The Micronesia Principle

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5 Responses

  1. Tal Benschar says:

    For some reason, I am reminded about the Gemara that states “Hillel mechayev es ha aniim, R. Elazar b. Horkenos mechayev es ha ashirim.” In the future when Hashem judges those who did not learn Torah, people will give all kinds of excuses: the poor will say they are too worried about livelihood to learn; the rich will say they are too worried about their possessions to learn. Then Hashem will point to Hillel (who learned in abject poverty) and R. Elazar b. Horkenos (who was very wealthy) as examples of those who learned despite their situation.

    (Similarly, R. Soloveichik interpreteted a Rashi at the beginning of Vayera that Avraham was mechayev Sodom — Avraham was a tremendous baal chesed who lived in the same environment as Sodom, the most selfish, cruel society on earth. Avraham’s chesed sweeps away any excuse by the Sodomites that it is their situation or environment which caused them to be selfish and cruel.)

    Le’atid lavo, when the nations of the world are called to account for their cruel, repeated, obsessive condemnations of Israel, they will render all kinds of excuses — they were weak, they were strong, they had financial interests, they went along with the crowd, etc. etc. Then HKBH can point to the United States — the strongest and wealthiest nation on earth — and Micronesia — one of the smallest and most obscure. Still, they stood with Israel. That is mechayev all the rest.

  2. Ori says:

    Emet v’Emunah: while the Jewish people have only one G-d, He may well have a special relationship with more than one nation.

    Ori: Does the Torah tell us of all the covenants G-d made with humanity, or only of those that are relevant to us? Does it say anywhere there can’t be other chosen people, possibly chosen for different jobs?

  3. Charles B. Hall says:

    Micronesia is a tiny, poor country with no real natural resources and just over a hundred thousand people. About a quarter of their economy is foreign aid, and most employed persons there work for their tiny government. Perhaps we Jews could help finance and support a tourism industry that really doesn’t exist yet.

  4. Ori says:

    Charles B. Hall, the reason Micronesia doesn’t have a tourism industry is geographic. They are too far away from anybody who is rich enough to want to be a tourist. Long flights are not fun.

    If anything can improve the Micronesian economy, it is outsourcing of information processing of some kind. Distance doesn’t mean that much when you communicate using a satellite.

  5. L. Oberstein says:

    Israel is unfortunately not considered a viable state long term by many nations of the world. Surrounded by enemies with oil, it is expendible. Israel is a small country that doesn’t make it in the game of international politics. This is the same as Kurdistan, Biafra,and a host of want to be smallstates that are overwhelmed by greater numbers and international apathy. Thank G-d, what I just wrote hasn’t happened,but it doesn’t make it less possible, Heaven forbid. This is what many people in the world think and is certainly what all of Israel’s enemies believe. Countering this pessimistic view is that of Shimon Peres that Israel’s brain power will make it a mightly power despite its small size and population.So far, Peres is right, Israel has a very strong army, economy and is far stronger than any of its nearby enemies. However, we delude ourselves if we forget that we are a sheep surrounded by wolves who would devour us in a second if they had even one opportunity. The big worry is that secular Israelis will buy into the scenario above and not believe Israel has a right to exist. This is tragically true of many Jews in and out of Israel. The religious Jew has to believe that Hashem wants Israel to make it.Otherwise, we don’t have what Micronesia has, isolation.

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