Love of all of creation requires extensive involvement, to expand it appropriately, and not to be a superficial idea… To have this love fill all places of the soul at all times. It is appropriate to ponder the opinions of other nations and different groups, to the extent possible, in order to have a solid foundation to be able to love them in a way that will benefit them.

It is only in a rich soul, filled with love of creation and love of humanity can love for a nation exist in its exalted state in a spiritual and practical element.

The narrow-mindedness, which causes people to see that which is outside of a specific nation, even if it is outside of Israel, as only disgusting and impure, is one of the greatest darkening forces that causes general destruction to the spiritual structure of good, which all pleasant souls await for its light.

Rav Avraham Yitschak HaKohen Kook



21 July in History

In 1816, birthdate of Paul Julius Reuter. Born Israel Beer Josaphat, he changed his name to Reuter and converted in 1844. He founded what would become Reuter’s news agency in 1849. He used carrier pigeons to carry financial news to those parts of Germany, France and Belgium not yet served by telegraph. He opened his own telegraph service in England where he lived the rest of his life and died in 1899. He converted for the same reason so many other German and Austrian Jews did – it was the only way to advance in the worlds of commerce and art.

10 Av in History

In 2005, more than 8,500 Jewish residents were forcefully expelled from their homes in 25 towns and settlements in the Gaza Strip (including 16 settlements in the flourishing “Gush Katif” belt) and Northern Shomron in the summer of 2005, as part of the Israeli government’s ill-fated “Disengagement Plan.”

Av 10 was the deadline set by the governments for all Jews to leave their homes in these areas. Two days later, tens of thousands of soldiers and police officers began the forceful removal of the thousands who refused to leave willingly. The removal of all Jewish residents from Gush Katif and the Gaza Strip was completed by Av 17, and from Northern Samaria a day later. The army completed its withdrawal from these areas on the 8th of Elul, after bulldozing all the hundreds of homes and civic buildings in the settlements. The Jewish dead were disinterred and removed from the cemeteries. Only the synagogues were left standing.

The government’s hopes that the “disengagement” would open “new opportunities” in relations with the Palestinian Arabs were bitterly disappointed. No sooner had the last Israeli soldiers departed from the Gaza Strip that Arab mobs began looting, desecrating and tourching the synagogues. The vacated settlements became the staging grounds for terrorist attacks against Israel, including the unremitting rocket fire on the nearby Israeli town of Sederot and the cities and settlements of the Western Negev.