The chilling blast of the siren brought traffic, people and business to a standstill for two minutes of silence yesterday. It is an extremely emotional day and period for Israelis. We remember those who perished in the Holocaust, the tragedy of the ongoing hatred towards the Jewish nation and the shrill voices of our neighbors who still call for our utter destruction.
As we watch the television programs, read the books and share the personal stories of Survivors we feel so fortunate to be living free in our historic homeland, protected by the IDF, unlike the situation in Europe during the Shoah. We remember who we are, who watches over us and why we can never leave our security and defense in the hands of anyone but our own people.
Next week we will experience the day of Remembrance, Yom Hazikaron when we specifically remember our fallen heroes; there have been far too many for our tiny nation who have paid with their lives in defense of our right to dwell securely in the national homeland of the Jewish people.
This painting was inspired by a visit to the Memorial for the Fallen Soldiers of the War of Independence, which is located quite close to Modi’in. By reading Benny Morris’s great history book “1948” one develops a sense of reverence and awe for the miracle of our survival and for the sheer courage and determination of the young people who willingly placed their lives and futures on the line to secure our homeland. Each generation has continued to serve and to protect despite the wish for a normal, tranquil life of peace. They were, and are like these trees growing tall, straight and strong, standing firm in the winds of change and uncertainty.
When the siren again sounds, we will stop,stand still and remember.
Here are some links where you can find more information on Yom Hazikaron: