Rabbi Shlomo Brody

Episode 2 March 05, 2024 00:40:33
Rabbi Shlomo Brody
The Koren Podcast
Rabbi Shlomo Brody

Mar 05 2024 | 00:40:33

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Show Notes

We're back for our fifth season of The Koren Podcast asking our guests to teach us their Torah al regel ahat - standing on one leg.

We were joined this week by Rabbi Shlomo Brody, author of the National Jewish Book Award-winning A Guide to the Complex and the new Ethics of Our Fighters.

Rabbi Brody is a leading expert in Jewish ethics and his new book is the first attempt to analyse the field of Jewish military ethics comprehensively. Although Rabbi Brody began the writing process several years ago, since October 7th it has an even stronger relevance. 

Listen now as he shares his Torah al regel ahat.

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Useful Links:

Ethics of Our Fighters

A Guide to the Complex

Ematai

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Get 10% off your next order from www.korenpub.com with code PODCAST at checkout. If you would like to contact us you can reach us on social media @KorenPublishers or via email, at [email protected]

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The Koren Podcast was written and hosted by Aryeh Grossman and Alex Drucker and was edited and produced by Alex Drucker. Artwork by Tani Bayer. Music by Music Unlimited via pixabay.com

The Koren Podcast is part of the Koren Podcast Network, a division of Koren Jerusalem.

 

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Episode Transcript

[00:00:01] Speaker A: We sometimes in the past, I think, have probably endangered our soldiers too much. Although from what I'm reading right now in the current war, I don't think that's the case. I think we've learned the lessons from past years as well. And in that respect, I think the IDF is a tremendous example of moral exemplars and should be emulated. [00:00:39] Speaker B: Welcome back to the Quran podcast. This week we are going to be joined by Rabbi Dr. Shlomo Mbrodi, the author of the new book Ethics of our Fighters, executive director of TAI, who will be answering our question, can you teach us the whole Torah while standing on one leg? Al Ragal ahat. Here is our interview with Rabbi Dr. Shloma M. Brody. [00:00:59] Speaker C: We are very happy to be joined by Rabbi Dr. Shlomo Brody, the author of the new book Ethics of our fighters, to be with us today on the current podcast. So, Rabbi Brody, thank you for coming. Can you please teach us the whole Torah standing on one leg? [00:01:16] Speaker A: Wow. I'd say the following. I think that jewish ethics are built around great principles. Those are principles that are found from deeply held values that have been built through halakha and through other sources. And the great challenge of our times when it comes to military ethics or medical ethics or many other areas of ethics, is to appreciate all those principles, understand where those values come from, and how to figure out how to apply them in different circumstances, particularly when they conflict with each other. And so that's certainly the case in military ethics. We have a lot of issues where we have values, like appreciating that all human beings are created in the image of God, but we also have the value of uprooting evil and of protecting our own people. Those are all deeply held jewish values. We need to figure out how to balance them and apply them in different circumstances. And I think that's the great challenge of our time. But it's also the great opportunity that Torah wisdom brings to the table of ethical discourse. [00:02:15] Speaker B: So before we dig into some of those topics a bit more, can you tell us a little bit about how, for you personally, have you reached this point where this is something that's on the top of your mind that you're thinking about? [00:02:26] Speaker A: Yeah, absolutely. Well, I grew up in a home of an ethicist. My father is Dr. Barak Brody, was a leading bioethicist. And not coincidentally, my bar mitzvah is Parshat Noach, and my yurusha is about abortion and suicide and jewish thought. [00:02:42] Speaker C: Every bar mitzvah boy does. [00:02:43] Speaker A: Every bar mitzvah boy what else could you possibly talk about in Parashat Noach? In fact, someone walked out in protest, which is a unique, like something I said, which I think is unique for all bar mitzvahs to have, actually, someone walk out. [00:02:57] Speaker C: Great induction to rabbinics there. [00:02:58] Speaker A: 100%. No one fell asleep, though, so there you go. But I grew up in that type of home where these types of issues were discussed and were important. And in general, the intersection of jewish thought and halacha, along with ethics and contemporary discourse and public policy, has always been a real interest of mine. In my organization. Now, Amatai, we're very much focused on medical ethics and particularly end of life ethics. But I'm interested in a lot of different areas of how we can apply Torah wisdom and learn from what's going on in the world and also impact what's going on in the world. And so I think a few years ago, I started thinking deeply about the issues of military ethics coming really from just living in Israel and interacting with these types of questions, which become very acute, partly because of what we have to deal with and partly because of the reaction that we get to our actions in the world and the academy and other places. So I felt there was a need to start to write about this and to think about this stuff. And it sort of evolved into this book, which came out, and, of course, in a surreal time, all too relevant, unfortunately. But I'm happy it's available now for people to have a resource to think about these issues. [00:04:17] Speaker B: Right. [00:04:18] Speaker C: You say that the genesis of this book was not directly related to the current situation. [00:04:25] Speaker A: Yeah. A couple of people said to me, did you start writing this on October eigth? I'm like, no, this book takes a lot longer. [00:04:30] Speaker C: Right. So one doesn't necessarily think of halako when you're thinking of halakhro and sort of how Jews govern their lives and whatever the military isn't necessarily the top of anyone's list of the halakhic and ethical considerations that an everyday jew has to consider. So what is it about the military just from living in Israel? But what specifically led you to sort of start looking into this topic, and what are some of the things that perhaps are surprising that you came across? [00:05:07] Speaker A: Yeah. I mean, it's not just that it's not an everyday question, but it's also not a question that jews had to deal with for many centuries. And it's really one of the interesting areas in which there's a lakuna. Right. There's something empty in the Masora of not having a tremendous amount of writing about it because these issues just didn't come up for many centuries in that respect. It's one of the really fascinating halakhic dilemmas of our time which emerged in the 20th century. And what was really fascinating to me when I started to engage in this topic is to learn the history of how Jews, rabbis, thinkers, and just your everyday jew how to begin to engage with these issues as jews began to be involved in warfare again. And I wrote the book because of that, partly as a history book. There's a story here, there's a narrative in which I tell the story of how, starting really with World War I, Jews began to think about these ethical dilemmas, which they didn't have for many years. And it's a really fascinating history to it. And so the book is partly about ethics and trying to lay out and explain to people how to think about these issues. But it's also to tell a really engaging and, I think, inspiring story of how you think anew about these dilemmas, which are horrific dilemmas. Right. These are very complex issues in many ways. There's a sort of blessing of not having had to deal with these over the centuries. Of course, there's no blessing, however, of being powerless. That was, of course, terrible for the jewish people. But once we started getting access to power and to military power and to be able using force again, we had to think about, well, what exactly is a jewish fighter? What does this mean? What does this look like? And we call the book, of course, ethics of our fighters, which is a play on ethics of our fathers. Pirke Avot and I think it's resonated with people because we know Judaism has something to say about moral behavior in general. But when it comes to the ethics of our fighters, it's one of those things people are like, well, that's going to be a pretty short book. When I told people originally, and I could have written a second book already, I'm already thinking about it. So a lot to talk about in it. [00:07:17] Speaker C: What does a jewish fighter look like compared to just a stumb soldier in a different army? [00:07:26] Speaker A: Right. Yeah. There's no doubt that the issues that I discuss in the book and I think that any fighter has to deal with are types of issues that will resonate with people from other cultures and other nations. In that respect, I don't think that there's something that's particularly novel to the point where someone reading this who's non jewish, and I have many non jewish readers of the book already, will say to me, oh, that's, like, totally novel. We never think about these issues. Right. The principles here can resonate with people from different cultures. What I think is unique about the jewish framework is dealing with conflicting values and recognizing the fact that you're going to somehow have to address a really acute question in a way which will take into account all these values, all of which are true jewish values. And one of the things I enjoy when I speak about this is to lay out some values and show sources for these values in jewish history and jewish text. And I asked the audience, well, which of these values are jewish in your mind? And they all recognize, yeah, these are all jewish values. So the jewish fighter then has to be thinking about, well, how do I implement these values? And of course, the actual fighters on the ground, particularly in warfare, don't have the opportunity in the moment, right, to necessarily think about these issues. But the training that we give them and the strategic planning that we do, of course, should take these into account. In that respect, I think we have a lot to contribute to contemporary moral discourse. [00:08:58] Speaker B: Can you give us maybe a bit of a taste or a flavor of an example, something from the book that our readers might encounter, like a case where you see, like, these two conflicting values, where we've seen them maybe in something that happened? [00:09:10] Speaker A: I think one of the most fascinating examples came up in 1982. Israel had begun was then called Operation Peace of Galilee, but then became known as the Lebanon War, and then, of course, known as the First Lebanon War. And a month into it, Israel laid siege on Beirut, and they were trying to get rid of Yasser Araphad and the PLO terrorists who were terrorizing Israel from southern Lebanon. And Rabbi Shlomogoran, the chief rabbi, then, of Israel. Previous, of course, chief rabbi of the IDF publicly stated that a siege under jewish law has to allow for an evacuation corridor, has to leave the fourth side open, so to speak. And it caused a bit of a bruah, including other rabbis like Rafshal Yisraeli, who were very upset about it and said, this isn't a mandate of jewish law. But it was a really clear case of a figure who has a military background, who very much appreciates the importance of a military victory coming out and saying, even in the midst of a war, we need to keep in mind that these enemies, including the non combatants in Beirut, are also created in the image of God, and we should try to minimize the number of casualties there. And what's even more fascinating is many people look at that idea and say, oh, this is just rabbis talking in the abstract and theoretical. They never understood how to apply this in practice. The IDF does this not just because of Rabbi Goren's statement, but they had strategic and moral reasons for doing it. 100,000 people flee Beirut during the siege, which, of course, saves many lives. And Rabbi Goren felt is a great kiddosh hashem from it. Now, you can argue whether he's right about this in terms of ethics or whether he's right about this in terms of halakha. But I think it's a fascinating example of someone who really, really believes in jewish power, who really believes in the jewish army, but also believes that there are other values that we need to take into account besides just mean, we. [00:11:09] Speaker C: Saw that again in the last few months when the IDF left open an evacuation corridor. How much then do we sort of have to react now to the realities? I mean, a lot of the discourse coming from the Prohamas side was that the evacuation corridor is just an opportunity for Israel to move a population, which is an act of a genocide, it's an act of apartheid and this sort of thing. Do we say, well, this is the halakh, or this is the ethical decision we've made, or are we able to say, like, well, we have a strategic objective and maybe it is better to close this corridor? [00:11:49] Speaker A: Well, one of the things I think you learn about from that debate between Israeli Rabb Goran is leaving the foresight open is reflective of a principle. I don't think, contrast to Rabbi Goran, this is a bona fide obligation or law. It sets up a principle of a value that we try to do. There might be situations where we couldn't create an evacuation corridor because it would be too debilitating for the military objective. And that being the case, we wouldn't necessarily create that understanding that they'll come with cost in human lives and greater collateral damage when it comes to the world. The idea of saying that, oh, you're creating an evacuation quarter, that's a form of ethnic cleansing. Someone asked me that recently, or maybe the foresight open. And it's just like one of those situations where you realize that you can't win in terms of policing everyone, and we shouldn't try to win in policing everyone. And what I think we really have to do is build up a greater understanding of our moral principles and build up a greater moral fortitude, which allows us to say, this is how we're going to try to act and behave. We understand that people don't like us. There's some anti semites out there. There are a lot of people out there who just don't understand what's actually going on here in Israel. And while we should do the best we can to explain what we're trying to do, that has diplomatic advantages, political advantages and moral advantages as well. But the end of the day, we need to just act based on what we believe to be true, be on a military level and on a moral level. I think that's one of the big lessons we've seen from what's going on in Gaza. I mean, we are fighting right now a crazy war where the enemy side is literally hiding under their own civilians in some ways. Unprecedented in many ways. And so you have to ask yourself, well, how do you fight a war in those circumstances? And I think we need to hold true to our moral principles. But one of those principles is to have defense of our own people, meaning self defense is not just a matter of interest. Self defense is a moral imperative. Defending the jewish nation, defending israeli citizens and soldiers, for that matter, is a moral imperative. And so we're going to have to deal with the ramifications of the criticisms that we face. But at the end of the day, what we really need to do is to set up our principles and stay true to them. [00:14:12] Speaker B: Can you talk a little bit more about in terms of you mentioned, obviously, the situation we're in now is unprecedented. What are some of the values or questions that you feel that have come up over the past few months that maybe on Hashanah Rabba, we never would have even imagined would be like a discussion within, like a halakhic framework? [00:14:31] Speaker A: I think the most difficult question right now isn't so much the human shields of the enemy side. We've had to deal with this before. It's more acute because of the tunnels, which I don't think we anticipated. Unfortunately, it's part of the mechdal, as they say, from October 7. But I think the unprecedented dilemma right now is dealing with the fact that we have hostages in these tunnels as well. And I know two parents of soldiers who are one soldier and one civilian who are in captive and we hope are alive and holding up and doing okay there as these things go in Gaza. It's a very, very serious situation, and it seems pretty clear, I don't think we know all the details, even whatever's gone out in the media. And I think we should be careful about passing judgment because we don't know all the details. But it seems pretty clear that the fact that we have our own civilians and soldiers in captivity in these tunnels is hampering our military advancement. And I think that's a really unique dilemma. And there are some who say we should prioritize saving the lives of the captives at all cost. There are those who say that we should treat the captives as if they're dead. And I think both those perspectives are wrong. I think we should be looking at going to war. As for the self defense of our people, that's why we go to war. Not for revenge, not for conquest, but for self defense. And part of those people included in that is, of course, those who are most acutely being endangered by Hamas, which, of course are the captives, but they're part and parcel of the broader strategy here. And so how to balance those needs of the most immediate people who are being endangered by Hamas versus the broader security needs of those in the south and the north, for that matter, and for the rest of us here in Israel, I think is really acute and new and unprecedented dilemma. My own take on this is that our priority has to be the self defense of the jewish state. And that's the one goal. I don't believe in this two goals of war here. There's one goal here, and depending on the reality on the ground, we have to figure out how that balance gets worked out. But I don't think I can be an armchair analyst here without really knowing the facts actually going on in Gaza and what the IDF actually knows right now. [00:16:54] Speaker C: If I could ask a practical or a technical question, we've been talking about this as unprecedented. Certainly the current war is unprecedented. Halacha loves the precedent. So how do you write a work of halacha, of jewish ethics, of jewish thought without precedent? [00:17:12] Speaker A: Right. There's no doubt that Halacha is built on precedents now over the last hundred years, and this is one of the things I try to show in the book, is we've built up some precedents, both in terms of thinking about what's going on in Israel, but also what's going on in other places around the world as well. Jewish thinkers and others have had interesting ideas about Vietnam or World War II or Afghanistan or Iraq and other wars. And so that has given us some precedent here. And I think those precedents have given us principles which are very important for us that we can turn to and say, okay, this isn't fully unprecedented. We've thought about these issues. What's a bit unprecedented is how to apply them right now. I mean, even thinking about questions of dealing with a multi front war, where do you prioritize? If we have to worry about Chizbalah and Iran, Lahutis and Yudavi Shamron. And that's really complex in terms of thinking about limited resources. And I think that's probably the next, unfortunately, frontier in terms of what we're going to be thinking about in the coming months, unfortunately, probably years. But there are precedents here. And I think one of the biggest precedents we need to think about is preemptive and preventative strikes. This is clearly one of the great mistakes that we learned after October 7, which is when you have someone on your borders who said they want to kill you and destroy you, and it's tried in many different ways, at some point you can't just be on the defensive. At some point you have to say, okay, we have to eliminate this threat. And I think we're now really facing that when it comes to Kisbalah, because on the one hand we've said, okay, well, we haven't had a war with them and shooting with them since 2006, that's a great accomplishment. But it seems like a lot of what's been going on there is them building up a tremendous arsenal. They have well trained fighters from Syria and whatnot. And the question then becomes is, did we make a mistake in not preempting or preventing their strike by attacking first? [00:19:23] Speaker B: Obviously. I mean, the state of Israel as a state is not run as a halachic state, even though many of the ideas might. Things within the state are inspired by or influenced by halacha or jewish ethics. One of the, I guess, classic Hazbarao Israel advocacy lines is the IDF is the most moral army in the world. Do you think there's a gap between that as a statement that we make and the actual reality of what you've seen in terms of how the IDF is run and jewish military ethics, do you think there's a gap there? Or do you think actually more or less, maybe the IDF is a good example of where we are actually maybe meeting the mark? [00:20:01] Speaker A: I think the IDF is a wonderful example. You compare to incidents that happened with the american army or the british army and other places around the world when they're fighting many thousands of away, by the way, from their borders. And I think our attempt to balance the values is incredible. And almost always when you read the ethical analysis a few years after an israeli war, whether it's in 82 or 2014, wherever it might be, you see all these outside analysts who aren't jewish, who aren't particularly Zionists, whoever might be, who, when they look at the cold facts and they can look and analyze what really went on, say the IDF was tremendous in its balance. Frankly, I think that one of the biggest moral questions that we have to ask is are we being too careful in some ways of avoiding international condemnation or avoiding collateral damage and not taking actions that can be more decisive and bring us some form of victory? And that's a moral question we really have to ask and we have to look back on. And I'm not being critical, of course. Chasfa Shalom of the IDF and when I say this, or the leaders of the country. But I do think that, as I was saying earlier, we have to be stronger in our moral fortitude so that way we can make the tough decisions towards victory. And so in this respect, I do think this comes down the book a bit, that there is a little bit of a critique that I have of some of the statements. So at least the way the policies have been positioned about IDF ethics, where there hasn't always been enough priority given to defending our soldiers and sometimes in the past, I think have probably endangered our soldiers too much. Although from what I'm reading right now in the current war, I don't think that's the case. I think we've learned the lessons from past years as well. And in that respect, I think the IDF is a tremendous example of moral exemplars and should be emulated from around the world. [00:22:09] Speaker C: Can you speak a bit more about that? Just how taking more decisive action is perhaps more ethically valid, I suppose. And one of the things that friend of the show, Elon Levy was sort of asked about on again, the british media, who he seems to get on very well with, was especially the prime minister's Netanyahu's invocation of Amalek over and over again in his speeches that we're fighting Amalek. Elon, I think, rightly didn't want to get involved in exegesis with the news anchor, with Amalek, it is very decisive action. Let's kill them all. How is more decisive action more sort of perhaps drastic or dramatic action, sort of more ethically? [00:23:08] Speaker A: Yeah, absolutely. I understand the question. I mean, I would never invoke a Moloch, not because I don't think we have ways of dealing with that on an exegetical level. And I think we have, and chapter two is actually devoted precisely to that issue. Amalek is not a law which is applicable in our times. Same with the seven canonite nations. And we should just say that very loud and clearly. Right. That's an important point to make at least when it comes to how we fight. It's just not applicable principle at all for our times and hasn't been for many centuries. The idea, which I think Prime Minister Netanyahu is trying to say, and in this respect I think is correct, at least on a fundamental level, is that there is real evil in the world and real evil in the world needs to be destroyed. And we have real evil on our borders. That is an existential threat to our country and for that matter, to the western world. And it's important for the west to understand sometimes that evil needs to be destroyed decisively. That doesn't mean, however, that we would, let's say, target non combatants or shoot indiscriminately. I don't think that means that at all. There's somewhere in the middle, of course, where you take decisive action, but you're always targeting combatants, you're always targeting military targets. Where I think that sometimes the question comes up is, well, if you have to make certain judgment calls, the classic case, for example, will be, you know, there's terrorists in one of three houses, you know, there's civilians in two of them. Do you send your soldiers door to door and endanger them, but in order to make sure that you're only shooting at combatants, or do you say, let's bring an artillery, air power and we're going to shoot all three homes because we know there's a threat here, we just know where it's coming from? That's been a big debate in ethical circles and even within israeli circles. And in this matter, I think we have to act decisively to ensure our military success in these moments because it's tremendously debilitating on a morale level, but also on a military level, when we have losses in these types of circumstances, when the other side is using human shields and fighting purposely within civilian territories in order to make us hesitate. That hesitation is costly on the military level and on our soldiers lives as well. In that respect, I think we need to be more decisive. But certainly to be decisive doesn't mean to do carpet bombing. And capturing that nuance, I think, is hard to get. And by the way, if you look at the british army, for example, or the american army in Iraq and other places, they understood that well, the serious military people and those armies understand very well what the IDF is doing and has great respect for the IDF as long as they're not biased against Israel per se and the whole issue. But on a public level, there is very little critique of american action or british action in Iraq or Afghanistan, other places. And so they never applied it to their own people. They didn't apply to their own soldiers. Those countries also don't have universal conscription. Makes a big difference because those countries don't feel the pain of the loss of soldiers and the way that a small country like Israel with universal conscription does feel. And so in that respect, we're just very different from other western countries. That's a hasbrah hurdle that is very hard to overcome. [00:26:34] Speaker B: Do you think there's a halachic nafkamino, as in, like, a practical difference there, the fact that we have an army that is based on universal conscription? [00:26:41] Speaker A: I think so, because I think part of the halachic Nafkamina, so to speak, is that when we're forcing people to fight, first of all, we should make sure we're fighting for really good causes and good reasons. That's always going to be true in any army. But certainly in these circumstances, when people didn't sign up for it, and you're telling people this is part of your obligation, that creates more responsibility to make sure we're sending people in the right ways and to be honest with the people about what the goals are of our missions. I think one of the great tragedies of the first Lebanon war was that there is a real, I don't want to say purposeful, but there is certainly an amount of misinformation about what the goals were at the beginning of that war, including at the cabinet level, and that has a real halakhic and moral error. And so I think we owe it to our soldiers when we're going to be conscripting them purposely and forcefully to say to them, listen, we're going to fight and we're going to fight hard for good causes, and we're going to fight to protect you as well. That's part of our goal. [00:27:56] Speaker C: Has there been a shift, I suppose, in analyzing and writing about the halakic aspects of an army or the jewish ethical things? Ari and I were talking yesterday about a podcast done by another friend of us, David Beshevkin, about how for the first time in history, we have Roshi Yeshiva and we have Poskim who themselves have fought in wars. What influence, if any, has that had the people writing and discussing, you mentioned Ravgarin, who was a military man. So what difference or what influence does that have on Faisal writing the book? But just know facts on the ground that the people making these halakhic and ethical decisions themselves have been? [00:28:53] Speaker A: Well, certainly it has an impact because the people writing, appreciate the dilemmas they understand very well. Doesn't mean they all agree, of course. Right. And part of the book discusses some of these very strong disagreements on a whole range of issues between Ravneria and Rav Gorin and Lichtenstein, Ravam Shapira and many others. Right. So people are going to have disagreements, but certainly the phenomenon of experiencing war firsthand with themselves, with their children, with their students, whatever it might be, has a big impact in making people appreciate how important these issues are. I think, actually military ethics and military halacha is really one of the interesting areas where the writings come from, the religious zionist world, there's very little, it's coming out of the Haredi world on these topics. And for obvious reasons, they're not engaging within the same way, and they're not getting the same types of questions that they would, let's say, in any other area of jewish life. What I think still is missing, and this is why I've tried to advance in the book, is to create discourse between halakhic literature and the general ethical literature out in the world. What has been really interesting to me is you see that rabbis post game over the past generations have been thinking about these great dilemmas of ethics, but not talking in that language. And the ethicists have no access to this discourse as well, because it's in Hebrew and it's in rabbitic jargon and whatnot. And I think that both worlds would benefit greatly from learning and thinking about each of these worlds and the goal of the book in many ways. And this is part of my general project in life, if I can say, is to try to create some form of discourse between the ethical language and conversation that's going on in the academy, in other places and other professional fields and halakhic literature that I think has been missing still. And that has to do with a lot of reasons, with israeli culture and access to that academy and how much academic or philosophical training many rabbinic writers have. But you're seeing changes there as well. And you see sometimes now that people have started to refer to some of these concepts, some ideas that are picking up from international law and whatnot. And I certainly hope that the book, of course, coming out, it's out right now in English, and it's coming out some point this year in Hebrew that will contribute to that dialogue as well. [00:31:19] Speaker B: So taking a step back, and you mentioned it there slightly a step back from military ethics, tell us a bit more about Tai, the work you're doing there and what the aims of that is, and also things that also, from what I understand, other issues that have come up during the war, not specifically what's going with the army that also are relevant to that. Your work there? [00:31:38] Speaker A: Yeah, absolutely. Aim Atai is really focused on helping jews navigate the dilemmas of end of life care of aging and organ donation. We are an expansion of an organization that used to be known as the lucky organ donor society that was very much just focused on organ donation. And one of the reasons we broadened it is the ethical dilemmas of aging and end of life go well beyond, of course, organ donation, which is life and death matter, but doesn't happen every day. And so I think that this opportunity to help people in a real way, that's not a ivy tower discourse. And the issues of military ethics come up in Israel and come up with a limited group of people. The issues of end of life care come up for all of us, and we all have to deal with this for ourselves and others. So that's been an exciting opportunity to be able to help people and to think about these issues and to apply those issues in the real world. I think the war has brought up a few really profound examples of this. First of all, it just forced people to think about mortality. I mean, it's so tragic. You see all these young people dying, all these young widows. Now, it should force us to think about the nature of life and the frailty of life and the fact that you never know what's going to come tomorrow. I think there's a profound theological response that we still have to work out, and we were sort of working this out a little bit after Corona, actually, because we saw that also in Corona. And then we got very quickly comfortable with not thinking about those issues, for obvious reasons. And the war has rehighlighted that for us. But there's also some really interesting dilemmas that have come up here. A posthumous sperm donation with soldiers that have died childless or maybe with a child, but their spouses or their parents want to preserve their sperm to bring their seed into the world. Is this a good idea on a moral level, on ethical level, halakhic level, big debate about that issue. I think some of these legacy letters, these last letters that soldiers have written, provide great examples for all of us to think about, of what types of legacies we like to leave in writing for our loved ones. When we get to Amevasrim, to get to 120, fascinating dilemmas have come up where this intersection has been really amazing. And we've had also nine soldiers whose bodies were in conditions where they could do organ donation, and it saved 36 lives. 38 lives, excuse me, since the October 7, which has raised awareness, again, of the organ donation question, because here you have this horrific tragedy. People are dying young, but they're able to die in ways in which they saved lives in both their lives and their death. And that's very profound. And it's raised awareness, I think, for the issue of organ donation as well. [00:34:41] Speaker B: Are there any case stories or cases. [00:34:43] Speaker A: You'Re able to share with the organ donation? [00:34:46] Speaker B: Yeah, over the past few months. [00:34:52] Speaker A: There have been a few really inspiring ones. In one case, it was a rabbi, actually, who had donated his own kidney, altruistically, this past summer, and he fought to be allowed to serve in the army because it says, too soon after the kidney donation. And he died, unfortunately, in a car accident in the army in this course of his service. And his wife was offered the opportunity to donate, and she said, of course, this is what he believed and wanted to do. But I think I paid a couple of Shiva calls. Several Shiva calls to these families. And what's really interesting to me is that you can meet families from very different backgrounds. One could be a bahardal family, so a very strongly national, religious one could be totally secular, very different vibes in the homes. And yet they all spoke of their love for the country, for their values of the country, and took great pride in the fact that their sons, in these cases, had lived their lives for the sake of the jewish people. And even in their deaths, both in the army service and in the organ donation, had preserved life. And I found that to be tremendously inspiring. We have a wonderful country of wonderful people, and we should appreciate that. [00:36:12] Speaker B: Is there a new phenomenon we're seeing with this war, or do you know whether it's been something that's happened in the past in terms of. Because I feel like there's been quite a few cases of value. So you visited a few families. Is it that it's just a more accepted thing to do now and that this is something we're saying now that's unique? Or actually, if we go back to 2014 or previous conflicts, there are examples. [00:36:33] Speaker A: Well, unfortunately, we've had a lot more deaths in this bow, so the opportunity for organization has certainly come up more. But I think also there's just greater awareness and acceptance of it and certainly designist community here in Israel. And I think each case leads to more awareness. The first example of Lucy Dee Zachana Levocha, who gets murdered in a terrorist attack, and her husband, Rabbelio decides to donate and saves five lives. And that caused thousands of people to register as organ donors. So each case, when it's properly highlighted in a sensitive way, can only increase more awareness of the opportunity and miracle of organ donation. [00:37:18] Speaker B: I guess a final question I wanted to ask you was the final chapter in the book, chapter 25 is titled Public Image and the CNN effect in Kana. So I was wondering if you, I mean, you mentioned before you're already thinking about another volume or another volume two. So chapter 26 or maybe chapter 27, what would they be titled? [00:37:40] Speaker A: Yeah, I think that I would like to deal more with some of the questions that come up with civilian military relations. So issues of prisoner swaps, of course, would be very relevant there. Issues of how we punish soldiers who make mistakes, how we deal with those types of questions and deal with those issues, or don't punish, of course, is a real issue. The issue of conscription is a massive issue here. I mean, at the end of the day, there are large segments of israeli society that don't serve, and that's a major problem. And I think we need to address those issues head on. There are also some really interesting questions and dilemmas of AI. New technology have come up, and the last after chapter 25, I do discuss that briefly a little bit about how that's going to change things, but we are seeing some of the ways technology is transforming warfare. So I'd like to discuss that a bit as well. But I think that's really one of the issues that we're going to have to think a lot about is the broader questions of civilian military relations. That's sort of chapter book two, if you will. [00:38:46] Speaker C: I mean, hopefully book two will be made irrelevant by circumstance on the ground. We obviously hope that the volume one becomes a history book and can preserve sort of what we're talking about. But it's an incredibly important book. It's a fantastic book and I've certainly enjoyed reading it. I think all this have to say then is thank you for joining us on the show. Thank you for teaching us our regal Akat. We look forward to having you back again to talk about something else soon. [00:39:15] Speaker A: Thank you so much. Yes, I hope our next conversation is about something a little bit later. [00:39:22] Speaker C: That's all we have time for this week. Thank you so much for listening. And thank you again to Rabbi Brody for joining us. You can get a copy of Ethics of our fighters from Corinpub.com, and if you enter the promo code podcast at checkout, you will get 10% off your entire order. So head over there and pick up your copy. If you want to be in touch with us, you can reach us by email. [email protected] or on social media at Chiron Publishers. Please make sure to, like, subscribe, comment rate, everything, the Quirin podcast or wherever you're listening, and we'll be back again in a couple of weeks with a brand new episode of the current podcast. Until till then, goodbye.

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