As is well known, Oprah Winfrey has a book club, in which she showcases a new book that she likes every so often. In fact, with an endorsement by Oprah Winfrey, an author may be catapulted from obscurity to stardom faster than you can say, 'Oh my gosh did you see Oprah yesterday?!' Being an accomplished Kabbalist myself, it is my desire to 'elevate' the sparks trapped in Oprah's book club. So I decided to start my OWN book club, specifically tailored to Jews and the imminent arrival of the King Moshiach. Brace yourself, world: here comes Benny's Bodacious Book Club!
The first book to be showcased in Benny's Bodacious Book Club is a book about a startling trend in warfare in recent history. As is well known, one of the key signs heralding the coming of the King Moshiach, a.k.a. the Jewish Messiah, is the end of war. "And he, [the king Moshiach,] will judge many nations... [and as a result] They shall beat their swords in to plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift sword against nation; neither shall they learn war anymore." That was from Isaiah, the prophet [not your alcoholic roommate at Yeshivah University.] Furthermore, the Rambam codifies this matter as law. But war is still around, right?
Perhaps not, says John Mueller, author of 'The Remnants of War,' our first book in Benny's Bodacious Book Club. In this book, Mueller, a political scientist, advances the theory that war has been in steady decline in recent history, and trends show that it may be at an end. Indeed, major war between developed nations has not been witnessed since World War II.
In his words, "The most notable and striking statistic in the history of warfare is zero: the number of wars conducted between developed states since the end of World War II. This is a massive shattering of historical precedent for these once-war-like countries; indeed, they have now been at peace with each other for the longest stretch of time in their history. "Given the scale and frequency of war during the preceding centuries in Europe," notes Luard, "This is a change of spectacular proportions; perhaps the single most striking discontinuity that the history of warfare has anywhere provided." " ( Page 81, emphasis is mine.)
Indeed, it seems one need only open his eyes and see that the world is a lot safer than it used to be. The only wars left, Mueller contends, are wars predicated by small bands of criminals which could easily be policed by disciplined armies of America and the like. Mueller takes us on an exciting ride through history, showing how the popular conception of war has changed over the ages. Interestingly, war was once considered to be a desirable, purifying, and fun enterprise, that is, until the anti-war movement and the horrors of Wolrd Wars I and II.
In my humble opinion, this would support the theory that World War II and related events constitute the ‘birthpangs of Moshiach,’ the terrible events that will take place shortly before the Moshiach arrives. And with war on the decline, look out for King Moshiach to put it permanently to rest. So go ahead and buy one of John Mueller’s ‘The Remnants of War’ to put in the bathroom, because Benny’s Bodacious Book Club said so! That way, the next time someone asks you to convince them that Moshiach is already here, you'll have something better to say than, 'Because Rabbi so and so said so.'