Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
The shock of the horrifying terror attack that took place at Mercaz HaRav Yeshiva last Thursday will not wear off easily. Eight of our nation’s finest religious boys murdered in cold blood, some with holy books in their hands, by a resident of a nearby Arab village with free access to all parts of Jerusalem.
The morning after the massacre I was near Mercaz HaRav as thousands streamed toward the stone plaza fronting the yeshiva where the bodies of the eight slain students were laid out on stretchers.
The eulogies were relayed by loudspeaker. The yeshiva head, Rabbi Yaacov Shapira, cried as he struggled to find words: “These priceless students were the best of the best, pure gold. Each one of them had unique and different good values in Torah studies, at work, in charity and kindness. These gentle souls were slaughtered in a massacre that constitutes the continuation of the  Hebron massacre…”
Another speaker was Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski. “Lord, nations have invaded Your land, desecrated Your holy hall,” he lamented. “Eight of our sweet loved ones, may God avenge their blood, who only yesterday were living among us, are no longer with us …”
Everyone seemed to know at least one of the victims, or a family member. This is a tiny country and we are one family. We grieve together at every tragic loss. Yonatan Eldar, age 16, was a neighbor of my daughter Tammy in Shiloh, his father the ba’al koreh of their synagogue. Another victim was the son of my granddaughter’s teacher.
Watching the funerals on TV of these boys whose lives had barely begun – boys a few years past their bar mitzvahs – tore one’s heart out.
The family of the murderer set up a mourning tent in his honor. His uncle called it: “…a heroic operation against an extremist Zionist college that calls for killing Palestinians. My nephew was a martyr…”
In Gaza, there were wild celebrations.
Predictably, the foreign media referred to “the ongoing cycle of violence.” But there is no such thing. It is not attack and counterattack. Israel seeks peace with those who will live with it and defends itself against those who seek its destruction. But militant Islamists seek to murder Israelis wherever they can, firing thousands of rockets across our borders, targeting innocent women and children, slaughtering eight golden boys in their yeshiva.
It is a deliberately skewed assessment to call it a cycle of violence. There would be no bloodshed if Hamas and its backers in Iran and Syria were to cease their relentless violence against Israel.
We have paid heavily in blood and sacrifice, and the long list was joined last week by eight teenage boys, murdered while studying Torah. May their memory be for a blessing.
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The meaning of “God’s watch” here is not entirely clear.
Don’t Israelis and Arab Palestinians deserve more than this? Is it not time to stop the insanity?
At age 104, my mother was still concerned about her relationship with Hashem.
“The only difference between this world and the time of Meshiach is our bondage to the gentile kingdoms.”
You’ve discovered our little secret!
Klein’s challenger has demonstrated a propensity to unleash poisonous vitriol, even to other Zionists
President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy.
Welcome the book of Leviticus!
If the nationalist Knesset members don’t provide the answer, the Arab MKs will do so in their place.
International Agunah Day falls annually on Ta’anis Esther, this year on March 13.
Yeshiva University Museum recently hosted an exhibit titled “Threshold to the Sacred.”
Even a foxhole Yid has to admit that antisemitism is on the upswing.
As shocking and insulting and horrifying as it is, Nazi war criminals are still living freely among us.
One can almost imagine a shocked Mr. Kerry thinking to himself, “How could he?” Yet not only did Mr. Putin do what he did, China, one of the three major international players along with the U.S. and Russia, agreed with him, not with Mr. Kerry.
Just imagine you are walking through a beautiful garden. Feast your eyes on the colors of the flowers, the grass at your feet, the leaves of the trees in shades from green to silver. Listen to the birds. Let the sunshine caress your face. Smell the perfume.
This is a remarkable book to assist those of us – and that means everyone – who are trying to find our way in life, with all its setbacks and pain, as well as for people who want to help people.
Forty-six years ago, in the first week of June, Israel stunned the world when it wasn’t looking. Four years later, Israel stunned me when I wasn’t looking.
Jerusalem was never real to me. It was a name I came across in books of Bible stories as a child. If I’d ever tried to imagine it, it would have been like places in my books of fairy stories. I knew it was a city with crenellated walls, with domes and towers and minarets. In my mind, I saw it peopled with old men with long beards and flowing robes, and women with clay jugs precariously balanced on their heads.
Jews all over the world celebrate Israel’s Independence Day – even those who have no intention of ever coming on aliyah, and many of whom have never even visited Israel. “It’s a kind of insurance policy” one overseas friend told me. “By supporting Israel financially and emotionally, I know that its sanctuary is available to me or my children or grandchildren should the need ever arise.”
As we get older, nostalgia takes over many areas of our life and we often yearn for things from the past.
One of the most popular of our chaggim is Simchat Torah, which falls on the last day of Sukkot. As its name suggests, Simchat Torah celebrates the joy of the Torah. There is no record of this holiday before the 11th century, and its origin may have been in Spain.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/eight-golden-martyrs/2008/03/12/
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