Why Observant Jews Must Support Israel

Before the creation of the State of Israel, the Zionist movement was largely made up of secular Jews. Yes, the idea of creating a secular Jewish state in the Land of Israel goes against traditional Jewish beliefs, but maintaining that state to protect the land and the Jewish people who live there is in cahoots with Jewish law.  Fast forward almost seventy years later, many of the biggest supporters of Israel are observant, or at least affiliated Jews. Nowadays, it is extremely important for all Jews to support Israel, but especially for observant Jews and here is why.

Currently, Jews are as assimilated as ever and many have grown up without learning anything about being Jewish, let alone supporting Israel. And this is vital because with so many Jews having very little or no connection to Judaism and Israel at all, that leaves less and less Jews who need to support it. While most Israelis would not admit it, Israel still needs the support of Jews and non-Jews in the Diaspora. Without the financial aid and advocating of people in the Diaspora, Israel would have little support around the world (even less than it currently has).

There is a need for observant Jews to support Israel because there are just not enough people around to stand up for Israel and tell the world how great of a place it is and how important it is to the Jewish people. As Matisyahu says, in his song, “Jerusalem,” “It’s not about the land or the sea, not the country but the dwelling of his majesty.” Israel is the land that the Jews were given thousands of years ago and we need to protect the land that God dwells in. Not to mention there is a part of God in every Jew, and with so many Jews living in Israel it is important to protect them too.

Even though many Jews have a slim knowledge about and concern for Judaism and Israel, they are not the only ones who greater the need for observant Jews to support Israel nowadays. Increasingly, Jews who grew up with either little, some, or even vast amounts of Jewish education counter Israel and what it stands for. Religious groups that oppose Zionism, such as Neturei Karta, have been in existence for a long time and it is important that other groups of observant Jews undo the damage done to tarnish Israel and Jews as a whole. It is more than being against the State of Israel when you visit with governments of countries who have claimed that they wish to eliminate Jews from the face of the earth.

Not only do other observant Jews need to help undo the damage done, but they need to show other Jews that not all religious Jews oppose Israel to an extent that they are willing to side with the biggest anti-Semites in the world. Also, with groups such as J Street bringing in Jews who maybe have had some affiliation with their Judaism growing up and identify as Jews perhaps even to a strong extent, the need for support escalates. Some fellow Jews that I grew up with who supported Israel from a non-’Orthodox’ point of view have dramatically changed their viewpoints over the past few years. Many Jews I know seemed to have been persuaded to sympathize with ‘Palestinians’ in all matters, while they attended various liberal universities. While they still claim to support Israel and that it has a right to exist, they will side with a Palestinian cause over an Israeli cause 100% of the time.

So with so few Jews in the world, and Jews from all backgrounds either not interested or vehemently against Israel, observant Jews need to step up now more than ever. They have to show fellow Jews and the entire world that not only does Israel have a right to exist, but Israel has a right to do what it needs to continue existing, especially since it is located in such a region of turmoil. That does not mean have to support a secular state or the origin of its creation, but Israel needs support from everyone for its continued existence and the protection of the entire land and all of the people who dwell there. With all of this support hopefully one day soon the rest of the Jews around the world will be living in Israel in the ideal way with only peace and unity.

About the Author
Zander Wold is a Jew from Los Angeles currently living in Haifa.