It is very difficult to understand how Jews worldwide fail to appreciate the miracle that is the State of Israel. It is even more difficult to understand how many religious Jews lack that same appreciation.
It has been said that when one stands next to a mountain, he is unable to see how high it is. The days of Yom Hazikaron, where we remember our fallen soldiers, and Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel’s Independence Day, are meant as a time of reflection. We acknowledge the sacrifice that was necessary in the creation of the State. And we should be filled with awe and amazement of what has transpired over the last seventy-five years. We say the Hallel prayer to praise Hashem for making this miracle come into fruition.
Who could have imagined that in such a relatively short time, that out of the ashes of Auschwitz, there could emerge a Jewish homeland of over seven million Jews? Israel has taken its place among the nations, and is a leader in so many areas.
What might be the most amazing, is the return of so many to their Jewish roots. The number of Yeshivot, and the amount of Torah learning, has not been seen since the period of the Second Temple.
This lack of acknowledgement can only be attributed to blindness and a bit of stubbornness. Some dismiss these great fulfillments of prophecy, by rationalizing that the country is still not religious enough. And some feel justified that they will only be convinced that this is part of a Divine plan, when the Mashiach comes.
It is interesting to note that as far back as 1962, Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, bemoaned the fact that religious Jews in America were not willing to align themselves with Religious Zionism.
In an address at a Mizrachi convention, he made a very direct request of the religious community. He said that it was clear that he was constantly approached with requests to render Halachic decisions, on a wide range of subjects. He said that if he could be trusted to decide difficult matters of Halacha, he should be trusted when he says that all religious Jews should be Zionists and do everything possible to strengthen the State of Israel.
This appears to be, without a doubt, the right thing to do. Israel is an incredible gift from G-d. We longed for it for nearly two thousand years. Now that this dream has come true, we must embrace it and cherish it, and appreciate it with all our hearts.