Mission continues – July 24

The second day of our solidarity mission started with a visit to Kehilat Ya’ar Ramot . Ms. Talia Levanon, director of Israel Trauma coalition, an organization that started with help from NY federation explained that Trauma in Israel is everywhere, among the soldiers, in the supermarkets, buses and schools. They work with communities not only individuals.
Dolev Kidar, 38, from Modi’in, the commander of the Gefen Battalion who died in Gaza said “The eyes tell the story but we have to continue”.
The organization gets 1600 calls a day and as the rockets continue to fall the work multiplies.

Next we met Tzipi Livni, Minister of Justice who explained that unfortunate we need to understand that we are facing pragmatics. Chamas uses violence against Israel and we need to focus on military operation that will find the tunnels. She then had to leave to a meeting with the prime minister.
We continued to another Masorti synagogue, Kehilat Ramot Zion.
rabbi Chaya Rowen-Baker compared these days before Tisha B’av to being “Bein Hamezarim”, a break point and we should try to rise and create peace if possible.

The next speaker was Rachel Frankel, the mother of Naftali who was one of the three teen who were kidnapped. Her smile and twinkling eyes captured us all. We were in owe. She captivated us with her spirit She said that she promised her kids taht they will be a happy family and is trying to keep Naftali alive even if he is not with them . She told us that she got strength from the people who came to console her and compared it to a person who expirience love and through that the world view is changed. Her parenst came from the US and she was born in Israel and grew up in Ramat Gan. There was no hanger , no regret only hope for a unity in the future.

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Outside the synagogue between two building we spotted Iron Dom which protects Jerusalem

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We continued to the Knesset , we met with Yuli Edelstein, the speaker of the Knesset The Knesset (Israel’s unicameral parliament) is the country’s legislative body. The Knesset took its name and fixed its membership at 120 from the Knesset Hagedolah (Great Assembly), the representative Jewish council convened in Jerusalem by Ezra and Nehemiah in the 5th century BCE.

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He was hoping we will reach cease fire, he sees toys,medicine and kids cloths flying in the air and cement used for building tunnels, millions of dollars used by Chamas in fighting Israel and in Israel we see unity , the whole country coming together to burry the fallen lone soldiers. Hope is still here. This is the first time Chamas is isolated from the arab world.
Tomorrow we will inaugurate the 10th Israeli president, Robi Rivlin. Tomorrow we will talk about what will happen after, how to bridge the Israeli society.

We contiued to a farewell diner . We heard form Rabbi Tamar Elad Appelbaum whi again talked about the BREAK. She compared it to a pregnant woman who is about to give birth.
She talked about the future of creating a religious language, a language that can bridge the gap between Jews and Arabs.

The mission is over. My country is suffering, 31 soldiers dead and many wounded but we are all united. We run for shelter when there is a siren alert, our boys are fighting and have the enormous task of keeping the home front safe so we have to be strong.
Let pray for peace.

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