Security is the Number One Responsibility of Our Leaders

August 21, 2015  

The Torah is very explicit in what is demanded of our Leaders.

I will delve deeply into that point but first I would like to comment on the Posuk from Shoftim that I believe gets to the very heart and essence of Torah.

“Thou shalt be whole-hearted with Hashem your G-d” (18:13). Rashi explains Tamim as Temmimut which loosely translates to whole-hearted. Others translate it as “whole,” and still others translate it as “simple” (as derived from the word Tam as used in reference to Ya’akov Avinu- “Ish Tam”). Temmimut is an all encompassing expression of all of the above. It means be honest, be forthright, be humble, have perfect Faith, have no airs, and be devoid of any “Schtick.” And it means much more. The Sefat Emet says it means that the Jew has a direct connection to G-d Almighty beyond Nature.

In other words, the Jew has a Supernatural connection to G-d. Having established that the Torah asks for Temmimut from each and everyone one of us, I would like to move on to the end of Parshat Shoftim which discusses corpses found between cities in Eretz Yisrael and the bringing of the Eglah Arufah (the axed Heifer). “Your Elders and Judges shall go out and measure toward the cities that are around the corpse.” They shall speak up and say, “Our hands have not spilled this blood and our eyes did not see.” The Ibn Ezra says that the Elders (Leaders) have a responsibility to prevent sinfullness in their city.

If the city had not sinned this would not have happened. The Ramban suggests that the Eglah Arufah Ritual will publicize the situation so that people will come forward to help find the murderer. The Rambam states that this occurred because the victim was not accompanied or escorted and makes this mandatory. Rashi follows a similar approach.

The Gemara Yerushalmi concentrates on the fact that the murderer was allowed to roam freely without the leaders taking him off the streets. The Malbim learns like this Gemara Yerushalmi. The Chida asks what is the point of the leaders to state openly, “Our hands have not spilled this blood”? The Chida answers that they have to spell out that they were not negligent. They did everything they could to prevent this tragedy. The security of the people is the number one responsibility of its leaders whether in Israel or in America or anywhere else for that matter. If people are not protected, murderers are allowed free, terrorists are not stopped then the leaders have failed their main responsibility.

They cannot honestly say “Our hands have not spilled this blood.” They are ultimately responsible and held accountable for the safety, the security, and the well being of all the inhabitants. Unfortunately, and I say this with a very heavy heart, too many times in the past 25 years, I have witnessed failed leadership both in Israel and America. Over a thousand Jews died because of an ill conceived, and foolhardy agreement called the Oslo Accords. To this day not one person to my knowledge has come forward to take responsibility for the mayhem that came about because of faulty reasoning (giving guns to terrorists) and pie in the sky dreams of peace with mass murderers.

The most responsibility I have heard from any one individual was former President Bill Clinton who said “Arafat made me a colossal failure.” America now faces a much worse situation (both in scale and scope) with the misguided, irrational, fairy tale agreement with the world’s most evil regime that calls for death to America and death to Israel at every turn. Our leaders need to look into the Bible to learn their number one responsibility. The world would be a lot safer for the simple exercise.

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