In all the things that might be pinned upon Rabbiner Hirsch, perhaps the most irresponsible is to align him with the views of the Netrurei Karta.

Now, there is reason to call him adverse to Zionism. Certainly his immediate descendents were cool on the issue. And he clearly invoked the idea of the “three oaths” in referring to the establishment of a state.

In an article readily google-able by Professor Leo Levi, one can find the full array of sources on the issue, and his educated guess, that had Rav Hirsch lived today, he would not have sided with the Neturei Karta over the Brisker Rov and a list of the greatest European gedolim of the day.

I would quickly add to this, that his grandson Isaac Breuer after ascending to Israel, while distancing himself from Zionism for many years, had a change of heart after meeting Rav Kook.

Furthermore, the views of Rav Breuer zL according to a member of his family, as heard by Rabbi Yosef G. Bechhofer, were akin to his brother Isaac’s views of working towards a Torah representation within the state.

What’s more, in a recorded interview with Mr. Jacob Breuer, on file among the papers of Steven M. Lowenstein, at the Center for Jewish History (linked here) you will find that he defines Israel by its biblical borders and is skeptical about swapping land for peace.

In Washington Heights, when a local, misguided, alumnus of MTA-turned Neturei Karta, known as “Ish Yerushalyim” was pictured marching with Iranians on Shabbos, the order was given by our Rabbinate, along with the other community Rabonim to deny him the amud or an aliya to the Torah.

There is no question that Rav Hirsch would distance himself, with a great amount of fervor, from the misanthropic behavior of fringe groups- even if only certain elements of that group engaged in the behavior. It is an utter disgrace to align him with anything that does not bring kavod shomayim.

I say this because the  group mentioned above has launched, among its use of media and internet, a website seeking to align Hirsch and German rabbonim with extreme forms of anti-Zionism. Some people who have a great love and admiration for Hirsch’s sterling humanism, have on occassion thought that so-called human-rights infringements in Israel are antithetical to Hirsch’s weltaunschung.

The anachronism here is comical. Not only did Hirsch pass away before political zionism could launch, but it is impossible to know what he would do if he had angry mobs at his border. Furthermore, when we don’t know what a gadol of a previous generation would have done in a given situation, we turn to the living leaders of the generation and we never surmise from a book. The Torah is a living document, and requires a living rebbe. Case closed

Hirsch was not an Extremist

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