Terror in France

wtcOur prayers are with the victims of the horrible terrorist attacks across Paris. Now is the time to grieve. The natural reaction is to strike back and avenge the carnage. But before we do, let’s pause and consider our actions, making them deliberate and thoughtful, to do more than lash out and punish. Who is the enemy and how do we best work to defeat them in the long-term war of ideologies in which we are engaged?


It is enticing to react and retaliate, but violence untargeted or mistargeted will serve to create more victims and foment more hatred. The threats are real, but we need to know who the adversary is and the most effective ways to combat the enemy. Precipitous action will do far more harm than good.

 Sadly, there are those who are struggle to support the French, seeing this tragedy as an opportunity to say “turnabout is fair play” due to perceived and real anti-Semitism in France. We are better than that.   The Jewish values of Chesed and Rachamim compel us to reach out and provide comfort and support. Our compassion helps us to rise above all kinds of hatred and Judaism becomes a beacon of light to the Nations.

2 thoughts on “Terror in France

  1. Barbara Grancell-Frank

    David, please allow me to enlighten you as to the identity of our enemies. They are Muslims who identify themselves as radicals. They are also known as jihadists. I hope I’ve cleared that up for you.
    Jihadists are estimated to include 15 to 25 percent of the 1.3 billion Muslims who live on this planet, a consensus arrived at by most western intelligence agencies. The majority of Muslims, therefore, are NOT jihadists. Still, when you do the math, you come up with 180,000 to 300,000 radicalized Muslims, all determined to end western civilization’s run and replace it with a global caliphate. That’s a lot of jihadists. It only took 11 of them to kill close to 3,000 Americans in four hours not so long ago.
    I totally support practicing the core values that Jews and many evolved religions share. But only the willfully blind, the suicidal and the stupid can fail to appreciate the consequences of engaging with adversaries who disdain our values and refuse to play by our rules. Their rules encompass rape, stoning, beheading, putting prisoners in cages and setting them on fire, machine gunning crowds and crucifying children.
    While some in the West try to figure out a compassionate response to radical Islam’s enthusiasm for destroying everyone who isn’t a jihadist, the jihadists are busy planning and implementing murderous attacks on innocent infidels. (Americans and Israelis are at the top of their hit list, so I’m really in for it.) The Paris massacre is only the latest manifestation of their homicidal agenda. It won’t be the last.
    Since 9/11 more than 27,000 terrorist acts on every continent have been documented. And now, despite Syrian (ISIS) involvement in the Paris debacle, President Obama wants to invite 20,000 Syrian refugees into our country. According to sworn testimony from the FBI’s director at a recent Congressional hearing, none of these refugees can be properly vetted since their names don’t appear on any data base. This fact, coupled with a nonexistent U.S. border (another Obama brainchild) in the south, should make the work of newly imported jihadists a whole lot easier.

    1. Rabbi David Levin Post author

      We need to be careful in the analysis. No question there are really bad guys (and gals) out there who are at war. But the victims of their terror are people in desperate need, quite literally fleeing for their lives. We cannot be blind to that. We have a robust vetting process that takes 18-24 months before we permit refugees into the US. The FBI Director is against just letting people inside without proper vetting.
      We need to be very careful that we do not sacrifice everything we believe in so that we can consider ourselves safe. I am far more concerned about terrorists who are already here and those who slip through porous borders.
      Our fear for our safety cannot be allowed overwhelm us.
      Shabbat Shalom.

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