The Author of Torat Hamelech, the King's Torah, Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira speaks to an ultra-Orthodox radio station, Radio Kol Hai, to explain what he meant when he wrote that Israeli soldiers can kill Arab babies if it appears the babies will grow up to be our enemies.
Shapira refuses to speak to non-Orthodox media. According to the Jerusalem Post, Shapira's interview with the ultra-Orthodox Radio Kol Hai will be broadcast at the end of July or early August.
But the Post has a few excerpts it (poorly) translated into English. Any emphasis added is mine:
“Let's assume that to win a war I have to kill children, otherwise my soldiers will die, then surely killing the enemies' children is more correct than having my soldiers killed,” he said. “The same way I need to ensure within my people that evil doesn't spread in the world, that applies to the other people. And it the other people wants to support the king, they are supporting evil, and if they don't want to support the king – they must act against it as I am obliged. The example I'm bringing of harming children are those of an evil king. If you pressure him in a way that will keep him from acting in an even way, you can harm [the children]. If I think the king is evil, a dictator who makes many unjust wars, and I want to win in the war and my way to win in the war is to harm his children and weaken his spirit, so he will stop sending his soldiers – that is allowed.”
So Shapira is saying three things:
1. Just as he should kill evil Jews so their evil does not spread, he should kill gentile babies who may grow up to be evil because their parents are evil.
2. Non-Jews are considered to be supporters of their evil rulers unless they actively rebel against them, meaning there are no neutral non-Jews and no non-Jews who hate the evil of their ruler but are unable for whatever reason to rebel.
3. It is okay and even preferable to intentionally target the infants and children of enemy rulers (and therefore it would seem the infants and children of all enemies) in order to break the spirit of the enemy ruler.
“Jews are a clever people, and when they will get their wits together, the revolution will be easily and tranquilly. I hope we won't have to go through difficult things for it to happen, a revolution in our awareness and in our behavior,” he said.
Shapira clearly advocates the intentional murder of babies done for no other reason than they will probably grow up to be our enemies.
He also argues that silence equals acquiescence, and acquiescence equals responsibility for the actions taken. Does this obligate someone to stand up to evil when doing so will most likely lead to torture and/or death? I don't think so.
But silence equals acquiescence should (and halakhicly does) apply to Jews, as well – and this means Shapira's silence on the repeated acts of price tag violence against Arabs, police and the army by his students make him responsible for that violence, as well.
Shapira advocates the intentional murder of babies to break the will of an evil leader.
And he endorses a revolution that he "hopes" won't be difficult.
Shapira thinks he is permitted to advocate all this because in his mind the Torah advocates it.
He believes the Torah is above secular law and that racism he believes is sanctioned by the Torah is kosher.
And this is Israel's problem.
The Torah can be construed to be racist. So can the Koran. So can the New Testament.
Incitement law mean that someone who advocates violence – even religiously based violence – needs to be prosecuted.
Politics means he probably never will be.
Shapira's understanding of the Torah and Jewish law is racist and narrow, so much so that most Zionist Orthodox rabbis oppose it.
But Shapira is quoting Torah and, in the end, Israel will probably let him get away with it – which is what most Zionist Orthodox and haredi rabbis seem to want.
Letting Shapira get away with it will bring Israel one giant step closer to the day it becomes a fascist theocracy ruled by Jewish "mullahs."
Putting Shapira, his co-author Elitzur, his mentor Rabbi Yitzchak Ginsburgh, and the rabbis who endorsed this racist work, Dov Lior and Yaakov Yosef, in jail where they belong will, I think, spark a wave of terrorism against Arabs, Jewish politicians, the army and police – a precursor to civil war, the "revolution" Shapira says is coming.
That is Israel's choice.
And it has to make it soon.