Blue and White: Shmuel Sackett

There Is No More ‘Yom’ HaZikaron

I have been living in Israel for 34 years and have always taken Yom HaZikaron very seriously....

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Colors: Yellow Color

Like everyone else on the planet, I receive dozens of email advertisements. Most of them don’t even catch my eye – except for this one. It contained an interesting subject line – “We Did It” – and it caught my attention. I opened the email, looked at the graphics – and almost called Hatzalah for the stroke and heart attack I was expecting to have at any moment.

Rabbi Moshe Hauer, Executive Vice President of the Orthodox Union (OU), issued a statement after some Jewish men went into the Arab town of Hawara and destroyed property. This was in response to the brutal murder of two brothers, from Har Bracha, who were shot – execution style – while driving through this town.

I must have received 100 emails, phone calls, WhatsApps, and even handwritten notes (yes, I have some very old friends) from people asking me to summarize what is happening in Israel. Left-wing protests, right-wing protests, Defense Minister fired, highways blocked, airport closed, hospitals on strike… well, at least the falafel guy is still open. Okay, here goes…

I have spoken to thousands of people about making aliyah and have received some very interesting reasons why – even though they would love to make aliyah – they have decided not to. I must state that my focus and direction on speaking to my brothers and sisters about this life-changing move is different from almost everyone else. I do not push aliyah because of rising anti-Semitism, intermarriage, or the high cost of yeshivah education. I do not talk about the crumbling of America nor the change of the political map. I focus on the positive, always the positive, because that is why I made aliyah back in 1990, and that is what gives one the strength, attitude, and relentless dedication to make it work, despite the difficulties and challenges.

Tens of thousands of leftist Israelis have taken to the streets to protest against the judicial reforms of the Netanyahu government. They have held massive rallies, blocked roads, and caused disruptions within the building of the Knesset. Many of my friends have bitterly complained against these people, and their actions, but I strongly disagree. Part of the democratic process is the right to protest, and they have every right to do so. As far as I’m concerned, they can gather every night, make as many speeches as they want, and even use civil disobedience as a tactic in their protest movement. I would like, however, to ask these protestors just one simple question.