Hear our prayer
We hope that it did not pass unnoticed by the Heavenly Court that the world’s pre-eminent planner of harm to Jews was scheduled to speak from the rostrum of the most august international forum on Yom Kippur. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was scheduled to address the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday this week. He was also scheduled to enjoy a full media tour during his stay in New York. At each stop, but especially from the marble dais of the General Assembly, he will have repeated his various ignorant and malicious attacks against Jews, Jewish history and the Jewish state.
The United States denied visas to 20 Iranian officials who requested accreditation, including two of Ahmadinejad’s cabinet ministers, of the 160-member Iranian delegation that accompanied the Iranian president. Alas, it did not cancel Ahmadinejad’s visa.
Nor did UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon cancel the invitation to the Iranian leader, despite the efforts of Jewish community leaders in the United States and Canada.
Liberal MP Irwin Cotler sent a letter last week to Ban pleading with him to cancel Ahmadinejad’s appearance. “Given President Ahmadinejad’s hateful and incendiary incitement, flagrant disregard for principles of international law, massive repression of domestic human rights and complicity with international terrorism, providing him with an opportunity – indeed privilege – to speak to the community of nations is simply as unacceptable as it is unworthy of the United Nations. My fellow parliamentarians and myself would implore you to exercise your authority under Article 99 [of the UN charter] to prevent this affront to the United Nations, its charter and human decency,” Cotler wrote.
The Orthodox Union and the Rabbinical Council of America took the admittedly unusual step of calling upon all congregations to dedicate a specific moment during their services on Yom Kippur to pray for an end to the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran.
“Yom Kippur is not a day for politics,” the OU read, “But Yom Kippur 5773 is different.
“On this Yom Kippur the world faces an evil regime whose leaders have publicly committed themselves to destroying the State of Israel and to harming Jews worldwide.”
The earthly court of diplomats, heads of governments, media celebrities and magazine pundits may indeed have found it appropriate to give a place and a forum to Ahmadinejad for the continued public pronouncement of his hatred and his incitement to genocide. But we, the “jurors,” the people of his intended victims, denounce, condemn and “convict” him and pray for the confounding of his genocidal plans.
And we hope the Heavenly Court hears our prayers.