that just like the Jews have an Erev Rav sitting amongst us causing problems, the Arab descendents of Yishmael have Amalek’s descendents sitting among them.

The medrash says that the descendents of Yishmael will do Tshuva (just like the original Yishmael did), but after debasing themselves beyond the lowest level of humanity, no less than Nazi Germany, I don’t see how that can be possible unless Amalek is mixed in with Yishmael and Bnei Yishmael somehow manages to destroy their evil elements living openly within.
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