Year’s End: What’s Next?


Shalom, dear Friend!

I hope this message will find you safe and well. With thanks to God, here in Jerusalem my wife and I are both well, as are our children and all of their children in their respective homes in the south, center and north of Israel.

As we approach New Year 5782, which starts on Monday night September 6, I’ve been thinking back over the past year, taking stock, and searching for direction for what is to come. This New Year is particularly auspicious as it is both a Torah “leap year” of 13 months, which has a special sanctity of its own, and also the Sabbatical year, which possesses very great sanctity. I am nearing my 72th birthday, and as a grandfather who recently became a great grand-father, I wonder what kind of a world I will be leaving to the coming generations.

Part I

The Pandemic

What a year it’s been! The Covid pandemic had already made its deadly entrance the previous year, but in the last year the crisis hugely intensified, with ever-renewed outbreaks, new, more resistant “mutations”, mask and vaccination mandates, repeated lockdowns, destruction of livelihoods, hopes and dreams, disruption of the world economy, travel, family and social life, children’s education and much more. Unmeasurable is the consequent toll of anxiety, fear, emotional pain and depression among people of all ages, not least among those who have lost dear ones or have themselves suffered the ravages of Covid. Statistics show that suicides have skyrocketed, while studies of children indicate marked cognitive decline since the start of the pandemic.

Despite being allegedly steered by “experts” and “scientists”, the authorities in countries across the world have failed to stem the pandemic even with draconian measures, and are now talking about new “mutations” against which the vaccines are said to be powerless. I have not heard of a single leader in any country calling for all to look deep into themselves, repent of their evil and pray to God for salvation from this plague.

From the bats of Wuhan to biological warfare

At first the virus was attributed to bats in the market in Wuhan, China, until the trail led to the advanced scientific laboratory in that city, where research in tweaking viruses to enhance their virulence and infectiousness through “gain in function” had been going on for decades. It turns out that this research was generously financed by the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases under the directorship of Dr Anthony Fauci.

Exactly how the virus “leaked” from the lab – who let the genie out of the bottle – is still unclear. A more important question is: What was the purpose of those who created and bottled up this genie in the first place? Could this pandemic be China’s biological war to subjugate the world? If so, why was the development of the weapons for this war financed by the government of the United States, in whose territory such research was for some years illegal? Who is making war against who? What is clear is that the pharmaceutical companies have made and will continue to make billions out of the vaccines, and governments across the world have expanded their authoritarian grip over their populations with the collusion of the mainstream media. Could the unthinkable be true – that hidden governmental forces have unleashed the virus against their own populations? Perhaps innocuous-looking agents are traveling around with little bottles, visiting a covered market here, a crowded shopping mall or sports event there, discreetly spraying tiny infectious droplets over everyone???

China & the quest for world government

One thing that has become strikingly apparent in recent years is the rise of China’s star. No longer is she the impoverished, isolated peasant thralldom of Mao Tze-tung which the tireless shuttle diplomat, Dr Henry Kissinger, reintroduced to the world stage back in the far-off days of Richard Nixon. Today China’s economy is booming, based on the theft of other nations’ technologies, a vast, disciplined, increasingly highly educated and prosperous workforce, and her own gigantic exports. Authoritarian control over all aspects of life ensures compliance within, while assiduous diplomacy and extensive foreign aid, trade and investment have extended her tentacles over the Far East, Iran, Turkey and many other countries throughout the world. These include Britain and the United States, where China’s enormous investments in industry, real estate as well as university professorships and student sponsorship have given her tremendous influence and leverage. It is worthy of note that China, the most populous country in the world, is officially atheist, and much of the conduct of her government and many of her people is a direct affront to the Torah and the Seven Universal Commandments of the Children of Noah.

Developments in the US this last year have been a major center of attention from the run-up to the presidential election to the catastrophic surrender in Afghanistan by the “winner” of that election. While the enemies of President Donald Trump used every ploy to spin the narrative as if there had been “collusion with Russia”, it is clear to many that the “deep state” that actually controls the American government has been in collusion with none other than China – as indicated by all the now-hushed scandals surrounding huge Chinese pay-offs to Joe Biden and his son Hunter (an Edomite name if ever there was one, see Genesis 25:28). The ultimate goal of such collusion would be to take down the U.S.A. as the world’s leading power in order to bring about a world government controlled by a tiny elite of super-wealthy.

The collusion was in fact much wider than between the Bidens and their handlers and some top Chinese officials, as detailed in a Time magazine article celebrating how concerted action by powerful forces thwarted President Trump’s campaign for reelection. Wall Street, multinational corporations, mainstream media, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, ballot fraud and computer manipulation, the forces that fueled “Black Lives Matter”, Antifa and the other destructive rioters, endless Democrat machinations, deep corruption in the FBI and the CIA who were and are actively spying on Americans, etc. etc. all conspired to steal the election.

With a rapid volley of executive orders that can only have been dictated by someone else (i.e., Barack Hussein Obama) through a hidden earpiece in his ear, dementia-wracked Joe Biden has sanctioned runaway government spending and steep inflation, destroyed USA oil independence and sent American know-how and production lines to other countries while simultaneously opening the gates to an uncontrolled flow of illegal immigrants (potential democrat voters?), many of them covid-infected, who are being covertly spread around America. He has ordered the actual destruction of healthy food crops, offering incentives to farmers to execute the program and penalties for failure to do so. This can only aggravate the growing food shortage (intentional?) leading to further chaos and suffering. Meanwhile he has been holding hundreds of his political opponents literally imprisoned in solitary confinement as part of a rapidly intensifying witch-hunt against a largely fictitious “extremist right wing” threat.

His latest “imbecility” (former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair’s term), the frantic, totally disorganized, ignominious retreat from Afghanistan and its surrender to the Taliban – welcomed by China, Russia, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, etc. – is an historic humiliation of Edom (embodied in the demented Biden) that will greatly embolden Ishmael, including Iran and her proxies, Hezbollah and Hamas, as well as a medley of old and newly-emerging terror organizations that will only make the world more dangerous.

Meanwhile in Israel

Lovers and admirers of Israel around the world who are not aware of its inner intrigues at the highest levels may be shocked and hurt to find that parallel machinations by “deep state” forces have been continuous here for decades, culminating in the past year with the successful campaign to bring down Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his allegedly “right wing” government in favor of a coalition dependent on extreme left-wing and Arab-Israeli partners. After four elections in the space of two years, the majority of voters, who clearly preferred “Bibi”, were once again deprived of what they voted for.

Thwarting the Israeli “democratic process” is nothing new. For over three decades the Israeli Supreme Court, a self-selecting panel of mostly extreme “liberal” and “enlightened” judges, have systematically usurped more and more power to themselves, using every legal loophole to disallow government decisions and laws passed by the democratically elected Knesset, showing partiality to criminals and terrorists while blatantly discriminating against Jewish religious practice and the integrity of Land of Israel and its Jewish settlers, shackling the Israeli army and compromising the country’s security at the cost of many lives.

In the wake of the disastrous 1993 Oslo Agreement followed by the horrors and nightmares of the renewed “Intifada”, the Israeli public preferred leaders perceived to be “strong on security”, yet one after the other they were eliminated (PM Yitzchak Rabin) or folded (Ehud Barak and Ariel Sharon, who needlessly and imbecilically destroyed Gush Katif, increasing terror against Israel by leaps and bounds, as exemplified in this past year’s war of rockets, missiles and incendiary balloons from Gaza into Israel. Even “right wing” Benjamin Netanyahu could never summon the power and the nerve to take decisive action against terror from Gaza or the Iranian nuclear threat.

Governments change, but somehow the same basic policies are followed, and the Jewish State of Israel is left in a stranglehold, with enemies barking on all sides. The Israeli army is like a bound Samson, dominated by leftist commanders, accompanied by crews of journalists, left-wing lawyers and international” observers” and critics monitoring its every move, to the point that soldiers are frightened to shoot even in self-defense. The Israeli domestic police find it easier to pursue “extremist” Jewish settlers and “extremist” ultra-orthodox Jews than to lift a finger to seriously combat growing Arab violence against them. Jewish communities in major Jewish-Arab Israeli towns such as Lod, Ramle, Yaffo and Acco have been ravaged by Arab riots, assault and vandalism. Yet far from heeding the desperate calls of the Jewish residents to restore order and defend them, the Israeli police are demanding that they surrender their personal weapons.

The orthodox Torah-observant communities of Israel have become ever more alienated from the predominantly secular Israeli government, judiciary and police, and particularly after this year’s Meiron Lag BaOmer disaster in which 45 people lost their lives in a crush that was demonstrably caused by official negligence. More and more obedient, loyal and devoted citizens of Israel who pay their taxes and serve the army are feeling oppressed, bewildered, powerless and despondent.


Part 2


In face of the suffering caused by the pandemic, the evident incompetence of governments in dealing with it and all the other evils we are witnessing, people of faith across the world are awakening, refusing any more to buy into official and mainstream media narratives, while searching for a new direction. Many feel they have been betrayed by corrupt leaders and governments, as if we are in the throes of a kind of societal “auto-immune disease”, where the very governments that were supposed to protect their citizens actually turn against them and attack them. There are many indications that a super-wealthy, super-powerful global elite has successfully infiltrated the governments of many of the world’s leading countries, who are using the “pandemic” to further an authoritarian agenda whose ultimate purpose is to subjugate all humanity to a world government.

This agenda is increasingly blatant, and is expressed in “Agenda 2030” fathered by the “World Economic Forum” (another unelected, self-selected group of super-wealthy, super-powerful), which has been officially adopted by all 193 United Nations member states. It is presented as a benign plan to “facilitate equal, sustainable and inclusive growth across the world, while promoting peace”, but the actual agenda is to use school curriculum to undermine and destroy little children’s ties to their parents, families and traditional beliefs and to instill in them idea that the state is all and their mission in life is nothing but to be its obedient servants. The ultimate roots of this vision lie in Plato’s “Republic”, where the masses, greatly reduced by lethal methods of population control, will be serfs under a middle class of managers, all working for the benefit of the tiny ruling elite.

Careful research now widely available through the Internet shows that secret networks of Freemasons and other shady and even occult forces have for centuries been working assiduously towards this goal. In the west and particularly in the USA, much of the groundwork in preparing the population to give up their freedom and submit to authority was laid in the wake of the cultural revolution started in the 1960’s by the post-Marxist, post-Freudian philosopher, Herbert Marcuse, who under the banner of “flower power” preached total sexual license. Since then, “Gay”, “Lesbian”, “Bisexual” and “Transgender” lifestyles have been actively promoted to the point where today they are legally protected and presented as being mainstream, and throughout the education system, much of the staff, from administrators, professors and researchers down to junior school and nursery teaches, have turned to be predominantly “liberal”, “left wing”, “Marxist”, “anarchist” and the like.

But far from the “flower-power” dream, the reality we see in our societies today is one of anger, prejudice, hatred, rage, violence, random assaults, stabbings, shootings, atrocious murders and other grotesque crimes, wanton vandalism and destruction, breakdown of the family, moral breakdown, total sexual license, rampant abortions, racial divisiveness, political, judicial and police corruption… The tone of public debate and discussion on all levels, from politicians, commentators and celebrities to street-life and social media trolls – has become universally abusive, full of vulgarity and verbal if not actual violence.

At the same time, people of faith who espouse traditional values are experiencing active persecution in countries across the world. Overt anti-Semitic attacks on Jews have become rampant everywhere, while egregious recent examples of persecution of Christians have been documented in China, Africa and even such enlightened places as Canada and “liberal” California. Despite all the talk of Islamophobia, in most cases Muslims seem to be spared persecution, and in Britain, Europe and USA today they seem to enjoy favored status.

The Torah View

The moral decay that we are witnessing is parallel to that of Sodom, Gomorrah, Egypt and the other decadent cultures of Biblical times (and many of the fallen souls of those times are evidently being reincarnated in this generation, for better or worse). The castigations of the Biblical prophets against the corrupt leaders and wealth-craving upper classes of the ancient kingdoms of Israel and Judah could equally apply to the powerful, wealthy “Deep State” in USA, Israel and elsewhere.

On the world plane, the end-times alliance between Edom and Ishmael has been developing for well over a century, ever since the need for oil forced the advanced western industrialized countries to seek control of the oil-fields in Arab countries, inevitably turning the Middle East into a flashpoint for conflict. The West needs Israel as the only stable and reliable country in the region, yet provides massive funding and strong diplomatic support for the Palestinians, in order to keep Israel preoccupied, weak and in tow. The protracted farce of pretending to rein in Iran’s nuclear aspirations, which are unashamedly directed against Israel, has served as nothing but a smoke-screen to enable Iran to develop the very weapons she wants. And now, Joe Biden’s despicable abandonment of Afghanistan is a rich gift on a plate to Ishmael by a US president who seems to be operating on orders from the Muslim Brotherhood.

The countries allied with Gog, king of Magog, in his end-times war against Israel are enumerated in Ezekiel chapters 38-39. Although Magog is identified with the region between the Black and Caspian seas, important scholars consider that Gog and his descendants were nomadic Mongols who migrated east and became mixed with the population of China, which they came to dominate. Other major players listed by Ezekiel include Russia (“Meshekh”=Moscow), Turkey (Beit Togarma), Iran (Paras) and an assortment of eastern and western peoples. Thus, the line-up in place against Israel today is precisely as prophesied.

The holy Zohar states that at the end of days, the tribe of Reuben, who in exile became scattered around the world, will rise up and make wars on every side and rule over all (Zohar, Vayechi 236a). Interestingly, the tribe of Reuben was one of the first of the Ten Tribes to be taken into exile by the Assyrians, and their first place of exile was in the eastern region of the Assyrian empire, precisely the location of present-day Afghanistan. There is abundant evidence that embedded within the Pashtun of Afghanistan are people who believe themselves to be descended from the Ten Tribes and who have many traditional practices that parallel Torah practice. Time will tell if the Taliban rulers of Afghanistan, who are mainly Pashtun, will indeed prove to fulfill the prophesied destiny of the Tribe of Reuben.

The Talmud states that “the son of David will not come until the wicked kingdom extends over Israel (i.e., over the whole world where Israel are scattered – Rashi) for nine months” (Bavli, Sanhedrin 98b). The “wicked kingdom” will be an amalgam of “iron” and “clay” (Daniel 2:42), Edom and Ishmael. We do not seem to be quite there yet although the Edom-Ishmael alliance is well established, and ever-increasing government repression and mind-control of their citizens is itself a manifestation of this wicked kingdom.

The Talmud states that if Israel will not repent at the end of days, “The Holy One, Blessed be He, will establish a king over them whose decrees are as harsh as Haman’s, and the Jewish people will have no choice but to repent…” (ibid. 97b).

Can the pandemic itself, man-made as it would appear to be, actually be the materialization of the plague sent against the hordes of Gog and Magog at the climax of the war (Zechariah 14:12)? Even if man-made, it is no contradiction to say that the pandemic has been sent by God, since He Himself works through agents, and uses the wicked to function as His rod of retribution. Although they themselves may think they are acting out of free will, in fact they are impelled to follow His plan (Ezekiel 38:4)

Of the plague, the prophet Zechariah writes:

As for those peoples that warred against Jerusalem, God will smite them with this plague: Their flesh shall rot away while they stand on their feet; their eyes shall rot away in their sockets; and their tongues shall rot away in their mouths. In that day, a great panic from God shall fall upon them, and everyone shall snatch at the hand of another, and everyone shall raise his hand against everyone else’s hand. (Zechariah 14:12-13)

Not only are we today witnessing the pandemic and its devastating effects, but also the ubiquitous strife between one person and another depicted by the prophet.

Emunah is the only answer

It is well known that at the end of days, God’s running of the world according to His plan becomes all but incomprehensible. Only with Emunah – faith in God and His Torah, faith in the prophets and true sages of Israel – can we see that everything that is happening today, including the very concealment of God and all the adversity that surrounds us, is leading only to complete redemption with the coming of Mashiach and the building of the Temple, when “Torah will go forth from Zion and the word of God from Jerusalem” (Isaiah 2:3).

Of the advent of Mashiach it is written that God will “grasp the ends of the earth and shake the wicked from it” (Job 38:13). Today we can all testify that we and those around us have been profoundly shaken by the pandemic and its effects. Harsh as are the pain and suffering caused by the illness and deaths it has caused, the destruction of livelihoods, plans, hopes and ambitions and the disruption of all our previous activities, we may derive some comfort if we see with the eye of Emunah that all the pain and suffering are not merely retribution but indeed atonement that is cleansing and preparing the world for the Redemption. We must take all that is happening to us and to the entire world as God’s CALL TO TESHUAH, true repentance for the sin, immorality and corruption that have swept the world. The one call that we never hear from any of our leaders, governments, experts, scientists, pundits and celebrities is for us to turn to God, but for those who have Emunah, all that is happening is sent only so that we should turn to God. If the shake-up has undermined much that we previously thought valuable and important, we must take this as our own personal Exodus from Egypt as we watch the false gods of the whole world crumble and fall before our very eyes.

Torah makes free

Even in the worst periods of persecution suffered by Jews at the hands of the Babylonians, Greeks and Romans, the Christian church and Islam, Communism and Nazism, those who had Emunah adhered to the Torah with all their hearts, soul and might, because the Torah pathway itself frees its faithful followers from servitude to flesh and blood (Avot 3:5). Martyrs fell, people suffered, yet Israel survived and the Torah gives ever-renewed vitality to an undaunted, undefeatable nation.

God’s call to us is surely to exorcise from within our minds, hearts and souls all the inner bogeys – the emotional, mental and ideological viruses – that have been pumped into us from earliest childhood, keeping us under the thrall of our taskmasters and oppressors. Through deep introspection, regular prayer, meditation and Torah study, we must continually prime ourselves with the knowledge that within ourselves and all around us, all is only God’s revelation, and our task is to bring ourselves to understand that our primary relationship is with God – ATAH, Thou. We must seek Him in the various situations we face and all the different people we encounter, even when He seems completely concealed.

If we crave the coming of Mashiach, we must steadily fine-tune ourselves to the point where we are living now already with the spirit of Mashiach – connecting to the True Tzaddik through emulating his traits and following the ways of charity, kindness, love and peace. Focusing not on fruitless questions about the identity of Mashiach but rather on the godly qualities he embodies and teaches could be the element that will ultimately bridge the gulf between Torah on the one hand and Christianity and Islam on the other.

We must seek the divine spark within all people, even those we detest. We are not required to love the wicked, but we may ask for what purpose God has put them here, if only to teach us the difference between right and wrong.

At a time when mask mandates, social distancing and lockdowns are separating one person from another, we need to foster truly human, loving relationships wherever we can with family, friends, fellow seekers, neighbors and those in the surrounding community. The social fabric is strengthened through acts of kindness and charity – even a smile and a helping hand. How good if those who have the space – a little patch of land or even somewhere indoors – can grow some of their own foods. All who care about our children – the most vulnerable of all in face of all the threats we now face – should do everything possible to prime them lovingly with Emunah, preferably through home education, to save them from the ravages of “woke culture” and immunize them for life against all evil influences. We all need to encourage and strengthen one another in the ways of Emunah, as it is written of our age: “Then those who revere God will talk to one another, and God will hear and listen, and a scroll of remembrance has been written before Him for those who revere God and esteem His Name.” (Malachi 3:16).

Focusing on the Ultimate Purpose

Rabbi Nachman of Breslov teaches that the reason for the basic human instinct to screw up one’s eyes when suffering pain is because, just as when one wants to look at something far off, it is necessary to narrow one’s eyes in order to focus, so too ultimately the only way pain can be assuaged is when we keep our focus on the ultimate good to which it will bring us, whether through atoning for our sins or spurring us to repent. (Likutey Moharan I:65).

Even when we barely see a way forward, we must keep our ultimate goal and mission at the forefront of our minds. We must dream and visualize the better future – the Final Redemption, the Restoration, the coming Temple and the life of tranquility and spiritual elevation that will be the portion of the righteous and of those who repent.

If Agenda 2030 aims for global government, let us for our part dream, visualize and actualize the vision of the restored Sanhedrin sitting by the side of the Holy Temple, from where the Torah and the Word of God will spread to all the world.

Rabbi Nachman teaches that the way to SIMCHAH, true, wholesome JOY, is through seeking and revealing the many “good points” within us and joining them together to turn our lives into a song. (Likutey Moharan I:282). Every member of the people of Israel and every one of the Righteous of the Nations has these sparks of divinity within us, and since God is infinite and His power is unlimited, when we foster, cultivate and steadily fan the fire of these sparks, we can shine light into all our being and every moment of our lives.

“One thing have I asked of God, that do I seek: to dwell in God’s House all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of God, to frequent His Temple.” (Psalms 27:4).

May you be written and inscribed in God’s BOOK OF LIFE for a good, happy, healthy, prosperous and successful New Year 5782!

Shalom from Jerusalem

Avraham ben Yaakov

About the author

Avraham ben Yaakov

Avraham ben Yaakov is a Torah teacher based in Safed Israel & author of translations and commentaries on Bible, Hassidut, Kabbalah, Spiritual Growth, Health & Healing.

By Avraham ben Yaakov

Avraham Ben Yaakov

Avraham ben Yaakov Greenbaum is a Torah teacher in Tz’fat (Safed) in Israel’s Galilee, and author of translations and commentaries on Bible, Hassidut, Kabbalah, Spiritual Growth, Health, Healing and the Environment.

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