Jerusalem , A Divine Reality

yom yerushalayim3
Moshe Kempinski
Nothing in this world happens by happenstance or coincidence. The lines of human history intersect the lines of destiny and purpose all the time. This occurs regardless if those witnessing these encounters between” time and purpose” are aware of it or not. Such is the nature of our existence. The world we live in is called Olam in hebrew, and that very word is a whisper of its root denoting hiddenness.

It is not happenstance that as the new goverbnment of israelis being formed the worldleaders are begining to calmor against this land and against Jerusalem.Yet the simple Divine reality and the miracles of the Six day war will prove to be much more powerful than any leader in the world and any nation.

They all need to beneed to be reminded of a hot and humid June in 1967.For the months prior to those fateful days, the radio waves were filled with hatred and threats against the small sliver of a country called Israel. Gamal Abdel Nasser, the president of Egypt declared on radio” We intend on beginning an all out campaign, it will be a total war and our basic purpose is the eradication of the Israeli state” (27.5.67). Ahmed Shukeiri the head of the Palestinian resistance movement also delivered the following statement” Israelis who were born in Palestine that will still be alive after the war will be allowed to live in Palestine. But based on my best estimation not a single one of them will still be found alive.” (26.5.67)” Similar threats were being aired every day by leaders of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Even the darling of North American media, King Hussein of Jordan joined the war that began in June of 1967 with the following words,” Kill the Jews with everything that comes to your hands. Kill them with your arms, with your hands, with your nails and with your teeth.”

All this hatred and rhetoric before a “west bank” ever existed as a concept and prior to any delusions of “two states living side by side in peace”

The residents within the pre-1967 borders – which Israel’s famed orator and foreign minister, Abba Eban, called the “Auschwitz borders” – were busy digging mass graves in Tel Aviv and Netanya. All this in preparation for the onslaught that was coming their way. The World powers, as is their custom even to this day, continued their endless babble and diplomatic game-playing as the noose around Israel was continuing to tighten. Not that many years had passed since the disaster of the holocaust and the fear and anxiety was palpable.

Reuven was a seventy-year-old survivor of Auschwitz who had migrated to America after the Second World War and subsequently made Aliyah to Israel. He told his children that he was determined to live out the dreams of his ancestors in the land of G-d and spend his last years in Israel. As the reports from the Middle East became more frantic and threatening, Reuven’s children desperately tried to get him to return to the safety of America. He described to a friend of ours the daily arguments, pleading and tearful requests he had to endure from his family. He explained that he understood his children, but that he was tired of running and that this was his home and final place of refuge.

Meanwhile, all around him, the hatred kept growing. Around the land, a thick pall of foreboding lay heavily over the population.

Yet, in the midst of those fear-filled and hot days in June, G-d produced a miracle, and the mighty armies of all the Arab countries that had amassed around Israel were vanquished. All this was done in an astonishing six days. A small but determined army attacked and beat back the Russian-equipped hordes of the Arab world.

Just as the eight days of the Hanukkah miracle of oil was a Divine signature on the even greater miracle of the victory of the small band of Maccabees against their oppressors, so did these six days dispel the notion that anything in this country came into being by happenstance. In those heady days of victory and celebration, most of Israel’s population rejoiced at the notion that they had been a witness to a modern-day miracle.

Mr Reuven of Netanya had no doubts regarding the Divine nature of this experience. This seventy-year-old man got on the first bus that was traveling to Jerusalem after the ceasefire. As the bus drove along Jaffa Road, it broke down and all the occupants began to walk, almost mesmerized, towards the liberated Old City of Jerusalem. As they were nearing the walls, a group of Israeli paratroopers were passing by marching towards the Jaffa Gate. The soldiers then broke ranks and began dancing through the gates. Reuven, the seventy year old survivor from Europe, joined them and danced all the way to the Western Wall. His age was forgotten, his past became a whisp of smoke and his heart was rejuvenated as he danced and sang with these young soldiers.

Later, he was to remark to his friends in Netanya, “I don’t know how but I found the courage to stay in my new home despite the treats and the dangers. As a result, I Reuven who came out of the graveyard of Poland was given the zechut, the merit, to be able to join the soldiers of Zion in their joyous dance towards our holy mountain.”

May that type of spirit and resolve fill the hearts of our Prime Minister and his government as the struggle against the steadily mounting pressure from President Obama and the world. If any of them feel ill equipped to face that challenge they would do well to come to Jerusalem during Yom Yerushalayim .They could join the tens of thousands of Jews young and old who will be dancing through the streets of Jerusalem towards the holy mountain..If they then develop the courage to look to the heavens , they may merit to see that generations who have come before us , for they too will be dancing in the heavens on this day.

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