When Being Analytical Is Bloodshed
Interview by Shai Gefen

Rabbi Shabtai Bloch has recently come out with "Actualia II." a compilation of news clips confirming the foresight of Rebbe's words regarding Shleimus HaAretz * A discussion with Rabbi Bloch about his activities to fulfill the Rebbe's directives in the Holy Land

Rabbi Bloch, recently many of Anash began to protest against the government’s policies in Eretz Yisroel, after a long period of silence. In what activities is your organization involved?

We haven’t just started working recently. We have been constantly on the job despite the tiny budget we have to work with and the lack of manpower. We do all we can to broadcast the Rebbe MH"M’s message about shleimus ha’Aretz.

We have recently published a number of different flyers which have been distributed in the hundreds of thousands, among them one entitled, "Pikuach Nefesh L’Milyonei Yehudim" (Danger to Life for Millions of Jews). It contains selected portions of sichos which discuss the danger of giving away land, and we have received positive feedback on it. It was actually published before the recent outbreak of terror.

With the outbreak of disturbances on Erev Rosh HaShana, we decided to publish a brochure, Actualia, which contains excerpts of the Rebbe’s sichos forewarning us about behavior that would lead to the current predicament. We have distributed about 200,000 copies around the country and around the world.

What feedback do you get?

The reactions are enthusiastic. Dozens of Jews call every day, not necessarily Lubavitchers, asking that we send them additional material. I am told that this is the best material published on the subject of shleimus ha’Aretz. One person wrote that it was really a shame that all the people on the Right didn’t quote the Rebbe.

I am happy to inform all of Anash that we just produced a beautiful new color brochure on shleimus ha’Aretz, which includes newspaper accounts quoting the Rebbe on this topic, and thus illustrating the Rebbe’s prophetic vision.

For example?

We cited portions from articles in newspapers, one of which quoted the Rebbe’s warning that signing peace agreements will lead to physical danger even for residents of Chadera, Chaifa, and Bnei Brak. The reader gets the broader picture by reading these newspaper quotes and is able to appreciate just how serious the matter is.

Why translate paragraphs from newspapers rather than quoting the sichos in their entirety?

This new brochure is really a continuation of the first Actualia. But this time we illustrate our point from the perspective of the media. This approach gives the reader a strong sense of "actualia" – they read the events unfolding, stage after stage, detail after detail.

What should the reaction of Chabad Chassidim be to the current situation?

If the government had listened to the Rebbe, we wouldn’t be in the midst of such a crisis. It is now, as we stand at the crossroads, that we must publicize what the Rebbe said.

Many people, including Anash, say that in such a crisis there is nothing to be done.

That is not what the Rebbe said and repeated. The Rebbe stated that all the agreements with the Arabs can be annulled, especially since the Arabs haven’t stopped breaking the agreements. This is all the more true today when the nation is at a point, which Hashem prepared for us, in which we have a golden opportunity to abolish all the agreements we signed with our enemy, Arafat.

Unfortunately, the problem is not only that the Israeli government is acting with restraint following the murder of Jews. One problem is that there continue to be Jews who to try to give land away, including Yerushalayim and the Temple Mount. What the Rebbe said thirty years ago is visibly more realistic than the confused statements of a few shortsighted politicians who cannot even see five minutes ahead.

What other activities is the Matteh L’Maan Shleimus ha’Aretz involved in?

Generally speaking, we constantly work on publicizing what the Rebbe said. We traveled around the north of the country, hanging up signs on shleimus ha’Aretz. We flooded the main junctions with signs saying: Nesiga – Sakana L’Milyonei Yehudim or Mesirat Shtachim Sakana L’Yehudim. We have distributed hundreds of thousands of flyers. We organized countless protest demonstrations at junctions about shleimus ha’Aretz. In recent months, the Matteh initiated an emergency meeting with rabbanei Chabad, headed by Rabbi Dovid Chanzin, Rabbi Drukman, Rabbi Levi Bistritzky, Rabbi Yeshaya Hertzel and Rabbi Eliyahu in order to discuss the crisis. I want to point out that despite the tiny budget, we have publicized ads in local newspapers in the north of the country, and have gotten good feedback.

We are trying to inform the public on a grand scale. The encouragement we get gives us the strength and the drive to go on. I would like to thank all those who work tirelessly and with mesirus nefesh to help print the material and organizing the protests and other activities.

Why aren’t official organizations protesting?

I can’t offer excuses for those who are not taking action.

I would like to quote Rabbi Dovid Chanzin, who participated in the emergency meeting in Petach Tikva on Erev Rosh Chodesh Tammuz. Rabbi Chanzin said that every Lubavitcher has the responsibility to work on behalf of shleimus ha’Aretz. Rabbi Chanzin inconvenienced himself to come late at night to this meeting and expressed his support for the work that we do.

The Rebbe says that when it comes to pikuach nefesh, we mustn’t hesitate; everybody must do all they can to save whatever is salvageable, just as if it were his own wife and children in danger, chalila. In a situation like that, you don’t ask questions; you just do what you can to save them! The Rebbe quotes the Gemara, which says that being analytical concerning pikuach nefesh is bloodshed.

What is being asked of us now?

In terms of public relations, everybody can benefit from the material we published, as it is relevant to the present situation. The reactions we received from the shluchim who distributed it were encouraging. People are waiting to hear a clear voice, and the material we have produced provides just that. Everybody has friends and acquaintances with whom he can discuss the important topic of shleimus ha’Aretz.

In terms of protesting, everybody should send faxes and letters to all our government’s leaders, protesting the situation, demanding that they cease this collective suicide. Also, people should go out to the highways at least once a week with a sign with the Rebbe’s message, so that other Jews see it and know what the Rebbe stated about giving away land. The message seeps into the hearts of the public, and we must do everything in order to reach as many people as possible.

There are many plans about to be implemented, including going out to the highways, distributing material, and organizing trips of Chassidim to settlements in Yesha to encourage the settlers.

All of Anash are asked to get involved. It’s absolutely critical. When the Rebbe spoke about shleimus ha’Aretz, it was with great pain. The Rebbe screamed about it and we cannot stand on the sidelines now. The public is waiting to hear from us.

Rabbi Bloch, when did you first get involved with shleimus ha’Aretz?

We began working on it ever since the Oslo Accords were signed, and since then we have continued publicizing the Rebbe’s message through all possible means. We have always worked in cooperation and with the counsel of rabbanei Anash and mashpiim who encouraged us. Since the beginning of the Oslo Accords, we have publicized ten different ads and we’ve organized protest demonstrations, some of which were reported in both the Israeli and worldwide media.

You were arrested by the Shin Bet after you protested against the Wye Accords. Aren’t you afraid?

The Shin Bet tried to silence me when they arrested me on the pretext that I wanted to murder Netanyahu. It was hours before the beginning of a demonstration against Netanyahu, who had come to Tzfas. I was arrested and taken for interrogation, although everybody knows that we use "ways of peace and pleasantness," but they tried to shut me up, unsuccessfully. Not only that, but we stepped up our demonstrations by manning the protest booth opposite Netanyahu’s office.

I’d like to say what I said then to the papers, which is relevant now, too. I said that every prime minister that gave away land, starting with Menachem Begin, found himself prematurely out of office. Netanyahu’s government fell a few months after he began to give away land, as well.

I say to Prime Minister Barak: Don’t gamble with Jewish lives. Take hold of yourself at the last moment. From Heaven they are showing you what the Arabs want and what their final goal is, r’l. Stop before it’s too late. If you do not stand strong, your end will be like the fate of your predecessor, Binyamin Netanyahu. You have no permission to play with the lives of millions of Jews living in the Holy Land!

Before our retreat from Lebanon, you were very involved in opposing this retreat. Why did the Right not aid you in your efforts?

Unfortunately, they didn’t understand the gravity of the situation. Today it’s clear what’s happening on our northern border. Now the front is right near Kiryat Shmoneh, the residents of Chaifa live in fear of katyusha rockets, and the I.D.F.’s hands are tied.

Right before the withdrawal from Lebanon, I publicized a psak din, signed by rabbanei Anash, against withdrawal from Lebanon. The psak din quotes the Rebbe during the war of Peace in Galilee, begging the government to let the army finish the job.

Over the years, we have seen what has happened as a result of not listening to the Rebbe. By not finishing the job, the army got stuck in Lebanon until today. If somebody thought the withdrawal, or better put – our flight – from Lebanon helped – reality has shown otherwise.

What do you ask rabbanim and askanei Anash to do?

We all know that the Rebbe said that shleimus ha’Aretz is the job of askanei Anash in Eretz Yisroel, led by the rabbanim, who must keep protesting. I think we all have to get busy and scream about the tremendous danger. How can we sit here and say our hands did not spill this blood?!

Today the settlers cannot leave their houses day and night. The Arabs of the Galil and throughout the country have given us a preview of what they can do. And not only that – the government has actually appeased them for what they did to us and even appointed a government investigation committee!

In these terrible times, when over 20 Jews have been murdered and cruelly slaughtered since the outbreak of terror, we must keep on screaming and protesting. I beg and call upon the rabbanim to issue directives to Anash and guide them in what to do. It just cannot be that while everybody waits to see what Chabad does, we have nothing to say. People ask why Chabad is not active. The time is now! There’s no question that the Rebbe’s view will be accepted now more than ever.

I call upon all those who have worked on shleimus ha’Aretz in the past to wake up before it’s too late. We must bring the Rebbe’s message clearly and forcefully. May we have the hisgalus immediately.


Rabbi Bloch celebrating after being freed from prison for his activities for the sake of shleimus ha’Aretz





Everybody should send faxes and letters to all our government’s leaders, protesting the situation, demanding that they cease this collective suicide.





The Rebbe quotes the Gemara, which says that being analytical concerning pikuach nefesh is bloodshed.





I say to Prime Minister Barak: Don’t gamble with Jewish lives. Take hold of yourself at the last moment. From Heaven they are showing you what the Arabs want and what their final goal is, r’l.


Home | Contents | Archives | Interactive |Contact Chat | Advertise

©Copyright. No content may be reprinted without permission.