Joseph Stalin, arguably the biggest butcher in the history of mankind, died on March 5th, 1953. His death was nothing short of a miracle. The infamous Doctors’ Plot, in which the Soviet dictator accused his personal physicians, most of them Jews, of plotting to kill him, was under way. Stalin, a renowned anti-Semite, was in the process of circulating a massive campaign blaming Jews for the all the evils of the world. Many argue that on the eve of his sudden death, he was planning to round up and deport the country’s Jews to concentration camps.
History Repeating Itself
Sixty-three years to Stalin’s death, the Jewish people face another genocidal regime bent on our destruction. As luck (or perhaps lack thereof) would have it, another ruthless Russian dictator is providing Iran with the military and political cover to make it happen.
National/Personal Interests Trump the Good of the People
For Putin, politics – and life have everything to do with cold calculation and nothing with the good of the People. All that matters to Vladimir is how Vladimir goes down in history and how quickly the Russian Empire returns to its former glory. Both Russians and foreign political pundits continue welcoming Putin’s “good will gestures” with open arms as if he’s the second coming of Mother Theresa. The fact that a very incomplete list of his crimes includes the orchestration of a bloody campaign in Chechnya that killed and maiming upwards of 50,000 people, most of them civilians, the ordering of a brief yet bloody invasion of the former Soviet republic of Georgia, helping Iran negotiate its way to a very favorable nuclear deal, leading an unprovoked invasion and consequent annexation of Crimea, and continuing to aid Assad’s genocidal campaign in Syria are lost on most. According to polls conducted in Russia, Putin is second to only Stalin when it comes to popularity rating.
Netanyahu’s ability to persuade his Russian counterpart to scrap a deal with Iran that would have seen key weaponry fall into the hands of Hezbollah is reason for people to fall madly in love with the criminal in the Kremlin. Because ignorance is bliss and because wishful thinking leads to a warped perception of reality. In truth, Putin does what’s best for Putin. The fact that he decided to listen to Netanyahu may yet come back to hurt Israel. Putin will undoubtedly use this as leverage for pressuring Bibi in the coming future.
Leaders Must Lead
Sixty-three years after we were saved by pure miracle, the world has not changed and neither have we. The fact that it has become a more dangerous place in which to live following the horrors of WWII and that “Never Again” has become a hollow gimmick is logical when it comes to a Jewish perspective.
Only when we, Jews, fulfill our national mission as a “Light Unto the Nations” by setting an example for the rest of the world, will others follow suit. Till then, we’ll be left at the mercy of the very nations who are all too eager for us to lead the way, minorities will continue suffering at the hands of homicidal terrorists, and evil will triumph over good. The world is waiting for us to live up to our name as a “holy people; a nation of priests.” Only when we fill the role designated for us by the Almighty, the world will truly be complete.