LIKE DREAM­ERS

The Jerusalem Post - The Jerusalem Post Magazine - - LETTERS -

David Gef­fen’s ar­ti­cle about Is­rael’s sec­ond birth­day (“Bask­ing in our nascent in­de­pen­dence,” May 3) was a won­der­ful piece of his­tory. But it would be wrong to see 1950 as his­toric while not rec­og­niz­ing the re­mark­able sig­nif­i­cance of our own mi­lieu.

I first vis­ited Is­rael in 1966, spend­ing two months here in the sum­mer of my bar mitz­vah year. The Six Day War and the re­uni­fi­ca­tion of Jerusalem were still a year away. The Old City was still Ju­den­rein, and I, along with ev­ery other Jew, was barred from en­try upon pain of death.

Then, two years ago, on the eve of In­de­pen­dence Day, I stood with tens of thou­sands of peo­ple out­side the Jaffa Gate as music played, lighted drones flew over­head in the night sky form­ing Li­ons of Ju­dah and Stars of David. The crowd cheered with a sin­gle voice in a thrilling, un­in­hib­ited com­mu­nal ex­u­ber­ance.

At the age of 13, I could never have imagined such a scene. More than half a cen­tury had passed, and for the first time I felt I knew what it meant in the bless­ing af­ter meals when we say, “When God will re­turn the ex­iles of Zion, we will have been like dream­ers.” ARI BAR-OZ Jerusalem

It it would be wrong to see 1950 as his­toric while not rec­og­niz­ing the re­mark­able sig­nif­i­cance of our own mi­lieu

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