Monday, May 9, 2011

Israel at 63

proaches its 63rd birthday, the contrasts are striking.

After 2,000 years, Jews once again have a home. Yet, it is in that home that we are most endangered of annihilation.

Israel has extended a hand in peace to its Palestinian neighbors countless times over the decades, yet the onus on peace remains with the Jewish people, at least according to the international community.

No country has done so much with so little. Israel's economy is booming, despite a lack of natural resources and international boycotts.

Perhaps a grieving father put it best at a ceremony for Yom Hazikaron, Israel's Memorial Day. Tzivka Shahak lost his daughter to a terrorist attack in 1996. He lives with the pain daily, he says. Yet we must remember our tragedies to overcome them.

"Given the challenges that await us in the future, only if the citizens remember these tragedies can we overcome them," Shahak said."Within the Israeli ethos, we know it is important to remember that this is our homeland, we fought for it, and we must protect it. From this place were will not leave, because we have no other country."

Indeed, we have no other country.

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