They’re Just Looking for a Juicy Red Story

Reporters came to places where Yidden were murdered by cold-blooded terrorists, but instead of recognizing innocent civilians murdered by barbaric terrorists, they indulge their own appetite for juicy stories.

By Rabbi Mordechai Lipskier – The Beis Medrash

A lion once had a bone stuck in his throat and announced that whoever dislodged it would receive a grand reward. A crane stuck her long beak into the lion’s mouth and successfully recovered the bone, but when she demanded her reward the lion roared, “How dare you! Is it not enough that I didn’t bite your head off when you put it into my mouth?! Now you demand a reward as well?”

The Baalei haTosafos use this parable to explain the exchange between Yitzchak and King Avimelech in this week’s sedra. Avimelech wanted to make a pact that Yitzchak would not harm him, claiming he had done much good for him in the past; but when Yitzchak asked what he had actually done, Avimelech became angry. “We didn’t harm you for all the years you lived with us, is that not enough?!”

Things haven’t changed much. Eretz Yisroel today is doing the whole world a favor by getting rid of a major terror threat, but instead of receiving gratitude or at least recognition, they get berated for it.

Another thing that hasn’t changed is how the world chooses to view the plight of the Yidden.

Eisav came home after a full day of murderous acts and found his brother Yaakov preparing a pot of lentils. Weak and hungry, Eisav told Yaakov to pour the pot of “red stuff” into his mouth.

Why didn’t he refer to the lentils by name?

Lentils are a food customarily eaten by mourners—their round shape denotes the cycle of life—and since Avraham Avinu had just passed away Yaakov was preparing the food for the mourning family. But Eisav had no interest in partaking in the mourning, so he acted as if he didn’t notice the type of food, just its color.[1]

Consider this: Reporters come to places where Yidden were murdered by cold-blooded terrorists. But instead of seeing the situation for what it is and calling it by its name—innocent civilians murdered by barbaric terrorists—they have the callousness and audacity to ignore the facts and instead indulge their own appetite for juicy stories. These reporters, the UN, and other descendants of Eisav throughout the world look directly at terror in Eretz Yisroel and at injustice in Gaza but refuse to recognize it for what it is.

This week’s sedra also provides the solution.

Yitzchak made a statement that reverberates until today: Hakol kol Yaakov v’hayadayim y’dei Eisav. Eisav’s power is in his hands—bloodshed and warfare, and Yaakov’s power is in his mouth—Torah and tefillah. Chazal qualify, however, that Eisav’s hands can only exert power when the voice of Yaakov is not heard. [2]

Eisav’s descendants will use any form of y’dei Eisav in order to threaten, intimidate or harm us, R”l. Our job is not to change them but to challenge ourselves to strengthen our kol Yaakov.

The Rebbe often said that when we fortify ourselves through limud haTorah, we bring safety to ourselves and to the Yidden in Eretz Yisroel. And when we encourage other Yidden to learn Torah, or help those who can’t do it on their own, the fortification becomes that much stronger.

The darkness of deceit and hatred will disappear, but the light of Torah will shine forever. Let’s try to remain focused on spreading light, and with Hashem’s help we’ll soon see the ultimate end to this insanity with the coming of Moshiach now.

[1] Beis HaLevi

[2] Bereshis Rabbah 65:20

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