I am enamored of our wondrous Jewish calendar, and am continually inspired by its myriad magnificent holidays and observances. Yes, I can say I have favorites, but I end up extolling all of them.
But there is one that I believe plays an extraordinarily pivotal role in the world today. The modern Jewish holiday of Yom HaAtzmaut – Israel Independence Day – takes on ever-increasing significance as anti-Semitism (sometimes disguised as anti-Israelism) continues to rear its ugly and dangerous head.
This age-old disease never seems to go away – it just takes on varied manifestations but continues to thrive as Jews-haters (sometimes disguised as Israel-haters) march on with their evil agenda aimed squarely at us.
Thus, I find heightened joy in celebrating with unbounded pride Israel Independence Day, lauding and adulating the magnificence that is the State of Israel with her eternal capital Jerusalem. I take great pleasure in sharing this celebration with all those who truly and unequivocally support Israel, who work to keep her strong, who contribute to her wellbeing and thriving, who stand behind her and alongside her, and who do everything to make certain that she feels loved and supported and protected.
While acknowledging our enemies, past and present, our holidays focus more time and energy celebrating our overcoming them, rejoicing in our wondrous heritage, and blessing all God has given us and that we have given to the world. Israel is one of those gifts, and we are grateful – as should the world be.
תחי מדינת ישראל -- T’chi m’dinat Yisraeil – Long live the State of Israel! Happy 71st birthday!