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April 18, 2014 / 18 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Paratroopers’

IDF Paratroopers Take the Biggest Jump of Their Lives (Video)

Friday, July 26th, 2013

Israeli paratroopers – 1,000 of them – trained in southern Israel this week and topped the exercise with a jump that in seconds overcomes fear and leaves behind the noisy engines of the plane for the quiet of the long drop to earth.

“Every paratrooper preparing to leap from a plane must overcome fear. It’s natural to feel fear, but paratroopers leave fear behind them. We are the only ones who are tested in the face of fear — even during training, said Brigade Commander Col. Eliezer Toledano said that

“The Paratroopers don’t need lengthy preparations to strike a very large array of forces behind enemy lines,” he added.

Col. Toledano stressed that the importance of the exercise is that “we proved that at any given moment the IDF can take a large amount of soldiers and drop them deep in enemy territory in a matter of moments… we have the ability go anywhere we say we will go.”

Jumping out of the plane is only the first part –  more important is what happens when you land.

“There’s a risk that you will you will be cut off from the Brigade and won’t find your friends on the ground,”  said Deputy Brigade Commander Lt. Col. Itamar Ben-Chaim. “It’s possible that you will end up fighting with soldiers who are not from your platoon, so we educate commanders in spatial understanding and in taking initiative.”

The Brigade applied lessons they had learned from last year’s exercise, reaching a new safety standard and making sure that their soldiers can fight effectively after landing. The severity of  injuries decreased in this year’s exercise in relation to last year’s.

After the Paratroopers land, they have all the equipment they need to operate in the battlefield, including heavy vehicles that allow for continuous and sustained operations in enemy territory after landing.

“The best part of an exercise like this,” said First Sgt. Hadar Ben Simon of the Reconnaissance Battalion, “is the contrast between the noise of the aircraft before you jump, and the quiet after the parachute opens.”

Sarah Silverman’s Reform Rabbi Sister, Niece, Detained at the Kotel

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Among the 10 Women of the Wall detained by police on Monday in Israel for praying in the open air women’s section at the Western Wall while wearing prayer shawls was Susan Silverman—sister of the controversial comic Sarah Silverman. Susan is a Reform rabbi in Jerusalem, and she was arrested along with her teenage daughter.

Sarah Silverman tweeted: “SO proud of my amazing sister @rabbisusan & niece@purplelettuce95 for their [genital reference] civil disobedience. Ur the [mamary reference]!#womenofthewall”

According to Ha’aretz, the comic’s niece, Hallel, twitted back: “@SarahKSilverman hey auntie, want a copy of my mugshot?”

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AP the women were detained due to regulations that ban women from wearing prayer shawls while worshiping at the Western Wall, which could offend Orthodox Jewish visitors. Several hours later, they were released.

Shira Pruce, WOW’s Director of Public Relations, emailed The Jewish Press:

“At 7 AM hundreds of men and women flocked to the Western Wall to pray with Women of the Wall, including several Israeli paratroopers who liberated Jerusalem and the Western Wall in 1967 at the end of the Six Day War.

“The women prayed, 200 strong, with at least fifty men in attendance for support. The prayer lasted over an hour and the women were allowed to dance, sing and wear prayer shawls (tallitot), despite the police surrounding them on all sides.”

According to Pruce, a few Haredi women made insulting comments, but were instructed by police to move on.

One of the paratroopers told the passing women that, after they had liberated the Kotel, everyone was welcome to pray there.

Michah Eshet, past Battalion Commander of the paratroopers’ Battalion 66, said he became involved with Women of the Wall because they are “the brave paratroopers in the hope that they will succeed in their struggle to liberate the Kotel from grip of the ultra-Orthodox, for all of the Jewish nation.”

Well, that’s harsh, even for a big, brave paratrooper. For one thing, according to Pruce, when she spoke to The Jewish Press, on Monday there was no reaction from the Haredi men by the Kotel, who let the hour plus prayer service proceed with no interruption whatsoever. The only entity doing the gripping at this point is the High Court, which took on itself to decide whose prayer leads up to the heavens and whose ends up in the Russian Compound, Jerusalem’s detention center.

Pruce said the cops were “sneaky,” waiting for paratroopers and most of the media to disappear, and only then, as the group of women was filing out of the Western Wall plaza at the conclusion of the prayer service, did the cops “descend upon the women, in what seemed like a planned blitz arrest of as many women wearing tallitot as possible.”

Personally, I’m proud of my fellow Orthodox guys at the Kotel, who just turned their back on the tumult and the raucous on the other side of the mechitza and just did their thing. After all, it’d just once a month (thank God nobody told them Adar had two Roshei Chodashim, or maybe they only keep one because it makes sense—it’s beyond my rabbinic sensibilities).

Here’s another observation: in my own shul in Netanya we barely had a minyan for shacharit this morning, and when it came time for Hallel we mostly mumbled along with one eye on the wall clock. We only sang the part from “Pitchu li shaarey tzedek” on, and since there were barely a dozen of us – you get the picture. So I can’t resist admiring a bunch of ladies who make Rosh Chodesh special in the extreme and even bring paratroopers.

This is a great idea, come to think of it – there are so many shuls who suffer from low attendance, especially in these frosty winter mornings – why not invite a couple of paratroopers?

Just tell them they must come help release you from the grip of the Ultra Orthodox. It seems to work.

Police Arrest 10 Women of the Wall as Liberating Paratroopers Watch

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Police said they arrested for “endangering public peace” 10 women who took part in a Rosh Chodesh (first day of the new month) prayer service at the Western Wall.

The women were taken in for questioning. They are members of the Women of the Kotel organization who demand to be allowed to conduct prayer services at the Kotel.

This time, the 300 or so women were accompanied by just under 10 of the very IDF paratroopers who liberated the Kotel in 1967, and who told the press they had sacrificed to make the holy site available to all Jews, not just to a certain segment of the nation.

Police behavior was a bit more restrained this time around, as they waited patiently until the women were done praying before taking them in. But Shira Pruce, Director of Public Relations for WOW, told The Jewish Press that police behavior was “sneaky,” or at least confusing, seeing as they arrested the women after they had already cleared the area.

Unlike the cops, Orthodox Jewish men did not respond at all to the praying women. In the past the women’s service tended to provoke the more Haredi congregants in the men’s section. This despite the fact that several women were wrapped in prayer shawls.

“Remarkably, today’s t’filah was beautiful and peaceful,” said Pruce. “Maybe a few Haredi women walked by and called us names. But the police told them to keep walking. With that tiny exception, it was so peaceful, it didn’t bother anyone. No one was upset.”

Pruce told The Jewish Press she and her fellow congregants made no attempt to tone down their prayers. “We sang, we danced—when we women get together for prayer, we ‘milk’ it, we enjoy it.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/police-arrest-10-women-of-the-wall-as-liberating-paratroopers-watch/2013/02/11/

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