An Explanation for the Return of Israeli MK Itamar Ben-Gvir Even After He Was Illegally Beaten by the Police

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Image from the Twitter Page of Itamar Ben-Gvir


On the 13th of Adar I, 5782 (= Mon, 14 February 2022) Ben-Gvir reported:

“Despite the assault and the injury to my head that were done by the order of Omer Bar-Lev (the Israeli Minister of Public Security, who is a member of the Labor Party) , I arrived this morning at my office in the Shimon HaTzadik neighborhood (in East Jerusalem). I will not give up and will not rest, until security returns to the residents of the neighborhood”.

Apparently, MK Ben-Gvir is taking a risk because he believes that there is a war here to conquer the Land of Israel and I have already brought Rabbi Kook’s opinion on the subject in my post “Rabbi Kook Did Not Subscribe to Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef’s “Land for Peace” Ideology Regarding the Temple Mount. The Grandson of Rabbi Kook, Rabbi Shlomo Raanan HY”D Sets the Record Straight“.

Here I will quote part of that post, which I feel is relevant for the struggle for the neighborhood of Shimon HaTzadik:

Winning the War to Conquer the Land of Israel Overrides the Commandment of Saving Lives

Rabbi Avraham Y. Kook
Rabbi Avraham Y. Kook

Former Chief Rabbi of British Mandate Palestine, Rabbi Avraham Kook pointed out (Chazon HaGeula p. 222) that winning a War to Conquer the Land of Israel takes precedence even if it means endangering Jews for the sake of victory.

Even for the sake of an Optional War, the Torah recognizes there might be war casualties as part of the price of victory.
Dvarim/Deuteronomy 20:7 ‘Is there any man among you who has betrothed a woman and not married her? Let him go home, so that he not die in war and have another man marry her.’

See also the book of Shoftim/Judges 20:39 as a backup to this concept.

The principle that winning the war to conquer the land of Israel overrides the commandment of saving lives, also explains one of the motivations of my rabbis, to oppose the various “Land for Peace” deals including Trump’s “Deal of the Century” and it also explains why they rejected the Gilad Shalit prisoner swap. I am not saying this is the only reason, just one of the reasons.

My rabbis further added that when Rabbi Kook wrote Chazon Haguela, there was a realistic chance for gaining more land for the Jewish people in Israel by the purchase of land. Therefore Rabbi Kook supported that activity. However, during that period of time Rabbi Kook did not believe, there was a realistic chance for a Jewish army to take the land of Israel by force. That is why he did not encourage the latter option in that period.

MK Itamar Ben Gvir apparently believes that in the fight for the Shimon HaTzadik neighborhood there is a reasonable chance of success to win Jewish control by his visits.

Possibility #2: He believes that in order to save the lives of other Jews, it is worth the damage he received or may receive in the future.

By Shlomo Moshe Scheinman