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From the Editor 220

Out of bondage to freedom – may this be the fate of our hostages. 

Our cover, by artist Yoram Raanan, depicts Crossing the Red Sea, our Jewish biblical history, out of bondage to freedom. May it be the Passover fate of our hostages in Gaza. Dr. Marvin Chinitz, who has written a Zionist Haggadah, believes that "Pesach is the most Zionistic holiday of the Jewish calendar … the holiday of

the Jewish redemption." Chinitz was interviewed by Michael Wolff. Gina Junger explains how we spend the night of Pesach in speaking in order to emphasize our freedom as slaves cannot speak freely. As we recall our passage from slavery to freedom we let our words flow freely. You might like to try our Pesach recipes by Nitzan Krivine, winner of Bake Off Israel, 2016.

Our emphasis in this magazine is on some amazing Israelis who since October 7 have devoted themselves to helping our soldiers and their families. The incredible efforts by volunteers doing their utmost to ease the plight of our soldiers in this terrible period of the Hamas-Israel War, reminds me of how the whole of Israel's peoples found creative ways of easing the absorption of over one million immigrants from the Former Soviet Union in the 1990s. My grateful thanks to Lucille Cohen and Marian Lebor, members of our Editorial Board, for their tremendous efforts to gather stories of volunteers from their respective areas, in the Five Towns and in Raanana. Our special section on War Volunteering features 14 projects, each expressing the care, concern and comfort that the volunteers show for our very courageous soldiers.

Israel is in our hearts. Galia Miller-Sprung writes about her love of Israel and Feeling Israeli, whatever that is. She says: "Israeli" is us. We are the Ingathering of the Exiles. Just look at the names of our hostages, our soldiers, our murdered family and friends … that represent many diverse backgrounds, cultures and ways of being Israeli. There cannot be one definition. And yet we are one." Jeannie Harrison, who spent three years in Senegal as the wife of the Israeli Ambassador, wrote in 2018: "I no longer say: I am from Israel. It leaves too much room for

interpretation … I say: "I am Israeli". You might ask what's the difference. … The plain truth is that almost nobody likes Israelis, and even less so Israeli diplomats." Teenage Maya Bachmann, in her article My Journey to Israel, explains why she chose to leave her life and family in Cape Town and make aliyah to Israel: "… following a deep-seated desire to fulfil our family's dream of making aliyah, I made the decision to move to Israel ahead of my family… the driving forces behind my choice … beyond our family's unwavering Zionistic ideals, … was the realization that waiting for the perfect moment might mean delaying our dreams for years. The chance to … contribute to the thriving Israeli community fueled my determination."

Let's focus on more young persons. There are the stories written by the third and fourth winners of our Young Writers Competition 2023: Error! Invalid Love Request by Alex Lytvak whose mother tongue is Ukrainian and A Twinkle in the Night by Katrina Makhoul whose mother tongues are Arabic and English. I find it very impressive that Israeli youngsters write so well in English. We also have a story by Nina Anderson, aged 14, who lives in New Zealand. She wrote about David Street in the Old City of Jerusalem as an assignment for English studies for Cambridge University U.K. and won an award for it.

With Pesach holidays approaching, here are a few suggestions for places to visit. Carol Novis was inspired by her visit to Israel's new National Library, both by the stunning architecture and the contents. She writes: "It is not just a repository for (8 million) Israeli books, documents and music … It encompasses the world's largest collections of textual Judaica, Jewish and Israeli music, maps, Jewish and Islamic manuscripts, rare books, photographs, community and personal archives." Lydia Aisenberg tells us about Kohav Hayarden (Belvoir) National Park and the gigantic sculptures of Igael Tumarkin which were inspired by the fortress and violent events that took place there in Crusader times. She also writes about an inviting small green paradise in the form of a Japanese garden on Kibbutz Hefzibah created by a Japanese movement known as the Makuya. This meticulously cared-for Japanese garden is dotted with Japanese sculptures, deep green lawns, dark and light green artistically fashioned bushes, a small waterfall and a pond filled with Koi fish — all oozing tranquility.

Book lovers, read Cindy Moritz' story on Yosef Halper's Bookstore on Allenby Street. For Israelis volunteering overseas, read how the Hartsteins brought eye care to Ethiopia. Debbie Sinai describes the Jewish Roots on the Silk Road. Health enthusiasts should read Lisa Brink on which foods are your natural pharmacy. Martin Sinkoff interviews the Yosopovs on wine. ESRA interviews Tanya Prochko on Changing Mental Health.

There are three articles by lawyers: Assaf Hasson writes about new regulations of the Ministry of Finance on the Cancellation of Reporting Exemptions for immigrants and returning residents and the Expansion of Reporting Obligations. Judy Rinot describes the Estate Distribution Agreement (EDA) and its new interpretations which are changing the way we execute and probate wills which can significantly reduce time, costs, bureaucratic hurdles, and conflict among legal heirs. Guy Carmi stresses the importance of making a will.

Bridge columnist Alan Caplan describes Timing the Play; Jennia Chodorov makes us smile with jokes; Maureen Hoch and Pat Zuckerman tax our brains with their Crossword.

Chag Pesach sameach.


English studies from Cambridge

studies from Cambridge




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Friday, 19 July 2024

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