The1 soldiers who have been privileged to protect Jewish towns at the risk of physical self-sacrifice will no doubt continue fulfilling their duty and mission of ensuring — by natural means — the security and welfare of the Jewish people, and will no doubt maintain this activity until its completion.

It goes without saying that they fulfill their duty and mission in the spirit of the verse,2 “[Some rely upon chariots and some upon horses,] but we [rely upon and] invoke the Name of the L‑rd our G‑d”; likewise,3 “We raise our banners in the Name of G‑d.” They do not believe that “my power and the might of my own hand have won this wealth for me.”4 Rather, they know that so long as we are still surrounded by the doubled and redoubled darkness of the era of exile, the Holy One, blessed be He, wants physical armaments to be used and action to be taken — according to the laws of nature — to ensure the security and welfare of Jewish people.

G‑d grants His help when Jews tackle their defense tasks with the realization that He is the source of their strength and when they fulfill His directives. These include the directive that it is forbidden to cede territories which are part of Eretz Yisrael (or territories vital to its security) and which He gave to the Jewish people. This prohibition is in effect now, too, when we are still living in the era of exile. (The fact that we are still in exile explains why some regions of Eretz Yisrael have not yet been given to the Jewish people, for this must wait until the coming of our Righteous Mashiach.) To resume the above thought: When Jews tackle their defense tasks with the realization that the source of their strength is the power of the Holy One, blessed be He, He sees to it that they will have no need for actual armaments, for the mere knowledge that such armaments exist will cast fear and dread on the other party, to the point that they will flee for their lives.

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Endeavors should therefore be made to strengthen the soldiers’ connection with all aspects of Yiddishkeit.25 Uppermost among these is a genuine trust in “G‑d, the L‑rd of Hosts,”5 a trust that He stands at the head of all armies, beginning with “the hosts of G‑d,”6 G‑d’s army — and in our context, the Israel Defense Forces,7 whose privilege it is to defend Jewish towns with actual self-sacrifice.

In order to fortify their trust in “G‑d, the L‑rd of Hosts,” their connection with all aspects of Yiddishkeit should be strengthened — to the extent of fully observing the Torah and its mitzvos in their daily lives.

This applies especially to the observance of the commandment of tefillin. For there is a Divine promise that “all the nations of the world will see that the Name of G‑d is proclaimed over you and will stand in fear of you”8 — and the Sages teach that this verse alludes to the tefillin that are worn on the head.9