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May 08, 1981 - Image 72

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1981-05-08

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12. Friday, May 8, 1981

Greetings from Israel on Independence Day

Mazal Tov and Hag
Sameakh to all of you.
* * *

From the Honorable

Prime Minister
of Israel

From Jerusalem our et-
ernal and indivisible capital
I send to you all heartfelt
greetings on the occasion of
the 33rd anniversary of the
proclamation of Israel's In-
dependence in the land of
our forefathers.
After- the most terrible
disaster which befell OUT
people in Europe and the -
heroic fight in Eretz Israel
for national self-liberation
we lived to see the day, one
of the greatest in theannals
of our ancient people, when
we became a nation
amongst nations, free and
independent in our own
country. Since then we have
brought home millions of
the Jewish people from the
four corners of the world.
We have had to sustain our
independence through five
wars, in which 14,000 of our
best men gave their lives
and more than 30,000 were
wounded. But we did protect
and preserve our indepen-
dence. We set our country
free; we reunited
Jerusalem; we built up the
land and are turning it into
green pastures.
- This year we celebrate
the second anniversary of
the signing of the peace _
treaty between Egypt and
Israel. No doubt this is a
turning point in the annals
of the two countries and of
the Middle East. After 31
years of a state of war and of
five actual wars waged on
the battlefield with great
sacrifice, sorrow and be-
reavement, we — Egypt and
Israel — declared that we
shall never again raise
arms against each other and
the state of war is termi-
The Middle East and its
periphery are in a state of

From the Honorable
President of Israel



turmoil. Iraq faces Iran
in armed conflict. Syria,
itself Seized by internal
convulsions, is in con-
frontation with Jordan.
Lebanon continues its
inner bloody strife,
mainly because of the
presence of the criminal
PLO now armed by
Soviet tanks and heavy
weapons, aided by Syria
and financed, as before,
by Saudi Arabia. In this
arena of instability and
dispute the only peace-
ful corner emanates from
the treaty of peace he
tween Israel and Egypt.
We have since signed
many agreements which .
stem from -the treaty. We
still have problems; in-
deed we hope to solve
Better the difficulties of
peace than the sufferings of
war. We will be faithful to
all the terms and all the
parts of the Camp David
agreement. There may still
be difficulties ahead but we
have started this great new
chapter in' our life, peace.
We live by the faith that
in generations to come our
people will live in this land
together with their
neighbors, in equality, in
human dignity, in freedom,
in independence and in real

To Jewish communities
everywhere we send from
Jerusalem hearfelt greet-
ings on Israel's Indepen-
dence Day. ,
What was not given to our
forefathers in 2,000 years of
exile has been granted to
our generation: the ancient
dream has been realized; we
have achieved indepen-
dence. Independence means
being able to shape our own
destiny; ceasing to be an ob-
ject manipulated by others.
Independence means that
we can develop our country
and our culture in accord-
ance with our spiritual le-
gacy, our history, our desire
to create a society of which
we can be'proud — a society
which will realize the bibli-
cal vision that Torah will
come forth from Zion.
When Israel achieved its
independence in 1948, there
were 650,000 Jews in the
country. Today there are
three and a quarter million.
In our first year of in-
dependence, our exports
consisted of citrus fruit,
false teeth and heads for
primus stoves. Today we
export, among many
other items, helicopters,
electronic instruments,
excellent and diversified
agricultural produce.
These are unparallelled
achievements, but there are
still difficult and most sig-
nificant challenges that we
have to meet: settlement of
the desert area that repre-
sents 60 percent of Israel's
territory; molding one na-
tion out of immigrants who
have come from 102 coun-
tries and speak 81 different
languages; solving the so-


cial problems with which we
are now grappling; complet-
ing the peace process begun
with Egypt and, at the same
time, guarding our own se-
curity. And the chief task to
be carried•out by the Jewish
people is and remains —
Till their actual aliya,
Jews in their communities
should study Hebrew, visit
Israel, strengthen Jewish
education. All of us must do
all in our power to enable
the Jews of Soviet Russia
and Syria to leave their
countries in freedom and,
we trust, join us in rebuild-
ing the homeland of our
All of us hope with all our
hearts that complete rede-
mption will follow upon the
beginning of redemption
which divine help has given
us, and that we will see the
scattered Jewish people
gathered in their own coun-
try, developing their land
and culture, creating a
model society. Indeed all of
us are responsible for each
other, as one Jewish people.
A happy Independence
Day to all of you!

* * *

From the Honorable

Consul General
of Israel
to the Midwest

Israel's 33rd anniversary
is marked while the world
undergoes a process of pro-
found unrest and continu-
ous tension, economic crisis,

severe and bloody religious
conflicts and violent out-
bursts affecting all conti-
All these traumatic
occurrences have not deter-
red the small, democratic
Jewish state to continue to
pursue its objectives and
progress since its Renais-
sance 33 years ago. In 1981,
Israel will have a popula-
tion of four million citizens
(not including the Arab
population in Judea,
Samaria and Gaza — num-
bering an additional 1.2
million). To compare it to
the 800,000 citizens (among
them 650,000 Jews) who
lived there on the threshold
of Isr-lel's independence 33
years ago, is to understand
the demographic, social and
economic positive revolu-
tion which took place in our
country, manifesting the
vivid and continuous
growth of Israel:
The absorption of 1.7 mil-
lion refugees and newcom-
ers and the development .of
the country from a coastal
plain mini-state to a
dynamic, proud and deter-
mined community — turn-
ing, literally, the desert into
bloom and the wasteland
into highly populated and
productive cities, kibutzim
and moshavim and busy
ports and centers of creativ-
ity and scientific and
technological progress.
Despite terrible wars
launched by the Arab
neighbors against it, Is-
rael grew from strength
to strength and despite
enormous economic
painful difficulties, in-
vestments, production
and manufacturing of all
kinds increased beyond
Israel has become the
biggest exporting nation
per capita in the world, sell-
ing abroad highly sophisti-

cated technological and sci-
entific commodities as well
as agrkultural production.
Its cultural and artistic
creativity based on our He-
brew language and Jewish
heritage gained interna-
tional fame.
The most significant
phenomena in Israel's life
has been the fact that it car-
ried on unceasingly to
create progresS and develop
despite being in the foref-
ront of the cruelest confron-
tation line against powerful
and ruthless world emp-
which have threatened
integrity and the well being
of the Free World as a whole
— and which Israel had to
encounter sometimes on its


own, as the soft and vulner-
able link and often as the
forgotten ally of the
Judeo-Christian civiliza-
On its 33rd anniver-
sary, the challenges facing
Israel are as meaningful
and as difficult as ever be-
fore. It has to continue and
strengthen the elements
working for peace in the
Middle East and the world
and reject any surrender to
those who want to jeopar-
dize it and turn the wheel
back from negotiation to


A Personal Love Affair With the Golden City of David

"How many ways do I love
that I can pinpoint when I
fell in love with this city. It thee? Let me count the
JERUSALEM — It was happened so slowly and im- ways," wrote a poet. It is
not love at first sight — or perceptibly that I wasn't easy to write poetry in
even second. In fact it took a even aware of it. One day it Jerusalem and many are in-
few years before Jerusalem was just another city -- spired to 'do so. Perhaps it's
came to have a special rather on the small side, the light .. . dawn comes
meaning for me. When I and then — one day — it stealthily, a rosy haze re-
flecting off masses of grey
came to live here in 1971, I was my city.
stone. And when the sun
wondered frankly what all
the fuss was about. Au- of their "Garden of sets, the darkenss is black
stralia, my birthplace, had -Eden." Unbelievably I velvet spangled with golden
bigger cities with wider am living in mine and I lights.
Maybe it's the sound of
streets, magnificent feel an enormous
— the wind sighs
beaches and a sun-drenched
rather frightening sense like mourning ghosts in the
London, where I'd once of responsibility. Every pine trees that abound here,
lived, had more dignity, now and again, the whole silhouetted blackly against
more graciousness. Venice concept that I live in the sky.
Then again it could be the
had more charm. Paris more Jerusalem seems to
of sage, thyme and
magic. What was so special
me. It's a place that in rosemary that wafts down
about Jerusalem?
personal terms you have in the early morning from
* * *
the Judean hills. It could be
There is no one moment to live up to.


World Zionist Press Service

the sense of history, as you
walk where kings and
prophets have walked,
where the Bible is a living
entity and where you go
about your daily lffe in the
city of King David.
* * *
, I think, for me, it is the
spirituality — a feeling of
God's presence. Not just
at the Western Wall, al-
though there you feel it
the most. Hardened
soldiers embraced it and
kissed its stones when it
became ours once more
in 1967.

fort you can't analyze, un- multi-lingual. It is the In-
less it's the belief 'that gathering of the Exiles and
Someone is really listening. it is eternity.
* * *
* * *
When I was a little girl,
Jerusalem is not a place,
it is an emotion. It is history my mother often enjoined
and tragedy, loss and vic- " me to count my blessings.
tory, the past and the fu- The greatest blessing of all
ture. It is the dream of our -is that I have come to live in
forefathers and our own Jerusalem, and that my
present reality. Above all it eyes have finally been
is people — a rich ethnic opened to perceive its
mosaic, multi-cultural and unique and abiding beauty.

Even when you're there

as a spectator, you cannot

fail to be moved at the sight
of men and women dwarfed
by the towering Wall,
chanting their prayers,
some crying over sorrows
they can relate only in this
holy place, writing notes
that they cram between the
crevices in the giant stones.
You approach it yourself
diffidently, feeling un-
worthy. Soon you too are
unburdening yourself -in
prayer and feeling the com-


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