‘Staring at his gun’ — NY rabbi offers worshipful sermon to his Israeli son’s M16 | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

‘Staring at his gun’ — NY rabbi offers worshipful sermon to his Israeli son’s M16

Last Saturday a leading New York rabbi urged his conservative congregation to “loudly, vociferously, vehemently use every means we have to defend the right of Israel to defend herself” against celebrity critics in the United States.

And a dozen times in his sermon, Rabbi Neil Zuckerman expressed worshipful feelings about his Israeli soldier son’s M16 because it represents the “miracle” of Jewish power.

Zuckerman told his Park Avenue Synagogue congregation that he stared at his son’s gun as it lay on the floor of his Jerusalem hotel room two weeks ago when his son stayed with him.

“I headed to the patio. And there it was, his gun. His M16 on the floor. Now for Israeli parents this might not be such a big deal to see your child’s gun from the army. But I’m not used to having a gun in my hotel room. Nor am I used to seeing my son carry that gun all over Jerusalem… So I sat down for a few minutes and I just considered what I was looking at… I thought about an essay my teacher Rabbi Donniel Hartman wrote several years ago called My Gun and I where he describes the ambivalence he feels about having owning a gun. I thought about the pride I felt in my son choosing to defend the state of Israel and the Jewish people… Mostly I thought about being in the land of Israel and the tension, as I looked at my son and the gun, between power and powerlessness.”

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