Nelly Shulman

The stumbling block

In our weekly Torah portion, Kedoshim, God commands the children of Israel not to put the stumbling block before the blind person. Rabbeinu Bachya, in his comment, writes that the Torah chooses examples from real life. Today Russia deliberately misleads a large group of people by exposing them to the vicious spawn of hatred. The state propaganda machine of Russia endlessly spits out a stream of lies, poisoning the entire nation.

Rabbeinu Bachya continues by saying, “Unfortunately, people who do have the habit of taking advantage of the helpless tend to be guilty of such examples as mentioned by the Torah. The words: “you shall fear the Lord,” after the warning not to place obstacles in the path of those who cannot see is a reminder that G’d can see what you do. The use of the expression ויראת מאלו-היך occurs usually when the matter is left to your heart, i.e. there is no police restraining your behaviour.”

Of course, the Russian police are also the puppet engaged in protecting the dictatorship, and there is no hope that the state media will ever change its tune. Therefore, any person speaking Russian nowadays has to take the mitzvah of removing this stumbling block by communicating with the Russian people.

About the Author
Nelly Shulman is a journalist and writer currently based in Berlin. She is an author of four popular historical novels in the Russian language. She is working on the fifth novel in this series and on her first English-language novel, a historical thriller set during the Siege of Leningrad. She a Hawthornden Fellow and an alumna of the Nachum Goldmann Fellowship.
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