Jerusalem – One day after a video surfaced showing Israeli extremists dancing with guns and rifles at a wedding celebrating an attack on a Palestinian family, Norway’s chief rabbi has condemned both those who glorified the attack and the music playing in the background, which he said has become a theme song for those seeking revenge.
Rabbi Michael Melchior, a former government minister and member of the Knesset, is a frequent contributor to Haaretz and in an article released today (http://goo.gl/Nvb69r) he lamented the choice of lyrics to the popular song Zochreini Na, which quotes the words of Shimshon shortly before his death as he expressed his desire to get revenge from on his captors.
“These are the words that Samson said right before he felled the two middle pillars of the Temple of Dagon, killing himself together with the multitude of Philistines there with him,” wrote Rabbi Melchior. “One need not be a great Torah commentator to understand that the words, originally said in despair, express a readiness to be killed, if by our death, many Palestinians will die with us.”
Listen below to The song by Dov Shurin
Rabbi Melchior observed that Zochreini Na is played frequently at simchos in all Jewish circles, not just those of militant extremists and said that whenever the song is played, he stops dancing and protests the choice of music.
“Of all the beautiful words written in the Torah and in the Bible, these are the words deserving an honored place at our public events?” queried Rabbi Melchior.
“The soundtrack of hatred cannot be dismissed with the argument that it’s just an example of only the extreme and negligible margins of society,” added Rabbi Melchior. “Here, here is where all of us must do some true soul searching.”
The song Zochreini Na was originally written by Dov Shurin, a well known Israeli singer-songwriter and media personality who is known for his far-right political views, in memory of a couple who were killed in Kiryat Arba near Kever Shimshon.
“I innocently went to Shoftim, to Shimshon’s death and looked for his words,” Shurin told VIN News. “My father would tell me the story of Shimshon when he would put me to sleep and it was a story that I loved and the words ‘zochreini na,’ strengthen me.”
Asked what motivated him when he composed the song, Shurin said “It is a song written by a guy who loves Hashem with all his heart and soul and everything, who wanted to make sure that a young couple was killed will always be remembered.”
Shurin observed that it is difficult for outsiders to comprehend how Israelis are changed by the current wave of violence.
“Rabbi Shlomo Freifeld, dean of the Sh’or Yoshuv Institute of Jewish Studies in Far Rockaway would say that when you walk down the street and someone puts a gun to your head, you are no longer the same person anymore,” said Rabbi Shurin.
“The Satmar Rov, Reb Yoel, would say that when his Chasidim go to the Diamond District, when they see things on the train when they go from Marcy Ave to 47th Street, they are no longer the same person anymore. These children in Israel, are witnessing attacks and are affected by what they see.”