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Saturday, April 06, 2013

Tired of being heros?

For years we've been told about how easy it is to make the transition from Memorial Day to Independence Day here in Israel (the two are on consecutive days which begin and end at sundown). Now, many of the bereaved families are understandably tired of sucking it up and pretending they can make that sharp switch. But they're still thinking within the box. They're calling for Memorial Day to be moved up by one day.
Tamir-Shurki and attorney Yossef Tamir posted a petition online calling on the State of Israel to mark Remembrance Day a day earlier, on Sunday, April 14, and thus create a gap between the day of mourning and the day of celebration. Nearly 5,000 people had signed the petition by Saturday.
"Remembrance Day may be the hardest day of the year for tens of thousands of families in Israel. This is a day in which the entire country joins in mourning and remembrance of the people closest to them [the bereaved families]," Tamir-Shurki said.
"The bereaved families go through an upheaval and enormous pain. Beyond the enormous mental pain, there is a physical effort, of running around from cemeteries to monuments and to different remembrance events. When the day is over, each bereaved person wants to lay their head down and rest. Instead, on their way home from the cemetery, they encounter roads blocked for Independence Day celebrations," he added. 
"A minute after their terrible day of mourning ends, everyone except for them moves to Independence celebrations all over the country, which is unbearable, and a continuous injustice to thousands of families in Israel," he bemoaned.
Tamir-Shurki added that the proximity of the end of Remembrance Day to Independence Day shows disrespect to the bereaved families and their fallen loved ones.
"The very people who paid the ultimate price (except for the fallen soldiers), are the ones who can't participate and find themselves on the outside of the national celebration," he said.
I agree with them. But I would go further. I would move Memorial Day to a date on which a significant number of soldiers were lost in battle or a significant number of victims of terror were lost. One day that comes to mind is the day of the battle of Sultan Yakub in the 1982  Operation Peace for Galilee. I'm sure others can think of others.

There is no intrinsic connection between the 4th day of the Jewish month of Iyar and the deaths of soldiers and terror victims. Surely a more appropriate day can be found.

And after that, maybe we can talk about finding a more appropriate day for Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah).

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At 6:01 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Or maybe we can talk about how the sons and sons-in-laws of you and your Haredi neighbors can join the IDF.


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