Is The Sun Setting On America’s Empire?

When they blame each other for “starting it first,” we cringe. When they tweet pictures of the other’s wives, we are appalled. When attack ads show an opponent’s nose grown long enough to become a noose, others highlight the investigation of 147 FBI agents and the sole Jew refuses to acknowledge his grossly inflated numbers meant to fuel anti-Israel sentiments, helplessness begins to set in.

In the rare moments they talk policy, their words fall on deaf ears. We have learned that either they do not mean what they are saying or they themselves don’t understand what they mean. It all becomes rather meaningless.

They tripped over each other at AIPAC to score “lover of Israel” points. One yelled “believe me” loudest. Days later his Jewish daughter gave birth and he announced his “Easter baby” knowing full well this child is Jewish.

Much ink has been spilled describing the depressing nature of it all. The mightiest institution in the world, The President of The United States of America, has become a third rate reality television show. Pundits and historians shake their heads in disbelief but this less than funny circus continues.

One of G-d’s greatest gifts to humanity is The United States of America. It has become a force of incomparable and unprecedented goodness. Man’s inalienable rights, endowed by The Creator, are enshrined in its founding documents. These were to change the world, for good.

“The empire on which the sun never sets” was used to describe an empire so extensive that one part of its territory was always in daylight. A trip around today’s global village, though, is dark. There is almost no country not suffering from Islamic terror, financial distress, turmoil, violence and/or brewing public rage.

Amidst it all, one tiny sliver of a country situated in the inferno of dueling evils called the Middle East, enjoys a comparably bright life. Israel is a sister democracy of the United States. These two nations have in common everything that is important. America’s founding fathers inscribed this reality onto its birth certificate, The Declaration of Independence.

The same Creator endowed the Jewish people with a small land called Israel. A modern day biblical miracle, Israel is home to 7 million Jews. Inexplicable by the laws of nature, the Jewish people have reclaimed and resettled their homeland. Today, the majority of the Jewish people live in The Holy Land.

When the twin towers came screaming down, the world became a much darker place. It has become only worse. The great empires of history watched as the sun did ultimately set upon them. Upon G-d’s empire, though, it will not.

History will mark this election season as a bottom. Sheer fury has been unleashed. Some have mused that perhaps an “end has come” and the sun can yet set on this empire as well. This narrative is superficial and short sighted.

For too long the world’s superpower has been asleep. But now, its great people have awakened. The overwhelming majority, silent or not, are energized. The status quo is set to be transformed, for good.

Israel’s decades long solitary battle against Islamic terror is now shouldered by the entire civilized world. America and Israel continue to be the world’s bastions of goodness. To those intellectually honest, these two democracies stand side by side as indispensable towers of light. They will not crumble nor implode from within.

Purim is now in our rear view mirror and Passover on the horizon. These two holidays are the frame holding this season’s call. Purim and Passover share realities of apparent inescapable doom. Purim’s decree of annihilation and Passover’s bitter slavery of centuries shackled us to a hopeless future.

Then something very deep inside of us stirred. A G-dly endowed spirit, dormant and asleep, was ignited. Suddenly we were gifted a glimpse into an infinitely greater reality. A power, higher and mightier than us all, greater than the sum total of all that swirled around us, was indeed in control.

The Talmud tells us of a time when our leaders will be a mockery. This will be the sign that a new dawn is upon us. The first half of this promise has certainly been fulfilled. We are equally witness to the unfolding of the second half. G-d has brought Israel to its current stature of revered might. Endowed with magnificent resourcefulness her future has never before been as promising.

True, her sister democracy is experiencing rumblings. But this too will turn out for the good. Rather than be immersed in the present small minded pettiness, we would do best focusing on this nation’s 240 years of greatness. America’s maturity and greatest strength is to be measured solely by the depth of its roots, anchored in the G-dly principles on which it was established.

Since the genesis of time, G-d was focused on humanity. It is all about the people. We can and we must seize the character of this country, the very fabric of it all. It is, unquestionably, the most gorgeous mosaic of unprecedented goodness rooted in G-dly endowed blessings. It will therefore ultimately persevere.

Currently it is dark. But have no fear. The land of the free and the home of the brave is still very much here. Across the shining seas, G-d will continue to bless Israel as He will The United States of America and all good people everywhere.

To this end, let us pray. Let us give. Let us love.

About the Author
Ciment is Founding Rabbi of Chabad-Lubavitch of Greater Boynton Beis Menachem, a pioneering traditional Jewish presence in Central Palm Beach County, Florida established in 1994. Chabad's 5 acre, "Rae & Joseph Gann Campus for Living Judaism" serves hundreds of member families and services thousands of Jews from all walks of life.
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