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Though it is true that many dedicated souls did contribute, it was Avital who led the battle, and the victory in many ways was her triumph.
Once in a Toronto airport, I overheard a young woman carrying her infant daughter telling Avital that she had named the girl after her in admiration of her struggle, her courage and all that she had come to mean to the larger world. Avital thanked the woman and humbly walked away.
I have no doubt that in the world today there are many young women named Avital in homage to this remarkable woman. Natan’s freedom is not only a celebration of his great courage, it is also a celebration of Avital’s formidable moral and spiritual strength.
Rabbi Avi Weiss, a weekly Torah columnist for The Jewish Press, is senior rabbi of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale and founder and president of the Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School. His book “Spiritual Activism: A Jewish Guide to Leadership and Repairing the World” (Jewish Lights) includes material on the struggle to free Sharansky.
About the Author: Rabbi Avi Weiss is founder and president of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah and senior rabbi of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale.
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The War projects to lower Israel’s 2014 GDP 0.5% but will have little influence on foreign investors
It is in the nature of the Nations of the World to be hostile towards the Jewish People.
Hamas and Islamic Jihad are actually fighting to “liberate Jerusalem and all Palestine.”
The congregants, Ethiopians spanning generations, were beaming with joy and pride.
The withdrawal from the Gaza Strip nine years ago did not enhance Israel’s security.
How does a soldier from a religious home fall in love with a soldier from a non- religious kibbutz?
In 19th century entire ancient Jewish communities fled Palestine to escape brutal Muslim authorities
Responsibility lies with both the UN and Hamas, and better commitments should have been demanded from both parties in the ceasefire.
But the world is forever challenging our Jewish principle and our practices.
If this is how we play the game, we will lose. By that I mean we will lose everything.
Reportedly, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have formed a bloc that seeks to counter Islamist influence in the Middle East.
One wonders how the IDF could be expected to so quickly determine the facts.
Of paramount importance is that both the king and his people realize that while he is the leader, he is still a subject of God.
Israel is the only place where we have the potential to fulfill our mandate as the chosen people.
Rav Kook of blessed memory, who said that no matter where a Jew is born, he is born in Israel.
One must act as if everything depends on us and pray as if everything depends on God.
When taking any major step in life it is a good idea to carefully re-evaluate one’s past.
Important message for Jews in the Diaspora: In times of need run to Israel rather than from Israel.
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