Friday generally doesn't have fast days. The Jewish Calendar is adjusted so that certain days, like Yom Kippur, never happen on a Friday, and when other fast days are supposed to fall on a Friday, they are moved up to Thursday. What is so important, so significant about the Tenth of Tevet? Why do I have to fast davka today, on Friday? I need that clarity and energy I get from my water-coffee routine.
Today we're mourning:
The Tenth of Tevet marks the onset of the siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, the King of Babylonia, and the beginning of the battle that ultimately destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple of Solomon, and sent the Jews into the 70-year Babylonian Exile. The date of the Tenth of Tevet is recorded for us by the prophet Yechezkel, who himself was already in Babylonia as part of the first group of Jews exiled there by Nebuchadnezzar, 11 years earlier than the actual destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem itself.The destruction of our Beit HaMikdash, Holy Temple, took a long time. I have no doubt that it actually even began before the siege.
- Maybe the first stages were when we couldn't build and repair around the Temple Mount.
- Maybe we Jews were forbidden to reach holy sites.
- Maybe we had lost control of the sites and they were routinely vandalized.
- Maybe some "misguided" leaders had been trying to make unworkable compromises with our enemies about sharing Jerusalem.
- Maybe Jewish life was being restricted, and Jews were forbidden to live and build in areas of Eretz Yisrael, The Land of Israel.
Looking at it that way, as an eternal danger, it is more understandable why Chazal, our Sages, decreed that even on a Friday, as we prepare for the Holy Shabbat, we must mourn our loss of a Holy Temple. That's because the small, earlier steps may not be recognized for what they truly are.
We, Jewish Israelis, must make it very clear that the Land of Israel is Our Land not to be shared or divided!