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October 21, 2014 / 27 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Eyal Yifrah’

Police: We Failed During Gil-Ad’s SOS Call

Monday, July 14th, 2014

Police Chief Yohanan Danino told the Knesset Internal Affairs and Environment Committee that 540 Israeli Arabs have been arrested during rioting following the kidnap/murder of Mohammed Abu Khdeir.

In addition, Assistant Commander Moshe Barkat noted the police  emergency hotline’s “failure” to deal with the SOS call from Gil-Ad Sha’ar on June 12. He said officers manning the hotline should have dealt with the call as an emergency.

Barkat also said that officers that failed to act appropriately had been summoned to the police disciplinary committee. Nanino added that officers are scheduled to be fired, but added that like all employees in the State of Israel they have rights and that those rights must be respected.

Photo Essay: Jewish, Arab Responses to Tragedy

Monday, July 7th, 2014
Palestinians throw stones at Israeli Police, July 5, 2014

Palestinians throw stones at Israeli Police, July 5, 2014

Ultra Orthodox man mourns by the graves of Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Sha'ar and Naftali Fraenkel, two days after their funeral, July 3, 2014

Ultra Orthodox man mourns by the graves of Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel, two days after their funeral, July 3, 2014

Israeli security forces take cover from stone-throwing Arabs in Umm el Fahm, , July 5, 2014.

Israeli security forces take cover from stone-throwing Arabs in Umm el Fahm, July 5, 2014.

Israeli teenagers light candles in memory of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha'ar and Naftali Fraenkel, June 30, 2014

Israeli teenagers light candles in memory of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel, June 30, 2014

Palestinians clash with border police during funeral of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, July 4, 2014.

Palestinians clash with border police during funeral of Mohammed Abu Khdeir, July 4, 2014.

Jews study Torah in memory of Gilad, Naftali and Eyal, July 1, 2014

Jews study Torah in memory of Gilad, Naftali and Eyal, July 1, 2014

Police clash with protesters in Nazareth, Israel, July 5, 2014

Police clash with protesters in Nazareth, Israel, July 5, 2014

Rav Dov Zinger, Rosh Yeshiva at Makor Chaim prays for the safe return of his students Gil-Ad Sha'ar and Naftali Fraenkel, June 23, 2014

Rav Dov Zinger, Rosh Yeshiva at Makor Chaim prays for the safe return of his students Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel, June 23, 2014

Thousands Visit Shiva Homes for Gilad, Naftali and Eyal

Sunday, July 6th, 2014

Government ministers, Knesset members, civic leaders, rabbis and ordinary Israelis from all walks of life have been flooding the homes of the three families whose sons were abducted and murdered by Hamas terrorists three and a half weeks ago. Many people said they came to comfort the grieving families, but said they left comforted and strengthened by the grieving families’ faith and power.

At the Sha’ar home in Talmon, chassidic singer Avraham Fried visited Bat-Galim and Ofir Sha’ar, Gil-Ad’s parents, on Saturday night, and led mourners in a spontaneous song, at the request of Bat-Galim.  

In addition,  a group of Ultra Orthodox Jews visited Thursday with an unfinished Sefer Torah that had been donated by an anonymous individual in memory of the three boys. The scroll was brought to each of the homes, where the fathers were invited to complete the last letters in the scroll.

In Elad, Ilana Dadon, mother of Shelly Dadon who was murdered on April 1st this year, came to console the family of Eyal Yifrah. In the end, however, Dadon said she felt consoled by Iris, mother of 19 year old Eyal.

Finally, this morning (Sunday) the Sha’ar family was visited by members of the search team who found their son’s body. “We didn’t know if they were alive or dead”, said one of the team members, “We began searching full of hope. With all the pain, we are glad to have found them. We could have missed them for years.”

Ofir, Gil-Ad’s father, said: “We want to thank you. We felt the army was with us. We saw your eyes, red from fatigue. and we knew that every effort was being made to find them alive.

“The cooperation mirrored what was happening generally – unity,” said Ofir Sha’ar.

Thousands Bid Farewell to Boys Who Unified Nation

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Tens of thousands of Israelis, including haredi men in long coats and side curls, Sephardic women in tight jeans and low-cut tops, and, of course, thousands and thousands of national-religious  representing the entire swath of the religious Zionist spectrum braved searing afternoon heat Tuesday to give one final honour to three boys – and their families – who unified a fractured nation.

In many ways, the funeral procession of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’ar and Naftali Fraenkel had a different feel to other mass funerals following terror attacks. Of course, the event bore terrible resemblance to other mass funerals following horrific terror attacks. As at funerals of the Fogel family, Koby Mandell, and countless more victims of Oslo, today’s procession was marked by teenage boys crying openly on each-others shoulders, middle aged men and women staring blankly at the crowd, trying in vain to understand the justice and the Divine logic behind the tragedy, and teenage girls sitting on rocks and dirt paths, quietly sobbing into prayer and Psalm books.

Mother of Naftali Frenkel, Rachel Frenkel, seen crying over the body of her son, during the joint funeral for the three murdered Jewish teens, in the Modiin cemetery, on July 1, 2014.

Mother of Naftali Frenkel, Rachel Frenkel, seen crying over the body of her son, during the joint funeral for the three murdered Jewish teens, in the Modiin cemetery, on July 1, 2014.

But a closer look revealed another, unusual side to the burial of three children murdered in cold blood. In addition to the natural human instinct to offer comfort to the grieving families, mourners seemed moved by another, deeper feeling. As much as a tribute to the victims, the gathering seemed to be a desperate grasp to hold on to the last three weeks – a period of fear and uncertainty, and of hope, all of which eventually exploded into the biggest show of national unity since the abduction and murder of Nachshon Wachsman HY”D in similar circumstances in 1994.

As Israelis of all political and ethnic stripes mourned the boys’ murder, there is a reluctance to bid farewell to Iris Yifrah, Rachael Fraenkel and Bat-Galim Sha’ar, the devastated mothers who both drew strength from the support they received from Am Yisrael and returned it to the nation ten fold. To paraphrase Prime Minister Netanyahu said, the past three weeks were a lesson – for Israel and the world – in prayer, in belief, in national unity, in humanity. Today’s gathering, then, was in many ways a desperate attempt to down one last gulp from the cup of unity and faith that defined the past 19 days.

Spontaneous Crowd

Although the burial service was not scheduled to begin until 5:30 pm (individual funeral services were held in each boy’s hometown), the area leading to the Modi’in cemetery was nearly impassible by 4:00. An hour before the speeches were set to begin, this reporter could not get within 250 meters of the eulogy tent. Ultimately, the bodies were delayed by more than a n hour, giving mourners ample time to sweat, pray – groups of yeshiva boys seized on the opportunity before the eulogies to recite the afternoon Mincha service  - and most of all, to sing.

As happened at memorial services around the country when word of the murders made the rounds last night, groups of teens hugged, linked arms and soothed their pain with the songs that have defined the entire ordeal – songs about God’s power and goodness, prayerful songs asking God to redeem captives, and especially the line from the Passover Haggada – “The promise made to our forefathers holds true also for us: For more than once they have risen against us to try to destroy us… But the Holy One, Blessed be He, saves us from their hands.”

Thousands of people attend the joint funeral for the three murdered Jewish teens, in the Modiin cemetery, on July 1, 2014.

Mourners from around the country – this reporter spoke to individuals who had travelled from Jerusalem, Rehovot, Bat Yam and Netanya, in addition to yishuvim around Judea and Samaria – said they were moved to attend the funeral by the families’ grace during the crisis, but also out of feelings of helplessness in a tough situation.

“Of course I’m here,” said Hallel, a 21-year-old university student from Ofra. “Am Yisrael came together for these boys, hoping against hope for a different outcome, knowing all the while that the signs didn’t look good from the very first moment.”

Asked what she prayed for knowing that the odds were against finding the boys alive, she said simply “mercy.” After a short pause, she added, “You know, growing up in Ofra, we’ve had our share of awful attacks. Too, too many people have been killed.

“Be’ezrat Hashem,” she said, “this whole story will serve as a catalyst for spirituality and good things.

“But the pain is unbearable. There’s just no way around it.”

Hebron Jews: Terrorists Don’t Frighten Us

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

A day after the IDF forces confirmed the brutal murder of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’aer and Naftali Fraenkel, members of the Shavei Hebron yeshiva and residents of the holy city of Hebron said the terrorists are “sorely mistaken” if they think they can sever the Jewish link to the Land of Israel with brutality.

“Of course, we have been praying for a different ending to this story since the boys were abducted,” said Rabbi Misha-el Rubin, rosh yeshiva at Yeshivat Shavei Hebron where Eyal Fraenkel HY”D studied. “Now, our task is to show our students – and the world – that our prayers were not offered in vain. The point of praying and of learning Torah is to make us stronger, to inspire us to become better Jews.

Rav Rubin said that Jews have a long history of drawing strength from prayer and added that ironically, it was the Jewish people who gained strength from the prayers of the families of the murdered boys during the 18-day manhunt for the missing teens.

“The families – and especially the mothers – broadcast their feelings to the entire nation. We all tapped into their bravery and the unity it engendered. Now, it is our task to use the energies we have gathered over the last 18 days to give power to the government. (The government must know that they have the 100 percent backing of the nation) to face the challenges of the present day,” the rabbi said.

Yifrach’s roommate, 20-year-old Micky Zivan, told reporters that while the brutal murder of his friend would leave a terrible void in the yeshiva, he added that the entire world has lost a unique soul.

“Of course, Eyal can never be replaced and will never be forgotten,” Zivan said with an even voice. “He was a leader, a friend, a brother. But it’s more than that, in this case: He wasn’t just a guy who lived in our room. He was a unique, beautiful individual who had so much to offer the world. And the world is that much poorer because he won’t be a part of it.”

Zionist Response

David Wilder, a spokesman for the Hebron Jewish Community, quoted the book of Psalms and King David’s admonition to “Depart from evil, and do good,” and said that Israel must employ a two-pronged response to the murders.

“We have lost three young men, three heroes, three individuals who knew nothing of evil,” Wilder said. “Their only crime was being Jewish, living in the Land of Israel, studying Torah in Hebron and in Gush Etzion.

“(In response) the State of Israel must eradicate terror and all of those who support it. They must be totally, completely done away with. It should go without saying that Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Salafists that we are seeing now among the Palestinian population – they all must be totally, completely wiped out.”

Lastly, Wilder stressed that he includes Abu Mazen in the category of terrorists who must be annihilated. “Abu Mazen knew what he was doing when he signed the deal with Hamas. When you enter into a unity deal with terrorists, you are a terrorist. Enough with the handshakes, the hugs and the kisses. It is all a show, and if they are not destroyed they will continue to murder Jews.”

Wilder called on the government to respond to the murders with traditional Zionism – expanding Jews’ presence in Judea and Samaria, and the rest of the Land of Israel. He quoted one Arab leader, who said that if Jews fail to claim the entire Land of Israel as their birthright and eternal patronage, then the Arab world will claim the entire land for itself. To that end, he cited the 1980 government decision to grant Jewish building permits in Hebron in response to a terror attack that left six Jews dead, and Wilder called on today’s government to copy the move.

“The ‘do good’ part of King David’s statement (from Psalms – MHS) means taking this yeshiva, which currently houses 350 men, and expanding it to include 1000 people. Shavei Hebron should be an international Torah organization, with men’s and women’s divisions. That’s the right response to this outrage,” Wilder said.

Another Jewish community spokesperson, Noam Arnon, reminded reporters Arab terrorism didn’t start on June 12. Rather, he noted that the community soon will mark the 85th anniversary of the 1929 Arab pogrom that claimed the lives of 70 Jews, and said that the current terror crime was only the latest attack in that ongoing war.

“In 1929, 70 Jews were burned, attacked, beaten to death and raped by their Arab neighbors,” Arnon said. “That’s 20 years before the State of Israel was created, and 40 before the so-called ‘occupation’ of Judea and Samaria.

“So terrorism has nothing to do with territory, or ‘occupation.’ The uncomfortable fact of the matter is that terrorist fanaticism is about one thing, and one thing only: About the Jewish connection to the Land of Israel. “

Tens of Thousands Sing, Pray for Boys’ Release

Sunday, June 29th, 2014

Tens of thousands of Israelis have gathered at Rabin Square in Tel Aviv for a protest rally/songfest/public prayer to call for the release of Eyal Yifrah, Gil-Ad Sha’aer and Naftali Fraenkel.

Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv (and former Chief Rabbi of Israel) Yisrael Meir Lau said that every human being with a beating heart prays for the boys’ safe return, led a communal recitation of a chapter from the Book of Psalms, as well as a Mi Sheberach prayer for the boys’ speedy return. President-elect Reuven Rivlin is also expected to address the rally, as are the parents of the boys.

The artistic program will include performances by Koby Aflalo, Koby Oz, David D’or, Miri Mesika, Dudu Fischer, Rami Kleinstein, Yonatan Razel

“The rally expresses concretely what everyone here in Israel feels,” Avi Fraenkel, father of Naftali, told Ynet.  Fraenkel ho remarked on the national “unity of fate and a very basic feeling of mutuality. Many people wanted to come here and we barely have time to see them, we barely have time for ourselves, and it’s an opportunity for us to do something with everybody.

“I have no idea how many people will arrive tonight, many feel connected to the matter and I hope that will be expressed.”

Tal Segev and Yonatan Razel debuted a song written in honor of the boys, entitled Don’t Give Up, in addition to Razel’s famous rendition of the words from the Pesach Haggadah: And the One who stood up for our forefathers and for us will continue to do so.

Dudu Fischer, a veteran Broadway singer, sang a Hebrew version of Bring Him Home, from Les Miserables.

Iris Yifrah, Eyal’s mother, talked about her son’s love for Shabbat songs, and especially about his love for Am Yisrael.

“Last year, Eyal volunteered with youth and teenagers in Bat Yam. He loved everyone he met – new immigrants, veteran Israelis, Russians, Sephardim, it didn’t matter. And he continues to keep in touch with them.

“[And here, we see]: Our beloved Am Yisrael is returning your endless love, your boundless sense of ‘giving back.’ Am Yisrael is returning that love to you. The whole nation is uniting, everybody is worried about you, waiting for you.

“I turn to you to, our precious Am Yisrael – all types and stripes of Jews – we are going through this terrible time together. Let us all support one-another.”

Naftali’s mother, Racheli Fraenkel, said the gathering was not a “protest,” but rather a demonstration of unity and love.

“Somewhere, there are three kids, living kids, not symbols. There is no chance any of us will give up. The love that we feel here is giving them life.

This awful story has reminded us of the joint foundation of our existence here (in the Land of Israel). I visited our soldiers in Hebron this morning. Guys with bloodshot eyes from days and nights (without sleep). But when I tried to thank them, they said to me, “”Thanks? What are you talking about? This is why we joined the army.”

Bat Galim Sha’ar continued the theme of the unity of Am Yisrael, saying that one of her earliest memories was the 1976 IDF rescue of Jewish hostages who had been hijacked to Entebbe, Uganda. That mission claimed the life of  Yoni Netanyahu, brother of the current prime minister.

“We are not  alone. There is an entire nation hugging, praying, waiting for your safe return, in Israel and around the world. Beit Yisrael has come together, has united around bringing you home. When you come home, will see a huge, expanded family, with new cousins and grandparents and aunts and uncles, all around the world.

“We are a brothers,” she said, quoting Yaakov Avinu’s children upon meeting their brother, Joseph. “We will not stop, we will not be silenced. Yesterday Entebbe, today Gush Etzion, tomorrow the Golan Heights. But the feeling of unity remains,” Sha’ar said.

 

Nigerian Pres Condemns Kidnapping

Sunday, June 29th, 2014

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has expressed his solidarity with the Sha’ar, Fraenkel and Yifrach families, and with Israeli society, and condemned the abduction of the three yeshiva students.

In a letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu, Jonathan said, “In behalf of the government and people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I write to express my empathy with the Government and people of the State Israel on the abduction of three teenage Israeli students. Given Nigeria’s experience with the scourge of terrorism, I assure you that we are in solidarity with you, as we believe that any act of terrorism against any nation or group is an act against our common humanity.

“We unequivocally condemn this dastardly act and demand that the children are released unconditionally by their abductors.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/nigerian-pres-condemns-kidnapping/2014/06/29/

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