TUESDAY INSPIRATION -- The Story of a Nation -- Am Yisroel Chai!

by Chossid March. 13, 2012 8204 views

Am Yisroel Chai! – The Nation of Israel lives! No matter what we go through, and the persecutions have been many, we will continue to exist!

Are you familiar with this quote by a famous non-Jewish American author?

“…If statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one percent of the human race. It suggests a nebulous dim puff of stardust lost in the blaze of the Milky way. properly, the Jew ought hardly to be heard of, but he is heard of, has always been heard of. He is as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his commercial importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallness of his bulk. His contributions to the world’s list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine, and abstruse learning are also away out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers. He has made a marvelous fight in this world, in all the ages; and had done it with his hands tied behind him. He could be vain of himself, and be excused for it.

The Egyptian, the Babylonian, and the Persian rose, filled the planet with sound and splendor, then faded to dream-stuff and passed away; the Greek and the Roman followed; and made a vast noise, and they are gone; other people have sprung up and held their torch high for a time, but it burned out, and they sit in twilight now, or have vanished. The Jew saw them all, beat them all, and is now what he always was, exhibiting no decadence, no infirmities of age, no weakening of his parts, no slowing of his energies, no dulling of his alert and aggressive mind. All things are mortal but the Jew; all other forces pass, but he remains. What is the secret of his immortality?”

– Mark Twain
(“Concerning The Jews,” Harper’s Magazine, 1899)

Please watch this English language music video. [youtube.com] Even if you don't understand many nuances, you will get the general idea.

Surviving the Next Round of Rocket Fire on Southern Israel

ASHDOD- A rocket war rages in the south of Israel as life continues so normally in the rest of this tiny country. Only a little more than an hour away from Jerusalem, the port city of Ashdod, has been the target of massive Grad rocket attacks from Gaza. The attacks began Friday afternoon last week, and have affected close to 1 million Israelis across the south. As I enter the city at around five in the evening, the wail of the siren suddenly sounds and the bus I’m traveling on from Jerusalem suddenly stops. The driver, an elderly man, halts to let the passengers off according to safety protocol. Residents living in Ashdod, Israel’s fifth largest city, have 45 seconds to find shelter once a rocket has been fired from Gaza.

Some of us lay on the ground with hands over our heads, while others take cover near a cement wall. It’s strange how quickly you find yourself adapting to survival mode. A few seconds later we hear a boom. And then the discussion begins—“Did the rocket actually land in the city? Or was it the sound of the Iron Dome intercepting the rocket midair?”

We get our answer a couple of seconds later, as we see a puff of gray smoke in the sky and hear a much louder explosion in midair. The Iron Dome, Israel’s short air defense system against incoming rockets and artillery shells that are fired at a distance of between four to 70 kilometers (three to 45 miles), has worked wonders during this escalation of rocket attacks against Israeli civilians. According to Israeli military officials, the Iron Dome had a 75 percent success rate on Monday as the system was able to stop 23 of 31 rockets fired at urban areas. Now it has worked again.

The passengers make their way back to the bus, some slightly hysterical and others more calm. The bus driver checks twice to make sure that everyone is back on. And then the phone calls begin. “It’s been the eighth time today that the siren has gone off!” one woman exclaims on the phone. Another passenger calls her kids to tell them she’s on the way home. The white-haired bus driver tells me that there is nothing to be scared of, that this is just another day on the job.

Yaniv Araha, part owner of a Michel Mercier hair salon, shows me a hair spray can that has been pierced by pieces of shrapnel.

However, a few hours earlier around 2:30 pm in the afternoon, a Grad rocket that the Iron Dome was unable to intercept, landed in a residential shopping area, causing extensive damage to businesses, property and vehicles. Two people were injured including an elderly woman, who was evacuated to a medical center in Rehovot after being struck by flying glass shards, along with another person. Eight people were treated for shock.

Business owners still look in shock from the attack a few hours later, as people mill around broken glass and debris that covers the sidewalk. Clothing mannequins lay on the floor in one store, with clothes strewn everywhere and the glass entry doors no longer intact.

Yaniv Araha, part owner of a Michel Mercier hair salon, shows me a hair spray can that has been pierced by pieces of shrapnel. “We were very lucky,” he says. “One of the stylists had to be hospitalized for injuries, but the rest of us including our clients who were with us at the time—are fine.” Araha shows me a protruding wall inside the hair salon where he took cover. “The shrapnel was able to reach all the way to the back kitchen,” he explains, “but the wall protected us.”

One resident holds in his hand, tiny metal balls that had been packed in the rocket

Across the street, an apartment building is covered in shrapnel holes, close to the crater-like hole in the sidewalk that the Grad rocket has left behind. One resident holds in his hand, tiny metal balls that had been packed in the rocket, which now lay harmlessly outside the apartment building. “If one of these had struck someone, G-d forbid…” he says and shakes his head. “We experienced a miracle here today. The outcome could have been much worse.”

Adi Ben Hamu, the spokesperson for Ashdod’s municipality explains that the municipality has worked very hard since the last rocket escalation against Ashdod during Operation Cast Lead to prepare residents for the next barrage of Gaza missiles.

“The first time Ashdod residents were targeted by rockets three years ago, we were not prepared,” Ben Hamu said. “There was a lot of hysteria, almost 800 people experienced shock and had to be treated. ”

“This time, not only do residents know how to act and follow safety procedures, but we also have the Iron Dome which has stopped many of the rockets and has helped boost morale,” he said. “Residents must still enter a protected area in any case because shrapnel from the rockets can still strike from above.”

“We know how to take care of ourselves,” emphasizes Ben Hamu. “But no civilian can tolerate rockets as a way of life and no country in the world would allow civilians to suffer like this.”

“The Israeli government needs to do whatever it takes to stop these rocket attacks on Ashdod, Be’er Sheva, Kiryat Malachi, Gan Yavne, Ashkelon and smaller communities across the south. In Ashdod alone we have close to 250,000 people, with 55,000 students, K-12, unable to go to school during these rocket escalations,” added Ben Hamu.

In regard to school, there has been a temporary solution, with teachers assigning homework assignments to students via e-mail and Facebook.

Ben Hamu however emphasized that there is a much greater danger out there than the current Grad rockets being fired. “Everyone here is aware that there could be a much more serious and massive attack of missiles –from Iran. This is what we have to prepare for and for an attack of that proportion, we cannot wait until the last minute.”

* * * * * * *

On Tuesday, a peace treaty was signed, and immediately broken, with many Katyushas targeting Israel.

Evictions by the Romans and Syrian Greeks, the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Holocaust, pogroms, pogroms, and more pogroms.

This photo was taken at Yad v'Shem, Israel's Holocaust museum. Most Jews leave stones on gravestones when they visit. This statue is in memory of the millions of slaughtered children whose only gravestone exists in a higher world.

Please see previous post as well.

For this month, although I may post sometimes, I have no real free time, so I ask your forgiveness for not getting to your blogs or replying to comments much of the time. As soon as I can (probably post-Pesach/Passover) I will be back.

Chevron massacre!

Defaced Torah scrolls.

More wanton destruction

In memorium of the martyrs who were so brutally slain

Jews returning to Chevron after having been expelled. Jews have lived in Israel constantly, since Biblical times. Avraham / Abraham specifically bought the cave of Machpelah, so that nobody could challenge its ownership.

Now we may once again pray at our holy sites.

Churvah means destruction. The Churva Synagogue was twice destroyed, with only the symbolic arch remaining, for centuries. Two years ago it was rebuilt.

Praying close to the holiest place on earth, in the Kotel tunnel, opposite the Holy of Holies.

We join a group of young GIRLS serving in the Israeli army, to defend our land

Am Yisroel Chai!

We are alive and well, in spite of all attempts to obliterate us!

Meanwhile, the “Western Wall” is all that remains today of the Holy Temple. It stands tall and majestic, and welcomes us home.

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There are 13 comments , add yours!
Yves Monast 9 years, 4 months ago

great post good luck....

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Jennifer Litwinowicz 9 years, 4 months ago

a very touching post!

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Chossid 9 years, 4 months ago

BTW -- regarding the comment "...the young army girls - I can hardly imagine what their mothers feel." I happened to be at the Kotel -- the Western Wall -- during the induction ceremony of new soldiers, the last time I was in Israel. We watched the parents crying with emotion. One turned to us, and said "I have been waiting for 18 years for this moment. I fought to keep Israel free, and now it is my child's turn." They are very proud that their children want to serve their country. This is NOT G-d forbid in any way like Arab mothers who pray that their children should be suicide bombers, murdering and mauling people. Jewish parents do not want their children to die, G-d forbid, but to live in peace in our homeland. Obviously, they pray constantly for their children's well-being and safety, and not the opposite. I don't know if this pride really translates as well to many other countries. I was born and bred in America, am proud of it, and quite patriotic. But I never looked forward to my sons serving in our military. I think it is because the Jewish people had been longing and praying three times a day throughout the many centuries of exile to be able to return home, and once we are able to live there, we want to defend our right to stay.

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Mike Meliska 9 years, 4 months ago

Amazing set...

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Rob Gant 9 years, 4 months ago

Wow very nice set

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Antonio Gil 9 years, 4 months ago

I wanted to visit Israel and now more than ever.

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Graham 9 years, 4 months ago

well done great post great job

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Mallusatish Reddy 9 years, 4 months ago

Outstanding post.very nicely done,great shots~!~

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Eiram Marie 9 years, 4 months ago

Excellent post, Leah. For me the most touching is the photo with the young army girls - I can hardly imagine what their mothers feel...
I watched a German documentary about the history of Jews lately, it was very interesting and I can only recommend it.


9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Dunja 9 years, 4 months ago

Outstanding shots captured superbly !

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Finbarr 9 years, 4 months ago

Excellent post !

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Yulia 9 years, 4 months ago

Super post,thank you!

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
Pete 9 years, 4 months ago

excellent post describing the fight of a nation

9 years, 4 months ago Edited
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