By Yehuda Ceitlin, Editor of COLlive
As Jews the world over celebrate Chanukah, the holiday of freedom, Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin remains behind bars at the Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, New York, waiting for a miracle.
While he is trying to make the best of his time there, the father of 10 is certain that the truth will come to light even after being convicted of 86 counts of financial fraud and sentenced to 27 years in prison.
Over 18 members of Congress have written to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate the case for alleged misconduct and fairness of the Federal Judge Linda Reade.
This week Rubashkin accused senior government officials in Iowa for conspiring against him, although he maintained good relationships with the mayors of Postville – which led to the demise of his family’s now-bankrupt Agriprocessors slaughterhouse.
He made the accusations in a recent email to his family and close friends -who forwarded it to COLlive.com for the public’s reading. We took the liberty in correcting grammatical errors but did not translate the Hebrew words so the email remains authentic.
Here is Rubashkin’s full email:
Today is Chanukah. Mai Chanukah, and what is the connection to our parshas Hashovua? As we know from the Shaloh Hakadoish that all the chagim that occur have a connection to the parshas Hashavua, that includes the Yomin toivim Medrabonon.
Chanukah is about a foreign Greek culture. It starts off in peaceful coexistence – as when Alexander of Mecodonia saw Shimon Hatzadik, and he came in peace – the Yidden and the Greeks seemed to be able to communicate well. The Greeks were into knowledge and the Yidden made a great people to learn with.
Until the Greeks turned against the Yidden and wanted to force their pagan beliefs not to accept the notion of one G-d as the creator. They went on to destroy the Jewish life – both religious and private. These “civilized” Greeks unmasked themselves and showed their penimius of a murderous people. They unleashed terror and death to all those that stood in their way.
The “civilized” Greeks robbed the Yidden of their possessions, murdered them and made their lives a miserable existence.
Until Hahsem Saved the Yidden, the Chashmonoim were shown, great miracles and ‘the many’ fell into the hands of ‘the few’ and ‘the powerful’ into the hands of ‘the weak,’ we were all liberated, we made the chanukas Habayis, lit the Menorah with pure oil, and we have a yoim toiv now every year we thank Hashem for his miracles then and now, Bayomim haheim ubezman Hazeh.
This is very similar to the story of the Yidden in Mitzrayim.
The story of Yoisef Hatzadik which starts the next phase of “ger yiyeh zarecho” for Klal Yisroel and Yoisef rising as Mishne Lemelech, the prelude to the golus Mitzrayim is always in the time of Chanukah.
There is a very strong lesson connecting them.
In explaining the reason of golus mitzrayim, there is the explanation that it was the Hakdomoh to Matan Toirah, the Moshol given is the golus Mitzrayim is like the “Kur Habarzel” – the “SMELT”ing pot (not the MELTING pot), it’s a vessel used to separate golden ore from all impurity’s.
Since the golden ore has in it, gold, mixed together with stone and dirt, all mixed up in one, the gold needs to be separated, there needs to be the separation of the gold which is desirable, from the dirt and stone which is not desirable, that’s accomplished by putting the ore into a pot that is heated in a fire, until there is the separation.
As a side, in our Golus America, when I grew up, I heard many times the concept of America as the Melting Pot, that the Yidden were expected to melt and become like one another, to lose their unique Identity as a Nation of Hashem!
If you look in a dictionary you will find the definition of Melting Pot like this; “a place where different race and culture or individual assimilate into a cohesive whole.”
It’s amazing the difference that one letter “S” in front of the word can make “Melt” is defined as to dissolve, disintegrate, also to cause to disperse or disappear, ”Smelt” is defined as to melt and to fuse in order to separate the metal…
Then there is the “Mosaic,” or, the maaloh of the kesoines Pasim. Tiferes, in kabbalah. Beauty is realized, not by assimilating colors into one color, but rather, by many colors complimenting each other, each color’s uniqueness brings forth the beauty of the other colors.
The greatness of unity is not when there is a disappearance of individual qualities, but rather by each unique quality bringing out its beauty, thereby and also complimenting the others.
The Moshol of Kur Habarzel as a hakdamah.
How does this moshol explain the pain of Golus Mitzrayim, and since Golus Mitzrayim is the root to all further golus and all Tzorois, how can we understand what our chachomom want to explain us with the SMELTING pot.
Question: The idea to take a doimem, and heat it up to extreme temperature, thereby separating the gold from the pesoiles is a plausible concept in the world of minerals, but how does that concept apply to real live human beings. Practically, how does the heat and pain of golus, applied as a reason to the real life experience of golus of all the Yidden in Mitzrayim?
In other words would it not be a better Hakdamah when there is no pain just Avoidah?
How is it, that by turning up the heat up on the Yidden, until it was a avoida perech, how will that help make a the yid a “Golden” Yid? a yid thats ready for Kabolas Hatoirah.
How will it make the yid, a piece of gold, thru his experiences of untold of hardship and pain?
Like the pain of the deceitful Pharoh, fooling and luring the loyal Jewish citizens of Egypt into slavery?
Pharoh used their extreme loyalty to the country , in order to rob them of their very freedom?
The pain when the Mitzrayim threw live baby boys into the Nile river?
The torture when Pharoh murders Jewish children every day in order to bathe in their blood.
When the Jewish men toil endlessly in the fields making bricks all day in the heat of the scorching sun?
When Jewish children are used as mortar and put in alive in the walls they are building?
The Mitzri soldiers coming into their homes to take their precious children away?
How does all that, make Yidden into a nation of gold?
Into better golden people?
How does all this pain and torture help mold and form the Yidden into the Am Hanivchar?
A nation that is separate from all the nations?
So what does it mean Kur Habarzel?
And what does all this have to do with Chanuka?
The answer I can give is the answer that I learned from my own experience.
Like Yoisef and his brothers, my father and family only brought blessing to those people in that city and state, with lots of Sayata Dishmaya the Yidden brought to them, peace, jobs, strong economy, and wealth to a part of the country that was abandoned.
My father invested his money, energy, and his family to make it succeed, we even attracted other businesses to come and invest. The place flourished to everybody’s benefit.
How was this blessing received by those people?
Like the Mitzriyim of old; Their highest leaders made meetings, from the local city council members, till the governor, had the same plan, they said “hovo nischakma Loi, pen yirbeh…”
They unleashed such hate and destruction that it should shock any civilized society.
But as the Egyptian society accepted Pharoh plan, so did all the people of that state, accept the Pharoh plan, even after physically assaulting the flourishing place into ruin, they came out with the wicked and insane charges against me and my father, 9311 of them, unheard of and would prove a public deception ploy.
Never was such treatment given to anybody else, this was Hovoh nischakmo “loi” to the Jewish problem, pen yirbeh…
After accomplishing their incentive of character assassination, which led to imprisonment and loss of my freedom, they say oops, 30 minutes before the trial begins they advise the judge, 9,226 were not real, they dropped all those charges, the remainder of the charges was proven to totally false and FABRICATED.
Sadly, Kur Habarzel and the heat is still burning, they are perpetuating their fabricated lie daily, they made a commentary video to memorialize the lie, now they are rewarding the people and making them available for more “testimony” when they need it, they are bringing back from Guatemala the people and families of those that were “hovo nischakmo loi,” they will have jobs by what they plundered and stole from my father.
The very same people that lied and libeled the innocent , they are getting their lifelong dream of US citizenship, they were and are part of the “hovoh nischakmo loi.” Rotzachto vegam yorashto.
Kur Habarzel is the Medium, or vehicle that separates, and makes recognizable that what was not recognized when in original state, what was before not recognized for what it was is recognized by going thru the Kur Habarzel.
I remember when I first came into the courtroom in Waterloo, I had not eating for the last approximately 20 hours, because they refused me Kosher food, which by US law I was entitled to.
I had been assaulted and beaten in the jail only because I was a Jew, I had been incarcerated through falsehood and lies. As I sat there in the big courtroom of justice, watching this libel continue, it dawned upon me that this is the meaning of the Kur Habarzel.
“Who wants to be like them” – these people that are torturing me, violating their very own laws in their very own courtroom where justice is supposed to happen. This was not a place of justice for the weak. It’s a place where power rules over the weak.
I realized that all this pain and suffering was teaching me a lesson, that I never could intellectually comprehend as fully as I do now. I was and I am going through the Kur Habarzel, the gold of the Yidisher Neshama is being separating from the klipah NEVER EVER wanting to have any shaichus or connection semblance of the rishus that embodies them, not in their clothes, not in their style, not in their food, not in anything that they stood for, the taavoh was lost.
The same as by mitzrayim.
Yoisef Hatzakik single handedly saved the Egyptians from doom. He brought them wealth and power that was too much too count, he made the Pharaoh’s strong and wealthy. Yaakov’s arrival stopped 5 years of the terrible famine they had already tasted.
All this should have made the Pharaoh’s and the Egyptian’s forever grateful to these good loyal Jewish citizens.
Untill the tyranny started, the Jewish people thought highly of their neighbors. Maybe there were thoughts to emulate them, just like by Chanukah. The Egyptians were a very advanced scientific society, they seemed so cultural, nice, and family minded, there was the possibility of error, maybe something of value was there by the Egyptian lifestyle.
That is when the Yidden needed the Kur Habarzel when they witnessed and felt on their own bodies who their neighbors really were. The shared friendship and loyalty turned into hate and cruelty that’s too great to describe, actually robbing them of their basic rights as a people, their right for freedom. The Egyptians went on to even imprison them as slaves.
When the heat and the Kur Habarzel separated the Egyptians from the gold, the Yidden were able to say with the Sheim Hamalchus the Brocho of SHELOI ASANI GOI! When they witnessed all the cruelty of the Egyptian society, they totally were separated from that evil, they never wanted to dress, talk, even be called like a Egyptian, the Yidden being forever separate to their very essence, they became the AM HANIVCHAR.
“Who would even want to be like them?” they realized, those cruel slave masters that were demons in the form of humans. Their mask of science and culture was hiding their real face and penimius of evil, there was nothing about their lifestyle the Yid would want to copy.
There was nothing about their look or style that any Yid would even want to look like them.
Would any Jewish boy or girl even want to resemble the German Nazi that murdered and burnt millions of innocent Jewish men woman and children systematically and cold bloodily for years and only stopped because they were forcibly stopped?!
The same is for all the rest of those nations, whether they were the Greeks, the Spaniards, Portuguese etc. The whole European continent, and Russia, is soaked with innocent Jewish blood. They burnt us alive, they murdered Yidden as if their blood was water. Yidden were driven from their homes after years of citizenship, pogroms was the tool of governments.
The greatest pogrom of the six million kedoishim was done with silence of all the nations who refused to stop it. The golus is full of these stories unfortunately too many to mention here.
The Kur Habarzel continues with all the nations against the Yidden now. Even when Yidden are in their own land, given to them by Hashem, there is no real remorse for their cruelty of thousands of years.
The Kur Habarzel makes the Yid to be able to see evil and say with total certainty, with their whole Yechida, ASHREINU MAH TOIV CHELKEINU… ATOH BECHARTONU MEKOL HOAAMIM… ESHAER NASAN LONU TOIRAS EMMES.
We are pure of any desires to copy any one of those society’s wickedness, we only have Hashem to learn from, we have one Hashem, his only holy Torahm his holy Mitzvos. It’s the inyan of Yechidah again where the Yid wants nothing other than Hashem.
May Hashem make the Ness of Bayomim HAheim bezman hazah, for each Yid Befrat and all the Yidden Bechlal with the coming of Moshiach.
A freilicher Chanukah,
Sholom Mordechai halevi