Anti-Zionism and the Holocaust

Rabbi Teichtal

Rabbi Teichtal

Ariel Sokolovsky has sent a link to online versions of Eim HaBanim Semeichah, the book written during the Holocaust by Rabbi Yissoscher Dov Teichtal. Rabbi Teichtal was a leading anti-Zionist close to the Munkatcher and Satmar Rebbes, who saw with his own eyes the destruction and death caused by that theology. He in his own terms repented, and wrote this book to stress the importance of settling Eretz Yisrael.

While the book is a classic much studied in Modern Orthodox and Religious Zionists circles, it remains largely unknown in the haredi world.

I don’t have the time to search through the online editions, but if you do, look for the section where he describes Hungarian rabbis telling their congregations that Hitler, yshv’z, will not get them because we are anti-Zionists, and God will protect us in the merit of our anti-Zionism.



Filed under Haredim, History, Israel, Jewish Leadership, Modern Orthodoxy

26 responses to “Anti-Zionism and the Holocaust

  1. Jerome Soller

    Thank you for doing the mitzvah of providing this link to the Jewish community. I have forwarded or will forward this link to a bunch of people I know. Some of these include Haredi (not Satmar or Neturei Karta) and Chabad people. They (most of Haredi and Chabad) are among the strongest proponents of a continued Jewish presence in the land of Israel.


  2. By the grace of G-d
    Shalom u’vrocha!
    Dear readers!
    I did send Shmarya the link. And explained to him the reasons why it’s being sent namely to increase love for Eretz Yisrael and understanding of the importance of unity among the Jewish people as a way to achieve the final redemption especialy among the Chareidi readers of the site.
    While this book is being used that way in Religious Zionist circles it is not a Zionist manifesto and surely it’s not the main point of the book to bash the “anti-zionists” in fact the author is trying to give the benifit of good intentions to many of the people and movements he criticizes in the book.
    Also the main idea of the book is to encourage a Chareidi mass alia to influence the character of the Land of Yisrael for the better.
    It’s also mentioned in the introduction that the Lubavitcher Rebbe told the son of the author to publicize the fact that his father wasn’t a Zionist (probably in a sense that he didn’t believe in the idea that creation of the secular state in the land of Yisrael is the begining of redemption) and in fact there are letters where the author tells his son that he foressees that this book will be misinterpreted which is what happened.
    In any case read it it’s very good book and while we may not agree with everything in it nor may some of us apreciate the tone of some of the chapters it’s a very inspiring book writen by a true tzadik and kodosh who perished in Holocaust (May Hashem avenge his blood!)
    PS. Those who can do so would enjoy reading the book in Hebrew original here .
    PPS. The Lubavitcher Rebbes view on Zionism have been recently published by Rabbi Volpo his book is now being translated in English and is published in last few issues of Beis Moshiach you can look it up here in the PDF archives starting in Issue 545 see here :
    With respect and blessing.
    Ariel Sokolovsky

  3. Jerome Soller

    Rabbi Sokolovsky,
    I will appropriately credit that Shmarya and you were the source of this link, when I send it out to others.


  4. B”H
    Thank you Jarome.Like the Chaza”l say “kol ha omer davar be shem omro mevi geulah le’oilam”

    – whoever properly atributes quotes brings redemption to the world. 🙂

  5. Paul Freedman

    Ariel–it wouldn’t be incorrect to state that the messianic theology reflected in this book would agree that the secular state indluding its “idolaters” while not immanently redemptive is nevertheless a vessel for the begining of redemption–not so far removed. I have always felt that the distinctions made by Chabad on the ground in Israel between what is and is not redemptive in the current enterprise of settling the Land to be superficial if not opportunistic.

  6. Paul Freedman

    .. that is, the state, it’s infrastructure, its army, its tax collectors, its work a day Jews with their taxes and work and contributions is all very well when it is doing something directly related to “redemption”–such as supporting Gush Emuniim or whatever–but when the state does something along the opposite lines, say, disengagement, then we hear: what is this thing the secular state that we should respect it at all? and then there is nothing good at all to say about this secular monkey state of pork snarfing abominations.

  7. Anon

    Ariel Sokolovsky do you know who is possibly going to be PUBLISHING Rabbi Volpo works on the Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson’s aka the Rebbe’s view on Zionism. Also that you for helping Shmarya out with this info as this is very resourceful for for the Internet Torah Jewry.

  8. B”H
    The Hebrew edition of his book has been in stores for some time right now if you want I can give you a link to buy it the English one is being translated and published in Beis Moshiach thus far they published like 8 chapters see
    starting from issue 545.
    Paul Rebbes view is based on halocha in the Rambam that is not disputed by any halachik source (as oppsed to midrashim) that redemption starts with Moshiach. The Rebbe explains that while in 1948 it was actually a mitzvah to make the state he points out that under the circumstances of persecution if it’s possible to make a Jewish state it would be a mitzvah to make one in NY even but this wouldn’t be beggining of redemption from exile just redemption from destruction – pikuach nefesh.
    Rebbe also says that various sources like 3 oaths are not strictly halachik thus one can use them before the fact (like Rebbe Rashab did for example) to point out that Jewish Nationalism -Zionism will result in greater persecution from the nation but once the goverment in Eretz Yisroel is a Jewish goverment at that point differnt issues come into play namely Shulchan Oruch laws of Shabbos Chapter 329 that border community must fight robber even on Shabbos. And three oaths are no longer relevant issue see

  9. Yochanan Lavie

    Yashar koach to Shmarya and Rabbi Sokolovsky. How does Eim Habonim compare to the theology of Rav Kook?

  10. Shmuel

    No need to wait for any more translations; there are 2 out there in English already:
    1. Restoration of Zion as a response during the Holocaust (“Em Habanim Semeha”) (translated by Pesach Schindler), Ktav, 1999.
    2. Eim Habanim Semeicha: on Eretz Yisroel, Redemption and Unity (translated by Moshe Lichtman) Kol Mevaser Publications, 2000.

  11. Shmuel

    The link provided here is to Moshe Lichtman’s translation.

  12. Anonymous

    So now will we have to suffer the avodah zarah of a mishichnik just because he sent a link???

  13. Paul Freedman

    Ariel–the Rebbe spoke that Moshiach was imminent–did he rest the claim of redemption solely on his own personal qualities as Moshiach–and not on “current events”? He is known to have cited the American victory in the first Iraqi war as a sign. I find it hard to believe that Chabad did not explicitly articulate the redemptive value post ’67 of settling land in Eretz Yisrael–not merely as a mitzva that was now possible; or that Chabad claimed that the sole redemptive activities begun in the generation of Messiah related only to the Rebbe’s own biographical activities–although that might be a consistent way of deemphasizing the secular state and non-Chabad generally; polemically insisting (while implicitly taking into consideration the Rebbe-less messianism of Kook-ism) there was nothing independently redemptive going on outside of Brooklyn.

    As Israel–whether as a state or a community of Jews–continues to be in danger, we can therefore recall earlier arguments as to Chabad’s metaphorization of the biographical requirements for Messiah.

  14. Paul Freedman

    That is, in the world, the “wars of Israel”–even if one devalues the theological value of the state per se–continue to be fought, and fought on all planes, metaphorical and non-metaphorical, at least as dearly as in the life of the Rebbe pre Gimmel Tammuz, without clear victory in sight.

  15. Rabbi Neal Abraham Wendrow

    Ultimately the only salvation for Klal Yisrael is through its true Messiah, Yeshua, our Lord Jesus Christ. Receive Him today!

  16. Paul Freedman

    There always seems to be a lot of days between this morning and ultimately…

  17. Rabbi Neal Abraham Wendrow

    Why should you turn to Yeshua? Because without Jesus you might as well be living in a latrine, covered in the filth of your sin, blinded by the Pharisee rabbis. Today turn to authentic Judaism and receive the Salvation Jesus freely gave on the Cross for you!

  18. Hman

    Authentic Judaism rejects Jesus for the same reason that it rejects all failed messiahs. I would suggest that you get out of the coolaid drinking cult that has scrambled your brains and beg forgiveness from the one true God for your immersion in idolatry.

  19. By the grace of G-d
    Dear Neal!
    If the Pope essentialy admits this:
    (No Davidic ancestry , no virgin birth [it’s not that Jewish Messiah must be born from a virgin but as you’ll see the Church doesn’t realy believe their own supposed dogma ] not really a “son of G-d” etc. I kid you not check it out.)
    It’s hard to see why would any person who seeks the real truth stay in that religion…

  20. Yochanan Lavie

    Neal: Here’s my bracha for you: Gei kocken in oyfen yam.

  21. Jerome Soller

    A note to Yochanan. Thank you for finally giving me an opportunity to use my birthday gift from my father (a Yiddish to English dictionary). I never thought I would use it until I read your post. 🙂


  22. Paul Freedman

    covered in the filth of sin
    i made a shiny badge of tin
    i inscribed a shiny shiny name
    an amulet to banish shame
    the name i clutched out of the air
    and adorned with ribbons in my hair
    i wandered ‘cross the troubled seas
    muttering about the Pharisees

  23. Yochanan Lavie

    Excellent poem, Paul. Did you write it? If so yashar koach.

  24. Yos

    It’s funny reading Yiddish written in english, transliterated. I have to sound it out. It’s like that Monty Python sketch where the guy with poor eyesight reads the joke so funny it’s deadly. He has to think about it awhile before he finally collapses.

    How did this get onto the subject of dueling messiahs? And who cares if Jesus walked on water and ran faster than a speeding bullet? Once Jews are mass roasted on spits in the name of the ‘Christ’ that pretty much rules him out as the Redeemer. That’s one thing the Lubavitcher Elokists still haven’t done.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say I hate scanned documents. I read the preface to Am H’Banim Semeichah, but when I got to the actual contents, the pages only loaded halfway. Big disappointment. But now I’m interested in finding a copy. Thanks.

  25. avrohom 2

    how pathetic this blog is and how sick it is. The world is now witnessing the great disaster of the ego of the “isms” f the past few decades and THEY cannot say “we made a mistake” and this sick erev and his bloggers dig stuff of 60 years old to prove what? that frmme jews can humble themselves to say that they erred but the terrible egotistic bloated secular gods cannot come to this?

    We are witnessing these days terrible days for israel. We see how the Lubavticher Rebbe was fromt he very few vocal leaders to be so right with regards to isaeal and what the “concessions” and “peace” shmiess would bring. The detterrence it once had is smashed to pieces. The government is run by secualrists who are afraid to the do tthe right thing and do not want to listen to the generals IN MIDDLE OF THE WAR AS TO WHAT IS THE BEST FOR JEWS! They care for what the goyim and the erev rav will say…and for that 9 soldeirs paid with their lvies yesterday…

    SHAME ON YOU erev rav scotty do teshuva and repent for your maligning the settlers who prttect the jews in israel…

  26. Yochanan Lavie

    “It’s funny reading Yiddish written in english, transliterated. I have to sound it out. It’s like that Monty Python sketch where the guy with poor eyesight reads the joke so funny it’s deadly. He has to think about it awhile before he finally collapses”

    Actually, Yos, I’m a big Python fan. Glad you had a laugh.

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