This Thursday – the 18th of MarCheshvan – marks the 33rd yahrzeit of Rabbi Meir Kahane. I am proud to have been a student and follower of his from my early teens. I continue to quote him extensively, teach his Torah wisdom, and publicly call him “Rebbi U’Mori” – my rabbi and my teacher. Over the years, countless people have advised me to drop “the Rabbi Kahane thing” – as it would label me an extremist and prevent my success, but I never listened to them. I have spoken in over 500 Jewish communities across America and Canada and in every one, I say it loud and say it proud: “Rabbi Meir Kahane was – and still is – my guide, my mentor, and my rav. I agree with every word he wrote and spoke.” But it wasn’t just his words that excited me – he was the greatest rabbi of action that I ever met. He did not sit in an office while sending others to do his work. He was the first to fight the anti-Semites, the first to protest Jewish suffering, and the first to be arrested battling evil and injustice.
Today, after the unspeakable acts of terror by Hamas on October 7 – supported by the “innocent” population of Gaza who celebrated their actions – hundreds of people have told me that they are now “more Kahane than me!” I have heard people say that there are no more leftists in Israel and that Ben-Gvir is not rightwing enough. “The IDF should carpet-bomb Gaza” and “Wipe those people off the face of the earth!” These are all great suggestions (no argument from me!), but there’s just one problem with most of the people making these statements: I don’t believe a word they say, and this article will prove it.
A person I know well – who has been a proud leftist from the day we met – recently said to me that Kahane was right. I innocently asked him what changed his mind, and he looked at me like I was weird. “What changed my mind,” he asked? “Look what they did to us – the slaughter, the horrific acts of mutilation, and the kidnapping of children. Kahane was right – no Arab can be trusted, and every one of them needs to be permanently removed from this land.” Then came my turn to talk. “Have you fired your cleaning lady yet?” Once again, he looked at me as though I were an alien. “My cleaning lady? The one who has worked for me these last 20 years? Why should I fire her?” My answer was clear: “Because she’s an Arab and you just told me that no Arab can be trusted.” Radio silence. My friend simply had nothing to say.
This is just one tiny example of what I mean, but I can make things even clearer. For all people who claim that they are now “more Kahane than Sackett,” have them take this simple five-question test.
Define the term “Palestinian.”
Name the differences between Arabs in Gaza, Ramallah, Taibe, and Jerusalem.
Should Israeli Arabs be allowed to vote in Knesset elections, as they do now?
How does one answer the claim that Israel is an apartheid state?
Should Israel continue to accept financial aid from the United States?
I can actually make this test much longer, but these five questions are more than enough to prove my point. The ideology of Rabbi Meir Kahane, which is based exclusively on genuine Torah sources – without being watered down by Western concepts – has not yet been accepted by the masses. Yes, people are angry, and the tragic events of October 7 have indeed changed people’s outlook on Gaza, but I am afraid that this will be short-lived. Furthermore, the overwhelming majority still maintains that there are differences between the various Arabs in the country, there are people called “Palestinians,” and that Israel still needs to “play nice.”
Oh, how I wish my brothers and sisters would have learned a lesson, but I fear they haven’t. The students of Rabbi Kahane still have much work to do to teach what our Rav called “The Jewish Idea.” This is a Judaism that completes a Yid – the personal side with strict adherence to uncompromising halachah, and the national side of establishing Israel according to the leadership of King David. When that day comes – and I pray it will be soon – our Rav will become the Kohen Gadol in the third and final Beis HaMikdash!
Am Yisrael Chai!