Wednesday, May 07, 2008


My sister called me from Israel yesterday when it was already the afternoon in Israel, erev Yom HaZikaron, the eve of the Day of Remembrance for Israel's fallen, in battle and in acts of terror against the Jewish State.

It's hard, she told me, from her sunny hilltop home. So much sadness. We pay a big price for this dream.

Much has been made of the difference between America's gaudy sales events in commemoration of Memorial Day and Israel's somber mood on Yom HaZikaron which comes days after Holocaust Remembrance Day -- Yom HaShoah.

Yet, to remind everyone of the dream driving the sorrow, tomorrow will be Yom Ha'atzmaut, Israel Independence Day.

A master psychologist or ace event planner could not have crafted this flow of days any better.

The celebration of Yom Ha'atzmaut is a reverse image of the sorrowful commemoration of the previous week. The deeper the sorrow, the greater the following celebration.

For us, perhaps. I've often wondered about those whose connection to Yom HaZikaron is deep. Parents who lost sons. Children whose siblings perished in suicide attacks. Wives whose husbands were killed in battle. Friends and loved ones slain in the war against the very existence of the Jewish State.

I wish that the Israel-haters around the world could simply admit the truth behind their pseudo-political positions. I wish they would simply come out and say that they have a problem with Israel. Period. It's not because of policy X or border dispute Y or reason Z.

The problem is simply Israel herself.

For them, Yom Ha'atzmaut is Al Naqba -- the Disaster. The Catastrophe.

And while the Arab ownership of this sentiment seems apt -- if questionable -- it seems curiouser and curiouser that people around the world with no tie to Israel or the Palestinians or Arabs or the region nurture such rage against Israel's existence.

Maybe that is the true disaster or catastrophe we should be paying attention to. How Israel's 60-year lifespan seems to have exceeded the world's ability to tolerate the concept of a homeland for the Jewish People.