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Somewhat conflicted...

Posted on 2011.05.02 at 06:05
Current Music: The Gears - Time Won't Let Me

Is it right to be happy that someone got shot in the head and killed? How much rejoicing can we do over that? A lot? A little? Also, does this mean that the war on terror is over?


Release the Kraken!
delerium69 at 2011-05-02 15:58 (UTC) (Link)
I mentioned this on Twitter last night, because I was growing disturbed by the raucous, joyful behavior as a reaction to his being killed. IMHO, it's okay to feel relief at the death of an extremely dangerous person, but I don't believe it's a good thing to express joy over it. We should feel somber that we need to end a life, regardless of the situation. The fact that people were whooping it up like their favorite team just won a game left a very bad taste in my mouth.
eitanhalevy at 2011-05-02 19:08 (UTC) (Link)
Many people like to quote a midrash on this topic about when the Jewish people crossed the Red Sea and the Egyptians were drowned. The angels started singing and dancing, and G-d said to them, "How can you rejoice when my creatures are dying?"

What many people forget is that this admonition was aimed at the angels. G-d did not reproach Am Yisrael for singing and rejoicing. In fact, what we have recorded in the Bible is a response of joyful singing and dancing in response to Egypt's demise.

While on some divine perspective it may be true that any death is to be mourned, we live in this world, and we have enemies. We should certainly rejoice if, from our perspective, an evil, and a threat to our well-being has been removed. We are not expected to have G-d's perspective.

As to whether the 'war on terror' is over. Of course not...
theservant at 2011-05-02 20:33 (UTC) (Link)
Of course the war on terror isn't over, but the manifestations of the war on terror, particularly troops everywhere.

I was thinking more about this, and I thought that basically I should stop being a jerk and so holy about it- a danger to me is lessened, someone who would have wanted to hurt me and my family and my people and any country to which I have allegiance is dead, and the natural response is to feel relief and yes, happiness.
eitanhalevy at 2011-05-03 04:15 (UTC) (Link)
Yay! Hodu lashem ki tov. Praise the Lord for He is good.
eitanhalevy at 2011-05-05 05:45 (UTC) (Link)
Just saw this today, by R' Aviner, Originally here (http://www.ravaviner.com/2011/05/celebrating-after-osama-bin-ladens.html):

"With America and the entire world riveted by the US Military's success in assassinating Osama bin Laden, we felt it important to bring you Rav Aviner's response to the death of Yassir Arafat (in 5765).

When Your Enemy Falls, Do Not Rejoice?

It is true that it says in Mishlei (24:17): "When your enemy falls, do not rejoice," but there are enemies and there are Enemies.

The Talmud in Megillah (16a) relates that when Mordechai was led around on the horse by Haman, he did not treat him exceedingly mercifully. When Haman questioned him: Doesn’t the verse say, "When your enemy falls, do not rejoice"? Mordechai responded: This does not refer to you.

Arafat was like Haman. He not only wanted to kill Jews, but actively did so, and left many widows, widowers, and orphans, as well as thousands of wounded and suffering. We could say that every child in Israel has a wound on his soul for a person who was close to him who was murdered.

It is also true that when the angels wanted to sing and join with the song of the Children of Israel after the Splitting of the Red Sea, the Master of the Universe prevented them, saying: "My handiwork has drowned in the sea and you are singing a song?" (see Sanhedrin 39b and Megillah 10b). This is correct, and yet the Children of Israel did sing! How so? We are not angels. As the Admor of Pisetzna, Rav Kalman Kalonymus Shapira, wrote during the Holocaust (see "Aish Kodesh"): Was an angel ever hit? Was an angel ever murdered? Was an angel ever humiliated? We were! The angels did not suffer as we did in Egypt, so they could not sing. But we did suffer -- suffered immensely -- and therefore during the Exodus from Egypt "Moshe sang." And Miriam and the women also went out with singing and dancing after the Splitting of Red Sea and the drowning of the Egyptians. And so, for Arafat, as for the Egyptians, we say, "and joy went through the camp" (Melachim 1 22:26) and we say "when the wicked perish, there is joy" (Mishlei 11:10).

May we be comforted by the building of Jerusalem."
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