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As Hanukkah Concludes, Hope Prevails for the Jewish People

Posted on Friday, December 15, 2023
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by BC Brutus
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38 Comments

AMAC Exclusive – By B.C. Brutus

Brightly lit menorah on the eighth night of Hanukkah

This year’s Hanukkah celebration, which concludes at nightfall on Friday, has been unlike any in recent memory amid the ongoing war in Gaza and an alarming rise in anti-Semitic incidents in the United States and throughout the West. But especially during these turbulent times, the Festival of Lights and its origin story are a potent reminder of the power of the faith of the Jewish people and their yearning to live free from violence and persecution.

The story of Hanukkah (despite what Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff might suggest) began following a Jewish victory over the forces of King Antiochus IV in the second century BC, when Israel was under the rule of the Hellenistic Seleucid Empire, based in modern-day Syria. Antiochus sought to impose Hellenistic culture and religion on the Jews, attempting to snuff out the Jewish faith and forcibly assimilate Jerusalem’s population.

As part of this effort, Antiochus’s troops desecrated the Temple in Jerusalem, the holiest site for the Jewish people. They erected altars to Zeus and other gods and sacrificed animals on them that the Jewish faith considers unclean. Antiochus made possession of the Torah punishable by death, banned the celebration of Jewish holidays, outlawed circumcision, and killed mothers and their entire families who did circumcise their children.

Jews were ultimately faced with two options: convert or be put to death.

In the face of this persecution, a hero arose – Judah, the son of a man called Mattathias who was the head of an important priestly family with the surname of Maccabee. Judah organized a rebellion against Antiochus by rallying the Jewish people around their faith. The rebels collectively became known as the Maccabees.

Starting in 166 BC, Judah led the Maccabees in a guerilla campaign against the much larger Seleucid forces. The Maccabees destroyed the pagan altars and began re-asserting the Jewish faith throughout Judea.

The pivotal moment in the rebellion occurred in 165 BC when Judah and his forces, despite being significantly outnumbered, achieved a miraculous victory over the Seleucid army at the Battle of Beth Horon. Following this success, the Maccabees reclaimed Jerusalem and liberated the desecrated Second Temple.

Upon entering the Temple, the Maccabees found only a small jar of uncontaminated oil, enough for one day. Miraculously, however, the oil lasted for eight days, the time needed to prepare new ritually pure oil. This event is commemorated by the lighting of the Hanukkah menorah, which has eight branches to symbolize the eight nights of the miracle, along with one central shamash.

The victory of the Maccabees and the rededication of the Temple are celebrated as a symbol of Jewish resistance against religious oppression and the preservation of their faith and culture. In English, Hanukkah roughly translates to “dedication” or “rededication.”

Though the story of the Maccabees holds great significance in the Jewish tradition, highlighting the importance of religious freedom and the resilience of the Jewish people, it was for most of history considered a relatively minor holiday. It became much more prominent in the United States in the early 20th century due to its overlap with the Christmas season, serving as a way for Jews to feel kinship with their Christian neighbors while still celebrating Jewish identity and distinctiveness.

Today, the story of Hanukkah is especially important as Jews once again face threats of violence and oppression, both in Israel and around the world. Hamas’s attack in October was a tragic reminder that there are still forces in the world which seek to eradicate the Jewish faith and all who practice it. Iran is empowering Hamas and Hezbollah terrorists, while other Middle Eastern states have offered their tacit approval of Hamas’s brutality.

Even in the United States, which has since Israel’s founding been its strongest ally, there are prominent cultural forces agitating for the destruction of the Jewish state – including some elected Democrats. In recent weeks the streets of many major American cities have been choked by demonstrators chanting “from the river to the sea,” an implicit call for the annihilation of Israel.

Meanwhile, in the halls of Congress, administrators from top universities have refused to condemn calls for genocide against the Jewish people. Tenured professors have downplayed the horrors of the Holocaust, and Jewish students have been forced to barricade themselves in libraries as pro-Hamas protestors banged on the doors.

But even amidst these new threats to the Jewish people, the Hanukkah story is a reminder that faith can overcome any obstacle. As the celebration concludes on Friday evening, we can all remember to give thanks for God’s faithfulness in the year ahead and recommit to protecting the principles of religious liberty and courage in the face of oppression.

B.C. Brutus is the pen name of a writer with previous experience in the legislative and executive branches.

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anna hubert
anna hubert
4 months ago

The brain washed marching for palestinians have no idea what they are marching for and no idea that they have nothing in common with Islam but everything with Judaism Brainless mob is a dangerous element

Jonn
Jonn
4 months ago

A very factual and profound article, written with respect and understanding. Well done.

Thinking
Thinking
4 months ago

Let us talk about a people that has been persecuted and hated for as long as they have existed and yet they survive. What other race of people can that be said about.
All those demonstrators, universities that deny anti semitism is happening are complicit in annihilation of the Jewish people. Civilization has not yet arrived, the destruction of the Jews is alive and well, in America and the rest of the world. Why is that still happening, why are these demonstrators still calling for the genocide of the Jews? What have the Jews ever done to them personally. This is a movement started in academia and the Stockholm syndrome did the rest. Most couldn’t tell you what river and what sea they are yelling about. Slogans are cheap really educate yourself that Jews are humans just like them. These demonstrators are brainwashed by the elite who want a world without Jews. Jews cannot be manipulated, they are smart, United and always find a way to survive. None of those demonstrators are volunteering to go to Gaza and fight for Hamas. Yelling slogans is not heroic is not standing up against a perceived enemy. It is a cowardly act and plays right into the hands of the elite who want the people to be puppets in their hands. And with the backing of the current regime in the White House they are getting traction. I wouldn’t be surprised if Soros and or Gates is financing them. Providing signs and flags and paint. Nothing is what it seems. If you look closely they all cover themselves up so not be able to be identified. You know those pesky Jan 6 people that are still being persecuted and arrested for just being in a crowd, they forgot to cover their faces.
Everything is staged and paid for by those New World Order people. WAKE UP AMERICA. YOU WILL BE NEXT.

Alice Birney
Alice Birney
4 months ago

A well written article which clearly relates the historical facts of the Hanukkah story while also reaffirming the fact that the people of the country of Israel have not only the ability but the right to live at peace within their own land, and to help rescue any of their citizens who are molested .
Thank you for the article.

Donna
Donna
4 months ago

Excellent article. Thank you.

Richard Reed
Richard Reed
4 months ago

May God bless and protect the Jewish people in this holy season and give them the wisdom to quickly discover who their true friends are.

Rabi
Rabi
4 months ago

I will always support the Jewish people who believe in respecting the lives of others even if they are living among those who do not respect life. Pray

Robert Zuccaro
Robert Zuccaro
4 months ago

It could have been worse: Kamala could have had Marxists dressed up as tin soldiers tap dancing idiotically around a menorah like Jill Biden did with Christmas.

tempus
tempus
4 months ago

Antiochus’s troops desecrated the Temple in Jerusalem, but God had the Romans destroy it. That should tell you something.
No country comes close to supporting Israel as much as America has. Without American succor, Israel would not exist. How has America been blessed? Here is a short list of blessings. Tens of millions of babies have been sacrificed to Lucifer in the abortion mills. Homosexuals are now considered normal and acceptable, even to the point of having their unions legally recognized. Miscegenation (adultery) is accelerating. Nonwhites are overrunning the country and will soon be a majority. Devoice is rampant. With Waco, Oklahoma City, and 9-11, the United States government has declared war on the American people so that the American people will give those who control the government absolute power over their lives. America has become a police state. Patriotism has been subverted from doing what is best for the country to unquestionable obedience to the President. Christianity, Western Civilization, and the Aryan people are dying. Children are no longer educated but are taught to be slaves of the illuministic controlled government. America is the greatest debtor country in history. Decadence, moral decay, crime, gambling, pornography, and drug abuse are growing. Self-reliance, freedom, security, and prosperity are fading. Even the United States themselves are on the verge of vanishing as one treaty and international agreement after another strip them of their sovereignty. It sounds more like America has been cursed rather than blessed for its support of Israel. Surely, if today’s Jews are God’s chosen people and if God wanted them to return to Palestine, God would have rewarded those countries that were obedient to His plan. These countries would have prospered in peace and spiritual growth. Instead, they have undergone wars, moral decay, economic decline, and oppressive governments.

Mark O Surprise, AZ
Mark O Surprise, AZ
4 months ago

Great article, I was taught this story as a child in a Catholic school. Happy Hanukkah!

Marta Alvarez
Marta Alvarez
3 months ago

The parrots of Hamas butchers have to put to action what their loud, ignorant mouths are. They have to go to the Palestinian front and fight for their Muslim brothers. Sceraming from the comfort of a Congressional Seat or the streets of their war free countries is only a testimony to this minority immense stupidity. These cowards hide behind the masses to scream and exert violence about something they ignore.

Ambrose
Ambrose
3 months ago

What about hope for the tens of thousands of innocent Palestnans murdered by the evil zionsts, most of them women, children, and the elderly. AMAC is nothing more than a shill for zionist-committed genocide. You’re pathetic and support pure evil. Destroy zionsts, not Palestinians.

Michael & Judith Kuriatnyk
Michael & Judith Kuriatnyk
4 months ago

What a wonderful article sharing the truth. Thank you.

GTPatriot
GTPatriot
4 months ago

The Jews, in my humble opinion, have, unfortunately, experienced greater hardship than this. They must, and will, remain resolute in their determination to ELIMINATE hamas. The Jewish state will prevail and the world will be better for it. What is amazing is that not a shot has been fired against Iran which caused this and is controlled by a demon that has no resistance since Iranian men do not have the will or courage to defend themselves or their families. Sad, really but the men of afganistan are just like them. Unlike the men of Ukraine or Syria who will fight to the death. Dictators function only where men are cowards

Concerned Citizen
Concerned Citizen
4 months ago

Thank you for sharing the history of Hanukkah.

Marlaen Fisher
Marlaen Fisher
4 months ago

There was some incorrect information on the celebration of Hanukkah. Hanukkah ended Thursday, the 14th not Friday. Most of the facts were correct. Hanukkah is called the Festival of Lights. The reason it is celebrated for 8 days is as follows: In Temples/Synagogues there is the ark which holds the Torah. The Torah is the compilation of the first 5 books of the Jewish bible. Over the ark is the “Eternal Light” which is always lit. After the battle was won when the Jewish army went into the temple, they wanted to light the “Eternal Light” but there was only enough oil for 1 night, but it lasted for 8 days long enough for more oil to be obtained.

Wayne
Wayne
4 months ago

They erected altars to Zeus and other gods and sacrificed animals on them that the Jewish faith considers unclean.”
Nomatter what the Jewish faith says about those animals, G0d said they are unclean. End of discussion.

Dan
Dan
4 months ago

I’m glad the author refers to Hanukkah as a “story”. People believe what they want to believe. The numbers 7 and 8 are very important in Judaism and the part about the oil lasting for 8 days was added to the tale of the rededication of the temple about 200 years after the historic event.

Casey C Matt
Casey C Matt
4 months ago

Though it may label me as being antisemitic I do wonder why tens of thousands of women and children must be blown to bits using American provided bombs and missiles as a knee jerk reaction by mad torah reading men for the terrorist actions of an extremist group the leader of the Israelis propped up some years back?
Happy Hannukah people of the British established scorpion farm called Israel

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