web analytics
July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
Blogs
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Eighteen…

One of the mass graves at Chelmno.

One of the mass graves at Chelmno.

I think the hardest thing for a parent to handle is the knowledge that their child is somewhere in pain – physical or emotional. It is impossible to go to Poland and visit the concentration camps, what remains of the ghettos, the abandoned synagogues and endless mass graves…and not cry, not break. The tears that come in Poland come from the depths of such agony.

When Amira and I went, we had the most amazing guide – an Israeli who had been to Poland 60 times…whose parents and grandparents came from Poland. He took us to his grandfather’s grave, one of 85,000 in a huge field of mostly unmarked graves…a few years before our visit, the guide had used German records to find where his grandfather was buried so at least his grandfather had a headstone, unlike those all around him.

Moments before we were about to walk into the gas chamber for the first time, in Maidanek, Chaim said to us, “I’m going to take you in there, and I’m going to take you out.” To this day, those words bring tears to my eyes. I’m going to take you out…that’s what Israel couldn’t do in the 1940s…because there was no Israel, and that is what Israel has been doing for the last 65 years. We took the Jews out of Yemen, out of Ethiopia, out of Iran and beyond. We took hurt people out of the rubble in Indonesia, Kenya, Haiti and beyond.

I wish I could be there for Davidi, to promise him that I would take him out. He’s 18 years old. He will survive the trip to Poland – they go with Israeli guards and the power and protection of the State of Israel. And still my heart breaks because while Israel can protect him physically, no power on earth can protect his heart, his soul from the devastation he will see. Even 70 years later, it is crippling. He’ll come back stronger…he’ll come back changed…but in these weeks before he goes, I can only think about what I saw, what I know he will see…

There are ashes that remain in the ovens, ashes piled into a mountain in Maidanek – it is called the Mountain of Ashes…I thought it was a symbolic use of the word, but it’s not, it’s very real…

The cemeteries are being destroyed. Unlike the Polish cemeteries that are so neat and often have beautiful flowers, the Jewish cemeteries are overgrown, abandoned, desolate. Many of the headstones have been desecrated.

The bunkers at Auschwitz, the suitcases, piles of glasses, and human hair that remain decades after later.

We went in the summer. Saba Moshe, grandfather Moshe, went with us. He looked at Auschwitz and said, “it’s all wrong…all wrong.” He was looking at the grass-covered feels. “There was no grass here. If there was, we would have eaten it.” When Davidi goes, there will be no grass. The cold will be incredible, especially for a child born and raised in Israel.

All this and more, he will see, he will experience – and I keep thinking to myself…he’s only 18. Amira was the same age, but I was with her…I wasn’t there for Shmulik when he went and he came back stronger and better for having gone. I won’t be there for Davidi…I have to believe he’ll come back stronger and better as well. For now, I just want it to be over.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Eighteen…”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
rocket in a field near Kibbutz Mefalsim
Heaven on Earth (With Rockets)
Latest Blogs Stories
Douglas Goldstein

This week Doug speaks with David S. Rose, entrepreneur, former angel investor, and founder of Gust.

WW making licht

Israeli’s are a religious people; even secular Jews believe that God is active in this world.

Israeli-flag

The beauty of a Jew is his relationship to other Jews and his involvement with Medinat Yisrael.


A ceasefire not only gives Hamas a victory, it will destroy the morale of the IDF and the country.

So-called US military aid props up US military industries while disposing of surplus supplies.

If Hamas would simply stop firing rockets into Israel, all the carnage would stop instantly.

Doug’s interview with engineer and personal finance blogger Len Penzo.

In Islam, there is no such thing as peace with accursed dhimmis as the Muslims refer to us infidels.

A reader claimed the Disengagement from Gaza was good, because it reduced the number of murdered Israelis. Examining the numbers tells a different story…

JoeSettler points out that most Gazans want to leave, and most Jews want to go back home to Gush Katif. How about a solution that actually resolves the conflict?

These are the photos of our soldiers (and a citizen) killed in action during the current IDF ground operation in Gaza.

Jameel went on a pizza run down south, and translated a letter from a soldier on the border, along with some of his own personal observations…

Rabbi Kahane spoke of transfer, because it was what the Torah spoke of.

Her message to her soldier son on the battlefield: “Complete the Mission! Sayyem et HaMissimah!”

JoeSettler contemplated some new El Al slogans like: “El Al – Our pilots are trained in evasive maneuvers”…. Let’s hear your new El Al Slogans…

More Articles from Paula Stern
candles on tracks

I love that most of my kids don’t actually read this blog – it gives me a freedom.

KL Majdanek. Mglisty paŸdziernikowy poranek 2008

The smell may be gone, but the air remains poisoned by the hatred.

My son continues to move slowly towards the army while working to complete his final year in high school.

It’s a strange feeling to known that a missile is flying towards your country and there is nothing you can do about it.

I’ll start by explaining that in Israel, a common phrase is “yehiye b’seder” – it will be okay.

At one point the Dr. asked me if I was famous because of the blog…

There are ashes that remain in the ovens, ashes piled into a mountain in Maidanek.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/eighteen/2014/01/09/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: