Sunday, March 17, 2013

Message from Rav Aaron Leib Shteinman shlita on Draft

This speech was delivered on Motzei Shabos vayikra 5773/2013 at a gathering to yeshiva leit in Bnei brak.

It is a yom tzarah, a difficult day, for us. Each and every one of us knows what a tzarah gedolah, a great difficulty, it is. For many years now, Boruch HaShem, thank G-D, we have had the opportunity, and we were able to learn and to teach Torah to our children. There was growth, Boruch HaShem, thank G-D, and the Yeshivos, the schools are growing with bochurim, students learning Torah. Suddenly it has come upon us such a tzarah, a difficulty like this one, where they want, chas veshalom, Heaven forbid, to destroy Klal Yisroel, the Jewish people from Torah. Chas VeShalom! Heaven Forbid! HaShem Yerachem! Heaven have Mercy! A very great tzarah. We are asking for mercy from HaKadosh Boruch Hu, from G-D, that he grant us the gift of being able to continue to teach our children Torah for our whole entire lives, so that the Torah should not be amiss from our mouths or from the mouths of our children, forever. There is one point however, besides that we must increase our strength in Torah, for, the more we will increase our strength in Torah, then HaKadosh Boruch Hu will cast light upon us, and the merit of the Torah will stand for us, there is one other point, and that is, that whenever there are people who are pained by the potential of the tremendous Chillul HaShem, desecration of G-D's name, that can come out this, Chalilah veChas, Heaven forbid, if there were to be a decrease in Torah study among Klal Yisroel, the Jewish people, such a tremendous Chillul HaShem, if it pains him, so that the whole heart is pained, chas veshalom, that it should not come to be chalilah, G-D forbid, such a painful thing. HaKadosh Boruch Hu should help that we shall merit only good, and it should never come to be that Torah study be diminished, until the coming of Moshiach Tzidkenu, our true and righteous redeemer speedily in our days. 


  1. Can someone explain this to me please. How is taking boys over 21 out of Yeshiva for two years going to be the destruction of Torah?
    Will it be Bitul Torah? Yes.
    Will it cause some boys to gave a yerida? Yes
    But they are offering 1,800 top boys every year, out of a draft of 8,000 per year the ability to avoid even this and stay in yeshiva.
    How is this a tremendous chilul hashem? The other boys will go and choose either charedi army service or national service in the police, fire service or ZAKA.
    This is still better than at any time since the Churban 2000 years ago.
    Does R.Aron Leib Shlita really think that this gezeirah will destroy us or is it just polemics?

    1. It is hard to argue with the daas of a gadol like R'Aaron Leib Shteinman shlita. Can you just clarify, you do acknowledge that it is bisul Torah while at the same time questioning whether it would be destruction of Torah? Doesn't bisul Torah mean to destroy Torah?

    2. Its not so hard to argue... Anyone who picks up an Ayeles HaShachar (his work on gemara) will find some pieces more convincing some less.
      But seriously, R.Aharon Leib is a special Jew and he lives almost completely detached from Olam HaZeh. His opinion should be taken very seriously which is why I posted here. This is a more serious forum than most others and I am hoping someone can explain what he means. Is this just guzma in order to motivate the troops or does he really think that the end is nigh?

      As to bitul Torah, of course any Bitul Torah is a destruction of the Torah that could have been revealed in the world at that time and it can't be made up for, but even lots of this won't end up destroying the Torah as a whole. The education system will remain the same for everyone until 21. Then for any but the 1,800 exemptions they will leave Yeshiva to go to a (hopefully) charedi environment to do some sort of service (it might even take the form of a Mitzva, eg. army, first aid, zaka). When they are done they can go back to full time learning as before. The best 1,800 who will form the future Rosh Yeshivas and Poskim will remain unaffected. Ask anyone in Chinuch, by age 21 you can tell who will 'make' it.
      Does the Kiyum of Torah really depend on no one going to the army or national service, no one going to work and everyone staying poor? I hope the connection to Torah of our youth is not so fragile.

  2. I also do not understand all this hyperbole at all. How is this 'destroying the Jewish nation', exactly? All this hand-wringing is evocative of a small child throwing a tantrum when faced with change.

  3. It's politics and deception.