Did the Jews ask G-d to bring 10 plagues down upon the Egyptians? No. Since the giving of the Torah at Sinai, the Jewish people have been tasked with the mission of perfecting the world and making it a worthy "home" for G-d by fulfilling G-d's commandments. Our mission is to educate and infuse the world with example and concrete action. We were taught to act like our forefather Abraham, exhibiting unconditional love to Jew and non-Jew alike. But what happens when a brutal philosophy arises and wishes to physically destroy the Jewish people or uproot our spiritual mission in this world? If a person discovers he or she has cancer, it is up to the doctor to choose the medication, and some of the methods chosen might be quite violent--chemotherapy, say, or radiation. Would the patient pray for the radiation to "smite" the cancer, the body's enemy? Of course!
At the seder, remembering what the Egyptians did to us, we say "Pour out Your wrath" on those who have continued the Egyptians' goals. How should the world become rid of obstacles to our collective mission to perfect humankind? That, we leave up to G-d. We visualize the coming of Moshiach and ultimate peace. "Next year in Jerusalem!"
Rabbi Chaim Mentz
Chabad of Bel Air
Bel Air, CA